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Events Are Hard, And They May Be Getting Harder

Hallway Track Summer is always a busy time in tech conference season, especially for the Open Source and Standards team. In the past few weeks, we have had team members in Japan, China, and Germany. Other community teams are busy too—today AnsibleFest happened in London, and last week the oVirt team was busy helping out with PyCon Israel.

There's a little bit of a lull coming up, and several of us are taking breathers as we recover from the challenges of international travel. Right now, those challenges are fairly well-known: jet lag, language barriers, cultural differences… but there seems to be an uncertain future on the horizon, a future where travel may be potentially complicated by much greater forces, such as climate and geopolitical change.

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FLOSS--The Scary Monster?

Monster How welcoming is the Open Source community? And I’m talking about Linux specifically. I would like to tell you a little bit about my experiences in last year or so. I already touched on this topic at the end of my previous post, but I would like to fully explain the problem and hopefully spark some hope. I will be saying “you” a lot, but I may not mean you. Don’t take it personally please.

I’m a former game programmer, obviously closed-source industry. I’m also a .NET Engineer (yes that is my job title at Red Hat). I work on C# stuff in Linux, I work on the Open Source .NET Core.

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ManageIQ Fine GA - Automation with Ansible, Public Cloud Improvements, and more

ManageIQ Fine After several months of Fine work by the fine ManageIQ team and community, we're proud to present you the ManageIQ Fine release! This sixth ManageIQ release is named after American chess Grandmaster Reuben Fine.

Since the ManageIQ Euwe GA, we’ve had 10 very productive sprints with a total of 1511 pull requests in the main ManageIQ repository and 4880 PRs overall (averaging 76/244 pull requests per week).

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Blog Challenge--Open Source Community Events

Summit Last month we ran a community blogging challenge on opensource.com. People really enjoyed both the writing prompts as well as hearing what others have to stay. Many expressed disappointment that the blogging challenge has ended, so we decided to bring it back! We want to hear what you have to say! We want to make sure that open source software communities have access to the best practices across all projects.

This week the focus is on events! For many of you, May was event month. ApacheCon, Open Stack Summit, OSCON, OSCAL, Read the Docs, Red Hat Summit, and PyCon are just a few of the events in May. So while you are thinking of them, what advice do you have for other open source software communities?

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Our Developers are the Seed of our Community

seedling “Our developers are the seed of our community.”—Daniel Veillard

When companies open source products, they often spend a lot of time thinking—and worrying—about creating a community. In reality, they are the community. The product developers are core of the community—its first maintainers.

After the product’s code has been released as open source, they should focus on making sure that community is public and welcoming of newcomers. They can start by working in the open, as the open source community they are.

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Let the River Flow?

river Inside the world of Red Hat, and other open source-oriented companies, there is a recurring metaphor to try to help explain the relationship between the projects where our source software is created and the commercially available software we ship with support, training, and other value-adds.

The metaphor used is "upstream" and "downstream," where upstream code is the "source" project code and "downstream" is the refined product code. Thus, Fedora is the upstream to Red Hat Enterprise Linux's downstream, to pick one example.

But increasingly we have been noticing a certain problem with this metaphor: very few people outside Red Hat and companies in this sector of IT really understood what the whole "stream" metaphor meant. Worse, when we really looked at the upstream/downstream metaphor ourselves, we realized that it has a fairly big flaw on its own.

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On Difficult Conversations in Community

gluster Before I moved into community full time, I was a project manager working on a lot of different things. As a project manager, you tend to have a large portion of your day tied up in difficult conversations, and what I learned through is: always deliver bad news over the phone. Deliver over the phone, follow up in an email, but give people space to be able to react in person or as near to in person as you can, and have that hard conversation together.

Since I started this practice, video conferencing has gotten a ton better, and that 'near enough' is sometimes good enough! (I have other thoughts on what to do in days of amazingly bad connections, which is more common than you might think these days!)

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Introducing a New Repository of Open Source Knowledge

The Open Source and Standards team is focused on making open source succeed at every level: community management, development, event management… Every aspect of open source can be improved for any project.

With that mission in mind, a new section of our site is dedicated to hosting "evergreen" knowledge articles and links that will guide free and open source software project participants to better practices.

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Open Source Stats--But What Do the Numbers Mean?

rdo I recently sent a report to project management containing some numbers that purport to describe the status of the RDO project.

I got a long and thoughtful response from one of the managers—we'll call him Mark—and it seems worthwhile sharing some of his insights. To summarize, what he said was, don't bother collecting stats if they don't tell a story.

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