F16 elections questionnaire

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(What do you view Fedora's purpose and place being in the F/LOSS microcosm.)
(What are your top three priorities as a board member?)
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box and to impact other groups in a good way rather than a “my way or
 
box and to impact other groups in a good way rather than a “my way or
 
the highway” attitude.
 
the highway” attitude.
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* <b>Rex Dieter</b>:
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1.  bring ongoing Fedora Community Working Group/Code of conduct efforts to fruition
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2.  reach out to fedora contributors and community members, looking for better avenues for communication as well as help and ideas to increase productivity.
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3.  continue work on its-a-dirty-job-but-someone-has-to-do-it stuff like project definition/scope/vision.
  
 
===What do you think about Fedora's vision and goals?===
 
===What do you think about Fedora's vision and goals?===

Revision as of 22:32, 1 June 2011

Contents

Board

What will you be able to accomplish by being elected, that you would not otherwise be able to do as a contributor?

  • Andrea Veri: (As you will see by reading the list right down here) Being a single contributor makes achieving these points impossible since changing how localized communities should work, improving our CoC and enforcing its rules and re-thinking Board’s role in our community is something that must be discussed and voted within the Board and its members.
  • Peter Robinson: It allows me to contribute back to the project in a more central way than being a contributor and to contribute ideas and direction in a quicker and more direct way.
  • Rex Dieter Honestly, only a few smallish things, but I do still consider these important, including:
    • continue to shephrd efforts behind Fedora's Community Working Group and Code of Conduct
    • revisit/tweak project updates vision statement

What will you do to ensure that Fedora remains at the forefront of innovation in the GNU/Linux space

  • Andrea Veri: I will try to do my best to give a warm welcome to new ideas and projects within Fedora, I’ll listen, discuss with as many contributors and developers willing to propose something new and innovative that could benefit our beloved distribution. I would like to link this answer with the third point of the first answer I gave on the questionnaire: new ideas are strictly related to my vision of innovation, everyone should be free to propose something new without having to worry about receiving personal insults or complaints: this is unfortunately missing in our community. (is our community really prepared for new ideas yet?)
  • Peter Robinson: I believe we need to add more focus on support for mobile devices. With the popularity of small devices such as smart phones, tablets, TV set top boxes and other small, low powered devices I believe we need to better support them, both connecting too them (eg ensuring you can share media from your Fedora laptop with your DLNA connected TV) as well as allowing people to run Fedora on them.
  • Rex Dieter: I hope to leverage my position as board member to continue to empower those doing the hard work within the project, and to tear down barriers that get in the way of getting that valuable work done.

What do you view Fedora's purpose and place being in the F/LOSS microcosm.

  • Andrea Veri:
  • Peter Robinson: I believe we’re a leader in a lot of areas of innovation. Fedora 15 being the first to ship GNOME 3 and systemd is a perfect and currently relevant example of this. But being in this leading space does scare some users away as they tend to like or require more stable environments that aren’t quite so close to the bleeding edge. Again systemd is an example of this, its the single largest shake up to the unix initialisation system ever.
  • Rex Dieter: Simply, Fedora serves a leadership role, and provides an ideal setting for collaboration.

What are your top three priorities as a board member?

  • Andrea Veri: If elected, I will mainly try to focus on:

Improving Fedora’s localization putting a great effort on introducing a form of formalization for specific localized communities having all the needed requirements to gain the “blessing” of Official local community for a certain country or language / dialect. This means pursuing one main objective, which is making Fedora Ambassadors and contributors not fighting each other but acting together as a community. Having two-three or even four websites / local communities just for the Italian or French langs is simply the wrong way to achieve the result of having a Fedora community together again. Ambassadors and contributors of a specific country or lang should focus on establishing *one* strong and trusted localized community, they should throw away the idea of multiple support websites, we need to put together everyone again, act as a team, Fedora together should be our motto. (the specific requirements to gain the above formalization will be written up by me and presented to the Board for a discussion, so expect more news to come about this point if my candidature will be accepted)

Re-thinking what the Fedora Board should be within the Fedora community. It should represent the community and all its members, if a single or multiple members are having a specific problem, from the bigger to the smaller one, the Board must deal with them to find a valid solution, nothing and no one should be left behind. The Board, in the end, should be the main reference point for everyone wanting to propose a new idea or just willing to costructively complain about something not working in the right way. Discussing problems, respecting everyone’s ideas and opinions and finding a good consensus / common solutions for everyone is alwais the way to go to improve the relationships between community members, contributors and developers.

Improving our Code of Conduct, finding a good way to enforce members respecting it and remembering which values should be found behind a community (respect between members and their ideas, costructive discussions, decisions taken with general consensus etc.) is the latest point but it’s definitely not the less important on my list. As I stated in my candicacy, I’ve been negatively impressed by the behaviour of some community members in two occasions: while introducing JustFedora’s Planet and while working on another Infrastructure duty. Criticizing without valid motivations just for the sake of doing so seemed to be the common rule on both of the above cases. I would like to remember everyone that this is *not* the best behaviour for an Open Source community, we need to act together as a single team, we don’t have to fight each other but we have to cooperate finding common solutions, discussing, criticizing *costructively* and helping our community coming out from the current situation.

  • Peter Robinson: In no particular order:

- Expansion of support within Fedora to mobile and low power devices such as ARM to ensure Fedora can lead in the ever expanding mobile and low powered device space and allow Fedora to assist others to innovate in this massive arena. - Allowing all groups that wish to use Fedora to be able to do so as simply and easily as possible. - Ensuring all groups work together nicely and think outside their own box and to impact other groups in a good way rather than a “my way or the highway” attitude.


  • Rex Dieter:

1. bring ongoing Fedora Community Working Group/Code of conduct efforts to fruition 2. reach out to fedora contributors and community members, looking for better avenues for communication as well as help and ideas to increase productivity. 3. continue work on its-a-dirty-job-but-someone-has-to-do-it stuff like project definition/scope/vision.

What do you think about Fedora's vision and goals?

  • Andrea Veri:
  • Peter Robinson: I think they’re pretty spot on. The four F’s and associated values I

think provide a simple vision that is timeless and generally works very well.


Who do you think Fedora is for today? Who should it be for?

  • Andrea Veri: Fedora is about innovation, but as you may all know, innovation might take in several problems especially for new comers or people switching from a Microsoft OS. Most of the people I know do have a lot of problems to simply open up a computer, writing a mail or working on a document; I would like to see Fedora (but generally Linux based OSs) available to use to everyone: from developers to complete newbies. I would like to work making the idea of Linux being usable by a restricted circle of people changing and I’m sure the arrival of GNOME 3 will definitely help us out on achieving our goal. (It’s user-friendly but innovative interface it’s simply superb)
  • Peter Robinson: I believe Fedora is more for the hobbyist and technology savvy people. I think its very usable for most people but the quick upgrade releases isn’t always what people want. Its much more simple to install than other proprietary OSes, and provides what most consumers want which is

generally communications, social networking, photos and music.


If proprietary is black (100% gray) and uncompromising completely free right down to the hardware is white (0% gray), what % of gray are you and why?

  • Andrea Veri:
  • Peter Robinson: I think around 40-50%. I prefer free and open software and hardware. It allows innovative use of various platforms that the manufactures of the HW/SW could never have dreamed of or envisioned. But I’m also a realist, companies need to be able to operate stable, usable systems

in order to be able to run their business whether it be technology or more mainline business. I believe in the best tools for the job, and in a lot of cases now days its free and open software that provides this.

Where do you see Fedora in five years? How do you think we'll get there?

  • Andrea Veri: An innovative Fedora but at the same time a distribution easy to use by any of us out there, an awesome cloud service available to everyone, a package manager made easier to learn and understand by newcomers, a GNOME 3 improved, stronger, robust and a gnome-shell completely ready and fully integrated on Fedora is what I would like to see happening within five years.
  • Peter Robinson: I think Fedora as a distribution will be in a similar location where we are today but running on a completely different class of device. It will still be aimed at server side and derivatives of it will be very mainstream in cloud and associated hosting solutions although its

likely you may not even know it. It will be very much more persuasive in the mobile space and I believe that ARM will have been a primary platform for a couple of years. It will still be leading by example.



FESCo

What will you be able to accomplish by being elected, that you would not otherwise be able to do as a contributor?

  • Kevin Fenzi: I think I can bring organization to FESCo as well as a good deal of understanding

how things have worked in the past.

  • Peter Jones: Being on FESCo presents a different kind of involvement than just being a contributor does. It's an opportunity to help set direction and get directly involved with broader decisions, and to ensure that Fedora is headed in the right direction on a technical level.
  • Iain Arnell: Maintain the existing balance of community vs Red Hat members on the committee, and encourage others to improve it next time round. I understand that they are an important part of our community, but that it's equally important to ensure that our volunteers have a voice too.
  • Tomas Mraz: Obviously the policy decisions are voted on by FESCo and to be able to have a direct vote in FESCo will give me better ability to achieve my goals.
  • Stephen Gallagher: Having a voice in making FESCo policy decisions will allow me to act on my stated goal of making Fedora into a powerful platform for the development of open-source software.
  • Bill Nottingham: The point of FESCo is to arbitrate escalated issues and coordinate work on features and policies; that's not something that can be done as well as an individual contributor. Also, for better or worse, I've been here since the beginning, and I feel that having that perspective of where we've been can help in steering where we're going.

What will you do to ensure that Fedora remains at the forefront of innovation in the GNU/Linux space

  • Kevin Fenzi: I think we need to continue to be ambitious in rawhide/devel releases as well as work hard to provide a stable release stream to folks. We should accept and embrace new tech as soon as (or slightly before) they are ready.
  • Peter Jones: In general, I'll try to enact policies that enable others to move forward in accordance with Fedora's Vision, to foster collaboration and allow individual contributors the freedom to set direction for the projects they're involved in.
  • Iain Arnell: I think we've already shown that innovation isn't the problem - we have a strong history of innovation and plenty of contributors willing to continue that theme. For me, it's more important that our users are willing to adapt to the changes; new innovations need time to mature as "technology previews" before being foisted on the community by default (and f14 was a good example of this, delaying both gnome-shell and systemd).
  • Tomas Mraz: I think that giving as much power as possible to the package maintainers of Fedora ensures this the best way. I think that FESCo should always make decisions towards this goal.
  • Stephen Gallagher: I will push strongly for the inclusion of tools to make development on Fedora easier. The simplest way to continue to make Fedora the leader in innovation is to make ours the platform that new developers WANT to work with.
  • Bill Nottingham: I will try to encourage innovation where it's being done and point out the areas where new innovation where it's needed. Additionally, through some of our update policies, I intend to work to make sure that people have a stable base to innovate on.

What do you view Fedora's purpose and place being in the F/LOSS microcosm.

  • Kevin Fenzi: I think Fedora is a place to push new tech and ideas as well as a kick ass day to day operating system for technical users. Of course it's also a place to provide new innovation to slower downstream operating systems.
  • Peter Jones: As reflected in our "core values", Fedora's place is to be a high-quality place for developers to bring new development in order to help with our users' goals, be they sysadmins or desktop users.
  • Iain Arnell: When I look at the FSF's "why we don't endorse other systems page"[1], I'm not dissappointed that we don't meet their requirements for a truly free operating system; I'm quietly satisfied that allowing a few blobs enables a much wider community to embrace free software. It seems wrong to deny access to free software just because you bought the wrong graphics adapter or wireless card.

[1] http://www.gnu.org/distros/common-distros.html

  • Tomas Mraz: Fedora should be the place where the development of the most innovative and useful projects can happen. Although sometimes it could

mean that usability for non-developers might slightly suffer. On the other hand the distribution must be usable for developers so I of course understand that there have to be some restrictions especially during the final stages of the release cycle before the GA release.

  • Stephen Gallagher: I know I'm sounding like a broken record, but I think that Fedora's place is to be the petri dish for F/LOSS projects. Fedora is where innovation should incubate while being provided with powerful tools to speed delivery to the public.
  • Bill Nottingham: I think 'the place where we bring innovation to the masses' is the proper place for Fedora - we make the bleeding edge technology available in a leading-edge distribution where it's consumable even by those who may not be Linux hackers.

What are your top three priorities as a board member?

  • Kevin Fenzi:(well, fesco here, but I will answer anyhow):

1. I think we really need to try and ramp up more folks. I'm open to any new ideas on how to do that. 2. I would love to see more coordination/structure for server using folks. I know that many wouldn't use Fedora as a server, but lots and lots of tech gets tested out in fedora and goes on to be used in server based oses. I'd like to see if we couldn't get that group a voice or help them be able to use Fedora for testing new server related tech. 3. I'd like to continue to see things like Sugar, LXDE and Xfce grow and get added into fedora processes.


  • Iain Arnell: I'm not a board member, but as FESCO candidate:

Ensure the continuation of FTBFS reports (and as an aside, I'd like to thank Matt for all his efforts over the years).

Improve the quality of the distribution by supporting autoqa so that it can be enabled by default (whatever that means) without inconveniencing contributors.

Identify under-maintained packages and encourage people to adopt them as co-maintainers.

  • Tomas Mraz: 1. Make the decisions as little intrusive and restrictive to the regular contributors work as possible.

2. Make the decisions effectively achievable. 3. N/A

  • Stephen Gallagher: 1) Aid and encourage Fedora QA in the creation of general-purpose testing and integration tools. 2) Push for better integration of development frameworks with the tools that Fedora ships. 3) Work to create documentation, guides and mentorship programs to bring new developers into the fold.
  • Bill Nottingham:
    • Support Fedora QA's efforts towards automated testing, in order to bring better quality to Fedora
    • Work with groups brigning in new features to make sure we're all pulling in (roughly) the same direction
    • Figure out a way to encourage better maintenance on the fringes of the OS where things may fall through the cracks. (FTBFS, broken deps, etc.)

What do you think about Fedora's vision and goals?

  • Kevin Fenzi:I really like the vision. I think we could do more to promote free content. ;)

By goals, do you mean 'objectives' ? ( http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Objectives ) I like them a lot as well. ;)

  • Peter Jones: I think our vision and goals are good - they point a general direction, without being so specific as to stifle further progress. It's true that we sometimes need to revisit them or discuss how they reflect on particular situations, but having the ability to do that gives us flexibility.
  • Iain Arnell: I find the vision statement itself to be a little weak and overly generic. But I whole-heartedly support the four foundations and the

project's objectives.


  • Tomas Mraz: N/A
  • Stephen Gallagher: Lofty targets, but worth striving for.
  • Bill Nottingham: I think they are great goals to reach for.

Who do you think Fedora is for today? Who should it be for?

  • Kevin Fenzi:I think Fedora is for many people and communities and it's limiting for me to try and provide a exhaustive list. :) That said I think some of who Fedora is for would be:
    • Technical users who wish a usable, fast updating workstation os.
    • Folks who wish to preview or play with the "next great thing"
    • Home users who need a reliable web browser os.
    • Educators who need something like Sugar.

We could expand into other areas as the people working on Fedora follow their passion and setup a way to reach those communities.

  • Peter Jones: Today Fedora is for a range of people, including developers, some desktop users, and admins of systems that don't need the sort of guarantees provided by so-called "enterprise" offerings. I think these are all valuable target audiences, but we need to continue investigate other audiences as well, and to keep in mind the sort of changes we can make - either to our software, our processes, or our websites and such - that can open up more opportunities for us to get Free Software out to more people, to be used in more scenarios.
  • Iain Arnell: I think that the default desktop is increasingly targetting Aunt Tillie, particularly with the simplification of the user interface

in Gnome 3. That's not such a bad thing, as long as there are still options for more advanced users.

  • Tomas Mraz: I do not really know for who is it today. Sometimes it seems that a regular users are the target, but I do not think this is really aligned with what the Fedora (not as distribution but as people) is. And what it should be? As I said it above, Fedora should be the place where the development of the most innovative and useful projects can happen.
  • Stephen Gallagher: Today, I think Fedora doesn't really know who it's for. Fedora as a distribution is a jack-of-all-trades, master of none. I think Fedora's strength in the past had always been that it used to be targeted mostly at developers (maybe not officially, but that was who were most inclined to use it). I think Fedora's strength was always in its ability to encourage more developers into its community, which in turn resulted in more, better and faster development.
  • Bill Nottingham: Today, Fedora is for developers, admins, people interested in the next RHEL, people who want a free OS and have someone familiar with Linux to deal with it for them, and assorted other groups. I think, if we want it to remain relevant to the goals and objectives (ubiquity, free culture is widespread) we need to take efforts to make sure it's usable by people beyond those groups; if we're *only* for developers and admins, it's unlikely we'll ever grow to make those goals possible.

If proprietary is black (100% gray) and uncompromising completely free right down to the hardware is white (0% gray), what % of gray are you and why?

  • Kevin Fenzi:I'm not sure what the % would be off hand. I am very much to the white side of things, but I think firmware and the like are things we should continue to ship, so perhaps thats 10%? I would love a day when users never asked for 3rd party repos to play their content or view their web pages.
  • Peter Jones: I really dislike this question. If you want to ask how I feel about embedded firmware (which I assume is what this is about), just ask about it. So:

1) I'm not a piece of hardware. 2) I'm not gray. 3) I'm not a percentage of anything. This is the real world, and there's just more nuance than that.

I would *love* for hardware to be available without any proprietary bits whatsoever. That's not where the world is right now. I'm wildly in favor of projects like opencores.org to help bring the world to a better place in terms of allowing the benefits of Free Software to also be seen in hardware. At the same time, I do think that e.g. dynamically loaded firmware is, in some ways, as much a piece of the machine as a software running on it. In general, I agree with the delineating function that if it doesn't run on the host CPU, it's *usually* reasonable to treat it as part of the hardware. So I'm definitely for keeping those bits in the distribution. Not having them would hurt our users more than having them does.

  • Iain Arnell: I would guess around 10-20%. I will grudgingly suffer proprietary if there's no free alternative. Occaisionally, I'll acknowledge that proprietary offerings are simply better. And sometimes, it simply doesn't matter to me: as long as I can watch TV, I don't need to know or care what the set-top box is running.
  • Tomas Mraz: That really depends on context. Generally I think that the current Fedora position in this regard is at exactly the right spot (perhaps 80% light gray).
  • Stephen Gallagher: My view is "realistic". I think the goal should be that we ultimately demonstrate by our actions (and successes!) that end-to-end freedom is the best and fastest way for technology to advance. However, we live in the real world, where at the end of the day hardware manufacturers are always going to make decisions that benefit themselves in the short-term, rather than the world at large in the long-term. So I think that Fedora's job is to do the best that we can to provide what freedoms we can, wherever possible.
  • Bill Nottingham: Honestly, I'm more of a flesh tone than grey (unless you're referring to my hair, which, thanks!) I'm not sure what the point of this question is. Do I always buy open, modifiable hardware and devices? No. I have (at least) three different Linux-running devices that aren't able to be easily modified to run a custom OS, and I think that's an OK choice, all things considered. While I'd love for all hardware to not require firmware, or not have signed bootloaders, or a variety of other things, I don't think that's Fedora's place to attack. First of all, there's always going to be BIOS, or on-board ROMs as in the old days, etc. Secondly, it's not like Fedora *can* make any push in these areas without sufficient market share to force a budgetary impact on the device manufacturers. Furthermore, when it comes to cases of wireless firmware, I think we're much better off furthering our goals by letting our users access the network - to take a principled stand here would be to principle our way into irrelevance.

Where do you see Fedora in five years? How do you think we'll get there?

  • Kevin Fenzi: I think Fedora will probibly go more toward technical folks than we even are today over the next few years. Many end users will move to smartphones or the like. We could position ourselves as a good platform for content creation as I think thats something that will not happen with smartphones or tablets. I think our main base of technical users will continue to be our main area.

Thanks for the questions. I'm happy to expand on things or talk with any folks about other questions. Catch me on irc or drop me an email.

  • Peter Jones: I've been working on Linux for a very long time, and five years is a long time to prognosticate about. I'd hope there are recognizable bits, but also that we continue to move forward with the development that's set us apart in the past.
  • Iain Arnell: On every desktop/notebook/whatever in the world! It doesn't hurt to have ambitious goals. But seriously, I'd like to see linux as a

whole acheieve greater penetration of the desktop market, and of course Fedora ought to be a large slice of that.

  • Tomas Mraz: N/A
  • Stephen Gallagher: This is going to sound pessimistic, but if Fedora continues as it is right now, in five years I see Fedora withering. Too many developers are moving to Other Distros where there is a perception that it's easier to develop for, or that they will get into more users' hands. I want to see Fedora five years from now carrying the majority of F/LOSS development, having made it clear that Fedora is the best distribution for developers and users alike.
  • Bill Nottingham: Honestly, I'm not sure. Ideally, I'd like Fedora to be the basis behind a variety of devices that allow users the freedoms we espouse in our vision statement, but we've got a long way to go to get to that mark.