I recently traveled to the I Free Software Forum in Lisbon, Portugal, where I gave two talks. The first was on load balancing and the second focused on "Google e o Software Livre" (Google and Free Software). The main organizer of the conference was Ralf Braga, an old friend of mine from Brazil, who moved to Lisbon few months ago.

Both of the talks were well attended, which was great. During my load balancing talk, I covered things I found out while testing Linux Virtual Server and HAProxy, two open source software load balancing solutions. I explained a bit about the basics of load balancing, and then the pros and cons of each approach.

Lisbon is a very beautiful city. Everyone was chatting about the amazing growth of conferences about "Software Livre" in that country. There will be a total of 6 conferences about open source software around Portugal in just the next few months.

There were around of 200 people attending two simultaneous rooms of talks over two days, and most attendees were university students. One of the sponsors prepared the table for their booth in the same shape as the Ubuntu logo. Really cool. They also had Ubuntu pillows. Do we have Google Code pillows? We should. :)

The organizers are planning the second edition of the conference for next year already. I proposed to the participants that each one of them brings at least one friend who has never been to an free software conference before with them when they return. I know I'm already looking forward to going in 2008!

(The I Free Software Forum site is in Portugese. You can read an English translation.)