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May 14, 2011

Fedora Board Election - The Bob Campaign - Day 1

Well it has been over 30 hours in to my bid for a seat on the Fedora Board and already my presence and unconventional thinking started some fires...

Well it has been over 30 hours in to my bid for a seat on the Fedora Board and already my presence and unconventional thinking started some fires. The thread starts with my announcement email to the "FAB list." Some of those that responded were anticipated and I expect more of the same as things go forward. There were a couple that surprised me a little and confirmed my positive opinion of these people. I personally wanted 10 members of the community to publicly endorse my campaign... and once I received this endorsement I would agree to run. In the first day it became clear that I'm running, the 10 endorsements horse has run and sure, I'll still take as many as I can get. It's ironic that eliminating micromanagement is a goal that most of us have yet the thread and my campaign was suddenly went under microanalysis whereby semantics and context become a burning issue for the election and my peers... really?

I really did not expect so many people to be offended that I asked 10 people to essentially put up a yard sign for my campaign. I continue to welcome people to step forward to add their name to the list. Having 50 names there showing support might just change how Fedora elections are in the future. Here in the USA people are endorsed by celebrities, TV stations, newspapers, companies and workers/labor unions. I really don't see how this is different. People look to others for advice, opinions, why should this election be any different?

As hinted to in my announcement email/post some can not handle the truth, they have so much dislike for me, those that have endorsed me and others I work with that they will not be able to help themselves and will have to attack me over it. That's fine, let them show their true colors, don't feed their flames unless you come with gasoline. ;)

Asking for supporters has been called "orthogonal" "quixotic" "absolutely insane" "ballsy" "destructive" some of these descriptions are true. Damn right it was ballsy, perhaps even absolutely insane. I guess insane that I, EvilBob, could find 10 people to back him up. It is clearly not quixotic as it has happened and invalidates this claim. The use of "orthogonal" seems to be popular these days when you disagree with someone or something said. Sorry I don't have a degree in mathematics or computer sciences that I can look back on to find these generally obscure words in an attempt to look smart.

Bring on more yard signs, the more the better. Based on them I guess as of right now the score is 60-0-0-0-0. Yes 60, 12x5=60, some might ask "what about your votes Bob?" I am hoping to cast my votes for someone that I want to work with on the board.

I would like to personally thank Ricky "CodeBlock" Elrod for endorsing Andrea Veri and reinforcing my endorsement concept.

May 13, 2011

Fedora Project and the Fedora Board

It's that time again where we elect leadership on the community side of the Fedora Project. Like every time in recent history I have been getting nagged to run. I have said no in the past for several reasons, these reasons no longer apply.

One thing I refuse to do is "self-nominate" for any election. If you think I am good enough for the job put your money where your mouth is and nominate me, Dave Riches has decided to do just that. One of my requirements to accepting the nomination is that at least 10 people have to pledge all their Fedora Board votes exclusively to me, this means you don't give "range votes" to anyone else. You also put your name on the wiki page endorsing me, post about it on your blog, your facebook, the footers in your emails. If you think I can help make Fedora better, then it is going to be a team effort. My team, the community.


People ask why would I do this? what are my goals? Why when I am so unpopular with so many? Hopefully the nomination page questions will help answer these.
  • Goal statement: Work with the current FPL and the others on the Fedora Board to make sure we continue to respect the Four Foundations. To make sure that the community knows they are being heard via active two way communication. To read/hear what the community is saying and nodding your head is not enough. If the board is doing something, talking about something I want the community to know and I will want feedback from the community. The community elected Board members are your appointed voices and need to be accountable to you. Fedora is built on what I call "The Community Concept" in the recent past it seems that this concept has been failing, lets get it back on the right track.

    An issue that the Board and Fedora are facing now and in the near future is the CWG, how to enforce the CoC and how to deal with enforcement. Long term is the relationship with the GNOME Project. As downstream many feel we should have a say in what GNOME does, As upstream, hey it's the GNOME project and shouldn't they be able to do as they see fit? One thing that we the Fedora Project has to remember is that Red Hat has a huge investment in both projects, how does that impact what we do in the future? I think Red Hat needs to be respected, they do a lot for us. Should we or can we move away from GNOME as the main desktop in Fedora if that is the consensus of the community? How would our actions in that case impact them with out our foundation of First? GNOME has to deal with many external pressures and do their best to fit their market. I am not sure at this time how I feel about it as there are so many questions to think about, if elected I expect you to tell me how you feel about them and essentially how you want me to vote on these topics and any others that come up. I want to be your voice, anyone that knows me well knows I can play "devil's advocate" sticking up for something even if I personally disagree with it.
  • Past work summary: In the past 8 years I have been involved in many parts of the Fedora Project and the Fedora Community. The one most know is being one of the founders of the Fedora Unity Project, this project has given to the community things like, Re-Spins of Fedora releases, the first LiveCDs. As part of Fedora Unity I was named as a Fedora Award winner in 2007. In the past have been involved in the Fedora Documentation Project including sitting on it's Steering Committee, The Fedora Ambassadors including sitting on FAMSCo, early on I was involved in Fedora Marketing and Websites. I started the Fedora Amateur Radio SIG packaging Ham apps for Fedora. I am actively involved in the "IRC Support SIG" trying to improve the user experience and change how we have done things wrong in the past and in some cases still are. I also have two projects on Fedora Hosted that we are currently working on, Reflector and Multiboot Media Creator.
  • Future plans: This is the hardest question for me to answer, it forces me to look at things that I may have done wrong... I have been and will continue to work on my communication skills so I don't piss people off every time I open my mouth or fire up my keyboard. Long term I would like to be the first true community FPL. I know they say it's a full time job and the FPL is a Red Hat employee. I have no desire to be a Red Hat employee at this time, to be paid to do something that I am passionate about.
  • Anything else you want to add: I will not self-nominate, if the community shows they want me then I am in. Some suggest that I am unpopular, If I have more than 10 people publicly endorsing me I am clearly not unpopular with everyone. Why am I unpopular with some? I speak the truth as I see it, some disagree with me, some think I am too brutal... some can't handle the truth. I have been known to say the right things the wrong way, I'm human. The Fedora Board is not about popularity, it's about making Fedora better, stronger, the best community in the sea of many distros. We do not have to be "First" in the market, Fedora's First is about innovation. That innovation like it or not is what brought most of us to Fedora and now we complain about new things in each release... We have to work together, splintering Fedora as a distro does us no good as a community.
So lets go ahead and run it up the flag pole and see who has the intestinal fortitude to salute.

Nov 07, 2010

When F/LOSS works right

To continue making Fedora and Linux a viable alternative to people outside of the tech community we have to have the Freedom to step out of the box. This is one of Fedora's foundations.

Some people ask why I am so passionate about F/LOSS software and Fedora specifically. It's not an easy question to answer at times, the politics involved in such a large, big business sponsored organisation has taken a lot of the fun out of it. To continue making Fedora and Linux a viable alternative to people outside of the tech community we have to have the Freedom to step out of the box. This Freedom is supposed to be one of Fedora's foundations.

I think it's a shame many of us feel limited by the bureaucracy. However things like the last couple days help make it worth the BS. I had an itch I wanted scratched, teamed up with a couple friends, and scratched it. We now have the ability to put multiple .iso images, installer and LiveMedia, on a USB stick. This will enable us to carry the full set of Fedora 14 images, both arch DVDs and all the LiveMedia on a single 16G USB stick. The user naturally will be able to choose what images to put on the USB device and what size device to use.

We can boot to the LiveMedia to show people Fedora or boot to a DVD and install Fedora. Because we keep the .iso images intact on the USB device after we are done we can even leave those images with the the new Fedora user to continue the cycle.

More details to follow in the next week, we have a bash script now to help create the stick but we would like to add some features and options before we release it publicly.

-- Bob

Jun 16, 2009

The downfall of modern civilization...

Recently a thread was started on fedora-devel-list about the idea of dropping CD(split) media from the releases Fedora Project puts out. In the past when CD media was not available from Fedora Project those of us at Fedora Unity have picked up the need and produced the CD iso images, we did this for Fedora 7 and Fedora 8 releases. Some have concerns about the foot print that has to be transferred to the mirrors before the release can happen, it is not that the mirror admins are complaining. Some have concerns over the extra code needed in anaconda and createrepo that allow split media to work. All are valid concerns in my opinion. However if the anaconda team wants to drop or keep the code should be up to that project, same goes for createrepo or any other tool.

A few emails in the thread seem to suggest that Fedora Unity is the enemy because we are willing to create CD media to fill the gap. How can a person running for a seat on the Engineering Steering Committee get a vote from anyone in the community when they are against the community's freedom. It would seem that Kevin Kofler has done just that. From reading the emails he has suggested that locking out the community, in this case Fedora Unity, is a viable option. Kevin is a member and huge contributor to the Fedora community, what if there was an issue that would hinder the Fedora KDE SIG? Would he be so quick to suggest or agree with it? I know he would not. I sure hope I am reading Kevin's messages the wrong way, until this is clear he can count on not getting any of my votes.

Seth Vidal suggested a time out to the list as I was typing this. Out of respect for Seth's opinion I will be giving this a break for now.

Apr 02, 2009

Fedora: Fixing bugs before other distros even see them, since 2003

My friend Jef told me about something the other day. I had to ask for a link today so I could share it with Fedora Marketing. Proof to me that Fedora's Community ROCKs pr0n star hard.

gQuigs' View:Fedora Beta Released.

I assume that gQuigs is an Ubuntu user, sure is great to have others acknowledge that Fedora Contributors contribute to all Linux distributions. 

Good Work Guys!



Feb 07, 2009

First meeting of scaLUG V4.0

Today scaLUG had it's first real meeting in about 2 years.

Today the St. Cloud Area Linux Users Group (scaLUG) had it's first real meeting in about 2 years. We figured out that this is scaLUG v4.0. The LUG has come and gone over the years and a few of us have been through this a couple times so we are a bit cautious of investing a lot of time, our current numbers being low does not help this. Our numbers will improve as time goes on but getting there is discouraging.

We are meeting at the "New" Great River Regional Library here in St. Cloud. It is a nice facility for us, things for our families to do while we meet. There is free wifi in the building and three nice well equiped meeting rooms that can be used for no charge.

In attendance were Myself, Mike Demars, David Sundquist, Adam Barthelemy, Steve Williams, Tom Cross, Callum Lerwick and Lee Lorentz. We discussed the meeting frequency, location and time. Talked a bit about topic ideas and came up with a few to get us started. An issue that we have had open for a long time is our website and domain name. We have been using domain ever since our .org domain was picked up by a squatter years ago. The .org is again available we agreed to use club funds we have from donations made to scaLUG v3.0. We talked about site content and it was agreed that we should go with a CMS solution so "web bastard" duties do not fall on the shoulders of one or two people as they have in the past. The only idea brought forward was Zikula, this is the CMS that Fedora Docs is deploying. I have only looked at it lightly, I hope to get a demo deployed this weekend to make sure it will fit our needs and not be too overwhelming.

We have committed to having a topic meeting the first Saturday in March and April, the topic for the April has been set, Tom Cross will be pimping Trixbox/Asterisk and general VoIP. Tom was the founder of the LUG when it first started and has been a great mentor for many in the community, I look forward to his presentation he always does a great job of getting people interested and fired up. The March meeting the ball is in my court, not sure what I am going to do yet. I have kicked around the idea of "Packaging with RPM and Becoming a Fedora Contributor."

If you have other suggestions for topics please let me know them it would be nice to hear what other LUGs are doing to keep users interested and educated.


Feb 06, 2009

Netbook, OMG there are so many choices now.

A guy in my LUG is looking for input on the Netbook craze. I have to turn to the masses to try and help him out.

A guy in my LUG is looking for input on the Netbook craze. I have to turn to the masses to try and help him out. I have included his email and my response if you can give us some feedback it would be great.

On Mon, 2009-02-02 at 13:15 -0600, Shaun Ferguson wrote:
> I'm currently trying to figure out which Netbook to purchase with my tax
> return, any recommendations?
> It doesn't matter what OS comes with it, as it will be wiped and have a
> Linux Distro put on it probably as soon as it comes out of the box.
> Any and all input would be greatly appreciated.
> Thanks guys,
> S.

Umm,  What OS is on a laptop should be as important as what hardware is inside. Buying hardware that is FLOSS friendly is VERY important to me. If my hardware is not supported by the stock Fedora kernel I have done something wrong in choosing my hardware.

There are some Netbooks that I would avoid from what I have seen in the #fedora IRC channel. One comes to mind, it runs a very old and modified version of Fedora, I think the distro name is Linpuss or somthing, that has had no security updates from us in several years.

I have thrown out a request for input/opinions to some friends of mine that do more of the front line support than I do to see what they have found.



Jan 31, 2009

The End of Winter

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Living in a place called by some Minnesnowda you would think being born here I would be used to weather changes, yet I still find myself a bit off guard when winter is here.

Living in a place called by some Minnesnowda you would think being born here I would be used to weather changes, yet I still find myself a bit off guard when winter is here. From Jan 1-Jan 30 we did not get over 0c in the entire month, many days were -15c or colder for the high temperature, we did come very close to -40 where all men are equal a couple days, Jan 31 has signalled the end of winter... 6c. I nearly had to break out my short pants and flip flops. Yes I am exaggerating that it is the end of winter but it sure felt like it today. I am actually looking forward to another two and a half months of snow after this little break from the frozen air and weather. 

Jan 30, 2009

Saving a dieing Linux Users Group

I have been a member of my local LUG for over 9 years. It has had hills and valleys over the years when it comes to participation. I am blogging about this to get ideas from other LUGs to see how they keep members interested or how they have revived a DeadLUG.

I have been a member of my local LUG for over 9 years. We used the LUG as a way to learn, to get help from those with more experience. It has had hills and valleys over the years when it comes to participation. Could it be that Linux is just to easy for the average geek these days, they don't need help? After a period of inactivity we started having a monthly meetings a while ago, Just getting together lunch really, once upon a time we had 6 meetings and lunches a month. We are looking at getting topic meetings going like we had in the "old days," we talked about things like setting up MythTV, (heck the local big box store could not keep tuner cards on the shelves for about 6 months after that) ssh tunneling, setting up LDAP, VPNs, it was a lot of fun. Hope we can get back there.

I am blogging about this to get ideas from other LUGs to see how they keep members interested or how they have revived a DeadLUG.

Thanks, Bob