OSCON report, part 1!

I’m completely overwhelmed by this week. OSCON was the usual good times – seeing good friends, hearing interesting talks, meeting new people and getting to experience a little of Portland. This year was particularly exciting for me, as I was given an O’Reilly Open Source Award and also asked to speak in the keynote track.

I still can’t believe that I won the award. There are a number of people who I have learned from and who do great work that I just want to give my award to! I’m incredibly honored and also astounded to be grouped in such amazing company. I remember sitting in the audience during the awards ceremony at my first couple of OSCONs and being so impressed with the recipients and wondering if I would ever make any significant contributions to free and open source software. And in many ways I feel like I am just getting started. After all, I’ve just begun as executive director of GNOME and really there is just so much to be done. I take the award as a vote for freedom. And I hope I can keep working towards that goal.

I was glad that the ceremony didn’t include acceptance speeches but I would be remiss if I didn’t at least thank Eben Moglen who recruited me into the free software world to begin with (and created the SFLC as an exceptional place to work), Bradley Kuhn who spent many hours bringing me up to speed, my other SFLC coworkers, not to mention my various clients over the years, who taught me so much. And my wonderful parents and husband who are always so supportive and understanding when I just want to send one more email or do a little more research before spending time with them.

I’ll write about my keynote talk in another post. There’s only so much gushing I can do at one time!!

Some things I’ve done so far

So we’re just over 3 weeks into my full time stint at GNOME. I feel a little bad about the fact that it’s taken me so long to get a blog going, but it took some time to settle on a name and make a hackergotchi that looked at least ok! (I won’t list these as accomplishments…)

I think for the next couple of weeks I may just post a few things now and again as I remember them so you can get an idea of what I’m working on as I get oriented. I’m still very new, and even though I’ve been involved with GNOME as a lawyer for a couple of years, I’m really still learning about the Foundation, the community and the software (though I should note that I have been a user and fan for over five years).

So, in no particular order, a few of the things I’ve done:

* I set up quite a lot of calls with people in the GNOME community – some contributors and some advisory board member representatives. There will be many more of these to come I think. (I hope! So far it’s very helpful to hear from people what they’re thinking about GNOME)

* I contacted someone using the GNOME name in a domain name and reminded them of our trademark guidelines. After some initial fuss, they agreed to transfer the domain name. I’ve got a few more of these to do. They take some research to be confident that you’ve got your facts right before writing. And hopefully these people will channel those efforts to contributing to GNOME.

* I got the foundation unsuspended in the state of California (this is where being a lawyer helps!) Due to I think a very old situation of missed filings, this needed to be corrected. Thanks to James Vasile and Marc Miller at SFLC and Rosanna Yuen at GNOME

* I read up on git. Yes, I’ve been an svn user primarily in the past, so it was time. That and I need to update GNOME’s website.

* I did some prep work for the panel I’m moderating at the Desktop Summit on Copyright Assignment, a very hot topic these days.

* I talked to Marina about the great work she and Stormy and a lot of others have done with the GNOME Women’s Outreach Program. I was totally inspired by the program and its success so far. We talked about what we can do at the Desktop Summit, and we contacted Claudia, Lydia and Celeste at KDE, about setting up a joint Women’s Networking BoF. I’m really looking forward to it.

* Attended my first board meeting and my first advisory board meeting (the advisory board meeting was on my first day). I also got to my new role just in time to welcome the new board to *their* new positions. The old board deserves a lot of thanks for their hard work, and I hope to learn from both the outgoing and incoming board members.

* I set up some interviews and other speaking engagements. I’ll post about those here as they happen! for now you can read the interview I did with Joe ‘Zonker’ Brockmeier.

I’ve of course been up to more than that in these three and a half weeks — these are just a few of the things that come to mind. Now that I’ve got a space to talk about them, I’ll try to write about things more as they happen.

Hello World!

Here’s my obligatory first blog post! I’ll be customizing this a bit but I’m excited to have a place where I can talk about the work I’m doing for the GNOME Foundation!

More to come soon…