Michael Brewer wrote:
On Saturday, June 13th, I wound up manning the PostgreSQL booth at SouthEast LinuxFest, in Clemson, South Carolina. This free conference drew a larger crowd than I'd expected; organizers told me there had been some 450 registrants by the day before, and they were expecting a final total of over 500 (with walk-ups). I was on booth duty all day, so I don't know if that figure was accurate, but it was quite crowded (and a little too large for the venue). Clemson didn't seem to be that easy of a place to get to, but it turned out that folks came out from all over; I met people there from Tampa, Warner Robins (GA), Charlotte, and even Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. I had nice chats with Baron Schwartz and D. Richard Hipp, among other people; it was a large and friendly crowd, with many people either already using PostgreSQL or in the process of evaluating/moving to Postgres. (Unsurprisingly, several people cited Oracle's acquisition of Sun/MySQL as additional motivation to try Postgres.)
As I did at OSCON last year, I made some balloon animals, but the talk of this year's booth was the old tuba I brought along. (Picture of me in "Army of Smurfs" attire and tuba here.) People would approach the booth, ask, "So, what's with the tuba?"; I'd point out our logo, go, "Elephant, tuba....", and they'd think, nod, go, "Ahhhh!", and stay and chat a while. ;) (Plus, if I ever got bored, wanted to entertain some of the children that were walking around, or got challenged ["do you really know how to play that thing?"], I'd play a little ditty or two on there.) *Great* booth icebreaker; I highly recommend it for future conferences. ;)
To sum up: Great conference, big crowds (especially considering the location/date); if we get a chance, we should exhibit at SELF again next year.