Takeaways from recipients who attended the Open Infrastructure Summit Denver.

It’s a heck of a job. Members of the travel committee were tasked with choosing just nine Travel Support Program (TSP) recipients from the 85 valuable community members who applied. The reward was seeing them at the Open Infrastructure Summit in Denver and knowing they’re contributing to the road ahead.

The committee picked a diverse group: five nationalities, of which five are Active Technical Contributors, two are Active User Contributors, four are Active User Groups members and the group as a whole contributes to 11 projects.

“The Summit and PTG are both important events for contributors to OpenStack Foundation to collaborate and build relationships,” says recipient Michael Johnson. “The program helps key members of our community attend when circumstances may not have allowed them to [otherwise].”  And while the OpenStack Foundation sets a budget to sponsor folks for every summit, the demand always exceeds request.  With support from donors, both individuals and organizations – thanks again everyone! – even more people can come together.

The Open Infrastructure community contributes from all points of the globe. Still, nothing can replace trading ideas, asking questions and swapping hacks in person.  The biggest takeaway for this group of TSP recipients? The program allowed them to meet, converse, collaborate and generate ideas in real life, in one place. For some, it means putting an IRC nickname to a face, a series of emojis with a real-life raised eyebrow. What starts with an excited handshake often leads to a heartfelt hug goodbye.

The program is part and parcel of what it means to be open. “[We] collaborate across communities, companies and cultures, bringing together people from all over the world with their experiences, their perspectives and their contributions to create something new, special and useful,” underlines Jonathan Bryce in his keynote.

If you or your organization is interested in learning more about sponsorship and how to contribute to the Travel Support Program, please contact us at summitATopenstack.org. Because after all, as Rico Lin, one of our recipients says, “It’s more than the value of the money. It’s an investment [in our contributors].”

Applications for Travel Support for Open Infrastructure Shanghai in November will open soon, stay tuned to Superuser for details.

Photo // CC BY NC