I like conferences. Done right, they're exhausting, as you spend every waking minute talking with people, making new friends, and making new connections. For example, at last night's Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit reception, I was chatting with Chris Wright, a noted Linux kernel developer. Tim Gardner stepped over to join us, and I made introductions. "Chris, Tim. Tim, Chris." Then, to add context, I mention, "Chris maintains the stable kernel series. Tim is a kernel maintainer for Ubuntu." Lights go on in both their eyes.
Chris: does Ubuntu carry a bunch of patches, bug fixes really, that might make sense for the stable kernel?
Tim: we do cherry-pick fixes out of mainline, yes, but we keep them separate so we know what we pulled and why.
Chris: it should make your life easier if you sent them to me – got them out of your hair.
Tim: I think you're right. I can think of a dozen patches that fit that bill. Let me find them and send them to you.
And just like that, a new connection, which will benefit Ubuntu immediately, and will improve the stable kernel series by pointing out several more bug fixes that are appropriate, thereby helping everyone who uses the stable series. Goodness all around, and all due to a "chance" meeting. I'm sure there will be hundreds of stories like this resulting from the summit this week.