Oversight Board/2008/Log-2008-10-03

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<walter> Anyone here?
  • erikos (n=erikos@e178245205.adsl.alicedsl.de) has joined #sugar-meeting
  • gregdek (n=gdk@nat/redhat/x-fe345b4c7cc01a06) has joined #sugar-meeting
  • erikos is here now - sorry for being late
<walter> Is Marco here?
<marcopg> hello!
<walter> so, lots to catch up on...
<walter> I wanted to update you on the SFC, the grant I am writing, the school trial I am visiting today in Boston, Mandriva, and moo.com
<walter> Other topics as well?
<erikos> the sugarlabs bugsquad maybe
<erikos> and planning for a 0.84 release party
<gregdek> I'd also like to talk about the model we're following for the Fedora on XO testing, and whether we can apply it in Sugarland.
<marcopg> yeah might be worth to discuss what we do with infrastructure
<walter> yes. thanks Simon
<marcopg> or if we decide to not do anything :)
<erikos> gregdek: yes - that would be great
<erikos> gregdek: there were some nice general ideas about how to do the testing (testing days etc), in the meeting yesterday
<walter> OK. Shall we start by cranking through my list? Most topics are pretty quick.
<walter> Just an update re SFC and SFLC... I think a couple of signatures are still in the mail... so we are not yet official.
<marcopg> should we ping those people?
<marcopg> if we know who they are at least
<walter> I've pinged everyone. Meanwhile, I signed a letter of engagement with the SFLC on our behalf. They are now officially representing us.
<walter> As of a few days ago, it was Greg, Chris, and Tomeu, all three of whom promised to get their signature in.
<marcopg> bad gregdek and cjb :P
<walter> So you can now say that Eben Moglen is your lawyer :)
<gregdek> I SUCK.
<marcopg> hehehe
<gregdek> Sigh.
<erikos> cool!
<erikos> gregdek: still time to fix it ;p
<walter> (The SFLC relationship is independent of the SFC relationship.)
<gregdek> I know. I've just got to find the right 10 minutes.  :/
<walter> Anyway, that is all I had to mention on that topic.
<walter> The big topic is the grant, as it is precedent setting.
<walter> I've been getting great feedback on the text--I think it is coming into shape.
<walter> I also heard back from Bill Kerr, who is happy to participate (more on that in a moment)
<erikos> where do we apply for a grant?
<walter> And our recommendation letters are all set (although I ended up asking David Thornburg instead of Alan mostly as a matter of convenience--I was in a conversation with him)
<walter> The grant I am applying for first is from http://www.dmlcompetition.net
<walter> Digital Media and Learning
<walter> The HASTAC initiative, which is supported by the MacArthur Foundation.
<walter> It is just the first of many. I will write a proposal to the Knight Foundation next.
<walter> Others on my list include the Hewlett Foundation.
<erikos> the Innovation in Participatory Learning Awards one i guess
<walter> And I am working on one for USAID.
<walter> Plus, I will start looking into the EU programs that Simon recommended.
<walter> Yes. the Innovation in Participatory Learning Awards.
<walter> Seems like a pretty natural fit.
<walter> I am asking for $250000
<erikos> yeah, looks interesting indeed
<walter> The budget break down is essentially support for meetings ($ for Greg's Event committee) and engineering support
<walter> I'm asking for two part-time engineers and a QA person (all as contractors)
<walter> I'l circulate the next draft this weekend.
<marcopg> I wonder if we would better deal with QA just through the community
<marcopg> both OLPC and fedora can help a lot there
<walter> That is in fact the issue I wanted to discuss.
<walter> Not just re QA, but in general.
<marcopg> you mean the general issue of hiring people to do things vs encouraging the community to?
<erikos> from my perspective, the engineering part, would be really a step forward
<walter> I spent a bit to time with Dan Ariely yesterday... he is a behavioral economist
<walter> he has studied the difference between social and economic realms.
<walter> when you cross from the social realm to the economic realm, it is hard to go back.
<walter> I think we need to be very careful when we cross that line.
<walter> I need to talk with him further, but I would almost like to suggest we fund people through other organizations.
<marcopg> which organizations are u thinking about?
<walter> Well, I don't know. Different ones for different needs.
<marcopg> and if it's sugarlabs funding the work, does it make a difference if it goes through other orgs?
<walter> Maybe when we get to the QA discussion, we can think about it in terms of how we can raise money with, for example, RH, to hire more help at RH, as oppose to us hiring someone directly.
<erikos> or do you mean that the other orgs should apply for grants o similar outside of sugarlabs?
<walter> Sugar Labs helping the external party raise the money to help advance Sugar.
<walter> Essential yes, as per Simon's definition.
<walter> Not sure if this is the right path, but let me digress for a moment on what has kept me up all night.
<walter> We asked Bill Kerr to be part of the proposal.
<walter> It is customary in academia (my background) to write in some stipend or honorarium for such participation, which I have done.
<walter> I don't begrudge it for one moment.
<walter> However, Bill asked if he could share the proposal with other education activists, some of whom are also contributing to our efforts.
<walter> That is exactly the right thing to do, but I worry that we'll have set an expectation that they will get stipends too.
<marcopg> share the proposal as having them participate too?
<walter> Share as in give feedback.
<marcopg> hm yeah, that could be the case
<erikos> hmm, sure once you start with honorariums, it gets hard to argue, who gets one, who does not
<walter> So maybe I have already put into motion these educators into the economic rather than social sphere.
<marcopg> I guess in general by contracting people you can set the expectation that everyone doing work will be contracted to do so
<walter> Yeah. A real problem.
<walter> I want to compensate people for their time on the one hand, but we don't have the resources to do so on the other...
<erikos> the problem with applying for grants outside sugarlabs can be harder
<walter> How so?
<erikos> for example; rewrite the datastore
<erikos> hard to apply for the 'Innovation in Participatory Learning Awards' here
<walter> Let me get back to that point in one moment.
<gregdek> Our practice in Fedora on full-time heads, fwiw: hire only people whose mission is to (a) do really hard technical work that it's really difficult to get done part-time (architecture, design, etc.); (b) people who are explicitly charged with being force multipliers; i.e. volunteer recruiting, coordination, support. We try to make that pretty well-known.
<gregdek> (Sorry to interrupt.)
<walter> One thing Dan pointed out is that there is a difference between money and things one or two steps removed from money.
<walter> The difference between bringing a $50 bottle of wine to someone's house vs. writing them a check.
<walter> I like the Fedora guidelines and maybe the way we deal with the Bill Kerr situation (although he qualifies as an amplifier)
<walter> is to give him something resource from the grant that he wants for his school
<walter> Bill Kerr should be in quotes, as Bill is not the issue, just a representation of a class of relationships.
<erikos> sure, understood
<walter> Just a thought. But in any case, as I said before, this grant sets precedents.
<erikos> i like the fedora guidelines as well
<marcopg> yup me too
<marcopg> and seems to fit Bill role too
<walter> Greg, is it written up anywhere?
<marcopg> (as a force multiplier)
<erikos> i mean we should as well be clear, that there are always edge cases, and that we will be confronted with situations where people work more or less etc
<gregdek> walter: Kind of. It's written up internally for Red Hat management to understand.
<gregdek> Basically, it's how we justify spending money on Fedora whenever we need to ask RH to open the purse strings, and it requires us to demonstrate a strong value multiplier every time we do it.
<erikos> but i think - if you set guidelines - make it clear - as well to the public - you should be able to limit those cases
<walter> +1
<walter> Lets take as an action item to write these guidelines up in the wiki. I can reference them in the grant proposal.
<marcopg> sounds good
<erikos> yup
<gregdek> (fwiw, I think this was one of the fundamental mistakes made by olpc, not following this methodology)
<marcopg> how does the grant work? is there a deadline for presentation and approval?
<walter> Most grants have deadlines, though some are rolling.
<walter> The DML grant is due on the 15th. The Knight grant is due on the 30th.
<marcopg> ok, cool
<marcopg> let's cross fingers ;)
<walter> Back to Simon's earlier point, while this grant doesn't really have a structure for external partnerships, many do, especially the EU programs, which usually mandate that there be a web of partners.
<walter> So in general, I think we can come up with a mechanism to get partner organizations to hire people in support of our mutual goals as expressed in a grant application.
<marcopg> ah in that case it would be pretty cool to involve other companies then
<walter> Absolutely.
<walter> In fact, I am talking to lots of companies: FT, BT, Cisco, AARP, etc.
<walter> Trying to make it a win-win
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<erikos> yes, for the european grant - they normally form a research cluster
<marcopg> europeans always do things better :P
<erikos> so far i know only about universities+univ.+univ. examples
<walter> Speaking of which, I am also looking into the possibility of SL being part of a cluster in Italy. More details soon.
<walter> I suppose this discussion constitutes the finance committee's report
<walter> Revenue: 0
<walter> Expenses: 0
<erikos> looks solid!
<marcopg> perfect!
<walter> OK. On to Mandriva
<walter> Dave has been in touch with them and Pamela Jones has given me some leads as well.
<walter> They are the Linux on the Portugal/Venezuela machines from Intel
<walter> I don't know if Tomeu also had some contacts we should persue.
<walter> I will be in Europe mid November and may try to see them in Paris. Anyone what to join me?
<marcopg> the idea is to encourage them to package sugar?
<walter> Yes.
<walter> At least to make it an option for these Classmate deployments.
<walter> Maybe even make it the default...
<marcopg> heh I was actually sort of planning a travel to Paris
<marcopg> in november
<erikos> we really need to invest as well, if we want to make sugar running on so many distros
<marcopg> when are you there?
<marcopg> it would be sort of weird though I guess
<walter> It would be the week of the 10th.
<marcopg> a RH employee talking with Mandriva to do Sugar packages :))
<walter> I need to be in Dusseldorf on the 13th.
<erikos> at the moment, we aren't doing so well, (sugar/fedora is still a far from working)
<gregdek> :)
<gregdek> erikos: We're not *that* far off, are we?
<marcopg> we need a browser! :)
<erikos> gregdek: well - we don't support NM 0.7
<erikos> gregdek: the browser
<marcopg> oh yeah we need to get 0.7 to work :(/
<walter> Which brings me to the next topic: Greg
<gregdek> The browser is a simple matter, allegedly.  :)
<gregdek> Live CD?
<erikos> and resolution independancy etc
<walter> Any chance you can post that LiveCD image? I visit a school in a couple of hours where we plan to test the LiveUSB scenario
<marcopg> walter: someone did
<gregdek> I sent you a note.
<erikos> gregdek: not too big issues - but we still need to find the time to do them :/
<marcopg> sdziallas just posted a link to it
  • gregdek looks for it...
<gregdek> http://sdz.fedorapeople.org/olpc/sugar-spin.iso
<walter> Just saw it. I'll try it out.
<marcopg> I think we can find time to do resolution and nm 0.7
<marcopg> we just have to cross fingers for caillon to get to xulrunner :)
<walter> Is there a pointer to how to make a LiveUSB from an .iso image anyone can recommend>
<marcopg> walter: it's very easy, just a command
<gregdek> walter: Are you running Fedora?  :)
<marcopg> but let me find it in the wiki
<marcopg> gregdek: he runs ubuntu :P
<marcopg> evil...
<gregdek> Hee hee!
<marcopg> do you have windows?
<gregdek> I'm pretty sure it's just a shell script...
<walter> I'm running Ubuntu, I am embarrassed to say.
<gregdek> Don't be embarrassed. Ubuntu is lovely.  ;)
<walter> I can find a Windows box somewhere...
<marcopg> http://fedorahosted.org/liveusb-creator
<marcopg> walter: you can use ^ on windows
<marcopg> never tried it
<marcopg> but it's supposed to work
<gregdek> It works.
<walter> I'll try it.
<gregdek> Actually, I'm trying to get Luke to wrap that installer around the Sugar Live USB by default. Should be simple, we just have to close that loop.
<marcopg> what do you mean?
<walter> I'll let you all know how things go at the school today... this is just the initial meeting.
<gregdek> i.e. have someone go to a spiffy URL, plug in their USB key, clicky clicky, and they get a Sugar Live USB key magically created on their Windows machine.
<marcopg> gregdek: ooh wow
<gregdek> marcopg: I know, right? Pimp.  :)
<gregdek> And it's *dead simple*, I think -- we just need to find someone with the time to maintain it.
<walter> Perfect.
<gregdek> Maybe I'll throw sdziallas at that next, heh.  :)
<marcopg> walter: yeah I wanted to mention to you and Dave... it would be good if you could communicate the stuff these people needs from engineers
<walter> Such a person is written into the DML grant, BTW--forgot to mention it.
<marcopg> walter: because I'd like to, but it's really difficult for me to follow all mails on the education list...
<marcopg> walter: like those that appeared recently after the conf
<walter> I think this is something the deployment team should be handling: getting requirements and communicating them clearly
<marcopg> right
<walter> We'll try to do better.
<walter> So, one more, fun topic from me:
<walter> I made a first pass at putting Christian's logo up on the wiki.
<walter> It could use some tuning, but I think it works.
<walter> Plus it immediately makes the website more distinct from OLPC.
<erikos> it is not online yet or?
<walter> This had been confusing people and also OLPC had asked us to stop using the XO
<marcopg> there seem to be too little contrast between the colors
  • dirakx reads about deployment.;)
<walter> should be live.
<marcopg> but what I know about art :)
<marcopg> dirakx: hey!
<marcopg> dirakx: send us all the requirements :)
<dirakx> marcopg: hello :)
<walter> I want to adjust the colors...
<erikos> now it did update
<walter> And of course get Christian's feedback.
<walter> I like the stack of logos at the bottom of the page.
<marcopg> we should get christian to do a landing page btw :)
<walter> I may try something like that in the upper left corner.
<marcopg> walter: yup, on white they looks cool
<erikos> maybe the logo could be a bit bigger
<walter> Yes. Christian said he'd help with the landing page as well.
<walter> The problem with larger is the aspect ration.
<dirakx> sorry i have to catch up..i'm in a local event where is going to assist charles kane of OLPC.
<marcopg> yup
<walter> @dirakx: NP, I'll post the minutes for what you missed.
<dirakx> walter: thx
<erikos> walter: hmmm, ok
<walter> One idea to explore for the upper left is to split it up:
<walter> Suagr
<walter> Labs
<walter> (Only we'll spell sugar properly of course)
<marcopg> ah yeah that could indeed help
<marcopg> our logo is very flexible ;)
<marcopg> heh
<erikos> hurray for the logo
<walter> But the other thing I did was to order some moo cards (moo.com) with the new logo on the front
<marcopg> wow cards!
<walter> the neat thing about mini moo cards is the aspect ratio that fits the logo very nicely.
<walter> Could be lots of fun.
<walter> I can put together a collection of images and then encourage all of you to make moo cards.
<walter> Plus being little, they are more environmentally friendly!
<marcopg> sounds cool
<erikos> yup cool
<marcopg> also we need to make tshirts :)
<erikos> yes absolutely
<walter> Christian designs great t-shirts.
<walter> Anyway, that is my list.
<marcopg> oh let's bug him about it then ;)
<erikos> looks like marco has a task ;p
<walter> Shall we talk about Bugsquad and Fedora support models?
<erikos> yes would be good i think
<marcopg> erikos: I'll trade a feature for t-shirts!
<erikos> marcopg: think about all the ice creams you owe me already ;p
<marcopg> hehe
<marcopg> we sugar labs ice creams, too!
<marcopg> ok QA
<marcopg> I think erikos can summarize the deal
<erikos> ok:
<erikos> so we created the bugsquad, since we wanted to have QA doing testing as well when OLPC and other parties are not interested yet
<walter> (an aside: I thought the AARP version of Sugar should be called "White Sugar")
<erikos> during the development cycle
<marcopg> hehehe
<erikos> we wanted to have our own track instance running us well - the upstream tracker
<erikos> for dealing with those bugs during the dev cycle, planning etc
<erikos> in the normal case, OLPC would file the bugs upstream as well, since more eyes would look at it
<erikos> but we said to shortcut it - and let them file in their tracker
<marcopg> (I think this is also related to where the code is hosted btw)
<erikos> since we watch those bugs - as being olpc employees
<marcopg> (ideally both activities and glucose would be hosted by sugar labs)
<erikos> this would at least be the short term solution
<erikos> correct - that would make sense
<erikos> actually - yeah we should really do this i guess
<erikos> olpc were not so happy with all those ideas
<walter> what were their objections?
<erikos> shall we push further for it?
<marcopg> walter: main objection was that we would disperse the little community we have
<marcopg> (then they are also worried about confusion and adding more steps to fix a bug, I think)
<erikos> and there were some misunderstandings as well
<marcopg> one of my main problems is that we are OLPC employees
<erikos> why we need this process etc
<walter> Maybe Greg can advice here. I get feedback from some people that they don't participate because we are too closely affiliated with OLPC
<marcopg> so it's very difficult to discuss with them these things and push when necessary
<marcopg> I tend to think Sugar Labs should have this kind of discussion with olpc more officially
<erikos> yes, it would be really good, if greg could clearify with kim and others
<marcopg> to figure out what make sense, and how we get there
<walter> Can he clarify with us first? I'd like him to weigh in with his experience.
<erikos> i mean - give examples like gnome/fedora etc
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<marcopg> yeah would like to know Greg opinion too
<erikos> sure
<marcopg> both about source code hostin
<marcopg> mailing lists
<marcopg> and bug reports
<marcopg> gregdek: ^
<marcopg> mmm our community VP left us alone!
<erikos> looks like he has another community he likes to hang out with
<walter> Well, to be continued.
<erikos> walter: do you have questions to the bugsquad subject?
<erikos> me and marco discussed it already a lot this week
<cjb> (Hi all, just caught up)
<marcopg> I guess it's not completely clear to me how much having our own infrastructure is important for us
<marcopg> I tend to think it's very important
<marcopg> but I might be wrong
<marcopg> (to me it's a big part of our identity, but that's because I'm an engineer perhaps :P)
<walter> I agree with Marco, but I think we need to table it until we can get some Greg time.
<erikos> yeah, i agree with the 'identity is important' one
<erikos> ok
<marcopg> yup, I think greg opinion is really important on this too
<erikos> same for the 0.84 one i guess?
<erikos> 0.84 party, i mean
<marcopg> we could also discuss on the board list I guess
<marcopg> to not delay this for two weeks
<erikos> cool
<marcopg> erikos: clearly you need the community VP for that :)
<walter> Where would we throw the release party so that everyone can join?
<walter> Maybe on an eJabber server?
<erikos> well by march we have the grant already i hoped ;)
<erikos> and that we can meet in person then
<marcopg> GNOME is doing small parties in many places around the world
<marcopg> but they are a much bigger community
<erikos> marcopg: are they pre or post release?
<erikos> marcopg: meaning - do they meet to get the last bugs fixed or
<erikos> marcopg: just to celebrate it
<marcopg> to celebrate
<marcopg> post release
<marcopg> It's probably a bit early to organize this...
<marcopg> we should see who and where we are in 6 months ;)
<walter> We should issue a press release as well!!
<marcopg> yeah we should make more noise for the release next time ;)
<walter> Alas, the PR firm I tried to bring on board cannot do it. I'll keep looking.
<erikos> marcopg: i just want to bring it up - that we don't organize 5 days in advance - and then nobody can attend
<marcopg> and have livecds ready in time
<walter> We should make a big splash on our home page about 0.82
<marcopg> erikos: sure
<erikos> btw: i will have an interview the next days with mstation, walter any guidelines?
<walter> lots of LiveCDs/USBs is in the budget for the DML proposal too!!
<erikos> or any things i should highlight - post groklaw interview
<marcopg> mstation?
<erikos> marcopg: http://mstation.org/
<marcopg> ooh nice
<walter> erikos: I think the only guidelines re the press is to be positive... don't behave like John McCain in the debates, bad mouthing your opponents.
<erikos> walter: heh yeah ;p
<walter> Simon, does this mean you still have time for your music? That is good to hear.
<erikos> walter: ohh :(
<erikos> walter: not at all to be honest
<erikos> walter: maybe after 1.0 again ;p
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<walter> The only thing I would highlight is that the future of
<walter> innovation lies in raising a generation of children who are immersed in the twin cultures of expression and critique.
<morgs> (quick note, Ubuntu packaging of 8.2.x for intrepid is back on track. Will make it more public next week.)
<erikos> go morgs go!
<erikos> walter: sounds nice, i will quote you there ;p
<walter> morgs: great news.
<walter> Well, I need to get going to this school in a few minutes. Anything else you need me for?
<marcopg> I think we are done for today
<marcopg> next in 2 weeks?
<marcopg> good luck at the schools ;)
<erikos> yes, thanks, was interesting again
<walter> yeah. in 2 weeks. I'll be in Peru, but presumably will be on line.
<marcopg> good luck at the schools ;)
<erikos> yes, thanks, was interesting again
<walter> yeah. in 2 weeks. I'll be in Peru, but presumably will be on line.
<erikos> walter: hope you don't bring back any bad grades ;)
<walter> I'll post the meeting log in the wiki and work on the minutes tonight.
<walter> :)
<walter> ciao