Life in Open Source Communities, live at ApacheCon!

October 30, 2009

notmuch.jpgI have just finished my slides for next week at ApacheCon. Though the topic of how to “survive” in our open source communities has been on my mind for a while, this is a totally new presentation, which is both great (in the blank slate sense) and a lot of work.

cocoon-step.jpgHaving recently read Presentation Zen (very recommended if you do presentations and/or like beautiful books), I started adding full-screen pictures to the first few slides, and couldn’t stop! The presentation will then consist of me ad-libbing (or more precisely trying to tell stories) on a series of nice pictures grabbed from morguefile.com (don’t worry about that name).

allabout.jpgI’ll post the slides here later, for now they are super secret, so you’ll just get the teasers…images courtesy of morguefile.com (update: slides added now).

Hope to see you next week! In any case I have collected a number of useful links in my delicious bookmarks, I’ll point people to them in the presentation.


Open Source Collaboration Tools are Good for You – relooked and live tomorrow!

April 1, 2009

I have relooked and slightly expanded this presentation for tomorrow at OpenExpo in Bern – the main addition is a discussion of the fear of making mistakes in public.

Talking to attendees last week at ApacheCon shows that people often struggle to introduce these tools and the open way of working in their companies. It seems like that fear can be an important blocking factor, and people are rarely explicitely aware of it.

(See how serious I am? This is April 1st and I’m not even making lame jokes!)

Update: the video is available on YouTube as part of the OpenExpo channel.


Google Summer Of Code 2009 – Real Soon Now!

March 6, 2009

The 2009 logo is fantastic, isn’t it? Flower power is not dead apparently.

Google Summer Of Code 2009 starts soon, open source organizations can sign up starting March 9th (a very important date planet-wide anyway), and students can sign up starting March 23rd.

An A4 flyer is available to display in your school, or anywhere geeks graze.

Assuming we’re accepted as an organization, projects of the Apache Software Foundation will be listed on our wiki. I’m probably going to suggest one or two Sling-related projects.

Philip Johnson’s video presentation (below) gives a good overview of the program and of its requirements, for students.


Open Source Collaboration Tools – at OpenExpo, Bern, April 2nd

February 26, 2009

The program for OpenExpo 2009 Bern is just out, I’ll be giving my Open Source Collaboration Tools are Good For You! talk on April 2nd.

I’ve been giving this talk a few times in various places already, and it often leads to interesting conversations, we’ll see if that works in Switzerland as well! I must not forget to indicate that I can understand questions in German, as many people are more likely to ask questions in their native language.


QOTD: on compiling open source projects

September 26, 2008

Rod Johnson, Spring founder, in the TSS thread about the new SpringSource maintenance policy:

Anyone who refuses to compile an open source project under any circumstances doesn’t really believe in open source: they believe in other people working for them for free.

Well said.


GHOP Grand Prize Winners @google

July 26, 2008

Two weeks ago I was at Google headquarters to represent the ASF for the GHOP Awards Ceremony.

Visiting the Googleplex was very interesting as an example of a modern working environment, free of most or all corporate annoyances that used to be present in too many companies.

The legends about the great free food are not exaggerated, Cafe MOMA and Charlie’s Cafe lived more than lived up to my expectations. To me the Googleplex looks like a environment that would appeal very much to young engineers, as you can more or less live on site, with food, laundry, massage, swimming pool, Friday afternoon music, TGIF and other perks. If you have a family, on the other hand, you might need some discipline to escape the campus at the appropriate time…

In the afternoon of the awards ceremony day, we were treated to great jetlag-proof presentations on AppEngine (by Guido Van Rossum, Mr.Python himself), Android by Romain Guy (nice to see a young French guy make his way there), GFS/BigTable by Jeff Dean (employee #20) and testing by Bharat Mediratta and Mike Bland (readers know how passionate I am about testing, and these guys seem to have a similar vision than mine, so /me happy).

Great stuff, and all this for ten students, their parents and mentors! Big thanks to Leslie Hawthorn, Chris DiBona and team for setting this up so nicely.

Here’s the (shortish) interview with the ASF’s Grand Prize winner, Spencer Davis. For me, meeting these bright young folks has been the highlight of all this, and the motivation to continue contributing to these student programs. Seems like there is hope for humanity after all ;-)

Sandy Armstrong, mentor for GNOME, and Peter Cawley, winner for Drupal, have more details on the awards ceremony day. The “exotic” ASF presentation that I mentioned happened in Kathmandu, Nepal, as mentioned in a previous post.


Hey, El Reg – Microsoft is *not* becoming an ASF member!

July 26, 2008

Contrary to what The Register reports, Microsoft is not paying $100,000 annual membership to the Apache Software Foundation.

ASF membership cannot be bought: people earn their individual membership by merit, and there’s no such thing as ASF member companies.

As with any other sponsor of the ASF, Microsoft’s sponsorship only means that they’re giving money to the ASF, money that the ASF can use freely, as the ASF does not accept directed donations.

I am very pleased to see this happening. It won’t make me love Microsoft’s current products much more (although, as my son notes, the XBox is a nifty piece of kit), but it is great to see more and more people inside Microsoft understand the importance of open source in today’s IT landscape.

Update: as I write this, the Google Number for +apache +microsoft +sponsor* is 682,000

Update: it’s been at least 24 hours since I posted a comment to the Register article linked above, indicating their error. Surprisingly, that comment hasn’t been moderated in yet…