Re: 10 Questions for All Candidates

On Mon, Nov 12, 2001 at 10:26:11PM -0600, Dan Mueth wrote:
> 1) Why are you running for Board of Directors?
There are some issues I'd like to see addressed, and hopefully, my
perspective from the top of the library stack is useful.

> 2) Do you have leadership and committee experience? If so, please explain.
Yes.  I've managed groups of various sizes (2-15 people) and been a
member of several committees.  The most important thing I've learned
so far is the rule of 3.  Every person above 3 will increase the
length of the meeting.  A classic example was the C++
standardisation committee, the resulting standard is pretty good
considering, but it took us too long.
> 3) How familiar are you with the day-to-day happenings of GNOME?  How much
> do you follow and participate in the main GNOME mailing lists?
Familiar enough to know the players, and to recognise which chips are
are on whose shoulders.  Participating in every thread
that comes across the lists would decimate productivity (Havoc gets full
marks for managing it somehow), but lurking on many is feasible.
> 4) Do you feel you would be good at understanding other people and
> companies and finding ways that GNOME can collaborate with other
> companies and organizations to benefit both groups and their
> users?
We have a strong platform, and excellent applications.   Finding areas
where GNOME can benefit other organisations is not difficult.
Collaborating with other projects when, possible is also, a fairly clear
requirement.  To squabble over a tiny sliver of the desktop seems like
a recipe for continued MS serfdom.  However, the goal of the foundation
is to enhance GNOME.  The board should be willing to go it alone if
necessary to produce results in a timely fashion.
> 5) What do you believe are the current weak points of GNOME as an
> organization, and if you were able to, how would you change the
> GNOME organization?
As a developer I tend to focus on limitations of the 'platform' rather
than the 'organisation'.   Flaws in the former are frequently
reflections of choices in the latter.  The main platform weaknesses I
see are
    a) Too much code replication in application.
    b) Not enough Interoperability between applications
    c) Too much latency in the development and deployment of new code
To my mind all of these have elements of the same underlying
organisational weakness.  There are no clear places for different
collaborations to go outside of the stable core.  This puts a strain on
core developers to make every new feature completely stable instantly or
delay their release.  It also forces apps to replicate (often poorly)
features that are missing from the core.  I advocate adopting a some
notions of life cycle that would allow new code to appear sooner in
'testing' libraries like eel/gal.
> 6) Are you good at working with others, who sometimes have very
> differing opinions than you do, to reach concensus and agree on actions?
I'm Canadian.
> 7) Please name three or more areas which you feel are important
> for the Board to address over the next year
- Fonts, Fonts, Fonts
- Increased collaboration between apps.
- A clear development life cycle for new code.
> 8) Do you consider yourself diplomatic?
As a relatively ancient coder by GNOME standards (> 30), leading
what is probably one of the oldest teams (average age > 30)  I'd
like to think I've learned a bit of diplomacy.
> 9) Will you represent the interests of GNOME and the GNOME Foundation over
> all other personal or corporate interests you may represent?
Isn't this a requirement ?  The goal of 'public service' (or in this
case 'gnome service') can only be reached if the public trusts you to
represent as unbiased a view as possible.
> 10) Will you be willing and have the available time to take on and
> complete various tasks that the Board needs accomplished?
Where appropriate I'm available.

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