Fedora Board Meetings, 27 Sept 2010 & 1 Oct 2010

I apologize in advance for the brevity of this blog post; I’ve been cranking full-speed ahead on the new www.fedoraproject.org with Sijis Aviles and Jef van Schendel and need to get back to it quickly. 🙂
The Fedora Board is now fully on its new schedule. What this means, exactly:

  • Every Monday, the Board will meet via phone at 2 PM Eastern time.
  • Every other Friday (starting with this Friday), the Board will hold a public ‘office hours’ style questions & answers session in #fedora-board-meeting at 2 PM Eastern time.

So, the Board is meeting more frequently, which I think is a good thing for Fedora overall.
This blog post is going to summarize two board meetings: the 27 Sep 2010 Board phone meeting, and today’s public IRC meeting.

Fedora Board Meeting 27 September 2010

The Board for the past two months or so has been working to put together a solid vision statement for Fedora, to help guide what we do. It hasn’t been an easy road, but this meeting was our deadline to have a draft statement so the task dominated this meeting. We happily came to agreement on the following, a modified version of Jared’s proposal:

The Fedora Project creates a world in which free and open culture is both welcoming and pervasive, collaboration and outreach are the norm, and people are empowered to control their own content and devices.

Let me talk about a few points of discussion that came up in the process of crafting this statement:

  • “People don’t join communities to join a community, they join because they have matching goals/ideals”
  • The vision statement should be a tool we can use to determine if a proposed feature fits Fedora or not.
  • The statement was changed to specifically not refer to software, because we felt the vision should talk about our goals/ideals – what we want, not how we will make it happen. Specifics of how to solve problems are in many cases the responsibilities of other folks – the Fedora Engineering Steering Commitee or the Design Team, to name a couple examples.
  • Reaching out to new & casual users is implied: if the majority of people in the world look at Fedora and think it’s unusable then we won’t ever achieve our goal stated here. We opted to not explicitly list out new & casual users, feeling it was implied by ‘welcoming.’

Now let me talk a bit about the discussion about the plan once we have a statement voted and in place (next steps!)

  • After we select the vision statement, we’ll come up with a set of tangible goals, focusing on specific SIGs/teams and outlining how they can play a part in those goals.
  • Everyone should be thinking about the short-medium term – the next 1-3 fedora releases: what goals we’d like to set, not too technically-specific, to meet our vision. For example, if we want to encourage more people to make desktop backgrounds, the Board should only state we want an improved focus on free art, and allow FESCo and the SIGs to figure out what that means to them and have them set the specific tangible goals on their own. (The Board should not be setting tangible goals like, 100 wallpapers by F16 or anything like that.
  • Jon Stanley proposed a barcamp session at next FUDcon in January to discuss implementation details of making our vision a reality.

After the meeting, Jared posted the draft to the advisory-board list for feedback and comments.
One other issue came up at the beginning of the meeting – Spot and I gave a brief summary of our trip to FUDcon Zurich. The full details are in the minutes.

Fedora Board Meeting 1 October 2010

Today’s IRC meeting was focused on questions & answers on the draft vision statement, and finalization of the statement. The concerns brought up by the thread on advisory-board:

  • The term ‘pervasive’ is difficult for non-native English speakers to grok.
  • The statement’s structure seems difficult to get right away, maybe too many commas.

Another idea we incorporated into refining the statement during today’s meeting was Spot’s idea that the statement should fit in a dent or a tweet – ~140 characters. So at the beginning of the meeting with started with this:

The Fedora Project creates a world in which free and open culture is both welcoming and pervasive, collaboration and outreach are the norm, and people are empowered to control their own content and devices.

By the end we ended up with this (now with alliteration!):

The Fedora Project creates a world where free culture is welcoming and widespread, collaboration is commonplace, and people control their content and devices.

The Board agreed to move forward with the last statement, and will be voting on whether or not to finalize the statement at this coming Monday’s Board meeting.


  1. Jaroslav Reznik says:

    Thanks, I like it! And one new word meaning – pervasive. Sorry for that, now I understand, even the slighter difference – sandwich and butter :D. But still I think it is better not to use such complicated language for statement.

  2. […] & discussion on advisory-board mailing list, you are probably well-aware that the Fedora Board set a vision for Fedora. As of late, the Board has also been looking to establish a set of long-term goals for […]

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