What does GNOME-UK do?


One of the questions that has come up in the discussions of the consitution, membership, and even LinuxWorld is what is GNOME-UK, or more to the point what is it that GNOME-UK does?

I was kind of asked this question by some shonky journo working for PC Plus (who also happens to sit at the desk next to mine until the end of the month) so I had to think about it a bit, and this is my first stab at what we do (thinking generally about what local groups do);

First we're a mailing list of GNOME users, contributors, system administrators, and supporters of the GNOME project. We act as a point of contact for people in the UK who have an interest in GNOME - people interested in GNOME could of course just go to gnome.org, join whatever mailing list or ask on IRC, etc, but these things can be intimidating and sometime fruitless if the people on the other end don't share language, cultural references or timezones (maybe less of an issue for us than other cultures).

Translation. At first, being and english white male, I thought that this didn't really aply to us, however on second thought quite apart from indigenous languages like Welsh or Celtic, there are whole host of languages in use in the UK, and we should be encouraging and supporting translation work in any and all of them.

Events and Conferences. We aim to provide a GNOME stand / speakers / whatever at relevant events and conferences, as well run e&c of our own. Stuff we've already done would include LUGRadio Live and LinuxWorld (and it's predecessors) - what other events should we have a presence at (BETT? ACCU? UKUUG?). And of course now GUADEC will be one we're organising - but I think we should be planning to have a regular GUADEC-UK conference from 2008. The original plan Thomas and I had with the bid was to go for it, learn as much we could from the process, fail, organise a UK event in 2007, and then bid again next year for GUADEC 2008, however the Foundation Board called our bluff on that one. Perhaps in future we might work with some conference to co-organise a GNOME stream (LUGRadioLive?, UKUUG?)

UK based evangelism and marketing. Alot of the event stuff falls under this heading too but there is other stuff as well. Building up national / local press contacts, UK based marketing (as part of the overall marketing strategy), lobbying government (if appropriate), liaising with orgs such as BECTA, NCC, OSC, where relevant. Supporting each other as evangelists (in the good sense) within our workplace, friends, lugs, clubs, etc.

That's as far as I got with things that we do - feel free to comment or add to that list (like I need to ask ;-). As to what the aim of GNOME-UK is the best I could come up with was

GNOME-UK is community whose aim is to encourage, develop, and grow the UK contribution to the GNOME project.

How's that for a tripleverb ;-) In general I think 'mission statements' are pretty lame, useless things, but I did think it might be useful some kind of terms of reference for why we're doing stuff. 

Anyway, that's enough definition for one day,


Paul Cooper                    |  Tel: 0121 634 1620
Assistant Director             |  Fax: 0121 634 1630
OpenAdvantage                  |  http://www.openadvantage.org

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