The KiCad community is to get its first-ever dedicated conference this year, in the form of KiCon 2019 which is to be held this April in Chicago, USA.

Designed to bring together both users and developers of the open-source KiCad electronic design automation (EDA) software suite, KiCon 2019 has been announced by organiser Analog Life. While a selection of speakers have already been confirmed – including KiCad project lead Wayne Stambough and developer Maciej ‘Orson’ Sumiński, Great Scott Gadgets’ Michael Ossman, KiCost, KiField, and SKiDL creator Dave Vandenbout, and event organiser Chris Gammel – additional presentations, talks, and workshops are being welcomed.

“We are looking for community members to propose talks, which will be recorded and uploaded for the rest of the world to utilise,” writes Chris Gammel. “We’re looking for stories about tools, methods, and successes using KiCad in manufacturing, research and business. This conference will bring together the power users of the tool to talk about how they use KiCad on a regular basis and to share that knowledge with others.

“This conference stemmed from a growing online community of KiCad users,” Chris continues. “This conference is a first attempt at getting those online denizens all in one place at one time. FOSDEM is a gathering of open source software developers and is a great place to learn more about how to contribute to the KiCad project as a software developer; these developers are a key piece to the advancement of the project. Each year Wayne Stambaugh gives a ‘State of KiCad’ talk that is delivered to a packed room. However, the focus there is on the development of KiCad, not the every day use of KiCad. This conference is to focus on KiCad users and advancing the state of the art of using open source tools for hardware development.”

The inaugural KiCon is scheduled for the 26th and 27th of April 2019 in Chicago’s mHUB. More information, for those interested in attending as well as those looking to propose a talk or workshop, can be found on the official website.