Saturday Jul 25, 2009
Tuesday Jul 14, 2009
By jimgris on Jul 14, 2009
I have an agenda in mind for my time. It's only a weekend, so I need to probe some issues as deeply as I can. I'd especially like to explore how software engineering and user communities are built across language and cultural barriers. That's the biggest deal for me since I live the issue every day and I believe there are big opportunities involved.
Other stuff: How/why do some communities seem to emerge organically (do they really?), while others are built using significant resources and sometimes face big challenges in the process. How do you manage around community dependence issues while investing resources? I know it's not popular to discuss, but I'll be asking people about competitive challenges they face while building communities. Over the years, many have told me that communities shouldn't be competitive (companies compete and communities cooperate, right?), but I've come to question and largely reject that line. I can point to many cases where it's absolutely true, but I also have lots of painful experience demonstrating that it's a lot of BS (I think it depends greatly on geography, culture, placement in the community, and politics).
More: Where is the line distinguishing building from natural evolution? And who defines the difference? On governance issues: Do you start out building with governance in place or let it emerge naturally over time? Do you build a top-down governing system, or let structures bubble up from the bottom when (and if) they are needed? And how do you resolve governance vs development methodologies? How do you measure growth or quality or whatever else you're building? What are the distinctions between building community from the platform of a major corporation vs building community while actually living out in the community itself? How are community development and engineering operations implemented differently around the world? How is community actually defined differently in various regions? Those are some of the issues I'll be poking.
And finally, I'd really love to see how people feel about the issue of "leadership" in communities. That's the name of the conference, after all, and it's an issue we've wrestled with on OpenSolaris forever. My opinion on leadership has evolved greatly over time, but I'm clearly moving in a specific direction lately and feel much more comfortable asserting my view on leadership.
Thursday Jul 09, 2009
By jimgris on Jul 09, 2009
Sunday Jun 28, 2009
By jimgris on Jun 28, 2009
The Japan OpenSolaris Community together on Saturday. Nice day (and night). About 60 people came by for the three sessions, two of which were in Japanese and the third in English. Then all three groups came together for a nomikai. I think the model works well to start integrating the Japanese and international OpenSolaris communities.
I used a new lens
for this event. My f/1.4 lens is getting fixed, so I borrowed Jon`s
50mm f/1.2, which is one scary smart lens. It`s a tad expensive, too,
so I was more than a little nervous shooting with it. Anyway, at f/1.2 the
focus is just razor thin. Focus on someone`s glasses and their entire face
is out. I messed up a few images that way, but by the end of the night
I was getting used to it. Amazing piece of glass. By the way, you can see Jon`s stuff
here. He`s one of the best photographers around.
Wednesday Jan 16, 2008
Tuesday Dec 11, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 11, 2007
Here are some images from Friday and Saturday, the last two days at FOSS.IN in Bangalore. It was great to see Simon and Danese and hear their talks on Friday. I also did a presentation on Saturday about contributing to OpenSolaris, and it was cool to be involved in the closing ceremonies and the speakers' dinner at Atul's place Saturday night. All in all, it was an outstanding conference. I learned a great deal about open source community building, and I hope to participate next year.
Friday Dec 07, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 07, 2007
The Great Indian DTrace Challenge
OpenSolaris Hacker Lounge
General Conference Shots
All my images from FOSS.IN on Flickr.
All the conference pics on Flickr.
Sun's official FOSS.IN blog.
Monday Nov 19, 2007
By jimgris on Nov 19, 2007
I'll be going to FOSS.IN this year for my first trip to India. Getting a Visa is proving to be quite an experience. I was rejected initially due to "not enough empty pages" in my passport. Excuse me? I guess three empty pages is not enough. But two quick trips to the American Embassy in Tokyo, and I now have 24 shinny new pages stuffed in there. I hope that's enough. I'll know for sure a few days, but I think I'm fine.
Anyway, if I get to Bangalore, I'll be doing a talk about contributing to OpenSolaris. This is an issue that comes up from time to time on the OpenSolaris lists. Sometimes it's a source of genuine confusion, sometimes it's bitterly complained about, sometimes it's praised, and sometimes it's just totally ignored and neglected. At the very least, we need to do a better job documenting how to contribute and pointing to those who are already contributing -- whether they are contributing on opensolaris.org or at other OpenSolaris-related venues around the world. So I thought I'd start writing a presentation about it, which I'll expand into some documents for the website. The talk at FOSS.IN will be a first attempt at this.
In general, there's no single entry point for contributing to OpenSolaris, and there's no single document explaining it all, either. Everything is conveniently spread out among dozens of locations -- Community Groups, Projects, User Groups, mail lists, and personal hard drives. It's all over the place. Plus, the project is still opening, so although most of the code is open now some of the core infrastructure isn't and that makes contributing harder for some. Then there are all the processes and governance and cultural issues to deal with. And then there are the flamers. It can be daunting for those just stopping by to check us out. But despite all that, people are getting involved, community code is getting integrated, and people are contributing in a variety of ways. And we are learning. So, that's what I'll try to talk about, along with a bunch of stories and politics along the way I'm sure.
By the way, just an aside: looking at the FOSS.IN artwork and the emphasis of some posters on coding brings back some memories. We had a conversation a while back about taglines for OpenSolaris (for banners or t-shirts or something), and the one I liked best was this: OpenSolaris is a four letter word: C-O-D-E. It never went anywhere, but I think the C-O-D-E bit blew away all the other options at the time.
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