Monday Dec 07, 2009

OpenSolaris at FOSS.IN 2009

Sriram Narayanan posted some nice updates to advocacy-discuss the other day (here, here, here, here) from FOSS.IN in Bangalore. It's excellent when people post mail like this to the community list when they are out at conferences because it leads to discussion around the world and helps generate ideas for the future. Connecting communities globally is just as important as building them locally.

Here are some FOSS.IN images from Kumar Abhishek. See the Bangalore OpenSolaris Community here. And, of course, the BeleniX distribution goes here. I couldn't make it to FOSS.IN again this year. Bummed. Maybe next year.

Monday Sep 14, 2009

FOSS.IN Bangalore 2009

I see things gearing up for FOSS.IN in Bangalore in December. I went to FOSS.IN two years ago and really enjoyed the entire experience. And I learned a great deal as well. FOSS.IN was one of the best conferences I've been to. Perfect size. Interesting people. Real community feel.

Also note the excellent blog from Atul Chitnis outlining the changes being planned for this year's event. What seems core to the organizers at FOSS.IN is the concept of contribution. It's easy to get distracted and drift from foundational principles when you grow, but it's great to see FOSS.IN getting the basics right. Participation. Contribution. Doing -- not talking.

See a recent Atul video on just these issues.

Friday Feb 22, 2008

Belenix Wins FOSS India Award

Great to see Belenix recognized with the FOSS India 2008 Award, which was announced at Open Source India Week recently. Congratulations, guys!

Tuesday Jan 15, 2008

A Photo on Gizmodo

I love it when my images make it on to other sites around the web. Here's one of Sam King, a fantastic guy I met in India at FOSS.IN -- JediPad May Be Coolest and/or Fugliest Pointy- Clicky Thing Ever. It's the last image down at the bottom. I remember I almost fell off the chair shooting down like that. Very cool, though.

Friday Dec 28, 2007

India and OpenSolaris Request Sponsor

Have you noticed the increase in activity on the request-sponsor list (forum here, list archives here) lately? Have you also noticed the distinct lack of flames on that list and the clear professionalism? And have you noticed all the names from India recently as well? University Campus Ambassadors are starting to contribute. The India OpenSolaris community is getting involved. Some of them multiple times, too. The Sun India engineering team is actively involved, of course, and they are building a developer community based on contributing in a variety of ways -- including code. When I was at FOSS.IN, I had the chance to see the India OpenSolaris community pounding away on OpenSolaris bugs for hours and hours. I guess it's continuing. Very cool. I have no doubt whatsoever that India will be a top contributing country to OpenSolaris.

Code contributors here. oss-bite-size bugs here. Get involved here. All of my FOSS.IN stuff here.

Community at Scale

I didn't get a chance to see Mitchell Baker talk at FOSS.IN because I had to be on a panel across town. Darn. I know I missed something I should have seen, and that's how to do community at scale. I looked at Mitchell's slides today, and although many of the community development principles are the same as OpenSolaris, we still have not experienced such levels of growth that Mozilla experiences every day. And that's clear from Mitchell's slides. But as OpenSolaris moves to engage users and more levels of developers, I think we'll surely scale well beyond where we are now. Perhaps not to the level of Mozilla, but it will be wild figuring out how to grow a global user community on top of the many other communities involved with OpenSolaris right now. The existing OpenSolaris user groups will be key to this move, of course. 2008 should mark some significant changes in OpenSolaris.

Tuesday Dec 11, 2007

FOSS.IN Last Days

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

DTrace and OpenSolaris Bug Attack at FOSS.IN

Some shots from yesterday at FOSS.IN. The DTrace BOF and the OpenSolaris Hackathon were most impressive. It was wild to see the everyone banging on OpenSolaris bugs in the hack session -- all new contributions on the way. The energy around the entire conference was massively high all day.

The Great Indian DTrace Challenge


OpenSolaris Hacker Lounge


OpenSolaris Party


General Conference Shots


All my images from FOSS.IN on Flickr.
All the conference pics on Flickr.
Sun's official FOSS.IN blog.

Thursday Dec 06, 2007

BOSUG Meeting for FOSS.IN

It was great to stop by the Bangalore OpenSolaris User Group meeting last night to meet more of the OpenSolaris Community and also a bunch of students from Amrita University in Kerala, which is a five hour drive south of Bangalore and a place they call "God's Country" in India. The students tell me it's quite beautiful, and the fact that they invited me to come down and visit was quite humbling. The students are visiting Bangalore for the FOSS.IN conference, and they are also participants in the Code for Freedom Contest.




Wednesday Dec 05, 2007

Open Source Community Innovation Awards Program

Sun just announced an open source innovation awards program, and OpenSolaris will be involved. Simon Phipps will have more details during his presentation at FOSS.IN on Friday, and we'll also propose a project to manage the program for OpenSolaris.

OpenSolaris Project Day at FOSS.IN

Here are some images from the OpenSolaris talks at the FOSS.IN Project Day yesterday. It was a great day with lots of technical content delivered by the Indian OpenSolaris Community. As I listened to the talks, I was having difficulty figuring out who was Sun and who wasn't. That's good. That's the whole point of building one community. The OpenSolaris Community has clearly made great strides here in Bangalore with BeleniX and the Bangalore OpenSolaris User Group leading the way.

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All of my images from FOSS.IN are on flickr. Also, for regular updates at FOSS.IN, go to Sun's Official FOSS.IN Blog.

Tuesday Dec 04, 2007

BeleniX at FOSS.IN

The Bangalore OpenSolaris User Group just posted The BeleniX 5 Day Challenge with some cool ways to get involved at FOSS.IN. The challenge starts today and runs through Saturday. Work on the logo, theme, website, fonts, and spec files. The guys will announce the winners on the user group site, and I'll invite them on stage at the end of my talk on Saturday.

Saturday Dec 01, 2007

OpenSolaris at FOSS India

The OpenSolaris Community will be participating at FOSS.IN next week in Bangalore with multiple engineering and community sessions. The theme for OpenSolaris at FOSS.IN this year seems clearly centered around contributing — to projects, to distributions, to user groups, and to many other areas of the community. The OpenSolaris project is growing globally, but India represents particularly rapid growth this year. For more information on FOSS.IN, see the conference schedule, the BOSUG announcement, and Sun's Official FOSS.IN blog.

Thursday Nov 29, 2007

Visas and Foreigners

I finally got my Indian Visa. Just today. Just in time. Denied twice. Took 3 weeks. Visits to two embassies and a travel agency and a bunch of confusing phone calls across a couple of languages. Big pain in the ass. But at least I get to go to India for a one-time visit for FOSS.IN. Hope the weather is nice.

So, with all that cleared up, I now get to go to Narita Airport on Sunday, where Japanese authorities will promptly mug shot me and fingerprint me as I leave the country (here, here). Then they'll do it again as I return home. And then when I go on another trip I'll get mugged and fingered again. And so on. Not because I did anything wrong, mind you, but because I'm not Japanese. I'm known as a "resident alien" here. They call me a "foreigner" and they actually use that word. A lot. I live here and have already passed all the Japanese immigration processes. This is my home. I even pay a boat load of taxes to the Japanese government (and the American government). And I have a fancy immigration card and multi-year work Visa and all, but I'm still a "foreigner" so that means, of course, I'm a potential you-know-what. The big T. You know, I'm already reminded I am a "foreigner" on an almost daily basis in Japan. This just makes the obnoxious all the more obscene.

Monday Nov 19, 2007


I love the artwork for this year's FOSS.IN conference. Very nice stuff. The images are all based on freedom, opportunity, personal expression, coding, participation, and contribution. That last part is most important to me because I think we need to focus more on contributing in the OpenSolaris Community, especially as we grow and diversify globally.

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 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.

Friday Sep 07, 2007

OpenSolaris at FOSS.IN

FOSS.IN is heating up, and OpenSolaris will be there. I see that OpenSolaris has been accepted as one of the Project Days Sessions. The call for papers will be issued next week.


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