Some observations while on an 8 hour (night) train ride to the 23rd Chaos Communication Congress (23C3) in Berlin:
There's a lot of press coverage about the congress already, so I won't repeat all of that here. Just let me tell you that there's a tremendous amount of great lectures, many of which I have attended (and they're also streamed on the web, as well as broadcast via DVB-T locally here in Berlin, which is great!).
Some history background:
A document of Charlemagne (Karl der Große or Charles the Great) from 806 mentions for the first time a "Kammergut" (estate) he owned, namely Ingoldesstat — which later became the city Ingolstadt (not too far away from Munich). Yes, that's the Ingolstadt you know from Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein. Ingolstadt will celebrate the 1200th "birthday" in 2006...
The aim of the archaeological project Ingoldesstat-finden is to find the exact place where the first settlers of Ingolstadt lived. Some recent findings indicate that the original Ingoldesstat was not where the city center is today...
The project, lead by Hans Strobl, has many volunteer participants, ranging from archaeologists, historians, art restorers, designers, photographers, videographers and — finally — a computer science student who created their website ;-)
There's a photo gallery which documents the excavations, findings, activities and people behind the project. I also set up a group blog so that all people involved can blog about what they do... It was a lot of fun for me to work with these people to get the site up and running and I'm curious how it will develop — my hope is that it will become a lively site with lots of discussions.
The thing that fascinates me most about this project is that so many citizens of Ingolstadt take part, help with excavations, wash findings, take photos etc. etc. I'll probably also take part in some of the archaeological stuff in the future. Expect to see me "digging in the dirt" soon, in the truest sense of the word ;-)
Software patents were stopped in India. We can prevent them in Europe, too. But we need to act. Now.