Developers Workshop 2009

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The Developers Workshop 2009 will take place the weekend of 6. and 7. June 2009 in Biel/Bienne, Switzerland.
This year a second Developers Workshop will be held, again in Biel/Bienne, Switzerland. The second one will be October 30th and 31st. See:

News Items

04. June 2009 ktk: Updated schedule information
19. May 2009 ktk: Schedule added.
18. May 2009 jvdh: Added registration information.
27. April 2009 ktk: Added some more hotel options.
23. April 2009 ktk: Initial website online, finally.


This event is a great gathering and is being organized for the fifth time now, by volunteers. As everything can be used for free we won't charge anything for DWS itself! We only ask to register yourself so we know who and how many are coming, to be prepared a bit. Please register at: DWS registration

And while this means a saving for you of about 50 Euro, it could be well spent on sponsoring units of course :-)
Like QT4 sponsoring
or Paul Smedley ports
or itself

Workshop Program

News: If you don't know anything about The Voyager Project and/or you are curious about the focus change of, check the new blog posting I did which explains a bit more.

For some time is working on a new project which will make it possible to describe user interfaces in a generic way for all kind of devices and interfaces. This project will be released as free software and will leverage existing technologies developed for semantic web. A lot of technologies that were developed the past years by people around Tim Berners-Lee and the Semantic Web.

At the developers workshop we will present the work we did the past months and we will talk about the concepts and challenges we have to solve.

Unlike previous editions, the workshop will follow a new scheme. On Saturday we will present the state of the project and various parts of it in detail. On Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning, we will have discussions about selected topics in workshop groups. For a final wrap-up, on Sunday afternoon we summarize the outcome of the discussions to the whole audience.

The topics we will talk about include things like semantic web, user interface abstraction and information description and linking.

For sure we will again provide enough space, wired or wireless network connection and lots of bandwidth.


Saturday Morning, Start 10:00:

  • Introduction to the Workshop schedule
  • Presentation of The Voyager Project: History and use cases
  • Technical Session: Semantic Web

Saturday Afternoon:

  • Two technical sessions: SOA, User Interface abstraction
  • First workshop/breakout session with participants: Thinking outside the box
  • Roundup from the first workshop

Sunday Morning, Start 10:00:

  • Second workshop/breakout session with participants: In depth discussions based on the technical sessions of Saturday

Sunday Afternoon, End: 17:00:

  • Roundup from the second workshop
  • Prototyping ideas
  • End session: Summary & next steps

Workshop Location

Besides famous watch companies like Rolex, Omega and Swatch the city of Biel in Switzerland is the home of one more cool company:! This means that the Developers Workshop 2009 will again take place in the city where was founded in 1997. I'm proud to do the hosting at the Berne University of Applied Sciences, the place where I did my studies and where I worked as a system administrator and teacher for several years.

Biel is a small, but cute, city close to Bern, the capital city. It's the boarder to the French speaking part of Switzerland, so people in Biel speak German and French, at least most of them :-) If you have some more spare time I recommend you to do a walk in the beautiful surroundings of Biel, for example the Jura mountains or around the lake. There is plenty to discover and with a bit of luck we will have a nice spring time in April.


Hope to see you there!

Adrian Gschwend
founder of

Getting to Biel/Bienne

Biel is the gate to the French speaking part of Switzerland, located in the western part of Switzerland. It is well connected to the railway system in Switzerland and easy to reach from about everywhere.

By train:
There are night trains to Basel, called CityNightLine, this is mainly interesting if you want to get to Biel from Germany, Holland or Austria (it works from Denmark as well some days). You reach Biel within one hour from Basel by train.

For other train connections consult your local train office, if you have to travel to Biel from an airport check the homepage of SBB, the railway company in Switzerland. For Geneva and Zurich you have to add Airport in the search field. For Basel and Bern Belp you need to take the local airport bus anyway.

By plane:
There is no large airport close to Biel but in Switzerland almost everything is close by anyway. So you can choose one of these airports if you want to get to Biel:

  • Zurich (ZRH) - The biggest airport in Switzerland, quite good connections to Biel (every 30 minutes). Takes about 1.5 hours by train.
  • Geneva (GVA) - good for Easyjet. There is just one train per hour to Biel, around 1.5 hours by train.
  • Basel (BSL) - also good for Easyjet. There are bus connections to Basel and from there it is one hour by train.
  • Berne Belp (BRN) - this is a small local airport, close to Bern but you still need to get to Biel and that's probably not much faster than Zurich because the Bus connections from this airport to Bern are not that great. From Bern it will take 30 minutes to Biel.

The local airline in Switzerland is Swiss, which offers quite good trips from bigger cities.

By car:
The address is Quellgasse 21, 2502 Biel, Switzerland. There are parking places in front of the building, ask at the registration desk about how to open the locks for the parking places. You can get a map here, it's number 2 on the map.


There are several classes of hotels available in Biel:

  • Lago Lodge - nice backpacker hostel directly at the lake of Biel. University is quite easy to reach by bus and the walk is not that far either.
  • Bed & Breakfast - Some B&B offers in Biel, click on the part of the map top left.
  • Hotel Continental - 3-star hotel close to the lake as well. The road is quite busy, so make sure you get a room towards the lake.
  • Hotel Metropol - 3-star hotel, 15-20 minutes walk to the University or bus.
  • Hotel Drei Rosen - 3-star Hotel, 10-15 minutes walk to the University or bus.
  • Villa Lindenegg - a very special and cute hotel in an old villa, 2 minutes away from the University, you can't get closer than that!
  • Mercure Plaza - 4-star hotel in the middle of the city
  • Hotel Elite - 4-star hotel close to the railway station. Takes less than 10 minutes to the University.

If you can't afford a hotel we offer a room at the University where you can sleep with your sleeping bag and your mattress. The room is in the old manufacturing of Rolex and there are showers available too. It's probably not really comfortable but you don't have to pay anything for that :-) Please contact Adrian Gschwend if you want to do that, we have to know how many people do it like this. Email: ktk [at]
Update: I made some pictures about the location:


If you have comments or want further information about the workshop, you can always reach us by sending an eMail to:
DevelopersWorkshop [at]
Adrian Gschwend is mainly responsible for organizing the workshop.