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The following speakers will be presenting at AbleConf 2011:

Tim Thomas

Tim took an interest in technology early, already programming computer games at his high school where he grew up in Princeton, NJ. For over 20 years, Tim has applied his passion for innovation and technology to companies in industries from Travel and Music to Financial Services. In roles ranging from Programmer to Vice President, Tim has a 360 perspective of building cutting edge web sites and web communities, having overseen architecture and development for PaineWebber Properties, Smarter Living,, Berklee Media, and, a web-based organization that he founded and built on his own. He is responsible for a variety of technology-based innovations from smart interfaces that made computers accessible to technophobes to the concept that became the lucrative travel shopping meta-search site Booking Buddy.

Tim's passion for vehicles pre-dated his love for technology, when he took every opportunity to drive anything with a motor as a child. An auto engineer at heart, Tim has rebuilt his own cars to varying degrees, and has completely disassembled and re-assembled one of his motorcycles. The car he loved owning the most was his first car, a Rabbit GTI, and the car he has enjoyed driving the most so far has been a BMW Z3. His dream cars have changed over the years, starting back in the 60s with the Jaguar e-type (XK-E) and 1968 SAAB Sonett II V4, and some day he still hopes to take a Ford GT and a Bugatti Veyron for a "quick" spin. At Local Motors, Tim combines his passions for cool cars, technology, innovation and building a totally new kind of business from the ground up. Tim is currently the CIO of Local Motors.

Presenting: Open Source Cars

Matt Curtin

Matt Curtin graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Mass Communications, alternative media and online marketing. Matt has over ten years experience working in the private sector developing software and marketing solutions primarily for small business. He is currently co-owner of Mosaic Team, an online image management & custom solutions provider located in the East Valley.

Presenting: The Hale Theatre: A case study in getting the most out of Wordpress and the LAMP stack

Paul S Hahn

Paul Hahn has been developing professionally in C/C++ on GNU/Linux systems since 2000. Prior to that time, he worked as a junior system administrator on various UNIX and big iron legacy machines. Currently an independent software consultant, Paul has worked as a software engineer or senior software engineer for Shamrock Foods,, and VistaCare. Paul currently teaches an introductory programming class at Mesa Community College. In his free time, Paul likes to read, bike, attend Linux user group meetings and go off-roading in his 4x4. You can find out more about Paul by visiting him at his website.

Presenting: Competitive Advantages of Free/Open Source Software in a Logistics Enterprise


der.hans is the founder of ABLEconf. He's also chairman of the Phoenix Linux Users Group, founder of the Free Software Stammtisch and strategic advisor to TEDxPhoenix.

His strong belief in community and education drives his work as an adjunct instructor at Mesa Community College and his efforts with professional and community groups such as the Phoenix Linux Users Group, the League of Professional System Administrators and the Arizona Center for Germanic Cultures.

In his free time he likes to go camping, annually not set himself on fire and learn about sustainable culture. He is slowly learning gardening and loves to brag about his grandma's cheesecakes and Spätzle.

Presenting: Moodle GIFT Question Format
Paying for Free Software

Jason Holtzapple

Jason Holtzapple is a system administrator with 15 years of experience living in Phoenix, Arizona. He is currently employed by local Phoenix startup

Presenting: Tame your web site with the MODx content management system

David Huerta

After arriving in Arizona from the posh, cosmopolitan enclave of southeastern Idaho, David founded the DeVry Linux User Group (DeLUG) in 2003, an originally student organization that drew members and activities from the greater West Valley Free software community, including students at GCC and ASU West. David is currently serving his second term on the Board of Directors at HeatSync Labs as its Editor, publishing event information and most written content for HeatSync Labs, including blog posts highlighting the accomplishments of the local maker community. David is also the founder of, an open-source web search history obfuscation system and is an outspoken advocate for online privacy.

Presenting: Hackerspaces as innovation incubators

Dennis Kibbe

Dennis is Adjunct Faculty at Mesa Community College teaching the GNU/Linux operating system. Dennis has used Linux since 1998 and is an active member of the FOSS community.

Presenting: GIMP workflow for digital photographers

Jim Klein

Jim Klein is the Director of Information Services and Technology for the Saugus Union School District, a position he has held for nearly 16 years. Through over two decades of IT experience, Mr. Klein has become widely renowned as an aggressive technology leader, particularly in the areas of open source and social media. He has written a number of articles for industry magazines, advocates for education technology personally within his state and on capital hill, and serves on a number of national and international committees and panels.

Mr Klein has been recognized as a T.H.E. Journal Innovator, NetworkWorld All Star, and a National School Boards Association "20 to watch" educator, and is chairman of the Consortium of School Networking (CoSN) K-12 Open Technologies Initiative.

Presenting: Open Technologies in the Education Enterprise

Ed Nicholson

Ed Nicholson consults on the use of Information Technology and the deployment of free software.

Presenting: Freemind for Organizations

Bryan O'Neal

Bryan O'Neal has been in IT since 1984, and in IT professorially since 1994. During this time Bryan has focused on hardware engendering, telecommunication, database administration, server administration, and even desktop support for Windows and Macs. Bryan also had a short lived career as a Java developer.

Bryan has been using Linux and open source since 1999. Currently, Bryan works as a MySQL DBA for the worlds largest hosting provider. They are also the largest implementor of MySQL in the world, with over 2 million databases and several thousand Linux servers.

Bryan's complete biography is available at:

Presenting: Using Commodity Services To Create Elastic Computing Services

Ryan Rix

Ryan Rix is a free software developer and people hacker currently interning in Red Hat's Community Architecture team, promoting Red Hat's open source work in education and the FOSS ecosystem as a whole.

As a freshman at ASU, Ryan is involved in the local GNU/Linux and hacker community, working to bring wider local involvment in FOSS, both in education and small business.

Presenting: Keeping Calm in a Collaborative World

Dierk Seeburg

A native of Germany, Dierk Seeburg has been an editor and freelance English-German translator and interpreter for 20 years. Dierk holds a master's degree in biology and served as an adjunct faculty member at Mesa Community College before joining Choice Hotels International in Phoenix, working on Choice's multilingual website He has is own translation management company, IcoText and resides in Mesa.

Presenting: FOSS in Translation

Eric Shubert

IT was called Data Processing, and the primary user interface was a card punch machine when Mr. Shubert entered the field over 3 decades ago. Of course much has changed since then, but he continues applying technology to improve business productivity. Mr. Shubert was highly involved with Structured software in the '80s, which laid the foundation for Object Oriented technologies of the '90s and beyond. Self employed since 1988, he has worked at large corporations such as Allied Signal and Honeywell, but has more recently turned his efforts toward servicing the small business sector. He has been using Linux since Red Hat 9 in 2003, and has been a member of the PLUG community since then.

Presenting: Applying FOSS with Business Servers

Curtis Zinzilieta

Curtis serves as a Practice Executive with Dell's Platform Optimization Services team, responsible for setting strategy and implementation standards for customers moving from proprietary systems to open standards-based software and infrastructure. He has been involved with Open Source and Open Systems for over 18 years, and led or assisted with migrations at some of North America's largest and most innovative companies. Curtis has specific interests around performance optimization and workflow efficiencies utilizing open source software and practices.

Prior to joining Dell, Curtis spent 8+ years at Red Hat, most recently serving as Senior Manager for the central and western division Solutions Architecture field team. Curtis has also served as Director of IT at Technical Resource Management, where he was responsible for leading the development and migration of their laboratory information systems reinvention using Lean manufacturing techniques and Open Source software and systems.

Presenting: Business Migrations to Open Source Software