History of the Flourish! Conference
What happens when you put Microsoft and a penguin together? Would you believe Flourish got its roots from this odd couple pairing? It's true! Tux at Flourish 2008! In the Fall of 2006, the University of Illinois at Chicago Linux Users Group (UIC-LUG) were distributing GNU/Linux CDs outside the Microsoft Internship Information Session on campus. Many students accepted our CDs and many more got a good laugh from our mascot, a UIC-LUG member dressed in a full body Tux the Penguin costume. After the information session had started, a man walking by commented about wondering why Microsoft would arrange to have a person dressed as a Penguin outside their information session. The student dressed as Tux explained to the man that we were not from Microsoft and that we were there to spread awareness of GNU/Linux and FLOSS software. The man then asked us a very good question, “Does Linux bring jobs to UIC?” In response to the man's question, the UIC-LUG decided to organize a conference to explore if FLOSS trully provides jobs and opportunities for growth. As a result, our annual Flourish conference was born.