The Linux Beer Hike in Belgium

Belgium 2.0

Article from Issue 144/2012

Land of the fries, home of the beer? Belgium has more to offer than that! In 2001 the LBW went to Bouillon, and this year the geeks returned to the small country in Western Europe – specifically to Diksmuide in West Flanders.

Douglas Adams would have been proud of us: 42 geeks turned up for the 14th Linux Beer Hike (a.k.a. Linux Bier Wanderung). From the 12th to 19th of August 2012 hikers and hackers from various countries all over the world came together in the small town of Diksmuide, the municipality in the Flemish province of West Flanders. We might not have had the “Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything,” and we had no enormous supercomputer, but we had Linux laptops, smartphones, and other toys, towels, hiking boots, bicycles, GPS devices, and maps.

I always look forward to the week of LBW each summer as a great way to get together, learn from others, explore the country, and enjoy the local cuisine. On our way to the venue, we passed thousands of cyclists – not surprising, given that Belgium has miles of fine bicycle paths along scenic canals away from car traffic. Some of us turned up on our own bikes, and one geek even left home a week in advance to cycle all the way from southern Germany to West Flanders, more than 1,000 kilometers!

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