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#sugar-meeting, 2009-09-23

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Time Nick Message
15:58 sdziallas there we go :)
15:59 bernie SeanDaly: yeah I fixed it a few days ago
15:59 mchua_class also, this is an informal/unannounce meeting, so this is more of a thought-gathering than anything else
15:59 SeanDaly thinks meetbot lives
15:59 mchua_class we can't really make decisions for people other than ourselves here
15:59 thinks dfarning is on email
15:59 sdziallas #TOPIC SoaS Mailing List and Project Discussion
15:59 mchua_class --> labs; ping if needed
15:59 SeanDaly well, will be a bit more efficient than the list
15:59 sdziallas #CHAIR SeanDaly bernie sdziallas
16:00 SeanDaly: yeah, I agree on that one...
16:00 so well, how do we start best? everybody throwing thoughts at each other? ;)
16:00 bernie I'd like to start by asking SeanDaly how the naming affects the Marketing Team.
16:00 SeanDaly in the beginning I was not sure a separate list was justified, but i did not make an opinion, wishing to listen more first
16:01 "Sugar on a Stick" is a "magic" name which will (already is) helping us break out
16:01 sdziallas nods.
16:01 SeanDaly break out from GNU/Linux 2% marketshare to 90% potential marketshare
16:02 And, we are very strong where MS is very weak
16:02 bernie nods too
16:02 SeanDaly They know this and have partnered with OEMs and MS ecosystem software providers to put K-8 offers together
16:03 the Archos Classmate launches show this perfectly
16:03 participation of senior Wintel execs, etc.
16:03 OK so since SoaS is a magic name we need to be very careful how it is used
16:04 this will only become more difficult as SoaS is more successful, which I work on every day :-)
16:04 sdziallas I do agree so far.
16:04 bernie me too
16:05 SeanDaly OK I've stated my position on that which I think is fair to everyone in particular sdziallas
16:05 while allowing for some flexibility in "which best" liveUSB Sugar can be presented
16:06 by presented I mean the one under the "pancake button" to come
16:06 in a sense we can start off the best way, with sdziallas's project being not only the best, but the only serious one at this time
16:07 But we need to be forward-looking;
16:07 imagine the difficulty (yet opportunity) if Sugar Labs can choose between 2 or 3 good implementations
16:08 mchua_class|afk looks up, agrees +1 to everything so far, goes back to labs :)
16:08 SeanDaly I say choose in the sense that that the main criteria will be: easiest possible teacher test and use
16:08 the download page would have them all and perhaps explain advantages of each one.
16:09 sdziallas SeanDaly: I'd like to add some thoughts after you're finished...
16:09 SeanDaly OK in that scenario, where do devs on the "alternative" or "potential" SoaS projects work?
16:09 sdziallas go ahead
16:10 sdziallas That's exactly my point.
16:10 I believe there are basically two options we have.
16:11 (1) There's one SoaS, being *the* SoaS. Development focuses on it, as well as bug hunting and so on. Nobody gets confused. Other people might use a different name (excluding SoaS) for their projects, though.
16:12 mchua_class|afk would like to chime in once sdziallas has spoken - can haz ping then plz?
16:12 sdziallas (2) There are various distributions spreading around, all under the Sugar on a Stick umbrella. It makes things more complicated ("heck, where do I report this bug?" - "how is this different? isn't it all sugar? they all boot straight into sugar...") and so on...
16:12 mchua_class|afk: sure, let me finish the thought... :)
16:13 But in the case of (2), you'll need to see this:
16:13 Why, in the world, should anybody coming from a distro put all of his work into a derivate inside SL, which would in the end turn out to be incompatible with his original distro?
16:13 That's creating a fork.
16:14 And because it's a fork, the original distro wouldn't even be able to promote or use it.
16:14 SeanDaly trying to understand...
16:15 sdziallas So what it comes down to is that this way creates a lot of work for everybody. Unless the development work happens directly with the distros. And not inside SL. But in that case, you don't need specific mailling lists for each distro.
16:15 walterbender hi everyone :)
16:15 sdziallas hey walterbender
16:15 SeanDaly waves to walterbender
16:15 sdziallas SeanDaly: and this *is* what happened.
16:16 We decided to drop the Fedora Sugar Spin in favor of Sugar on a Stick. Because it would have caused a hell of confusion with the users.
16:16 So Fedora is currently without a promotable Sugar solution.
16:16 SeanDaly sdziallas: you mean like David van A openSuSE version?
16:16 sdziallas : OK several points
16:17 1) Fedora is great, but has miniscule marketshare and brand power
16:17 sdziallas SeanDaly: well, that's again somewhat different... because I don't know how it brands itself. but go ahead, yes. heh, mchua_class|afk, did you want to reply directly?... oh oh, I'll need to say something to that :)
16:17 mchua_class|afk looks up
16:17 SeanDaly 1a) I will be surprised if even 10% of teachers have ever heard of Fedora
16:17 mchua_class reads back
16:17 sdziallas SeanDaly: to (1). that's why I believe the underlying distro should be *entirely* irrelevant.
16:17 mchua_class raises hand
16:18 sdziallas calms down.
16:18 SeanDaly My position is that the distros and desktops (Gnome) can't help us market, because they are weak
16:19 From teacher's viewpoint I agree underlying distro irrelevant
16:19 bernie SeanDaly: I agree here
16:19 raises hand
16:19 SeanDaly entirely from marketing standpoint (no technical judgement), Fedora works if the question is asked because it was the same basis as OLPC OS
16:20 sdziallas wonders who was first... mchua_class? then bernie? we're getting into trouble.
16:20 bernie sdziallas: yeah, mel was first
16:20 mchua_class looks up
16:21 Ok.
16:21 I think we're starting to bikeshed a bit here.
16:21 SeanDaly listening
16:21 mchua_class A mailing list != an official project/marketing stance
16:21 sdziallas raises.
16:21 mchua_class I agree with most (if not all -I'd have to go back and check individual statements) of the points raised here.
16:22 As Sean pointed out, SoaS is a magic marketing word, one that can bring us beyond Linux's tiny little marketshare.
16:22 SeanDaly mchua_class: so same list if underlying distro is switched?
16:22 mchua_class As Sebastian pointed out, it's important for his development efforts to have an identity and a place to go to.
16:23 SeanDaly: yes, because the list isn't about "the single development effort the pancake button points to right now"
16:23 at least not the way I see it
16:23 think of, say, the activities list.
16:23 SeanDaly my feeling is that list should be where Sebastian works, for as long as he wishes (longtime I hope) even if in a year or two choosing a different underlying distro makes sense
16:23 mchua_class Many Activities, one list.
16:24 sdziallas mchua_class: I believe that those topics are very closely aligned. (mailing list & project decision)
16:24 mchua_class It happens that some Activities might talk on the list more than others; if the traffic gets significant (like it did with sugar-devel and soas traffic) then we can talk about distro-specific efforts splitting into their own lists.
16:24 SeanDaly I see the potential for 3 or 5 liveUSB projects; one is "simplest" and under the pancake button, but others are available for savvy project deployers & systems integrators
16:25 mchua_class But I think the general idea of doing development of sugar on a liveusb, on its own, warrants a list where technical issues for those sticks can be brought up.
16:25 sdziallas mchua_class: +1 on that.
16:25 mchua_class Trying to take the user perspective (as best as I can badly render it here)
16:25 sdziallas SeanDaly: but those liveUSB projects could still exist even if they didn't use the SoaS brand.
16:25 SeanDaly mchua_class: and if engineers consider there are three paths to go by?
16:26 mchua_class if I'm a developer, I go to the soas list (or maybe soas-devel@ is a better name) and go "oh, there are multiple projects here," and follow along and jump in there
16:26 SeanDaly sdziallas: exactly - they will all be on the Try Sugar page
16:26 sdziallas SeanDaly: well, there's a big difference there. at least for me.
16:26 SeanDaly sdziallas: but if SoaS over Fedora become SoaS over Ubuntu?
16:26 mchua_class if I'm a teacher, I go to the shiny website, where the Marketing team has a big "this is SoaS!" button (maybe with some tiny "based on $distro" text underneath) and click and get something and I don't care - or need to care - or know, or need to know - what specific soas project that pointed to.
16:27 SeanDaly mchua_class: exactly
16:27 the issue is, what version SoaS is cold change
16:27 sdziallas SeanDaly: then this is a decision to be made by considering the required teams, both from the technical side (soas list) and markting side (marketing list).
16:27 SeanDaly s/cold/could
16:27 mchua_class SeanDaly: if Marketing decides a year from now or whenever to re-point the "Get SoaS!" button and associated marketing from the Fedora-based effort to $distro-based effort, nothing changes on the devel side.
16:28 SeanDaly sdziallas: well, we were still discussing it and then poof the list was created
16:28 mchua_class they still go to the list, hop in wherever they want, whatever effort/efforts they want.
16:28 sdziallas thinks he needs to stress one of his points.
16:28 mchua_class teachers also don't have anything change. they go to the webpage, they download whatever is listed there.
16:28 SeanDaly listening
16:29 mchua_class SeanDaly: Maybe it might make sense to think of SL Marketing (you) "packaging" - and then distributing - whatever you want to call SoaS at the moment.
16:29 sdziallas If (2) is to happen, meaning that different SoaS distros will spread everywhere (even if only one gets promoted), I don't see a reason not to do the work inside Fedora. To be fair to all involved projects.
16:29 mchua_class SeanDaly: since you (Marketing) would have control of the generic SoaS name, the underlying version numbers of the various distro-based SoaS projects wouldn't matter.
16:30 SeanDaly: SL Marketing can still call it SoaS (or SoaS-1, SoaS-2, etc.) and have that be a separate versioning scheme entirely.
16:30 SeanDaly mchua_class: it's a little more complicated than that, because we will need to support SoaS
16:30 mchua_class And then say "SoaS-1 is based on the Fedora SoaS project version Strawberry, SoaS-2 is based on the Gentoo SoaS project version Cucumber" and so on
16:31 sdziallas mchua_class: that's making things much too easy, IMHO.
16:31 SeanDaly And to be fair to sdziallas, I don't think it's wise that I or anyone could suddenly switch the  SoaS base distro
16:31 mchua_class sdziallas: things being easy is a bad thing? :)
16:31 SeanDaly: Who will be supporting SoaS?
16:31 sdziallas mchua_class: no. but making complicated things easy while losing important aspects is.
16:32 SeanDaly mchua_class: systems integrator, local Labs, Sugar Labs in that order
16:32 mchua_class SeanDaly: My guess is that it will be the developers of whatever version is chosen as the one we're pointing the "SoaS" name at.
16:32 SeanDaly: when we talk about Sugar Labs, anyhow
16:33 bernie Can I make a point?
16:33 SeanDaly mchua_class: ultimately perhaps, but before them come the syst integrator, local lab, then SL
16:33 listeing to bernie
16:33 mchua_class notes this is all separate from a mailing list name, which was the original issue raised.
16:33 SeanDaly no, is right on-topic IMHO
16:33 sdziallas yeah, bernie raised... sorry ;) go go!
16:33 mchua_class listens to bernie, also would like to hear afterwards why sdziallas thinks this is an oversimplification
16:34 sdziallas hehe ;) sure...
16:34 bernie The marketing motivation that SeanDaly gave makes sense, and I agree it is very important.  However, the name SoaS is already strongly associated with the Fedora SoaS.  It's hard to change that, the same way it's hard to change Linux to GNU/Linux at this point.
16:34 Can't the Marketing Team come up with a neutral name, such as Live Sugar to identify the generic product?
16:35 SeanDaly bernie: that's logical on the face of it, but I'm afraid nt
16:35 s/nt/not
16:35 SoaS is only associated with fedora by initiates
16:35 bernie Also, I feel like Caroline should be participating.  She clearly has some interest in the brand (sugaronastick.com).
16:35 mchua_class iirc, SoaS was/is supposed to be the neutral-and-generic name.
16:35 SeanDaly Not a single teacher who has never heard of Sugar has any idea that SoaS means Fedora
16:35 sdziallas mchua_class: was it? heh. didn't know that.
16:36 SeanDaly: as long as we don't promote it that way. we could have placed a "Fedora Remix" logo at the bottom of Strawberry's boot screen.
16:37 SeanDaly mchua_class: no in fact I don't consider SoaS neutral and generic... I consider it is based on Fedora... *at this time*
16:37 sdziallas But we didn't. And I didn't propose it with a reason.
16:37 SeanDaly: because... "the underlying distro is *entirely* different". but you could already guess that ;)
16:37 bernie SeanDaly: all right, but what about the rest of us?  You'll hardly be able to zap any trace of "soas" out of the minds of the members Sugar community... they'll keep sayg "SoaS is great" and "when is the new release of SoaS out?"
16:37 SeanDaly sdziallas: as I've said, neither Fedora, nor Gnome or any other distro can bring brand recognition
16:38 mchua_class SeanDaly: +1 to that.
16:38 bernie SeanDaly: besides, is Sugar on a Stick such a good name that we want to use it for marketing?  I remember seeing threads about giving it a new name anyway.
16:38 SeanDaly in fact I was upset that OLPC had fedora remix logo at boot and no Sugar logo at boot.
16:38 sdziallas SeanDaly: I believe that depends on what you're targeting. But that's maybe more Marketing-related, on which you have more experience. ;)
16:39 SeanDaly bernie: we have brand equity in the name and we are pushing it constantly
16:39 sdziallas waves to dan1 aka dfarning.
16:39 walterbender raises his foot towards his mouth
16:39 sdziallas grins :)
16:39 mchua_class SeanDaly: in fact, I think if anything it'll be the other way around (people using SoaS will go ...oh, it's based on Fedora? what is that? ooo!) (we hope)
16:39 walterbender I see it slightly differently: there was a name, SoaS, that predates the Fedora version. (I had been using it even before I met Caroline in Indianapolis.) But there was no maintainer. Now there is a project, SoaS, with a maintainer, SDZ. As long as he is doing his job, why would we not associate the project with his work. If others want to fork it, then their work should be referred to as...
16:39 ...the XYZ fork of SoaS... But SL will market SoaS and perhaps recommend the XYZ fork under certain circumstances. Doesn't that work from the Marketing perspective?
16:40 SeanDaly mchua_class: in fact my personal belief is that SoaS can break marketshare wide open
16:40 mchua_class SeanDaly: I think we're describing the same thing, just with different words.
16:40 walterbender there is also a legal perspective on this... SL has to protect its trademark
16:40 sdziallas walterbender: that gets a +1 from my side. (though I'm not the marketing perspective)
16:41 SeanDaly walterbender: my goal is to seek the simplest/most reliable experience for teachers
16:41 walterbender but I don't see a conflict vis-a-vis trademark in this particular discussion.
16:41 SeanDaly even starting with geeky teachers
16:41 mchua_class SeanDaly: what I mean by saying "SoaS is a generic term" is "SL should control the SoaS name/trademark" - in the same way Red Hat controls the Fedora name/trademark.
16:41 walterbender SeanDaly: I think we market SoaS, period.
16:41 mchua_class In terms of ultimately legally being accountable for it.
16:41 This is *not* to say that SL (or anybody) will control the direction of the underlying code.
16:41 SeanDaly walterbender: we certainly do, but I think we should choose what the underlying distro is
16:41 walterbender SeanDaly: and there may details that potential uses need to sort out as they get into it and as some forks crop up.
16:42 SeanDaly and to be fair, this choice be say annual
16:42 mchua_class I think it's clear that sdziallas is in charge of the underlying code of the SoaS work being done based on Fedora now
16:42 SeanDaly walterbender: savvier users such as systems integrators, or large-project managers will be able to try & pick different versions
16:42 walterbender SeanDaly: I think that the current distro is Fedora. but if the project stopped being maintained tomorrow, then we'd want to look at a fork tomorrrow, not on an annual basis
16:43 SeanDaly walterbender: I agree
16:43 cjb thinks we should let the decision panel thing work it out instead of having the argument again ;-)
16:43 (although no-one seems to be arguing at the moment)
16:43 SeanDaly mchua_class: what you said is why I want to eliminate ambiguity about what work will be done on that list
16:43 sdziallas walterbender: +1. (It wasn't my intention to ask for an unlimited usage guarantee for the name. But to have some certainty... Greg's e-mail puts this very well.)
16:44 mchua_class cjb: I think what's happening right now is that we're starting to see the various perspectives/options emerge more clearly
16:44 walterbender SeanDaly:  I presumed, perhaps mistakenly, that the mailing list was more general than just the mainline branch...
16:44 mchua_class SeanDaly: What would you like the list(s) to be called, and what work would you want to be done on them?
16:44 bernie SeanDaly: OLPC seems to be working hard to avoid acknowledging the existence of Sugar.
16:44 mchua_class too, presumed the mailing list was more general than the mainline branch
16:44 bernie catches up with the backlog
16:45 mchua_class shuts up and listens for a while
16:45 walterbender SeanDaly: I would hope that all the people working on forks would use the mailing list for discussion and to help each other
16:45 bernie: not true...
16:45 SeanDaly walterbender: not sure that would work... sdz, maybe opensuse version, ubuntu, trisquel, etc?
16:45 walterbender bernie: ed and chuck are trying to get the Sugar logo into their build, like the Fedora remix, for example
16:46 SeanDaly ok what's the case for having a separate list from sugar-devel... liveUSB architecture issues?
16:46 walterbender SeanDaly: but we are already sharing sugar-devel for all these discussions and much more. why wouldn't it work?
16:47 SeanDaly: I think it was a traffic issue... personally, I am in favor of tags in the subject field, e.g., [SoaS]
16:47 SeanDaly walterbender: that seems a simpler solution to me
16:47 walterbender SeanDaly:  some of these newbies don't realize that you can filter email :)
16:47 SeanDaly but then again, I want sdz's view
16:48 sdziallas SeanDaly: heh. :) on the mailing list thing? or on the underlying distro thing first?
16:48 bernie walterbender: good to know
16:48 really
16:48 SeanDaly mailing list thing
16:48 do you feel its necessary & why?
16:49 sdziallas SeanDaly: I think it's necessary *in case* SoaS becomes a SL project.
16:49 SeanDaly well, it's a de facto SL project, no?
16:50 mchua_class For me personally, it's a traffic issue; I can filter, but not everyone will remember to [tag] stuff. And when you have 2 different release schedules, it's hard to tell some emails apart - is "Beta released!" referring to a SoaS beta, or a Sugar beta?
16:50 sdziallas SeanDaly: I did raise this at the beginning in my open letter to get some parallel effort going, to keep on with the development.
16:50 mchua_class Also, [tags][for][all][SL][projects] is not going to scale well
16:50 SeanDaly it's the pillar of our marketing strategy
16:50 mchua_class: OLPC and SL numbering is useful for devs but unbelievably complicated for anyone else
16:51 sdziallas SeanDaly: I'm not sure on that one. I've been asking on where SL wants to position SoaS (because I'd act accordingly concerning where to move my efforts).
16:51 SeanDaly: well, and the current SoaS is the pillar of it's development strategy, heh. ;)
16:51 SeanDaly part of how we got so much press in June was by creating a meme that after a year of work, we were coming out with a v1
16:51 mchua_class SeanDaly: Oh, I totally agree. Which is why I 100% support Marketing efforts to make those version numberings things Users Don't Have To Worry About.
16:52 SeanDaly sdziallas: yes, quite, current SoaS is pillar of dev strategy :-)
16:53 I just want to be ready for the day which may or may not come that a "better" i.e. easier liveUSB shows up... then what?
16:53 sdziallas SeanDaly: so you might want to re-read Greg's e-mail: http://lists.sugarlabs.org/arc[…]ember/019403.html
16:53 mchua_class would rephrase that as "current SoaS is pillar of marketing/distribution strategy" because core-Sugar dev is something else entirely, and core-Sugar is still SL's primary focus/project/code-chunk.
16:53 SeanDaly My answer is: without precipitation, we decide if it's worth switching what we cann SoaS to that
16:53 sdziallas SeanDaly: I'm *not* asking anybody to decide to let me own the brand for *ever*.
16:53 mchua_class: "SoaS is your *only* product" (citing...)
16:53 walterbender has an idea for a new name: "Unlimited Potential" ... oops. I guess that is taken :)
16:53 sdziallas grins ;)
16:54 SeanDaly guffaws
16:54 sdziallas SeanDaly: I'm admittedly biased in case of Fedora. But at rare points even I might support a switch.
16:54 SeanDaly sdziallas: I agree with GregDek and I support you which why I have proposed the earliest date for any change for 1 year from now
16:55 mchua_class sdziallas: I don't recall the context for that quote, can you fill in?
16:55 SeanDaly if you remember, I said if an alternate appeared supported by a team of engineers, that to be fair to you, there should be just as many engineers working with you to truly compare
16:55 sdziallas mchua_class: Greg, in an e-mail about the role of SoaS.
16:57 SeanDaly: that makes some sense. well...
16:57 SeanDaly from my position: any simplification/improved reliability of SoaS will mean thousands more teachers
16:58 if an alternate is clearly much better... then what?
16:58 my first reaction: can existing SoaS benefit from work of alternate?
16:58 mchua_class is trying to make an ascii diagram to try to clarify things, brb
16:58 sdziallas SeanDaly: "thanks for all the work you've done *when no one else
16:58 would do it* to make SoaS a great experience -- but just so you know, we
16:58 reserve the right to turn around tomorrow and say 'thanks, but we're gonna
16:58 go another direction'."
16:58 SeanDaly perhaps different architecture approach...?
16:59 sdziallas: :-) but... my position is... not tomorrow, but in October of next year
17:00 sdziallas SeanDaly: so you're probably going to say that after I put in *two* years of development? thanks :p
17:00 SeanDaly sdziallas: probably not... because at the rate you're going, SoaS will be even more awesome in two years :D
17:01 sdziallas Mel said once (rephrased) "if you can't trust in something, better work it out, since otherwise you might notice that you just wasted a lot of work"
17:01 SeanDaly sdziallas: agree that trust is very important.
17:02 Like you and many others I put many hours in and I'd feel awful if I felt work might be discarded
17:02 sdziallas SeanDaly: Heh, well. "Probably". You know, I could be working in the next supermarket to finance my college education. But I decided not to. And when somebody might just raise up and tell me what I just quoted above whereas I don't even need to agree, then I'm... a bit worried about my work. (sorry, that's just the way I feel)
17:03 (I decided not to because this is something I love doing, and something I believe in.)
17:03 Anyway... yeah, that's a point I agree with.
17:03 SeanDaly sdziallas: at your age I was working in the restaurant to be a musician :D
17:03 sdziallas: you have a tremendous opportunity to effect change
17:04 walterbender sdziallas: none of us have any guarantee that our work will be used... but we all believe we are doing the best we can for the mission and that we can count on open sincere and fair critique of our efforts.
17:04 sdziallas grins ;)
17:04 SeanDaly Marketing is loaded with stories of "tops" and "flops"
17:05 you'll notice I talk about luck a lot
17:05 walterbender sdziallas:  the time to worry is when people go underground or behind your back... I don't think that is happening here
17:05 SeanDaly sometimes massive effort= nothing happens
17:05 sdziallas walterbender: I feel like it happened already.
17:05 SeanDaly sometimes little effort= jackpot
17:05 mchua_class So, this is how I see it: http://pastebin.com/m5a26efe7
17:05 walterbender thinks of invading Iraq :(
17:05 sdziallas walterbender: ...which is also why I feel like we're having this discussion already a bit late.
17:05 SeanDaly: yeah, right... :)
17:06 SeanDaly sdziallas: I hope you don't think I was undergrounding you in any way
17:06 mchua_class (feel free to modify the pastebin so it fits your understanding, btw. what's different in your diagram?)
17:07 SeanDaly mchua_class: I wouldn't say Marketing decides when to switch.. I'd say Marketing suggests when to switch.
17:07 such a decision would have projectwide impact I think.
17:07 mchua_class SeanDaly: Who's the ultimate holder of the SoaS trademark/name?
17:07 It would.
17:08 SeanDaly mchua_class: as stated previously, Sugar Labs
17:08 mchua_class meaning SLOBs?
17:08 sdziallas SeanDaly: that sounds reasonable to me. (not that I don't trust you, that's not the point. but I agree that there should be more groups involved in such a decision).
17:09 SeanDaly well, list consensus, SugarCamp, SLOBS (and walter in there too)
17:09 mchua_class I'd want to point to a group that will contain a small group of individuals that we would trust to make and execute such a decision.)
17:09 SeanDaly and, by the way,
17:09 mchua_class that's indepenent of any named individuals.
17:09 SeanDaly this is why I suggest potential SoaS distro switch *following* SLOBs elections
17:10 such a change I feel could be part of election platform
17:10 sdziallas "SoaS Steering Committee"?
17:10 mchua_class Yeah, +1 to SeanDaly's earlier idea of a set/date cycle for SoaS distro switch issues to come up
17:10 SeanDaly sdziallas: Steering committee excellent idea
17:11 sdziallas SeanDaly: so that the different groups (like marketing and development) could discuss things like this there...
17:12 SeanDaly mchua_class: with the nuance that some events could trigger earlier change, such as sdziallas falling sick (n.b. after the restaurant I was a NYC bike messenger and busted both my arms... couldn't play guitar for 2 months, and had to leave the band I was in :-(
17:12 mchua_class suggests "SoaS Steering Committee" be a normal ol' decision panel that gets regularly created/convened by SLOBs after each election, and dissolved once the "where does the SoaS ### arrow point?" is settled for that year
17:12 (hopefully soon afterwards)
17:12 SeanDaly mchua_class: no I prefer continuing existence
17:13 bernie mchua_class: do we have enough volunteers for the decision panel?
17:13 sdziallas SeanDaly: +1 from my side on that
17:13 SeanDaly sdziallas should know he has a fair shake, that things don't get "decided" without his input (although I think sdziallas may be more worried than necessary)
17:13 bernie mchua_class: the only one I'm aware of is SJ
17:14 cjb: have you been counting the volunteers
17:14 ?
17:14 mchua_class bernie: is there any criteria about how many volunteers decision panels need to have? If not, the SLOBs can say "ok, decision panel is these people!" whenever you want
17:14 SeanDaly there are a dozen volunteers from the OLPC support list
17:14 sdziallas SeanDaly: maybe I've gotten a little paranoid lately... sorry in that case :)
17:14 SeanDaly but decision panel != steering committee
17:14 bernie SeanDaly: yes, the panel needs to come up with a decision and submit it to the board for approval
17:15 mchua_class Yeah, decision panel != steering committee.
17:15 SeanDaly steering committee meets regularly to verify the ship's heading
17:15 walterbender mchua_class: we have a slobs meeting scheduled for Friday... we'll appoint a panel from a subset of volunteers then.
17:15 mchua_class walterbender: yay!
17:15 cjb bernie: nope, will have the list ready for the meeting on Fri morning
17:15 bernie: I think we have enough volunteers
17:15 mchua_class SeanDaly: how is a steering committee different from a team (like marketing team, devel team, etc)?
17:15 cjb bernie: oh, there are many more than SJ
17:15 bernie: dsd, mtd, sdz, Caroline, from memory
17:15 it'll be fine
17:16 walterbender SeanDaly: maybe we are approachin the point where we should consider a steering committee of some folks like Alan Kay, etc.
17:16 bernie SeanDaly: if we do not like this procedure, we can vote to change the bylaws, but I guess it wouldn't be good form to retroactively change it for the current issue.
17:16 SeanDaly mchua_class: in the big IT projects I have worked on, there are people working hard on the project
17:16 bernie cjb: ah ok
17:16 neuralis so, uh, hello and stuff, sorry to butt in, but do you guys think you maybe overdoing the bureaucracy thing, what with having an oversight board, decision panels, steering committees, individual teams and whatnot for a still-tiny project?
17:16 it all seems a little ridiculous to me.
17:16 SeanDaly and a steering committee of both the project manager, and people whose experience & POV are respected, and
17:16 cjb neuralis: it did cross my mind.  I didn't realize it existed until Walter pointed out I was breaking the rules.  :)
17:16 walterbender neuralis: we love departments and bureaus :)
17:16 mchua_class that's why I'm asking whether any of our existing structures can work instead of a separate steering committe.
17:17 SeanDaly who have a different perspective from day-to-day work in trenches
17:17 bernie neuralis: it seems overcomplicated to me too
17:17 neuralis: we copied the GNOME foundation, iirc
17:17 cjb bernie: no, I think bemasc invented the decision panel thing
17:17 mchua_class neuralis: the nice thing about good governance/structure is that once it's set up (usually with a fair amount of aggravation at the start) it becomes invisible if it works right.
17:17 SeanDaly neuralis: no, worth the effort if we get the millions of teachers I'm targeting
17:17 cjb mchua_class: right, and our governance is clearly not invisible
17:17 neuralis mchua_class: the nice thing about less governance/structure is that there's nothing to make invisible.
17:18 walterbender FWIW, I was thinking of a "visiting committee" equivalent... an excuse to periodically invite some smart people to argue with about our strategic direction. Not another management team.
17:18 neuralis SeanDaly: why don't we add more bureaucracy as necessary while going along, rather than doing this kinda ridiculous thing up front?
17:18 cjb SeanDaly: of course it's worth the effort if we become a huge company; the point of making a small company not have a huge bureaucracy is so that it might make it all the way to being a huge company.
17:18 SeanDaly walterbender: +1 Alan Kay
17:18 mchua_class asks the question "what's the minimal decisionmaking architecture we need in place to Get Crap Out Of People's Way?"
17:18 cjb mchua_class: the answer to that question does not involve forming Decision Panels.
17:18 SeanDaly cjb: I'm anti-bureaucracy
17:19 walterbender I think we have enough critical mass where we could attract some interesting folks to come in to critique us.
17:19 mchua_class we're clearly at the point where individuals charging forward are running into other individuals charging forward, so a total lack of governance/structure is no longer optimal
17:19 bernie SeanDaly: I'm anti-bureaucracy too, but I'd rather have the overhead of democracy than an efficient dictatorship where the CEO can go crazy and make deals with Microsoft behind our backs.
17:19 SeanDaly But we need to be clear about what we are doing
17:19 anti-dictatorship
17:20 walterbender democracy is the worst, until you try all the others... or something like that
17:20 SeanDaly walterbender: yes we could try to bring in some heavy thinkers, in pedagogy?
17:20 neuralis dictators are so last year. what sugar labs needs is a politburo.
17:20 mchua_class anti-bureaucracy and anti-dicatorship and anti-red-tape-crap, which makes these discussions very difficult for me to be in because I constantly have to fight the urge to go off and hack (or more often these days, write) something
17:20 SeanDaly neuralis: I spent 4 years in Moscow right after the fall, met many apparatchiks
17:21 walterbender actually, maybe Hugo Chavez would sign up. Along with W.
17:21 mchua_class not advocating for any particular governance setup
17:21 SeanDaly rms said "my friend Hugo" in a speech once
17:21 bernie neuralis: poliwhat?
17:21 mchua_class advocating for constant small experiments and observations of our governance setups when needed, so that we iteratively get closer to A System That Works For Us
17:21 walterbender the bottom line in this organization had better remain: show me the code
17:22 mchua_class being conscious of the way we work with each other == good
17:22 walterbender which is why I think an active maintainer is a trump card
17:22 cjb grumble.  everyone says they don't like bureaucracy, but isn't offering ways to have less bureaucracy.  :)
17:22 mchua_class walterbender: +1
17:22 bernie oh
17:22 SeanDaly bernie: kremlinology: which members of the Politburo watching parade on Red Square who were not there last year.. and who is gone
17:22 mchua_class cjb: I'm trying to offer ways to have different bureaucracies so we can see which ones we like, does that count?
17:22 neuralis cjb: i have lots of offers. how about you scrap this decision panel shite and trust that SLOBs will make the right decision when consensus fails to emerge?
17:22 cjb neuralis: that was my proposal, yeah.
17:23 mchua_class http://pastebin.com/m6c1165db updated
17:23 bernie cjb: is the decision panel really an idea of bemasc?  I think he was quoting our bylaws
17:23 SeanDaly are SLOBs toothy enough?
17:23 neuralis i mean, seriously, "decision panel" sounds like something used to scare people in the healthcare debate.
17:23 walterbender neuralis, cjb: viva la revoluccion, but let's see how the existing structure plays out...
17:23 cjb I mean, before I realized that decision panels existed.  It seems like you vote for people on the OB because you think they're best at making hard decisions.  But now we're saying "hey, let's form a panel full of people who haven't been voted for and let them decide."
17:23 how's that better?
17:23 neuralis cjb: yeah, beats me.
17:24 cjb neuralis: I was going to put "death^Wdecision panel" in my e-mail about it :)
17:24 bernie cjb: yes, he was: http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/S[…]e#Decision_Panels
17:24 cjb bernie: hm?
17:24 bernie: oh, bemasc, right.
17:24 mchua_class bemasc did initiate the idea of decision panels earlier though, http://lists.sugarlabs.org/arc[…]-June/000950.html
17:24 sdziallas cjb: I've been wondering about this "deferring decisions" thing, too...
17:25 bernie cjb: no, you vote people on the OB because you want them to *Oversight*.  The OB is not an executive organ
17:25 cjb sdziallas: don't think I know what that is
17:25 bernie cjb: in a grassroots organization, there's no executive organ.
17:25 cjb bernie: right, but someone has to make a decision.  that's why we're having this process in the first place.  so, you're faced with the question of "who should make decisions?"
17:25 mchua_class three on the "defer decisions" thing, but that's how it's written right now.
17:25 cjb bernie: I think this "everyone will just agree and no-one should have any power to make decisions" thing is a fantasy.
17:25 bemasc bernie: actually, I'd say it the other way.
17:25 sdziallas cjb: heh. what I meant is: "a decision panel actually allows SLOBs to defer a decision... which it needs to revisit anyway afterwards"
17:26 mchua_class If SLOBs were to make the decision that *they* were going to make decisions, I'd be fine with that; just as long as we have a place Where The Buck Stops.
17:26 bemasc The Oversight Board is purely executive. It is not legislative or judicial.
17:26 neuralis i've got to go Do Work now, but man, i have a special soft gooey place in my heart for sugar labs and i really don't want you guys to red-tape yourself into the corner. so, please keep asking yourselves "is this necessary?" when dealing with more bureaucracy, okay? okay. much love.
17:26 dfarning The decision about the direction of soas should fall on the soas team, the decision about how to market it should fall on the marketing team.
17:27 cjb bemasc: which is another way of saying that you want someone else to make the decisions, but you're going to stop the people who actually seem most-placed to help make them from taking part.
17:27 bemasc cjb: I don't want anyone to make decisions.
17:27 cjb dfarning: then everyone should be happy.  they don't seem to be, though.
17:27 bemasc I don't want any governance at all, but it's an SFC requirement.
17:28 mchua_class recalls this conversation originally started because of a question about the name and purpose of a mailing list.
17:28 cjb bemasc: this is where I come in with the happy fantasy land thing :)
17:28 SeanDaly dfarning: does the SoaS team decide when to switch the underlying distro? I don't think any one team should decide that.
17:28 sdziallas SeanDaly: +1
17:29 dfarning The nature of open source is that alternatives compete on their merit, if we lose that, we have lost every thing.
17:29 SeanDaly mchua_class: discussion for 10 days already, but precipitated by creation of list before consensus
17:30 mchua_class SeanDaly, sdziallas, bernie: Can the list name and purpose reach consensus soon? I think SeanDaly is the only remaining dissenter on soas@lists - I talked with dirakx earlier, though it's worth waiting a bit longer to make sure nobody else has issues to bring up.
17:30 SeanDaly dfarning: +1
17:30 mchua_class SeanDaly: Yeah, the creation was premature; sorry, I should have put a "but please wait until we reach consensus" note on the ticket text
17:30 SeanDaly: to warn bernie
17:30 SeanDaly, sdziallas, bernie: what are the blockers to reaching consensus on list name/purpose?
17:30 cjb will shut up and let you get back to the meeting.  :)
17:31 mchua_class SeanDaly, sdziallas, bernie: List them, pump them to a mailing list thread (a new one, please), and then start getting through them.
17:31 SeanDaly still not clear to me why bother with new list? and how does list function the day we need to switch distros?
17:31 dirakx mchua_class: i agree with the name ;)
17:31 sdziallas SeanDaly: I think if there's one product we're promoting, this product should have a (development) list.
17:32 mchua_class SeanDaly: if we address those two concerns of yours, will the creation of the list be unblocked?
17:32 sdziallas SeanDaly: and we're not going to promote SoaS-$DISTRO... (at least hopefully not) :)
17:32 SeanDaly sdziallas: I agree, but in that case it should be clear what project the list is for? For all liveUSB Sugar implementations?
17:32 mchua_class SeanDaly: (1) because SoaS developers would like to not be overwhelmed with email, (2) the same as it did before - as a neutral work/discussion ground for liveusb Sugar distros.
17:32 imo.
17:33 references descript at http://dev.sugarlabs.org/ticket/1419#comment:7.
17:33 SeanDaly well, if you think it won't be confusing to regroup all liveUSB dev work on the same list...
17:33 sdziallas well, I think it's general purpose should be the discussion of the soas direction, as well as technical things. but if there are new projects or ideas coming up, I think the list should be open for them (and they should be able to find a home there)...
17:34 mchua_class SeanDaly: right now, the majority of liveusb dev work is the fedora-based stuff.
17:34 bemasc It certainly won't be confusing.  There aren't enough people to get confused.
17:34 SeanDaly mchua_class: which is why I think SoaS-fedora is more explicit :D
17:34 mchua_class SeanDaly: if enough separate projects start up that the SoaS list gets cluttered, they (including the fedora-based effort) can request or create lists of their own, but I wouldn't expect that to happen for a while.
17:35 SeanDaly but if you think other liveUSB Sugar projects will be welcomed, OK I guess
17:35 mchua_class sdziallas: will other liveUSB Sugar projects be welcomed?
17:35 getting kicked out of the room shortly, will drop offline in a few min
17:35 sdziallas mchua_class: definitely. I'd put such a sentence on the lists welcome page.
17:36 SeanDaly I had mentioned in thread that intersection of different approaches could help
17:36 mchua_class SeanDaly: does that address your concerns? We can add a second, more neutral moderator if you like (one of the debian/ubuntu SoaS maintainers, you, etc.)
17:36 SeanDaly: I don't want to call it "consensus" if you're still feeling uneasy about this in any way.
17:37 sdziallas maybe quidam? (from trisquel?)
17:37 SeanDaly on that basis my concerns are addressed...
17:37 for the list name & purpose
17:37 mchua_class SeanDaly: Are there others? (Would you like some time to think about it to make sure?)
17:37 dfarning Is their a consensus to let the marketing team control the message?
17:38 mchua_class is feeling a bit like m_stone today :)
17:38 SeanDaly I want to make huge splash with SoaS, easy for teachers to try, support sdziallas work while remaining open to other solutions which could be better... fairly
17:38 mchua_class getting kicked out of lab now
17:38 sdziallas grins ;)
17:38 SeanDaly: I think we'll try to get a rocking v2 release, right? :)
17:38 bemasc still blames the naming.
17:39 mchua_class SeanDaly, sdziallas: can you post a summary of either "I think we have consensus and here is why" or "we do not yet have consensus and here are the things that need to be resolved in order to get that" when you're done?
17:39 --> home, to cram
17:39 SeanDaly dfarning: it's true that if marketing is the horse following the cart, we won't get where want to go
17:39 sdziallas: +1 on rocking v2!!
17:40 sdziallas SeanDaly: how does this look to you? http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/soas
17:40 SeanDaly: :)
17:40 notes that he'll need to get some sleep soon (tomorrow long school day)
17:41 SeanDaly looks good my suggestions are: 1) "liveUSB Sugar" and include alias feedback@sugarlabs.org
17:41 sdziallas grumbles as he forgot to take action items through meetbot.
17:41 SeanDaly: yup, that sounds good. sure, let me change that.
17:41 SeanDaly needs to sleep too
17:42 waves to silbe before keeling over from tiredness
17:42 dfarning If marketing needs to name a list to provide clarity to the project why are we preventing that from happening
17:43 silbe sneaks off...
17:44 SeanDaly dfarning: I'm OK with general SoaS name as long as crystal clear that list is for *all* liveUSB Sugar projects
17:44 list likely to be rarely seen/used by teachers, but
17:44 more often by support - systems integrators, local Labs
17:45 sdziallas SeanDaly: http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/soas (better now?
17:46 SeanDaly: oups, there's a P too much, let me repair that :)
17:46 fixed.
17:46 SeanDaly sdziallas: looks great - may I ask for one more small change?
17:46 sdziallas SeanDaly: sure :)
17:46 SeanDaly I hate acronyms, they obfuscate
17:47 IAEP (It's An Education Project)
17:47 sdziallas smiles, yes, right.
17:47 done!
17:47 SeanDaly actually, may be necessary to mention Sugar-devel as upstream... you think?
17:48 for smebody just arriving?
17:48 s/smebody/somebody
17:48 sdziallas hm, folks might see that when looking at the list of the... lists, heh: http://lists.sugarlabs.org/
17:49 but I don't see why we shouldn't add it, either.
17:49 SeanDaly sdziallas: just to avoid confusion (I'm anti-confusion) remember, many people will conflate Sugar and Sugar on a Stick
17:49 sdziallas nods... let's do it
17:49 bernie cjb: you're putting words in my mouth.  I just said that the OB is not an executive organ.
17:49 SeanDaly as Tomeu can attest, even some non-SL devs are confused :D
17:50 bernie cjb: otherwise, we'd call it a Steering Commitee.  Which we might decide to have one day.
17:51 bemasc SeanDaly: I sincerely wish for the marketing committee to come up with a new name.
17:51 SeanDaly sdziallas: re the related subject of how to "steer", "decide", and "oversight" SoaS... I think I need to sleep on it. But I like the idea of bringing in steerers who are ace in education and not at all necessarily geeky
17:52 bemasc: new name for what?
17:52 bemasc Firefox is not called "Gecko in a Browser". Pidgin is not called "libpurple with a UI".
17:52 sdziallas SeanDaly: http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/soas (finally...)
17:52 SeanDaly: yeah, that makes sense... I'll need to sleep on it as well.
17:53 (regarding the meeting logs / summary, I guess we can handle that tomorrow or so)
17:53 SeanDaly bemasc: yes, but Firefox is not a staple in every country of the world, with trade associations in 90 countries
17:53 bemasc what?
17:53 sdziallas wonders if he can close the meeting...
17:53 walterbender dfarning: off-topic: can we pick a time to talk tomorrow about Bolano? You name the time.
17:53 SeanDaly sdziallas: that page is dynamite, crystal clear
17:53 bemasc: "Sugar"
17:54 sdziallas SeanDaly: :)
17:54 dfarning any time after 9 am and before 3 pm
17:54 SeanDaly sdz: I think you can end
17:54 sdziallas okey dokey, awesome. thanks everybody, I think this was very helpful!
17:55 #endmeeting

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