GUADEC is an acronym for the GNOME Users And Developers' European Conference. Held annually in cities around Europe, GUADEC is the largest congress of GNOME users, developers, foundation leaders, individuals, governments and businesses in the world. It highlights the capabilities and direction of GNOME – the user environment for desktop computers, networked servers and portable Internet devices. GUADEC also features discussions of the future of Free Software and Open Source development in general.
The History of GUADEC
This is the 12+1th year in which the developers and users of GNOME will gather in person to discuss the future direction of the project and to spread word of GNOME and the benefits of Free Software. The story of GUADEC begins in Paris in 1998 where a number of GNOME developers, who had worked together via the internet, thought it would be nice to finally meet in real life. They have met at the GUADEC conference every year since then. In the last times, each two years they meet with the KDE Community in order to collaborate in the progress of the free desktop enviroments. Every year, at different cities across Europe GUADEC brings together more than 500 people, with a dazzling array of keynote speakers from several sectors such as government and education, as well as GNOME community leaders. Between the years 2000 and 2010, GUADEC was in Paris (France), Copenhagen (Denmark), Seville (Spain), Dublin (Ireland), Kirstiansand (Norway), Stutgart (Germany), Vilanova (Catalonia), Birmingham (England), Istanbul (Turkey), Gran Canaria (Spain) -- "Gran Canaria Desktop Summit", co-located with Akademy -- The Hague (Netherlands), Berlin (Germany) -- "Desktop Summit", co-located with Akademy. As for GUADEC 2012, it will take place in A Coruña (Spain).
The GNOME Project was started in 1997 by two then university students, Miguel de Icaza and Federico Mena. Their aim: to produce a free (as in freedom) desktop environment. Since then, GNOME has grown into a hugely successful enterprise. Used by millions of people across the world, it is the most popular desktop environment for GNU/Linux and UNIX-type operating systems. The desktop has been utilised in successful, large-scale enterprise and public deployments, and the project’s developer technologies are utilised in a large number of popular mobile devices.