UniForum Austria has joined the growing list of international associations affiliated with UniForum. The group is headquartered in Vienna and has grown steadily from 15 members to about 150 since its inception in 1986.
Started as a support organization for those who work with UNIX professionally, the group holds meetings about once a month, where presentations and discussions are held on open systems topics. About twice a year, conferences are held in Vienna lasting two or three days, covering such topics as network administration, client/server architecture, decentralized data processing, and quality assurance in software development. "Topics that we are doing less now are straight system administration or straight coding," says Friedrich Kofler, general manager of F&F Electronics in Vienna and president of UniForum Austria. "We are doing more overviews of technology now, as well as presentations of technical papers."
UniForum Austria publishes a newsletter called Expert Domain which is distributed periodically to its members and other interested parties.
The association has two working groups, one on system and network administration and the other dealing with software quality assurance. "We are trying to establish some more groups," Kofler says. In addition, the group helped found a company that is dealing in commercial Internet access in Austria, and is a minority shareholder in the company. Although the association does not operate an Internet connection itself, it does intend to offer some newsgroups and mailing lists for the benefit of its members who have Internet access.
The Austrian group is affiliated with EurOpen, the European umbrella organization for UNIX user groups. Kofler further hopes that his group's affiliation with UniForum will broaden its international contacts and enable it to become involved in international events. "UniForum is well known for having good sources of information," Kofler says. "We are affiliating first for the quality of information and secondly to be strongly linked with an international association's membership."