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smithjr
From: smit...@eisner.decus.org (Charles T. Smith, Jr.)
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.0@decus.org>
Date: 9 Mar 94 22:32:00 GMT
Lines: 24

It's a sad day for DECUS when spin control has become a formal part of 
the society: 

> FUNCTION/COMMITTEE:  Public Relations
        
[text deleted]

>        There are three basic types of Chapter information which may
>        be addressed from time to time:
>        
>         o Pro-active - those unsolicited press releases describing plans 
>           for the society (announcements of events, etc.)
>        
>         o Responsive - responding to legitimate press inquiries and 
>           industry events (If DNR calls with a question, who should they
>           talk to, etc.)
>        
>         o Reactive - quick responses in "fire-fighting" type situations 
>           that may come up from time to time (especially now given the    
>           volatile state of some members of the society)

I find the last highly amusing.  Just for the record, many organizations
do this sort of thing, but most would never write it down.  I suppose 
I should applaude the honesty.

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smithjr
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.1@decus.org>
From: "Charles T. Smith, Jr." <smit...@eisner.decus.org>
Date: 15 Mar 94 12:25:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.0@decus.org>
Lines: 16

Well, I must confess my surprise.  I had thought there was no way that the
current powers that be could further insult and injure the x-provider base.
It seems, however, they came up with a way.

I understand that there is consideration to using local students for 
session chairs in New Orleans.  Those willing to volunteer would get
waived registration.

Note that we can't (at least without much screaming and nashing of teeth)
grant a waiver to an industry expert like Linus Torvalds or to folks willing
to come in and present their session...but we can give waivers to 
college kids to do a job that that folks used to be willing to volunteer
to do (at least back when there was an infrastructure to set it up).

My opinion is that the whole thing "inhales briskly".

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smithjr
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.2@decus.org>
From: "Charles T. Smith, Jr." <smit...@eisner.decus.org>
Date: 15 Mar 94 12:31:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.1@decus.org>
Lines: 19

I had originally though incorporating a trade show with DECUS was a Good
Thing;  however, one of the concerns was which was dog and which was the
tail.

I'd have thought the symposia was the dog, and the trade show the tail;
if this is the case, the tail is wagging the dog.

I understand that the lunch "break" was requested by and promised to the
trade show group;  that any attempts to change this were not considered.

I guess we can extrapolate just how empowered the program commitee is,
and who is really in the driver's seat.

I also find it telling that most of the logistics team has quit, and
most of the program team is unwilling to serve again.

Would it not be simpler to remove any fiction of member involvement, and
simply turn the whole damn thing over to Tally?

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richon
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.3@decus.org>
From: "New Orleans Program Team" <ric...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 15 Mar 94 16:20:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.2@decus.org>
Lines: 19

    re: 204.1

>I understand that there is consideration to using local students for
>session chairs in New Orleans.  Those willing to volunteer would get
>waived registration.

    There was a trial baloon floated by a staff person to use students to
    chair sessions.  They would sit in a room all day to chair.  No mention
    was made of waived registration.

    The sender of the message also made it clear that she was trying to free
    volunteers from an odious task (being onsite session chair coordinator,
    I can state that it is odious).

    At the end of the message she also made it clear that this was just an
    idea, and could be shreaded, improved upon, or ignored.

    I have just asked that staff person permission to post her original 
    message.

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richon
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.4@decus.org>
From: "New Orleans Program Team" <ric...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 15 Mar 94 16:27:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.3@decus.org>
Lines: 14

    re: 204.2
    
I understand that the lunch "break" was requested by and promised to the
trade show group;  that any attempts to change this were not considered.
    
    Not quite.  The trade show folks asked for a break so people would have
    a chance to come to the floor.  The Event team proposed a lunch break
    as part of the overhaul of the structure of the event.  The two were
    not related.
    
    The Program Committee decided to put them together as the best way to
    satisfy both groups.  Attendeees are, of course, free to eat lunch,
    visit a campground, take a nap, go to a BOF, or even go to the trade
    show.

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smithjr
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.5@decus.org>
From: "Charles T. Smith, Jr." <smit...@eisner.decus.org>
Date: 15 Mar 94 17:47:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.4@decus.org>
Lines: 8

>    Not quite.  The trade show folks asked for a break so people would have
>    a chance to come to the floor.  The Event team proposed a lunch break
>    as part of the overhaul of the structure of the event.  The two were
>    not related.

I'm afraid some of your teammates are in disagreement with you about the two
being related. 

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Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.6@decus.org>
From: "New Orleans Program Team" <ric...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 16 Mar 94 10:22:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.5@decus.org>
Summary: More about the Lunch Break
Lines: 39

>>    Not quite.  The trade show folks asked for a break so people would have
>>    a chance to come to the floor.  The Event team proposed a lunch break
>>    as part of the overhaul of the structure of the event.  The two were
>>    not related.
>
>I'm afraid some of your teammates are in disagreement with you about the two
>being related. 

    Standard disclaimer: I speak only for myself.
    
    I just talked with Joe Pollizzi, and the idea of a lunch break first came
    up at a meeting held to discuss changes to Symposia last
    October/November.  The idea of the lunch break is to promote more
    person to person interactions at BOFs, campgrounds, and conversations
    in hallways.  As he put it, if the intention was to promote the trade
    show we would close *everything* down except the trade show.  So
    according to the guy who put the lunch break in, it has nothing to do
    with the trade show.
    
    Somebody (staff, board, other, I don't know) did tell the trade show
    folks back in SFO that there would be a break.  Tally is a partner in
    the Symposia now, their needs should be heard and considered, but
    should not be, IMO, a driving force.
    
    Now when the program committee met, we had these two things on the
    table: one, there would be a lunch break; two, somebody speaking for
    DECUS had promised a break.  If we were being driven  by the trade
    show, we would have put a break right in the middle of the afternoon,
    and shutdown everything else.  Instead we looked at it and said, here's
    this break for lunch that Events Team says we have to have, let's use
    that to satisfy the promise made to Tally.
    
    At least, that's how it went to the best of my recollection. (Gee, can
    you tell I live near Washington DC? ;} )
    
    Would things have been done differently if that promise had not been
    made to Tally?  IMO, no.  The Event's team originally put down a two
    hour no-sessions lunch break, and we cut it back to an hour.  I really
    doubt that we would have cut it to zero.

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richon
Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.7@decus.org>
From: "New Orleans Program Team" <ric...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 16 Mar 94 10:30:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.6@decus.org>
Summary: More about Students as Session Chairs
Lines: 32

Here is, with Paula's permission, her original message about using students.  
I have removed only the mail headers and trailers.  Objections were raised
to this, and I have no idea at this point if this idea is dead or being
looked into, but I'll find out.

Date:	 7-MAR-1994 14:07:24.43
From:	MX%"MO...@decus.org"
Subj:	Suggestion
To:	RICHON
CC:	

Well, folks, now that scheduling is behind us, we have to
figure out how to get session chairs.  

For many years, I have listened to the SIG Chairs say that 
finding Session Chairs is one of the jobs that the SIGs would
like to get rid of (things may have changed, but I doubt it...
actually, Tim, Karen and Ron can speak to this).

One suggetion I have it trying to get to one of the local
Universities/Colleges to get student assistance.  The student
would be responsible for a particular room for the day.
We would supply the student with introductory materials and
it would the student's job to verify the speakers with Gloria
Caputo so that they get their appropriate thank-you certificate and
gift.

Feel free to trash this, but I thought it might start some 
thinking.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.8@decus.org>
From: "Dave Gudewicz-CARTS LUG Chair" <gudew...@eisner.decus.org>
Date: 16 Mar 94 14:39:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.7@decus.org>
Summary: I thought I was helpin'
Lines: 7

    What was wrong with using the "membership" as volunteers to be session
    chairs?  I did it for years, and would do it again, but that seems to
    have gone bye-bye also.
    
    I thought I was helpin' out!
    
    Dave...

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Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.9@decus.org>
From: "Terry Kennedy" <kenn...@eisner.decus.org>
Date: 16 Mar 94 15:10:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.8@decus.org>
Summary: Historical anecdote
Lines: 13

>     What was wrong with using the "membership" as volunteers to be session
>     chairs?  I did it for years, and would do it again, but that seems to
>     have gone bye-bye also.

  When I was involved with the RSTS SIG, the SIG Steering Committee wound up
chairing almost all of the sessions due to the difficulty in getting volun-
teers. I heard the same thing from many other SIGs as well, so it wasn't just
a RSTS SIG thing. Not having to scrounge for chairs would have been helpful -
I think some Steering Committee folks wouldn't have considered being on the
SC at Symposia such a "ball and chain".

  On the other hand, we found that members who *did* volunteer to chair a
session were often willing to do other things with the SIG as well.

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Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.11@decus.org>
From: "UNIX SIG/MIF ChairBear" <reis...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 16 Mar 94 21:59:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.10@decus.org>
Summary: We never had trouble
Lines: 26

>              <<< Note 204.9 by EISNER::KENNEDY "Terry Kennedy" >>>
>                            -< Historical anecdote >-
>
>>     What was wrong with using the "membership" as volunteers to be session
>>     chairs?  I did it for years, and would do it again, but that seems to
>>     have gone bye-bye also.
>
>  When I was involved with the RSTS SIG, the SIG Steering Committee wound up
> chairing almost all of the sessions due to the difficulty in getting volun-
> teers. I heard the same thing from many other SIGs as well, so it wasn't just
> a RSTS SIG thing. Not having to scrounge for chairs would have been helpful -
> I think some Steering Committee folks wouldn't have considered being on the
> SC at Symposia such a "ball and chain".

We (UNISIG, now UNIX MIF) never had trouble gathering session chairs.  There 
were always some sessions that the steering committee members wanted to chair,
and the rest we collected at the Sunday night social.  We have a Session Chair
Coordinator as a position on the committee, and she never had trouble gathering
up the needed warm bodies.

>  On the other hand, we found that members who *did* volunteer to chair a
> session were often willing to do other things with the SIG as well.

Yup, once they get hooked on the volunteer-thing, we had them.  Of course, the 
"New DECUS" is going to be volunteer-free.....

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Newsgroups: comp.org.decus
Subject: Re: The "New" DECUS
Message-ID: <boardpublic.204.27@decus.org>
From: "UNIX SIG/MIF ChairBear" <reis...@topaz.decus.org>
Date: 17 Mar 94 23:24:00 EST
References: <boardpublic.204.26@decus.org>
Summary: The Old DECUS
Lines: 87

Although this was generated in response to something outside of this 
discussion, perhaps it is time to rmember a few of the things in the
"Old DECUS" which were found to be of value to some of us.  This is
posted with permission.

From h...@zk3.dec.com  Tue Mar 15 16:51:11 1994
To: "Mary B. Oskirko 508-841-3584" <OSKI...@decus.org>
Cc: h...@zk3.dec.com, uni...@grant.mtxinu.com
Subject: Re: UniForum 
In-Reply-To: Your message of "Tue, 15 Mar 94 20:02:00 GMT."
From: "Jon 'maddog' Hall, USG Product Management" <h...@zk3.dec.com>

Mary,

I am a Digital employee, but I was also once a customer, and I can tell you
what brought me to DECUS, and why it interests me as a UNIX user.

Twenty-five years ago I was a student at Drexel University (then Drexel
Institute of Technology) in Philadelphia.  Computer Science did not exist at
that time, it was "computer Black Magic".  We stumbled through doing the things
(writing compilers, operating systems, etc.) that today (with modern day theory
and tools) can be done in a single semester by a sophmore student.

Out of that morass came two main items:

	o Digital Equipment Corporation's PDP-8
	o DECUS

From the PDP-8, and using the paper-back books that my salesman *gave* me, I
learned how to program the PDP-8 in assembly language.  This was the second
computer I ever programmed, having learned a little FORTRAN while as a coop
student.  It was the first time that I actually began to understand how a
computer worked.

While the PDP-8 was great, I wanted to get more software.  But as a student
I could not afford a lot of money.  Enter DECUS with its catalog of freely
distributable software.  It was not *completely* free, since it came on paper
tape, and you had to pay for the duplication costs.  But it was "free enough".
It got me started.  Software that was written by users of PDP-8s, and
donated to other users through DECUS.  An organization that you joined just
by using Digital's equipment!!

Years later, after programming on large computer systems from a vendor who
should remain unknown, I ran into Digital and DECUS again.  This time I was
the Department Head of Computer Science at a small two-year technical college.
Once again I was on a tight budget, and once again I got interesting software
for my students through DECUS.  I will remind you that up until this time I had
never attended a DECUS event, nor payed any DECUS "dues".  All I had to do was
use the two Digital Computers (a PDP-11/70 and a PDP-11/34) that I had in my
lab.

I left the school to work at Bell Laboratories.  There I learned
UNIX, and while most UNIX people "rolled their own code", even in those early
times there were UNIX people in DECUS trading information about the software
and the hardware.

Finally I came to Digital, and I was able to attend a DECUS national event.
Trying to pay back all those years of DECUS contributing to me, I developed
talks to give to people trying to learn UNIX.  I donated the software that I
had written (troff macros to create good-looking resumes which still work after
ten years, thank-you!!).  I met the UNISIG steering committee, and although a
scrappy bunch from time to time, they epitomize those elements of DECUS and
UNIX that I have enjoyed:

	o always willing to help someone who has a question or problem
	o freely willing to donate their time to advance "the cause"
	o freely willing to give code, shell scripts, etc.
	o contributing code for a tape of UNIX applications

But DECUS is a lot more than UNIX, and while a lot of customers look at it as
a "VMS show", it is really a technical conference where you can learn about
UNIX, networking (TCP/IP, NFS, DECnet, PC/LAN, Novell, etc.), MSDOS, NT,
OpenVMS, and layered products of all types all in one place.  There is no other
computer technical conference that I know of that spans this range of topics,
nor has survived this long on the power of volunteers.

DECUS, in my mind, is the best of the incorporation of USENIX, UniForum,
and the Free Software Foundation.  Long may it live!!!

Jon "maddog" Hall
Senior Manager
UNIX Software Group
Digital Equipment Corporation

P.S. Yes, I will be at UniForum, and at New Orleans DECUS

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