andrewsomething@ubuntu:~$

Just another Ubuntu weblog

Posts Tagged ‘community

Fun with graphs

with one comment

For awhile now, I’ve felt like the ubuntu-motu mailing list has been a shadow of its former self. It turns out that empirical data backs up this feeling. I produced a histogram of mailinglist volume over time:

I also figured I should take a look at ubuntu-devel:

That graph raises the question what happened at the end of 2006. Of course, that was when ubuntu-devel-discuss was started:

I’m not sure what this all means, but I do find it interesting in the context of some recent discussion on the direction of the Ubuntu community.

—-

You can find the python code I used in a GitHub gist. It takes an mbox file and produces a histogram using matplotlib. It is shamelessly based off of code by Takafumi Arakaki that was designed to plot a histogram of the commit frequency of a Mercurial or Git repository by reading newline separated unix time via STDIN. I just rewrote the read_dates() function. If someone has a simpler way of doing the date conversion, I’d love to see it. What I did was a bit convoluted.

Written by andrewsomething

October 9, 2011 at 8:01 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , , ,

Ubuntu Developer Membership Board Election

with one comment

Voting Machine

An election for a recently opened spot on the DMB has just begun. While all the names of those nominated are familiar to me, I still need some more information to make a decision. All of the candidates are eminently qualified. Unfortunately, the call for votes didn’t include any statements of intent from the candidates. Votes will be accepted through 2011-09-06 12:00 (presumably UTC). So perhaps we’ll hear from the candidates themselves. Until then, to save others a little bit of Googling, here are their Launchpad profiles and Ubuntu wiki pages:

Written by andrewsomething

August 23, 2011 at 12:57 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , , , ,

Ubuntu Release Calendar

with 7 comments

CalendarOne thing I’ve been missing recently has been having the Ubuntu release schedule in my calendar. Steve Langasek used to provide one in ical format, but it wasn’t update for Natty nor Oneiric. The Fridge has a calandar containing a schedule of events for  #ubuntu-meeting, but that doesn’t include the release schedule. It’s also a bit too high volume for me to want to keep it in my main calendar view.

So without further adieu, I am announcing that I will be maintaining a public Google Calendar for the Ubuntu release schedule.

Please feel free to subscribe to it.

Written by andrewsomething

August 19, 2011 at 11:39 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , ,

Can i haz answers?

leave a comment »

AskUbuntuAskUbuntu is continuing to grow. According to the Stack Exchange site directory, we have:

  • 17k Questions
  • 31k Answers
  • 19k User
  • 21k Visits/Day
  • 81% of questions have accepted answers
While 81% puts us into the same league as Stack Overflow and Super User, we still have hundreds of questions without any answer at all. In fact, about 10% of all are questions are unanswered. Here’s just a handful of them:

Killing some free time on the internets? How about you stop looking at lolcatz and answer a few questions that slipped through the cracks? How about starting with mine:

Why use sbuild over pbuilder?

StackExchange Error Lolcat

Written by andrewsomething

July 14, 2011 at 3:12 am

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , ,

U.K. National Lottery Winner!

with 2 comments

Well, not really….

For some reason, my spam folder doesn’t contain the usual Viagra, porn, and Nigerian prince emails.  The most frequent spam I receive generally is letting me know that I just won £1,000,000 in the U.K. National Lottery. As I’ve only been in the U.K. once, and I certainly never played the lottery while there, I assume they are a scam. (Although, there might actually be some lottery official out there who doesn’t understand why I don’t want to collect my money.)

Well, the other day I opened an email from a British company that began: “Congratulations!” This time I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a scam. The good folks at Canonical accepted my sponsorship request for UDS Dallas! As this will be my first UDS, I’m incredibly excited. I just booked my tickets, and can’t wait to finally meet you all in meatspace.

See you in Dallas!

Written by andrewsomething

October 5, 2009 at 8:43 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , , ,

The Web (and Ubuntu) Can Make a Difference

leave a comment »

Spread Firefox Affiliate Button

The week of September 14-21, 2009 is Mozilla Service Week, brought to you by the good folks behind Firefox and Thunderbird. They’ve partnered with Idealist.org, a non-profit jobs listing site, to link service-minded techies with non-profit organizations in need to their help.

We’re looking for people who want to share, give, engage, create, and collaborate by offering their time and talent to local organizations and people who need their help.

Mozilla believes everyone should know how to use the Internet, have easy access to it, and have a good experience when they’re online. By utilizing our community’s talents for writing, designing, programming, developing, and all-around technical know-how, we believe we can make the Web a better place for everyone.

Spread the word:

The Ubuntu NGO Team is also working on making Ubuntu a great platform to help non-profits. Check out Daniel’s recent post for some updates on our work, including efforts to make life with Ubuntu easier for organizations working in places with out cheap and accessible Internet.

Written by andrewsomething

August 21, 2009 at 7:27 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,

Ubuntu NGO Kicking Off!

with 2 comments

Ubuntu NGO will be having its first meeting this Friday, 26th June 2009, 15:00 UTC in #ubuntu-ngo on irc.freenode.net

————————————————————————–

A little over a month ago, Daniel Holbach asked who was using Ubuntu in their NGO? In the time that’s passed, a group of Ubunteros has coalesced around the idea of making Ubuntu a great platform for NGOs, non-profits, and charities. Whether they’re using Ubuntu in their back office, their web server, or giving out refurbished computers loaded with Ubuntu, we want to focus on the specific needs they face and how Ubuntu can help meet them.

I’m especially excited about this new initiative as over my life I’ve been involved with a number of non-profit and advocacy organizations. I see this project as a way to tie together two things I’m involved with that seem separate but come from similar motivations, making the world a better place and give back to community. It’s a natural fit for the Ubuntu community as well. The same things that motivate so many of us to contribute to Ubuntu motivate others (and some of us) to work for and volunteer at NGOs.

There are a lot of possibilities with this, and it’s just starting to take shape now. It’s a great time to join in and help shape the group and our goals. Come to the meeting. Join the team. Check out the wiki page and see some of the things we’ve already started working on.

Some of the things we’re interested in are:

  • Finding out about NGOs that are using Ubuntu right now and sharing their stories.
  • Studying different use cases.
  • Documenting of best practices.
  • Looking at work that some LoCo teams have already done and encouraging connection between NGOs and LoCos.
  • Investigating ways to deal with regions without Internet access.
  • Packaging a CRM solution for non-profits.

That last point is something that I’ve already begun working on. We’ve started packaging CiviCRM, an open-source constituent relationship management solution designed specifically to meet the needs of advocacy, non-profit and non-governmental groups. Our packaging branch is host on Launchpad: lp:~ubuntu-ngo/civicrm/ubuntu If you’re interested in pitching in, there’s a TODO file in /debian and a watch file to pull the upstream source. I’d be particularly grateful if someone with experience packaging with dbconfig-common took a look.

This is a great opportunity to get in a the beginning of an important project! Our first meeting is this Friday, 26th June 2009, 15:00 UTC in #ubuntu-ngo on irc.freenode.net

Got any ideas? Let me know in the comments!

Written by andrewsomething

June 24, 2009 at 10:50 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , , ,

Reflections on being an Ubuntu Universe Contributor

with 7 comments

Last week I made the big leap from “contributor” to “developer.” At the most recent MOTU-Council meeting, my application to become a Master of the Universe was approved!

Now, I want to take a minute and think about the Ubuntu Universe Contributor (aka Ubuntu Contributing Developers) program, how we can better utilize it, and ultimately encourage more people to get involved in Ubuntu development. But first of all, what is the UUC program anyway?

On the wiki page, Ubuntu Contributing Developers and their roles are described as:

  • Are members of the universe-contributors team in Launchpad
  • Are collectively responsible for the maintenance of most of the packages in Ubuntu (the universe and multiverse components)
  • Merge new versions from Debian, work on bugfixes and new packages
  • Continue with sponsored uploads
  • Participate in technical discussions with other Ubuntu developers, providing ideas and feedback

That’s pretty vague. A lot of people who aren’t UUCs do merges, work on bug fixes, and get uploads sponsored. The qualifications for joining are even more so. You have to meet the requirements to be an Ubuntu Member and submit an application to the the MOTU-Council.

We need to be more clear on both the goals of the team and what it takes to join. But this becomes a bit of a sticky issue. We shouldn’t be placing hard metrics on the requirements for joining. Joining should be about the quality not quantity of uploads and connecting contributors to the development community not quizzing them on technical aspects. Becoming an UUC doesn’t give you upload rights, but it does make you an Ubuntu Member. So while it is a development centered path to Ubuntu Membership, its really a community designation not a technical one.

So how about who is an UUC? Looking at the UUC members list, you see that there are 16 individuals on the team. Including Chow Loong Jin (hyperair), who just joined, congrats! Of those, nine of us have gone on to make MOTU. So there are only seven proper Ubuntu Universe Contributors. So, it seems that becoming a UUC is a good step to becoming a MOTU, but still not all that many people are using the program. In fact, more people have become MOTUs this year so far than have become UUCs.

According to Ubuntu Top Uploaders list, 395 people uploaded at least one package in Jaunty (although it’s not a completely accurate count as some people have more than one listing due to using more than one email address). Of those, only about 100 people uploaded more than 10 packages. The top 25 all have over a hundred uploads. The level of involement is amazing, but it is also extremely top heavy. We need to shift that curve down.

For me, the main goals of the UUC program should be to draw reoccurring contributors further into the community and acknowledging them for the work they have already done. It’s about both retaining contributors and increasing their involvement. The more connections someone has with a project the more likely they will continue to contribute and increase their level of commitment. Someone who gets a few patches sponsored into Ubuntu but doesen’t get involved in the community may well switch distributions when they have an issue and take their contributions with them. Someone who becomes engaed in the community will stick around and help solve the issue.

We also need to be making it easier for contributors to navigate the sometime bureaucratic processes involved with getting patches sponsored into Ubuntu. Dan Chen has already talked about some of the plans coming out of UDS Barcelona, including a new Launchpad group to take on this issue, ubuntu-reviewers.

As every one who went to UDS is now home, I expect we’ll hear alot more about the discussions that went on there. I’m looking forward to it, and hope to find ways that I can help make the plans made there a reality.

So, if you’ve read this far, what are you’re thoughts? Have you contributed to Ubuntu? What was the most annoying part? Have you considered joining the Ubuntu Universe Contributor team? What’s stopped you?

Written by andrewsomething

June 1, 2009 at 1:15 pm

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , ,

“Because humans need Oxygen.”

with 10 comments

Breathe Icon Theme

Breathe Icon Theme

The Ubuntu Artwork community just made the first official beta release of the  Breathe Icon Theme. It’s a refresh of the Human icon theme using Oxygen as a base. The idea is to create as modern a set as Oxygen but with that distinctly Human feel.

You can grab the 0.43 release on the GNOME-Look page or on the Ubuntu wiki. You can also check out the source on Launchpad.

It’s being developed by community members over on the Artwork Team list-serve. Drop by, join in and share your ideas.

Creative Commons License
The Breath Icon Theme is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

Written by andrewsomething

May 30, 2009 at 6:53 am

Posted in Ubuntu

Tagged with , ,