Meeting:Board strategic working group 2010-02-15

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Contents

Roll Call

  • Attendees: John Poelstra, Paul Frields, Chris Tyler, Mike McGrath, Colin Walters, Matt Domsch

Previous Meeting

Spins

  • Matt Domsch: gathering feedback on spins
  • sent out request yesterday
  • will have discussion in this group next week

What is Fedora the Distribution?

  • Chris Tyler: User:Ctyler/draft/what_is_fedora_the_distro
  • How is the Fedora distribution defined? Is it a universe of packages, a specific spin, or is it something else?
  • What is our main product, what are we trying to do?
    1. Is it the package universe?
    2. The default offering?
  • It plays into a lot of important areas: the importance of and emphasis on spins, the importance of the primary spin/default offering composition, the importance of compatibility with the default offering, the extent to which experimentation with incompatible packages or subsystems is encouraged, and how easy (or difficult) it is for an individual to have direct input into the shape of the distribution
  • In the beginning, with Red Hat Linux, then Fedora Core... there was one installable image.
  • Starting with Fedora 7 and the elimination of the Core/Extras distinction and the creation of spin/remix tools, the definition of "the distribution" became less clear
  • Chris: favors the Fedora Distribution as being defined as the package universe. The default spin is the default entry point into interacting with that package universe.
  • John: do we risk watering down "what our product is" if we say "it's all of the packages" ?
  • Matt: do we need to then promote the Spins more than we do now, if they are to be the users' entry points into the Package Set?
  • Chris: If the product is defined as the default spin then it is a two step process to get something into the core offering (packaging, then getting into the default spin)
    1. Get into the package universe
    2. Be made part of the default spin
  • Mike: As it is you could draw a venn diagram of each spin and they would all still be in the larger Fedora Package circle because they are all a subset of packages
  • Paul: Having a product that can be attained simply by removing or installing different sets of packages doesn't imply a design
  • Matt: how would we apply QA to the package universe?
    • Paul: we're making progress on doing more QA on a wider range of packages than just the default media -- framework of Test Days makes this possible for any group to run them if desired
  • Chris: for packages not part of the default offering what does that say about them?
    • Paul: The distribution is all the software we ship, but the distribution is not a product -- we can't effectively design or use the unit of "all software we ship"
  • John: What is end result or impact of deciding that the Fedora Distribution == Package Universe
    • Chris: the way we refer to these things has subtle impacts throughout the project
    • Mike: This ends up being somewhat of an academic discussion
    • Definition of our critical path package set is more indicative of what is important to the Fedora product
  • John: How can we arrive at a conclusion for this issue?
    • Chris: maybe technology will answer this question in the future
    • Possible that in the future network-centric installs may become predominant and make choice somewhat ubiquitous
    • Colin: Worries that we could become Debian in that model
    • Matt: think of default spin as entry point with a universe of other options to install
    • Paul: a lot of the questions we are trying to answer are about laying a foundation to make Fedora more compelling to everyone, this may not be one of them
  • Matt: we need a rallying point for people--a tangible release, not a package universe
  • CONCLUSION:
    • We do not think the answer to the originally posed questions is "one or the other"
    • Regardless of the answer, we can still apply focus on creating a central product that interests people in the larger whole.
    • This was a good discussion to have and we all thank Chris Tyler for all the research and thought he put into the question
  • NEXT ACTIONS:
    1. Recommend to the full Board that the SWG does does not believe there is more to discuss here
    2. Mark this question as resolved unless the full board requests more discussion or a new direction to the original question

Next SWG Meeting

  • Paul tuning the "different default offering" page, per last Board meeting
  • Spins discussion led by Matt
  • Monday, February 22, 2010 @ 3 PM EST