Bosnia and Herzegovina is the heart shaped land that lies in the heart of southeast Europe. It is here that eastern and western civilizations meet. Sometimes conflicted, but often more enriched and reinforced each other throughout country's long and fascinating history. Some 15 years ago (17 to be exact), Bosnia and Herzegovina was about to break up/fall apart completely as a country, slayed by mass war. Now 17 years later, different times have came for our country, it's about time we start doing something and properly build one of the most important grounds of this country. We are ready to take initiative and host DebConf, and as we like to believe it, this could mean a major technological boost for our country. Since Bosnia lies in middle of Balkans this DebConf could also be refered to as Balkans DebConf.
Banja Luka is the university, financial, political and administrative center of Republika Srpska (one of the two entities in Bosnia and Herzegovina), and with about 270.000 inhabitants, the second largest city of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is a modern European city, a recognizable center in its surroundings, found on civil rights, in which all the citizens have equal possibilities to actively participate in everyday life and where young people have an emphasized place. Safe, human and urban life surroundings, with a rich cultural and sport contents, where entrepreneurship, knowledge, capability and results are recognized and valued. * http://www.banjaluka-tourism.com * http://www.banjaluka.rs.ba
Full Government Support We have full government support, while city of Banja Luka and goverment of Republika Srpska offered us with both full moral and financial support for this event to take place. City and whole entity officials are highly interested into switching their whole government/city infrastructure to Debian. Besides governmental support, we have talked to many leading IT companies in country and they have expressed great interest in sponsoring this event. Adnan Hodzic (team leader) and the Prime Minister
Airports: Banja Luka has an international airport. New airline (Sky Srpska http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sky_Srpska) is being formed which we hope will extend its capabilities in future. The distance between the airport and the highway Gradiska is about 1 km; the City itself is about 23 km away from the airport. The closest airports are in: <ul><li>Zagreb (2 hrs with a car)
Belgrade (5 hrs with a car). </li></ul>If traveling with a Bus, add about 1-2 hrs extra. More: http://wiki.debconf.org/wiki/DebConf11/BanjaLuka#Arrival
Conference Facilities Banja Luka has "handful" of possible venue options. However best two options; especially since we got full support by government of Republika Srpska are the main Government building and Bans Palace.
Network Connectivity: Internet Provider: - We are aiming at M:Tel (http://www.mtel.ba/). They can give us the best service, and we should be able to get them to sponsor us or at least give us a discount.M:tel offers 34 Mb/s, 155 Mb/s links. - SARNET - Academic and Research Network of Republic of Srpska. Free 1Gbps fiber optics internet connection. Most of educational and institutions of culture within the city are connected, including Bans Palace. The whole City is HIGHLY wired. Also, it should be noted that most of the coffee shops/restaurants offer WLAN.
Accommodation Hotel Bosnia, Hotel Vidovic ... Since all kind of accommodation facilities are in close distance from selected venues. And it should be possible to reserve the whole place and enough rooms upfront without too much problems.
Fun and Free time Banja Luka is known for having a lot of amusement possibilities. Clubs, free activities, we could also organize a tour, around some interesting touristic places in the surroundings.
For daytrip rafting would be great for attendees to relax and enjoy themselves. One such interesting location in those summer days would be Aquapark with great relaxation and pool facilities and as well a very nice Rouge Bar and restaurant.