Friday, February 17, 2017

BSides Tampa 2017 report

This past weekend, February 11th, I was in Tampa for the 4th BSides Tampa Conference.  This is my second time attending, and second time presenting.

Overall it was a good conference.  There were some differences from last year, most positive.  They clearly need to move to a larger venue.  This year and last was at the Stetson Law Center in Tampa.  This location has a nice facility, but is limited in parking, and there is no place to get lunch.  Last year they brought in KFC for everyone, this year was food trucks.  But there was only 2 and I didn't have the time to get lunch before I had to do my session.

Now, they had planned on being elsewhere this year, but things fell thru. I don't know the whole story, but from what I gather the problems were from the venue side, not the fault of the organizers.  I find it sad that a certain type of venue that should be open to these sort of community events & organizations are making themselves more difficult to work with.  They are failing at a part of why they exist.

So hoping that next year we'll be at a bigger and better location.

This year they again had an opening and closing keynote, and both were great.  Now one was with an author, and while they noted they wouldn't have books on hand, some were expecting this.  Another thing to consider for the future.  They had about 5 or 6 tracks of talks going on.  So many they had to move some activities to a nearby building.  This building had the CTF and lockpick village, as well as all the job-related sessions.  The job-related stuff was an great addition to this conference.  Hopefully something we'll see at other conferences as well (they took inspiration from BSides LV for this).  Believe most talks were recorded and should be available on-line.

They had some nice stuff to give out.  Everyone got a nice water bottle, and all the speakers got a nice padfolio.

So I look forward to next year's event.

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