Oxidize Berlin 2019 In Retrospect

Oxidize Berlin 2019 In Retrospect


On April 25th to 29th, Ferrous Systems organized and hosted Oxidize - the first global Rust conference focused on embedded and IoT subjects. It included a day with three workshops and a conference day with 13 talks.

Talks were practical and presented practical solutions, either by integrating Rust into existing systems or even shipping applications completely built in Rust. While many talks were about professional and deployed projects, others focused on fun things: like building a bluetooth stack from scratch to control an electric skateboard.

Embedded Rust in Full Force

Oxidize sold out weeks before the conference and hosted a number of 100 attendees, and workshops for 50 people. 10% of the attendees had participated in our very early supporter ticket sale! Thank you all for that! Oxidize was a way of testing the waters in this ecosystem and the response was far larger than we expected!

It was amazing to see that interest from both enterprise and hobbyist camp. Many companies had employees attended, expressing serious interest in the Rust embedded stack.

Workshop experience

Oxidize had three workshops:

  • A beginners workshop
  • An advanced workshop
  • One focused on RTFM

All of them were packed. Running time-constrained workshops is where Rust really shines: The opportunity to quickly get setup and start working on all platforms is really great! The possibility to run a beginners and an advanced workshop side by side gave people the chance to spontaneously switch in between in case they misjudged their skill levels.

We've published the material from our beginner and advanced trainings on our github.

Workshops were kindly supported by Decawave by providing the education boards.

Talk experience

Talks were wonderfully in-depth, with all speakers making a good case for all their works. With videos coming out soon, we won't spoil you the experience by discussing them ahead of time, though…

impl Days

Similar to RustFest, Oxidize had impl Days. impl Days are like Hackfest, but aimed towards advancing the ecosystem. This statement is intentionally broad: not everyone needs to work on Rust project stuff, it's also great to just be there and start learning. Newcomers advance the ecosystem!

Still, a lot things were tried and moved forward, and the Rust projects embedded working group used the chance to meet in person and discuss a couple of things in deep. Highlights include:

For a full list, see this document.

Thanks to all the sponsors

We'd like to take this chance to extend our thanks again to all our sponsors, especially ThoughtWorks for providing the venue! Mozilla, Decawave and ARM. Also, a great many thanks to all that paid their employees travel to the conference! See our website for a full list.

Oxidize 2?

That brings us to the final question: will there be another Oxidize? Well, not this year. The conference was at a scale though where organization was doable and we can see ourselves running another one. Given that we were sold out this year, this does raise the complexity: we would need to find a bigger venue, but with more lead time, I see that happening. Also, there's a couple of things to fix: increasing speaker diversity, making all processes go smoother and maybe changes to the format. If you have ideas or want to help out in any of these, please get in touch.