Community News

Event Report--Flock 2015

Flock logo Did you miss the Flock to Fedora conference, or just want to relive the greatness?

With many workshops, presentations, and over 200 attendees, it's safe to say that Flock 2015 was a huge success.

This year's location at the Rochester Institute of Technology was quite the compatible fit. Fedora is quite popular among RIT students and faculty alike. One RIT researcher, Jon Schull, even started the e­NABLE Community Foundation ­­ a non­profit organization that creates prosthetic upper-limb devices for children in need. These limbs are created with a 3D printer as well as open source software running on the Fedora platform. Flock attendees had the opportunity to learn more about e­NABLE from Schull himself.

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Introducing the “fedora-tools” Image for Fedora Atomic Host

Project Atomic logo Borrowing from the developerblog entry, here's an introduction the fedora-tools” image for Fedora Atomic Host.

When Red Hat’s performance team first started experimenting with Atomic, it became clear that our needs for low-level debug capabilities were at odds with the stated goal of Atomic to maintain a very small footprint. If you consider your current production environment, most standard-builds do not include full debug capabilities, so this is nothing new. What is new, is that on RHEL you could easily install any debug/tracing/analysis utility, but on Atomic:

-bash-4.2# dnf bash: dnf: command not found

Whoops! What’s this now??? If you haven’t played with Fedora Atomic yet, keep the first rule of Atomic in mind:

You don’t install software on Atomic. You build containers on RHEL, CentOS, or Fedora, then run them on Atomic… sysadmin tools are no exception.

We always knew we needed an equivalent for Fedora… and we're happy to announce today the availability of the fedora-tools image.

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Event Report--LinuxCon NA 2015

LF logo Pretty much going to go out on limb here and make the call: if you didn't find something that interested you at this year's pantheon of LinuxCon North America events, then you may want to start using Windows. Except Microsoft was there too, so you're out of luck. And Apple, so just settle down.

The list or speakers and sponsors was varied, to be sure, no less so than the visitor roll call. But the real variety was marked by the sheer number of events the Linux Foundation hosted in the Seattle Sheraton during the week of August 16.

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Lies, Damned Lies, And Downloads

Download Icon Most people who went to school learned to count, a skill basic enough to be mastered by everyone. Yet, we often forget to use the necessary amount of critical thinking with counting, which leads to some problems–especially in free software.

Working for a company that started as a Linux distribution provider, it will surprise no one by saying that my team is often asked to acquire some statistics about the downloads of packages in order to estimate community engagement and the number of users of the project.

Though my job is not a community liaison, I work with enough of them to understand they need a way to measure the growth of their respective communities and the impact of their work. The professionalization of the community metrics field has even spawned its own mini-conference. Similarly, my colleagues working on the commercial side of the company have long since embraced the use of metrics and KPI offered by numerous CRM software platforms that provide reports to the upper management and enabling them to have a synthetic view and much-needed feedback on their initiatives.

But when people ask me for such statistics, I often explain why this is not the best idea. While download statistics are good for trends in community growth, they are not the sole sign of community health. This is due to three points I will now explain in detail.

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Event Report--EuroPython 2015

EuroPython logo Here is a report about some of the talks I've attended at EuroPython this July. The conference had nine tracks running in parallel, the recordings of which are available online.

The conference was opened with a keynote by Django Girls organizers about the power of community, the progress made in just one year of Django Girls' existence, and their future plans. The slides for the presentation were illustrated with hand-drawn paintings and overall the keynote was quite inspiring.

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Welcome to the New Gluster Community Lead

Gluster logo The Open Source and Standards team in Red Hat is very pleased to announce the addition of a new team member: Amye Scavarda, who will be taking the role of GlusterFS Community Lead.

Amye's journey to the GlusterFS Project could arguably be said to have started when she turned away from Dreamweaver web technology in 2008 while working on large Department of Energy cleanup sites as a technologist. A Portland, OR resident, Amye was invited by a friend to look for solutions at the annual Open Source Conference. It would be at OSCON that Amye would learn about the Drupal content management system.

GlusterFS is a scalable network filesystem that is the upstream for Red Hat Gluster Storage. With its broad and global community, GlusterFS has been a powerful voice in the storage ecosystem for quite some time. Amye's steps into the role of Community Lead is a strong fit for the skills she brings.

After becoming a website consultant focusing on Drupal-based solutions, Amye soon learned the attraction and strength that an open source community could provide to a project like Drupal. Embracing the open source way through project management and analysis, Amye was able to work on projects for a wide variety of clients including the United Nations and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Her previous work at Acquia had her working with user communities of various skillsets, which enabled her to immediately see the impact of her work, something she enjoyed immensely.

Amye's background in project management will serve her in good stead as the GlusterFS Community Lead, as she sees herself as a facilitator for the project, not a manager. Some of Amye's more immediate goals will include revitalizing the GlusterFS board, increasing community contributions, and helping the project figure out where it needs to go in a future that is ever-changing.

With the skills and energy Amye possesses, there is little doubt that GlusterFS' immediate future is looking much brighter.

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Open Source Curriculum Ideas Wanted

IFL logo Recently I’ve begun volunteering at Idea Fab Labs here in Santa Cruz, with two specific goals — expanding the space to include free/open source software ethos and hacking, and helping all these awesome makers with questions and reality around the open source way.

Tip — I got quite fired-up to do this from Ruth Suehle’s keynote at SCALE this year, so go watch that if you need any reason why you should be helping maker spaces and friends with your open sourcery.

On the first goal, I’m working up a space in the fab labs — similar to the 3D printing, CNC router, laser cutter, jewelry zone, electronics, etc. spaces — goal is to have a place to drop in and do real software hacking; teach others from the bottom all the way up on how and why to contribute; or, yeah, even freaking care about open source software.

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RDO Interviews Flavio Percoco From Zaqar

RDO logo Zaqar (formerly called Marconi) is the messaging service in OpenStack. I recently had an opportunity to interview Flavio Percoc, who is the PTL (Project Technical Lead) of that project, about what’s new in Kilo, and what’s coming in Liberty.

The recording is here, and the transcript follows after the break.

(If the player below doesn't work for you, you can listen HERE)

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Adieu, Portland!

OSCON logo The crush of the crowd was full of anticipation. Hundreds of red baseball caps surrounded us, all holding their numbered tickets and waiting to hear their number to be called.

In the booth, we stood fast, tossing out offerings of t-shirts to keep the swelling crowd appeased as they waited for the appointed hour. It was tough going; the RDO and CentOS shirts were flying out, while oVirt shirts were slower to be distributed.

Then, it was time. The drawings for the four prizes–two Go Pros and two Bose sound systems–were successful, and the happy prize winners went their separate ways and the sea of red hats dissipated, blending with the rest of the OSCON floor crowd.

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