So, why isn't Aegir at DrupalCon Denver?
I've been asked that question repeatedly over the past couple months, and so I figured I'd write up a little explanation for anyone else that's curious.
In case you don't know what Aegir is (nevermind how it's pronounced), I'll take a minute for a brief intro. The Aegir Project is, to our knowledge, the only fully free and open source Drupal provisioning tool available to the Drupal community. It allows for painless deployments, backups, migrations and updates of a whole network of Drupal sites. Being built exclusively on Drupal and Drush, it can easily be extended by anyone already familiar with the tools and techniques of Drupal development. We have a vibrant community that centers around our IRC channel (#aegir on freenode.net), our community site, and the various d.o issue queues that make up the project. There are also a number of shops offering professional services and hosted solutions (such as Omega8.cc and us at Koumbit).
After DrupalCon Chicago, this is what Dries had to say:
Aegir is an important tool in the toolbox of the Drupal community.
So, first off, it isn't that we didn't want or intend to be present at DrupalCon Denver. Two of Aegir's maintainers, Steven Jones (darthsteven) and Antoine Beaupré (anarcat) submitted sessions, as did I (ergonlogic) and at least one other community member. Koumbit (along with Steven) also submitted a pre-conference training proposal. Unfortunately, none of these were accepted. This came as a bit of a shock to us, as our sessions at DrupalCon London had been very well attended; standing-room only, and overflowing into the hall. The pre-conference training there also received mostly positive reviews.
Without such high-profile events, it was hard to justify our attendance. Most of the maintainers are spread out between the UK, Poland and Australia, and travel to the US can be prohibitively expensive. Koumbit, though based in Montreal, is a non-profit, and members here faced a similar dilemma.
Thankfully, some intrepid community members organized a BoF (thanks notzach & shrop, among others!), which seems to have been well attended and lively.
That said, we intend to re-double our efforts to ensure we have sessions at DrupalCon Munich, and future DrupalCons. Also, we're very active in regional DrupalCamps (Koumbit in the north-east US & Canada, Steven across the UK, etc.), and we can always be found on IRC, the community site or the d.o issue queues. So if you're interested in the project, feel free to reach out to us any time, not just during the big conferences. :)