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Friday 11 July 2008

GUADEC notes #3

  • Got positive feedbacks about our plans. We still need to write down things for people who are not at GUADEC (sorry that it feels like teasing to you). I'm not posting the slides yet since, well, they're pretty much useless without some text. Some people are worried that we're going to do something big that might destabilize GNOME: we're pretty aware of those kind of risks and that's relly not the plan. We will try to write all the details today or tomorrow, but it's hard to find free time for that during GUADEC.
  • Matt Webb's keynote was good. Many interesting thoughts, and it was funny to see him recommend some kind of documentation for the various D-Bus APIs we have -- something I had in the back of my head: it will indeed encourage people to start playing with them. And doing new stuff.
  • Had a discussion with Dimitris about how to organize the work on Transifex, and he sent his thoughts as a roadmap.
  • Yet another meeting. With Lennart, Bastien, Jens and Marc-André about sound in GNOME. Productive, with action items.
  • The boat party was great. Many thanks to Collabora for such a good time!
  • We of course had the Ice Cream Deathmatch. So, it seems people thought it was all about speed, while really it's all about enjoying :-) On the other hand, Henri Bergius (if I remember well) is just not a human since he ate everything so quickly. But, well, his bio mentions Henri Bergius is a former Viking based in the Nordic country of Finland...
  • A party on a boat is great. There can be some small issues, though. Like: when you don't hear that you have some limited time to go out of the boat before it does another round. We were quite a few people in this situation. Ooops :-)
  • Chatted with Owen and Andreas. Result: we'll try to organize a hackfest. I love how starting to talk about something can lead to some really concrete idea.
  • The gourmet restaurant tradition has been honored. GUADEC wouldn't be GUADEC without this.
  • Lucas and I have been volunteered to do a lightning talk about GNOME Outreach Program: Accessibility. One of the things that people seem to not really know about this program is all the small tasks that are easy to complete. Everybody should at least take a look!
  • To let people know that their lightning talk time was about to end, Behdad hacked some quick & dirty script that beeped quite loudly. Annoying. Amazing.
  • Around 115 people attended the Foundation AGM. Went great -- we actually expecting tougher questions ;-)
  • Federico knows how to do awesome demos during a keynote. Sure, he's cheating with non-live stuff, but still awesome!

Thursday 10 July 2008

Live from Istanbul: GNOME 3.0

GNOME 2.30 = GNOME 3.0

Slides and details will be posted later. Discuss :-)

GUADEC notes #2

  • The GUADEC keys are awesome. So small. Thanks Mandriva!
  • The Drooling Macaque Band was at the cocktail party yesterday evening. Perhaps we should record them live next year? Oh, and we had this idea of doing a GNOME song in the past...
  • Was glad to hear that I tricked some people into drinking some cherry juice, thinking it was wine. Don't steal my glass :-)
  • Looks like I'm completely exhausted most of the time :/ Could be because of the RMLL conference last week, or because of all the meetings... If you come talk to me and see I'm nearly sleeping, don't worry, just come back 30 minutes later -- I'm generally much better after a while.
  • Having Stormy rocks. Every time I see her, she's either explaining some great ideas, or talking with someone different to learn more about the project and the people. She will just know everything, I guess :-)
  • Having Behdad rocks. He's running everywhere, organizing things, and doing tons of stuff.
  • Luis said "don't be afraid to talk to big people like Michael. He's so right. Everybody here is nice and willing to talk with everybody else. But I can also understand why you can be impressed by Michael -- always brings a new perspective, that makes you think for quite some time :-)
  • Since I push people to pronounce Vincent correctly (ie, french way), I also try to pronounce other names correctly. Makes me feel happy to have this international touch.
  • The Ice Cream Deathmatch will happen tonight, at the boat party. If you see Ali, hug him: he's doing all the hard work to organize it!
  • I heard Kris' keynote about GTK+ this afternoon is most interesting.

Wednesday 9 July 2008

GUADEC notes

  • Istanbul looks great. Many cats. Helpful people. Lots of beatiful things everywhere. And I went to Asia for the first time in my life yesterday evening. Sure, it was only the asian side of Istanbul, but still, big event!
  • Quite easy to spot GUADEC people when you walk around. And hard to eat somewhere and not find some of them :-)
  • Lucas really is my evil twin. Proof: those two posts that also summarize my first two days. Lots of discussion with him. Hard to not fall in love with him ;-)
  • Doctor Don is here. And it seems he's talking about pulse to lots of people because Shaun promised him eternal glory.
  • Had a BoF about release notes. Hopefully, this has helped make people aware of the various issues we have when writing release notes. Important thing that most people seem to not know: the most consuming part of the release notes is doing research about what to put in there, not writing -- so no need to be a good writer to help! Oh, and if you're here in Istanbul, you should really go and talk to Davyd or Murray to get them excited about new 2.24 material that they should put in the release notes.
  • Andreas still loves to tell this story about his ancestors, the woodmen. Explains a lot of things.
  • Also had a talk/BoF about translation tools. I think we really have a good plan, and Dimtiris is so great. Good to see my beloved Danilo again and glad to see his positive feelings about all this.
  • Couldn't attend many sessions so far because of meetings. That's a bit sad, but on the other hand, everything went well and there are some exciting stuff.
  • I'm Silvia again this year. Still no progress in catalan.
  • I also have two nametags, so I'm ready in case somebody starts stealing all nametags.
  • Couldn't play the FreeFA tournament, but I heard Bastien lost. Don't know if I can go and ask him to check it's true :-)
  • No Love/Hate wall yet? Any volunteer to set this up?

Tuesday 8 July 2008

Welcome Stormy!

I'm a bit late to the party, but I really want to send a very warm welcome to Stormy. Yep, we hired her as our executive director. And I'm already convinced she'll just rock our world :-) And if you need to be convinced, just go and talk to her. Really. Do it. Now.

Great to have such an announcement on the first day of GUADEC :-)

Saturday 5 July 2008

RMLL in Mont de Marsan

I've been in Mont de Marsan in the last few days for the RMLL (which is actually named LSM in english). This is the biggest community event in France, so it's quite a good place to be! On the bad side, we could have done with a more helpful weather and a better connectivity to the outside world in the boothes area, but it was still an enjoyable event in the end.

While I was the only openSUSE advocate, I was pleased to see french GNOME friends Claude (okay, he's swiss), Frédéric (hrm, he's belgian...) and Dave (err... irish?!?). I guess that's the best example to show that the french-speaking community is far from being a french-only one :-) Yay for francophonie! Of course, there were also most of the usual suspects who usually attend the major french/french-speaking events, so it's always a good time to mix with people from many different projects or organizations. Which explains how I could talk to many people. I got good feedback about GNOME and I think I got quite a fewpeople interested in openSUSE: two simple things to make me happy :-)

There was the usual GNOME booth where I tried to help a bit (only a bit :-)), but I also attended to give three talks (an organizer told me this might be a new record!):

  • the first one was about the openSUSE community, and howthe community is growing and how the development process is beeing opened. Unfortunately, the attendance turned out to be low :/ Not really sure why, but it's probably (at least partly) because we started late and it was after a talk from a totally unrelated topic (so people didn't stay). It sill went well, I guess.
  • I also talked about the openSUSE build service. There was a track about build forges and infrastructure, and it seemed natural to talk about the build service there. While I'm far from being an expert, I think I still managed to introduce it in an understandable way ;-) We had some great discussion with a few people about upstream, packaging, making some steps easier, etc. I was glad because it was really the right place for this talk.
  • and finally, I gave an overview of the release engineering processes in GNOME. Since I've been involved in this area for quite some time, it all seems natural to me, but it's true that people usually don't know what it involves. I simplified a bit some stuff, but I tried to explain our development processes, how the development cycle is organized, how a tarball is rolled and how a complete GNOME release is made available. There are so many things to tell about all this... Good stuff!

I'll put the slides online soonish -- just need to fix one or two typos. However, I guess the slides are nearly useless if you only look at them since I've been using the "one word or very short sentence per slide" rule. I really like to do talks this way, although it's not always possible (really much harder for technical topics, for example). But it really gives me the feeling that it's more inspiring for people who attend the talk. And while you could think it's way easier and faster to write slides like this, it's not always the case (I also love doing photos-only slides, but it requires even more time).

Oh, and Claude had this wonderful initiative. People liked this and had fun trying to build this penguin the right way.

Next steps: a night in Lyon with some friends, before heading to Istanbul for GUADEC for some great time with lots of GNOME people:

by Vincent