Re: Candidacy (Michael Meeks), I'm totaly misunderstood <sob>

On 16 Oct, Dan Mueth wrote:
> On Mon, 16 Oct 2000, Michael Meeks wrote:
>>         The hackers[1] currently collectively own and control the
>> Gnome project ( I know this is something Bart wants to preserve too ).
>> If we start adding non-hackers to the board 'we' start to loose what  
>> we used to own.
>>         Even if the board makes no significant technical decisions,
>> which I remain extremely unconvinced about, I maintain that hackers[1]
>> better represent the Gnome community than any other.
>>         So in summary; I think the people best equipped to represent
>> and lead the Gnome team are the technical[2] people who have so far 
>> created what we have.
> Your use of "hackers" and "technical people" is a little unclear here.  I
> am hoping that you really mean "contributors".  For GNOME to succeed, it
> requires contributions in many shapes and sizes from a diverse group of
> contributors.  The most obvious is hackers.  However the project could not
> exist without sys admins (for web pages, cvs, mailing lists, ...), it
> would look horrible without artists to do graphics, users could not use it
> without user documentation, ...

Thank you, Dan.

Perhaps I'm a being a bit overly sensitive, but I couldn't help feeling
that Michael's comments were directed at me in particular--primarily
because I described myself primarily as a GNOME user.

I'd like to think that my minor contributions (AquaX, some sawfish lisp
modules, etc.) were not being swept aside merely because I'm not one of
the major GNOME hackers.

Now perhaps I'm mistaken, but foundation membership was opened to all
who have contributed to GNOME in *any* way, which in turn suggests that
any of those people may be elected to the Board.

More importantly, I think we need to trust the process: the foundation
members are intelligent enough to choose people that will both represent
GNOME fairly and provide the balance of talents necessary. If we vote in
someone who doesn't even use GNOME, let alone contribute to the project,
then we get what we deserve. By the same token, it would be just as
tragic to only elect those with similar perspectives.

Finally, the bottom line is that without "users", GNOME is nothing but a
"proof-of-concpt" toy for the hacker elite--and there would be no need
for a GNOME Foundation, let alone a board of directors.

> I don't think we want to talk about who "owns" GNOME.  It is Free, so I
> don't have to care who "owns" it.
> The GF is not meant to "control" GNOME.  I see the GF as another piece of
> GNOME which sits on the side, doing its work and filling a void.  The GDP
> sits on one side writing documentation.  The GTP sits on another side
> translating.  The GF sits on yet another side doing several things which
> no other part of GNOME does: working with the media, organizing conference
> participation, working with corporations who want to use/contribute to
> GNOME, outreach and education, addressing legal issues, generally acting
> as the "voice of GNOME".
> Note that the tasks I listed above do not require a low-level
> understanding of GNOME libraries.  Also note that most GNOME hackers
> probably would not want to do these tasks, nor would they necessarily be
> any good at it or even have the time necessary to do a good job at it.  I
> do not want the stereotypical hacker on the Board of Directors.  The
> stereotypical hacker doesn't want to write documentation, doesn't want to
> do administrative tasks, doesn't know how to work with corporations or the
> media, may not know much about law, etc.
> The qualities that are important are:
>   * Dedicated to GNOME and part of GNOME community
>   * Follows GNOME happenings on a daily basis
>   * Willing and able to commit significant time resources to GF work
>   * Willing to do whatever work the GF needs (*not* hacking)
>   * Can represent GNOME well (to media, companies, etc.)
>   * Good communication skills (can write/speak, returns emails, ...)
>   * Good board member (shows up, contributes, plays well with others,...)
> I take all of these very seriously.  And while some hackers would be very
> good board members, most would not IMO.  (This is not to "diss" the
> hackers, you can say the same thing about the GDP or GTP or GNOME as a
> whole.)
> Nonetheless, I think we will still have a majority of GNOME hackers on the
> board.  This is okay because the large majority of serious GNOME
> contributors are hackers, and we happen to have some very well-rounded
> hackers.  However, I think any GNOME contributor who is not a hacker and
> has the qualities above should be seriously considered.  This is
> especially true if they can contribute a unique set of relevant
> experiences, skills, or expertise.  (Bart, once again, is an excellent
> example: he is very good at all the things on my list above, plus has a
> law degree which may be very helpful on the board.)
> I have seen a number of people post questions to the candidates about
> their beliefs or how the foundation should handle technical issues and
> projects.  I have avoided these questions because almost everybody who is
> a serious GNOME contributor believes GNOME should be Free, and almost
> everyone also agrees that the GF should not be meddling in the technical
> issues of GNOME which should be resolved on the mailing lists.
> What I'd really like to know from each candidate is how good they are at
> my list of qualities:  (copied from above)
>   * Dedicated to GNOME and part of GNOME community

I like to think that I am part of the GNOME community: I follow the
gnome, pan, & sawfish lists and post occaisionally. I've submitted minor
patches--including some of the .desktop files that were included in the
GNOME 1.2 release.

>   * Follows GNOME happenings on a daily basis

Although I don't hit the website daily, as I mentioned above, I do
follow the lists daily--they form a major portion of my daily email.
(Only BANJO-L is bigger . . . ;-)

>   * Willing and able to commit significant time resources to GF work

With my children nearly out of high school, I have (and will have) more
time available for this kind of work.

>   * Willing to do whatever work the GF needs (*not* hacking)

Whatever needs to be done, if I am able--and that includes such mundane
things as filing and collating. If you're looking for a spokesmodel,
look elsewhere--I've been recognized as "the Unix geek" in the Dilbert
comic, sans suspenders.

>   * Can represent GNOME well (to media, companies, etc.)
>   * Good communication skills (can write/speak, returns emails, ...)

Coming out of the closet--not only do I have a good speaking voice and
stage presence (music & drama background), my master's was an M.Div.
(Yes, I'm an ordained minister--no longer active for reasons which are
too personal and detailed to post to a publically archived list.) I have
had a reputation as an effective speaker since my teens--and especially
as a preacher--the one who *didn't* use a manuscript.

As to my effectiveness with the written word, I guess posts like this
one shall have to suffice as my witness.

>   * Good board member (shows up, contributes, plays well with others,...)

Me? I'm always unfashionably late--if I do appear. I never share and
hoard everything I have. I'm a real loner and don't like other people at

Ooops! Forgot to toggle the sarcasm bit! <g>

   ld_barthel yahoo com |
       Organization: The Pennswald Group -- Linux powered!!
gpg fingerprint: 8D3F 4BFF D36B BFCC FEE5  86A0 2AAF D3DA C395 641E

The generation of random numbers is too important to be left to chance.

[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]