Discussion:
Nominations and their spiels for the LA election
(too old to reply)
Pia Waugh
2007-01-02 04:42:03 UTC
Permalink
Hi all,

even though I urge everyone to log into the LA membership page to pore over
the details of the election and also to get ready to vote, I wanted to post
the voting dates, the nominations and their spiels to the public mailing
list for the communities' information.

Dates
=====
Nominations 01/12/2006 00:00 to 31/12/2006 23:59
Advertise Candidates 01/01/2007 00:00
Voting 09/01/2007 00:00 to 16/01/2007 17:30
Results 16/01/2007 17:31 at the AGM

Description of positions
========================
President (1)
Responsible for ensuring the smooth running of LA according to the LA
vision. The President often has to speak on behalf of LA to the press, other
organisations, and the community. The President effectively need to keep the
committee and other individuals enthused and progressive in their work for LA
and the wider community.

Vice-President (1)
The Vice President supports the President in all Presidential
responsibilities, as well as taking over in these duties when the President is
unable.

Secretary (1)
The Secretary must ensure all member details are kept up to date and
accessible. The Secretary also takes the minutes and ensures that the minutes
are accessible. The Secretary is responsible for any necessary correspondence
between the members and committee.

Treasurer (1)
The Treasurer's job is to maintain smooth running of the organisation from
an accounting point of view. All monies are to be collected and payments
authorised. Correct books need to be kept showing the financial affairs of the
organisation. The treasurer typically also has to work closely with the LCA
(http://linux.conf.au) team to ensure that LCA is properly funded by LA.
See Section 17 of the Constitution for full details: http://linux.org.au/about/constitution

Ordinary Committee Members (3)
The Ordinary Committee Members help with the running of the organisation,
help push initiatives that fall into the scope of the LA vision, and generally
keep some sanity in the organisation.


Nominations
===========
Please note, these nominations are not the final candidates, as some people did
not accept their nominations, but for the record, they are all here. I have
marked all actual candidates with a CCC below.

President
---------
CCC * Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
It would be good to see Jon continue in his role as President
o Andrew Donnellan` (ajdlinux at gmail.com)
Jonathan has done a good job in his
current role as LA president and I
would like to see him reelected this
year.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
Yep - jon should continue in the top job. I don't see his energy waning,
nor his steady leadership needing refreshment. jon for President!
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
I'm seconding the nomination for James as President even though I'm
intending to run for that position myself because I'm sure that if
elected he would do an excellent job. He's been a one-man army over
the last 12 months.
o Andrew Swinn (andrew at swinndesign.com)
A prime example of someone willing to make an impact on the world with
Linux and FOSS.

Vice-President
--------------
Note: Jon had accepted his VP nomination, however as he is running uncontested
for P, he will automatically be removed from the VP option for the voting
process.

* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
If not P then VP!
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
On the outside (and I do consider it an outside chance) chance that I
actually do win the Presidential spot, I really feel that Jon's
experience and knowledge should not be lost to the committee.
Hence I am nominating him for the position of Vice President.
CCC * James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
I think James' enthusiasm for the community, LA - especially the openness
and relevance of the organisation would be valuable in such a role where
he has the ability to get things done.
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
James' drive and energy would be a boon to this position. Having the two
J's in the hot seats is a Force to be reckoned with.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
James for VP!! I think that jon and james would make a good pair at the
helm of LA - however I reckon jon has held steady as president over the
past year and should continue on as president. However james vision and
energy deserves the recognition and authority that an office bearer
brings - and so I nominate him for VP.
CCC * Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org) (Accept Nomination) was nominated by:
o Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)
Pia's passion and pizzazz produce a potent prepapration for a proactive
and purposeful posse. Pia is proficient at public promotion and persuading
the priviliged, without being either pliant or prone to prevarication.
My proposal: purloin Pia, pint-sized prodigy and PC poster-girl, as
perennial VP!
o Julien Goodwin (jgoodwin at studio442.com.au)
Hope to see Pia continue her excellent work with LA.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
Linux Australia needs Pia's energy. She should continue in her role as
Vice President. Pia's belief in the pillars of Open bring focus to her
work for the FOSS community. I am pleased to nominate her for the
position of VP.

Secretary
---------
CCC * Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au) was nominated by:
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
AJ performance over the last year has shown he is the "man for the job",
and I think LA would benefit from his continued placement in this role.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
aj, has been a good secretary for LA this past year and I believe he
should continue in the role.

Treasurer
---------
CCC * Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
It would be good to see Terry continue in his role as Treasurer - ever
improving the organisation of LA's finances. I feel it is important to
have continuity in this role.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Terry has done an excellent job this year of getting his head around the
LA finances. I think he should continue in the position.
o Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)

Ordinary Committee Members (3)
------------------------------
* Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Stewart's long commitment to LA has helped make it the org it is today.
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org) (Accept Nomination) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Alternative allotment in case AJ's alliterative allusions to Pia's
acuity alas affords not the ammunition for more authoritative appointment.
o Silvia Pfeiffer (silvia at silvia-pfeiffer.de)
Pia is a a very well connected and loud voice for the Australian Linux
community. Without Pia, LA would not be what it is. Through her, LA is
part of an international network of Linux organisations, a part that has
taken us out of isolation. Pia is the hear and soul of Linux in Australia.
* Michael Davies (michael at msdavies.net) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Past Committee member, Mr LCA2004, and a well-balanced and respected
member of the FOSS community: what more could we ask for?
CCC * James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
I'd hate to lose James' presence on the Committee just through failing
to make either P or VP, so this is a backup/insurance nomination.
o Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
I see the true commitment that James has for the FOSS community. His
passion and enthusiasm has been displayed clearly in the past year. I'm
sure he will show the same, if not more, if elected for the year to come.
CCC * Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
Karin's work on the Podcasts and radio programmes shows her commitment
to getting FOSS out there and known, a strength and experience LA should
harness and use before someone else does.
o Scott Sinclair (scott-linuxau at sbs.id.au)
Karin has played a big role, with James, to get LUGs and the like to
co-operate with each other, and would as such be an asset to the
committee as a OCM.
CCC * Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
I'm seconding Steve for his depth of experience in the Free Software world,
combined with his enthusiasm, work ethic and willingness to go to great
lengths to make the LA presence at trade shows as successful as possible.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Steve Walsh has been active in both his local community (better known as
CLUG man) as well as the greater LA community volunteering at both Linux
World and CeBIT, as well as other LA events. I think we should harness
this energy and use it for our own purposes.
CCC * Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
Janet has been a champion of Free Software awareness and representation
with government bodies and politicians. It is a role I hope she will
continue and expand upon which is why I'm seconding her nomination.
o Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
Janet is an asset to the FOSS community. Her passion, enthusiasm and
drive have been evident since her appointment to the committee.
o Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)
Janet's continuing work on covering the trek of our digital rights here
in Australia and her strong commitment to FOSS as well as Creative
Commons/Free Culture give her an edge that deserves recognition and puts
her amongst the best in our community. I think she has done a great job
in her work in the past and will continue to do so in future which is why
I third her nomination.
CCC * Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
Whilst young, Pascal will learn a great deal from the great team around
him and as such represents much of the future of Free Software. Being
young is also an asset, as Pascal will bring added enthusiasm and a
fresh perspective to Linux Australia. Hopefully he'll be asking questions
on issues many of us currently take as given.
o Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)
Has been active in Ubuntu group.
Interested in education and advocacy.
* Marco Ostini (m.ostini at uq.edu.au) was nominated by:
o Clinton Roy (clinton.roy at gmail.com)
Marco has consistently shown great zeal for the principles behind OSS and
would be a stabilizing and motivating force for LA.


Spiels
======
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)

In my spiel for the last election I talked about some of the challenges
facing the FOSS community, and then ended with: "my objective is to provide the
community with a healthy, growing organisation that provides the resources
necessary for the relevant people to solve each of those problems for our
collective benefit."

While we've made a lot of progress so far and Linux Australia has
continued to grow in size, relevance, diversity, visibility, credibility, and
activity, the organisation we have today is still just scratching the surface
of the possibilities that are open to us. I'm pretty chuffed about everything
that has been done over the last few years but what really excites me is how
much further we can go. FOSS is continuing to mature both technically and in
terms of acceptance; our community is also growing and maturing; and Linux
Australia needs to continue to grow and mature with it. I envisage an
organisation that in just a few years has many thousands of members who are
provided with a wide array of services and whose collective voice is heard and
respected by the people who right now won't even give us the time of day.

With this in mind, if re-elected to the Committee there are four main
areas that I intend to focus on.

Firstly, over the last year I've become increasingly aware of how little
interaction Linux Australia has with various external groups and with LUGs in
particular. LUGs are the lifeblood of the FOSS community but despite the best
efforts of many people they are still too disconnected from LA and from each
other. Over the last 12 months I've spoken to people in many different
FOSS-related contexts such as conferences, LUGs, and at Software Freedom Day,
and been surprised how little they know about LA. That has to change. Recently
we started inviting LUG organisers onto the Committee teleconf and it's been a
great success so I'd like to see that continue, but I'd like to take it one
step further and actively connect with LUGs directly by having LA
representatives offer to present a "Meet Linux Australia" talk to as many LUGs
as possible over the next 12 months. That can extend to other types of
organisation as well such as local PC user groups but our main mission has to
be to support LUGs so they should be the initial focus.

Secondly, we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. This is a critical issue that I don't have a specific answer
for but we need to think about it very hard: the number of people involved with
FOSS on non-Linux platforms is increasing rapidly and many people who would get
a lot out of Linux Australia avoid the organisation because of the name. I've
personally spoken to many people who I am sure would have the time of their
lives at LCA and get a huge amount out of the LA mailing lists but won't even
think about getting involved because they run FOSS on Windows, or MacOS, or
Symbian, or *BSD, or OpenSolaris, or whatever. Should we rebrand Linux
Australia or LCA to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. We'd
be diluting ourselves too much at this stage of our development. That doesn't
mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the time has come for a more
generalised FOSS organisation of which LA could be a part, or even just for LA
to be more consciously inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS
but haven't switched out their underlying OS. This is an open question that we
really need to examine in the next 12 months.

Thirdly, one of the topics that has come up a number of times is member
services. The question to ask when growing an organisation is what value and
benefits it can provide to members: why should people join anyway? What do they
get out of it? In addition to the existing intangible reasons it's about time
that we started providing some tangible reasons too. Setting up an online store
with LA merchandise, providing email addresses for members, and providing
subdomains for projects are fairly obvious ideas that have been raised recently
and will all likely happen very soon. If we look ahead to an organisation many
times larger with more diverse income then other possibilities open up
including production of an Australian FOSS magazine; different types of events
to complement LCA; and far more extensive lobbying activities. Some of those
may sound like pie-in-the-sky ideas but even with the resources we have right
now we could be providing far more services to our members than we currently
do, so let's start with the easy ones and work up from there.

Finally, something that is becoming more important day by day is the
necessary but unsexy work of planning for and managing the scalability of the
organisation. That includes setting out clear organisational policies and
processes; documenting those processes; assigning authority and
responsibilities for specific tasks and projects; and overseeing projects and
subcommittees. This is the stuff that has to be taken care of if the
organisation is going to avoid imploding. I certainly don't want to create a
bureaucratic monolith but an organisation without processes is like a software
project without documentation. That's fine when the project is small and just
starting out but larger projects shouldn't rely on inherent discoverability:
smart ones smooth the way with user and admin documentation, design documents,
coding standards, and FAQs. Organisations are the same and it's critical that
we continue to appropriately scale up the boring bits of organisational
infrastructure as we go.

Linux Australia is already a vibrant organisation with a lot of energy. I
believe that if the Committee pays careful consideration to those four areas it
will continue to rapidly grow and evolve, and I'd love the opportunity to be
re-elected to the Committee to help make it happen.

Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)

Linux Australia has come a long way, particularly in the last four years.
I feel my efforts in jump-starting LA at linux.conf.au Perth (2003) have paid
off, and with the efforts of great committees and community members, LA is now
a vibrant community with many active and inspiring contributors and members. In
only 4 years we have increased membership from 5 to 1200, gotten into the ears
of industry and Government, brought together a largely geographically dispersed
community and created a transparent and trustworthy organisation that assists
its community by being a tool for community development and FOSS in Australia.

Now we need to work especially hard to take LA to the next stage. I would
like to accept the nomination for VP and my aims for 2007 include: to empower
our community further for growth and local representation; to get FOSS onto the
agenda of Australian Government and mainstream media; to create a better
relationship between the Australian FOSS industry and community; & to create a
way for FOSS groups to participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux".
This last point is really important, there are many groups out there that are
part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg - Perl, Python, Open
Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be more formally inclusive of non-Linux
FOSS groups so we can all be stronger together.

These aims are not short term. I am committed to LA for the long haul as
I see the community voice of FOSS as being especially important now and well
into the future. As our entire lives become more and more digital, trustworthy
and sustainable technologies are vitally important. This is an important part
of my personal commitment to FOSS and LA.

I hope to serve as VP with Jon as President as I feel his well-balanced
and stable leadership is complimented by my energy and connectiveness. I hope
to continue to serve the Australian FOSS community, and help take us to the
next stage in a strong, trusted and participatory national community focused
organisation.

* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)

After much thought and such I've decided that I'm not going to stand for
President. Jon has been doing such a kick buttock job so far and I don't want
to stop the run :)

On the other hand I do believe I can achieve a lot in the position of VP.

In terms of what my plans are in the role, it all boils down to 1 thing.
Making sure that LA stays the premier community body representing the FOSS
Community. This will require a lot of hard work and building of communication
channels between both our brother/sister orgs as well as the other players in
the area such as government and business. Thats only one area, but I don't want
to bore you with more unless you ask :)

Before I finish, I would just like to say that fitting into the shoes of
VP is going to be hard (if I win it) considering the previous occupant. Not
only were her feet a hell of a lot smaller than mine, but she has made such an
impact on the org. Rock on Pia.

Secretary
---------
* Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)

Keep on keeping on.
In particular:
(a) improve record keeping and financial handling for projects like lca
and software freedom day and new/other projects.
(b) improve hosting and admin arrangements for la services
(c) support other projects, and generally making la more open and useful as
time permits

Treasurer
---------
* Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au)

Thanks for the nomination.

I'm keen to continue to work to complete the objectives I set for myself this
year:

- complete the documention of the processes and procedures associated with the role.
- establish clear and logical relationships with the LCA treasurer role and that of
other major LA-related projects.
- automate tasks where possible.

Ordinary Committee Members
--------------------------
* Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)

I've been a member of CLUG since late 2004, and Meeting Coordinator since
mid-2005. I was one of the LCA volunteers at 05, and have worked with Pia on
the 2006 Linuxworld, Cebit and Education Expos, pimping FOSS and LA to the
masses. If elected, I intend to continue this pimping, hoping to convert the
people of this wide brown land to the FOSS way of life.

* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)

See my speil for VP :)

* Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)

Hello I am interested in finding ways to respond to the AUDMCA copyright
act, and to try and put pieces together to try and build some support for
teachers interested in using open source technologies in schools. Cheers Janet

* Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)

I would like to accept my nomination for ordinary committee member.

I do not have any grand plans for the direction of Linux Australia as I
believe it is already on the right track.

I have smaller ideas for connecting the community more, by means of
having an open pathway for User Groups to communicate both with the Linux
Australia team and each other which I believe will give many the opportunity to
contribute and have more input on different projects.

* Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)

---

Many thanks all, and good luck to all the candidates! The results will be
announced as part of the LA 2007 AGM at linux.conf.au:

Date - Tuesday January 16th 2007
Time - 17:30
Place - Mathews A at UNSW (as a scheduled part of linux.conf.au 2007
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/Programme)


Cheers,
Pia
--
Linux Australia http://linux.org.au/

"There is no darkness but ignorance." - William Shakespeare
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 21:04:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Secretary
---------
* Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)
Treasurer
---------
* Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au)
Ordinary Committee Members
--------------------------
* Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
* Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)
* Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
* Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)
I've thought for a while (some would say harped on about, perhaps) that
having people you can talk to directly about LA stuff is much better
than only being able to follow what's going on online...

So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth. Since we've got lca coming up so soon, that's
probably an ideal opportunity for folks who are going to be there, and
would like to be involved in keeping Linux users around the country in
touch with each other, and make use of LA's resources to achieve that,
to chat with committee members and come up with ways of staying involved.

We've tried to keep in touch with LUGs a bit, particularly when we go
visiting a city for a face-to-face meeting; but I wonder if we should be
more active about that, and have committee members and other Linux folks
fly around the country to gives talks in other cities/towns a bit more
often. I suspect the main reason we haven't done that up 'til now is that
it can be a bit expensive and time consuming getting around Australia,
and the committee's been a bit reluctant to spend money without some more
explicit feedback from the community, such as via the grants project.

So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
like this:

- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events

- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year

- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year

- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year

If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?

Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)

Cheers,
aj

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James Purser
2007-01-02 22:22:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)
Cheers,
aj
Ya know something? I'm not going to say its stupid, in fact I think its
brilliant.

[Warning - The following is somewhat stream of consciousness, there will
be a more practical post following soon.]

For the entire time I've been involved with Linux Australia, first as a
member, then as a podcaster then as a committee member, a perennial
thread has been "How do we communicate with our members/The LUGs/Joe
Blogs". We've tried tinkering around the edges but nothing this
dramatic.

This also brings up the question of "Where does the money come from?"
linux.conf.au started out as the entire focus of LA, and has always been
our primary income earner (with great thanks to all previous and current
linux.conf.au organisers!). However we are now at a place where we need
diversify our income streams. There will come a time when for whatever
reason linux.conf.au doesn't bring in the money (may that day be a
loooong way off). We need to setup that fund raising committee and we
need it to start raising funds :)

I guess it boils down to this. Linux Australia needs to start acting
like a professional organisation. This means reaching out to our members
and to the wider community, taking a more professional approach to how
we do things like sub committees (which Jons already working on) and so
on. We also need to be more definite in what we are offering our
members.

Also just for the record I would support exactly this proposal even if I
was completely kicked off the ctte at the coming election and was never
elected again.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Paul Wayper
2007-01-05 13:20:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
This also brings up the question of "Where does the money come from?"
linux.conf.au started out as the entire focus of LA, and has always been
our primary income earner (with great thanks to all previous and current
linux.conf.au organisers!). However we are now at a place where we need
diversify our income streams. There will come a time when for whatever
reason linux.conf.au doesn't bring in the money (may that day be a
loooong way off). We need to setup that fund raising committee and we
need it to start raising funds :)
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.

We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia. As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.

Have fun,

Paul
Kim Hawtin
2007-01-05 14:16:02 UTC
Permalink
Hi Paul,
Post by Paul Wayper
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.
We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia.
Good work =)
Post by Paul Wayper
As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.
I'll be putting another order in when you do your next batch =)

regards,

Kim
James Purser
2007-01-05 14:16:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Wayper
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.
We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia. As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.
Have fun,
Paul
Hey every little bit counts.

Paul, while you may not have been happy with the result, you've started
something that could take off in a big way.

I'm going to suggest to anyone who's interested in helping out with
fundraising, whether as part of the official committee or as helping
hands, and is going to LCA, perhaps we should get a Fund Raising
"Hallway meeting" or similar going.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 11:25:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Wayper
We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia. As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.
Do keep in mind though that $140 may not sound like much - but that's
domain registration for a lot of lugs for a fair while, it's even close
to some grant amounts.

Every bit helps. Also, think about that if this is every 2 or so months
even, that's close to $1k, which can pay for a fair bit.
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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Kim Hawtin
2007-01-05 14:16:02 UTC
Permalink
Hi Paul,
Post by Paul Wayper
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.
We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia.
Good work =)
Post by Paul Wayper
As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.
I'll be putting another order in when you do your next batch =)

regards,

Kim
James Purser
2007-01-05 14:16:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Wayper
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.
We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia. As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.
Have fun,
Paul
Hey every little bit counts.

Paul, while you may not have been happy with the result, you've started
something that could take off in a big way.

I'm going to suggest to anyone who's interested in helping out with
fundraising, whether as part of the official committee or as helping
hands, and is going to LCA, perhaps we should get a Fund Raising
"Hallway meeting" or similar going.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Paul Wayper
2007-01-05 13:20:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
This also brings up the question of "Where does the money come from?"
linux.conf.au started out as the entire focus of LA, and has always been
our primary income earner (with great thanks to all previous and current
linux.conf.au organisers!). However we are now at a place where we need
diversify our income streams. There will come a time when for whatever
reason linux.conf.au doesn't bring in the money (may that day be a
loooong way off). We need to setup that fund raising committee and we
need it to start raising funds :)
I know the coffee fundraiser didn't do so well the first time - more due
to announcement and timing issues on my part than anything else. But
I'd be happy to run other ones, at whatever frequency and distribution
people would like. I suspect quarterly or thirdly (i.e. every three or
four months) would be enough.

We had $368 in coffee orders, $228 of which goes to Kaldi and $140 goes
to Linux Australia. As a fundraiser it's small change compared to what
Kaldi regularly does - they've told me of fundraisers which made over
$1000 for the organisation. In total we had around ten people order 16
bags of coffee - eight people were from within Canberra and five from
within CLUG. I'm not happy with this response, and want to generate
more interest in it next time.

Have fun,

Paul
Michael Still
2007-01-02 22:26:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)
The goodosity of the idea would depend on whether $34k is a significant
portion of LA's operating budget or not. I'm a little out of touch with
LA's finances, can you clarify that aspect please?

What about other options, like video conferencing international people
in? Or having the international people talk at more than one LUG while
they are out here?

Mikal
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 23:03:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Michael Still
The goodosity of the idea would depend on whether $34k is a significant
portion of LA's operating budget or not. I'm a little out of touch with
LA's finances, can you clarify that aspect please?
Not in detail until the AGM, unfortunately. For comparison,
linux.conf.au's total budget (including attendee accommodation booked
through the lca website etc) is currently about $300k - $400k aiui,
but it's self-funding through registrations and sponsorship, and returns
a surplus. The last budget we drew up estimated that our other ongoing
expenditures would be about:

Grants: $24,000

Ctte meetings: $4,000
Insurance etc: $4,000
Media training: $5,000
SFD, mirror, etc: $6,000
LW, CeBIT, etc: $2,000

which totals about $45,000 all up. We've also contributed $10,000
to the establishment of the John Lions chair at UNSW this year, and
there are other expenses too. We're approximately breaking-even on a
year-to-year basis, thanks to lca, interest, and miscellaneous other
funds. It's likely we could increase our incoming funds by asking for
more sponsorship outside of lca, by having it be possible to pay for
membership rather than only be free, or by selling t-shirts etc with some
of the proceeds going to LA. LA's got a reasonable amount of money in
the bank primarily from previous conferences though, so without having
any real use for the money we've got, there's not much incentive to get
serious about getting more money in.
Post by Michael Still
What about other options, like video conferencing international people
in? Or having the international people talk at more than one LUG while
they are out here?
Sharing speakers (and their costs) with other groups like SAGE-AU and
AUUG (or local universities or even schools or whatever) would also be
possible too, presumably.

Cheers,
aj

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Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 23:03:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Michael Still
The goodosity of the idea would depend on whether $34k is a significant
portion of LA's operating budget or not. I'm a little out of touch with
LA's finances, can you clarify that aspect please?
Not in detail until the AGM, unfortunately. For comparison,
linux.conf.au's total budget (including attendee accommodation booked
through the lca website etc) is currently about $300k - $400k aiui,
but it's self-funding through registrations and sponsorship, and returns
a surplus. The last budget we drew up estimated that our other ongoing
expenditures would be about:

Grants: $24,000

Ctte meetings: $4,000
Insurance etc: $4,000
Media training: $5,000
SFD, mirror, etc: $6,000
LW, CeBIT, etc: $2,000

which totals about $45,000 all up. We've also contributed $10,000
to the establishment of the John Lions chair at UNSW this year, and
there are other expenses too. We're approximately breaking-even on a
year-to-year basis, thanks to lca, interest, and miscellaneous other
funds. It's likely we could increase our incoming funds by asking for
more sponsorship outside of lca, by having it be possible to pay for
membership rather than only be free, or by selling t-shirts etc with some
of the proceeds going to LA. LA's got a reasonable amount of money in
the bank primarily from previous conferences though, so without having
any real use for the money we've got, there's not much incentive to get
serious about getting more money in.
Post by Michael Still
What about other options, like video conferencing international people
in? Or having the international people talk at more than one LUG while
they are out here?
Sharing speakers (and their costs) with other groups like SAGE-AU and
AUUG (or local universities or even schools or whatever) would also be
possible too, presumably.

Cheers,
aj

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Tim Ansell
2007-01-02 22:33:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
I actually think this would be a great idea! I have to admit I never
actually get around to going to my local LUG, but still think this would
be cool thing to do.

Personally, I would also like to see the LUG's advertise and try to
reach out to getting new users a little bit more. Posters around
Universities, getting free Ubuntu CD's for schools to hand out, etc.

As mentioned on IRC, timing talks around LCA would also help reduce
costs of the International speakers.

Tim Ansell
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 22:35:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
Oh, fwiw, this was inspired by two things, one is remembering this exchange
from a while ago:

http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2004-January/msg00255.html

and still thinking that having the LA President attend int'l functions
is a Good Thing for the organisation; and the other is that Jon keeps
whining about how he never gets to go to a real debconf. ;)

Cheers,
aj

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Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 23:03:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k.
This is wrong. $2,000 x 12 months is a $24,000 budget. I think I'll leave
estimating how much is used until I have some real numbers :(

Cheers,
aj

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Christopher Yeoh
2007-01-03 08:32:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth.
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in
the future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots -
maybe only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?

Even if not taken up by all LUGS, this may help encourage people from
smaller or more remote LUGs to participate in LA who normally wouldn't
feel they are qualified to be elected to the LA committee.

Chris
--
cyeoh at samba.org
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-03 08:53:02 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

He's not an idiot.
The doctor said so.
James Purser
2007-01-03 09:18:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.
- Jeff
Well on the communication front, we are already implementing a monthly
chat with LUG representatives through the LA Ctte teleconf. This has
been quite successful so far and it has become a regular feature, I look
forward to more of it.

There is an argument for putting together "A Council Of LUGs", if
nothing else but to help the various groups talk to each other and share
ideas and so on. As Jeff mentioned, there is already a mailing list
which is always a good start to these sorts of things.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Sridhar Dhanapalan
2007-01-09 16:31:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a
mailing list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer
something like that to swelling the committee with geographical
representatives. Do we need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's
goals (ie. the community's goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd
suggest the latter.
Please spare us the burden of a geographically-based system of governance! It
might be (or might have been) a good choice for nation-states, but it would
shackle a flexible technology-based organisation like LA.

Is there genuinely a sentiment that certain geographical areas are being
underrepresented (or even misrepresented)? If so, are there
alternative/modified forms of governance/communication that we can
investigate? It sounds like we may be allowing ourselves to over-speculate
and over-emphasise minor issues, thereby distracting ourselves from more
important matters.

Note that there are other divisions other than geographical, like
socio-economic, occupational and educational. Do we alter our structure for
those as well? How do we reconcile these all at once? The answer, as I see
it, is to maintain a flexible form of governance and infrastructure, not much
different in principle from what we have now.
--
Your toaster doesn't crash. Your television doesn't crash.
Why should your computer? http://www.whylinuxisbetter.net
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Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:16:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.
As Jeff says, there was an attempt - and it didn't really work out...

I also think that geographical representation on ctte would be flawed at
best.

Perhaps a LUG Advisory Board (LAB) that chats with LA ctte at various
points (maybe every 2 or 3 months) to discuss various things?

I think the regular dial-ins from LUG people to the LA ctte conf call
have been great, but perhaps doing it all en-masse will get larger
participation and cross group communication going.

thougths?
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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James Purser
2007-01-10 09:22:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stewart Smith
As Jeff says, there was an attempt - and it didn't really work out...
I also think that geographical representation on ctte would be flawed at
best.
Perhaps a LUG Advisory Board (LAB) that chats with LA ctte at various
points (maybe every 2 or 3 months) to discuss various things?
I think the regular dial-ins from LUG people to the LA ctte conf call
have been great, but perhaps doing it all en-masse will get larger
participation and cross group communication going.
thougths?
On a practical note, depending on how many people we get wanting to join
in these teleconfs, it might be easier to hold the meetings via irc.
Personally I find it easier to follow multiple irc conversations than
spoken ones. And that despite having three kids.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Jeff Waugh
2007-01-10 09:28:03 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="James Purser">
Post by James Purser
On a practical note, depending on how many people we get wanting to join
in these teleconfs, it might be easier to hold the meetings via irc.
Personally I find it easier to follow multiple irc conversations than
spoken ones. And that despite having three kids.
IRC meetings are long and low-bandwidth. Don't run a social organisation on
a socially broken technology platform. :-)

- Jeff
--
Open CeBIT 2007: Sydney, Australia http://www.opencebit.com.au/

"You know, the crunchy, folk-singer part of me wants to believe that a
performance is a dialogue, but I can't hear a fucking thing you're
saying." - Ani DiFranco
James Purser
2007-01-10 09:33:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
IRC meetings are long and low-bandwidth. Don't run a social organisation on
a socially broken technology platform. :-)
- Jeff
Which is easier to follow: 5 conversations on irc or 5 conversations on
a teleconf?
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Janet Hawtin
2007-01-10 09:58:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
Which is easier to follow: 5 conversations on irc or 5 conversations on
a teleconf?
taking minutes for irc is easier than taking minutes for teleconf
it is possible to see who is speaking and can get things spelt out more easily
it is possible to take time in documenting after the meeting and and
listen/read and participate during the meeting.
it is also possible to keep the log itself in situations where the
minutes person is not there.

teleconfs are better for being able to hear how people feel
you get more of a personal impact
they were good for having lug folk participate because it is the
dialogue itself which was handy
for pragmatic getting stuff done i feel irc is more effective.
meeting scale/numbers of participants is a factor for both

janet
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-10 10:32:02 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="James Purser">
Post by Jeff Waugh
IRC meetings are long and low-bandwidth. Don't run a social organisation
on a socially broken technology platform. :-)
Which is easier to follow: 5 conversations on irc or 5 conversations on a
teleconf?
a) you're having a meeting which, hopefully, has a purpose: don't have five
conversations at once

b) run a high bandwidth conference call and use IRC as a low bandwidth back
channel: best of both worlds

- Jeff
--
Open CeBIT 2007: Sydney, Australia http://www.opencebit.com.au/

"Stick to your guns and get it right." - Havoc Pennington
James Purser
2007-01-10 10:47:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
a) you're having a meeting which, hopefully, has a purpose: don't have five
conversations at once
b) run a high bandwidth conference call and use IRC as a low bandwidth back
channel: best of both worlds
- Jeff
There ya go :) Best of both worlds. This actually worked incredibly well
when we did the interview with Rusty over the Copyright foo.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Jeff Waugh
2007-01-10 11:12:01 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="James Purser">
Post by James Purser
Post by Jeff Waugh
a) you're having a meeting which, hopefully, has a purpose: don't have
five conversations at once
b) run a high bandwidth conference call and use IRC as a low bandwidth
back channel: best of both worlds
There ya go :) Best of both worlds. This actually worked incredibly well
when we did the interview with Rusty over the Copyright foo.
(That was not "choose A or B" btw, just two points that are both important.)

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

Great minds think different?
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-10 09:28:03 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="James Purser">
Post by James Purser
On a practical note, depending on how many people we get wanting to join
in these teleconfs, it might be easier to hold the meetings via irc.
Personally I find it easier to follow multiple irc conversations than
spoken ones. And that despite having three kids.
IRC meetings are long and low-bandwidth. Don't run a social organisation on
a socially broken technology platform. :-)

- Jeff
--
Open CeBIT 2007: Sydney, Australia http://www.opencebit.com.au/

"You know, the crunchy, folk-singer part of me wants to believe that a
performance is a dialogue, but I can't hear a fucking thing you're
saying." - Ani DiFranco
James Purser
2007-01-10 09:22:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stewart Smith
As Jeff says, there was an attempt - and it didn't really work out...
I also think that geographical representation on ctte would be flawed at
best.
Perhaps a LUG Advisory Board (LAB) that chats with LA ctte at various
points (maybe every 2 or 3 months) to discuss various things?
I think the regular dial-ins from LUG people to the LA ctte conf call
have been great, but perhaps doing it all en-masse will get larger
participation and cross group communication going.
thougths?
On a practical note, depending on how many people we get wanting to join
in these teleconfs, it might be easier to hold the meetings via irc.
Personally I find it easier to follow multiple irc conversations than
spoken ones. And that despite having three kids.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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James Purser
2007-01-03 09:18:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.
- Jeff
Well on the communication front, we are already implementing a monthly
chat with LUG representatives through the LA Ctte teleconf. This has
been quite successful so far and it has become a regular feature, I look
forward to more of it.

There is an argument for putting together "A Council Of LUGs", if
nothing else but to help the various groups talk to each other and share
ideas and so on. As Jeff mentioned, there is already a mailing list
which is always a good start to these sorts of things.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Sridhar Dhanapalan
2007-01-09 16:31:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a
mailing list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer
something like that to swelling the committee with geographical
representatives. Do we need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's
goals (ie. the community's goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd
suggest the latter.
Please spare us the burden of a geographically-based system of governance! It
might be (or might have been) a good choice for nation-states, but it would
shackle a flexible technology-based organisation like LA.

Is there genuinely a sentiment that certain geographical areas are being
underrepresented (or even misrepresented)? If so, are there
alternative/modified forms of governance/communication that we can
investigate? It sounds like we may be allowing ourselves to over-speculate
and over-emphasise minor issues, thereby distracting ourselves from more
important matters.

Note that there are other divisions other than geographical, like
socio-economic, occupational and educational. Do we alter our structure for
those as well? How do we reconcile these all at once? The answer, as I see
it, is to maintain a flexible form of governance and infrastructure, not much
different in principle from what we have now.
--
Your toaster doesn't crash. Your television doesn't crash.
Why should your computer? http://www.whylinuxisbetter.net
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Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:16:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.
As Jeff says, there was an attempt - and it didn't really work out...

I also think that geographical representation on ctte would be flawed at
best.

Perhaps a LUG Advisory Board (LAB) that chats with LA ctte at various
points (maybe every 2 or 3 months) to discuss various things?

I think the regular dial-ins from LUG people to the LA ctte conf call
have been great, but perhaps doing it all en-masse will get larger
participation and cross group communication going.

thougths?
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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Ben Powell
2007-01-03 10:10:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Christopher Yeoh
Post by Anthony Towns
So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth.
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in
the future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots -
maybe only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
Even if not taken up by all LUGS, this may help encourage people from
smaller or more remote LUGs to participate in LA who normally wouldn't
feel they are qualified to be elected to the LA committee.
Chris
Us down here at TasLUG discussed making this sort of suggestion to LA,
but after much debate we decided that it would not be such a good idea
because if a State/region did not nominate a member it sends a very bad
message firstly to their community and potential members and secondly to
LA and the general Linux community, although reasons for a lack of
nomination are often to do with a lack of time to contribute (I know
that all of the TasLUG executive are totally flat-out most of the time -
and many of our members are too). If a State/region does not have an LA
delegate then it may hurt its chances of expanding as its potential
community of members may see it as not being a 'serious' LUG.

This is why I made the suggestion of the Conference of Australian LUGs -
it means that at least once a year a LUG exec member can meet with
others and LA to share ideas and knowledge and hopefully develop
strategies to better run their LUG and expand their membership. I think
that the teleconf participation by a LUG rep is also an excellent idea
to help LUG-LA communications - possibly putting this on a rotational
basis amongst LUGs (rather than just asking for calls for participation)
may be a good way of ensuring that everyone gets to participate.

I agree with Jeff - its better communications rather than representation
that's needed and ideas like the LUG-roundup, LUG rep teleconfs and
possibly a COALUG meeting of some form could form an important part of
this. With more communication between LUGs and LA it is likely that more
regional/small LUGs would nominate for LA committee.

On the issue of getting speakers, etc. to LUGs - this is something
TasLUG's been discussing for a while. We want to try and have a major
event in addition to our regular monthly meetings once a quarter eg. get
someone (either interstate or overseas) down to talk at least once a
quarter or run some other major event. It'd also be great to get a
LA-rep down for one of these so we can all "touch-base". However, the
limit of 50 LUG members may be a trifle high for many small-yet-active
LUGs (TasLUG has over 50, but many others that are just as active do
not) - the measure probably should be more based on activity with a
smaller min. member number or alternatively on a purely discretionary
grants basis, then the LA community has an opportunity to comment before
making a speaking grant - although this adds extra admin to the LUG and
to LA.

As far as getting internationals down to talk, maybe try and co-ordinate
these talks with international visits for LCA - eg. after LCA maybe some
speakers would be able to do a talk for a LUG or two. I know many of
them are too busy and only fly-in/fly-out but if LA can even get 2-3 a
year that will reduce the cost as the international leg of their fare is
already paid.

Cheers,

Ben
Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:22:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ben Powell
Us down here at TasLUG discussed making this sort of suggestion to LA,
but after much debate we decided that it would not be such a good idea
because if a State/region did not nominate a member it sends a very bad
message firstly to their community and potential members and secondly to
LA and the general Linux community, although reasons for a lack of
nomination are often to do with a lack of time to contribute (I know
that all of the TasLUG executive are totally flat-out most of the time -
and many of our members are too). If a State/region does not have an LA
delegate then it may hurt its chances of expanding as its potential
community of members may see it as not being a 'serious' LUG.
I'd advocate having it be somebody not on the LUG or LA ctte. somebody
else in the community who can use this bit of cross-group communication
as a good way to contribute to the wider community.

e.g. for LUV, I could be the guy for 2007 - neither on LA ctte or LUV
ctte, but pretty well connected to both and understand what's going on.*

[*] this shouldn't be taken too literally as a "give stewart more work"
thing.
Post by Ben Powell
This is why I made the suggestion of the Conference of Australian LUGs -
it means that at least once a year a LUG exec member can meet with
others and LA to share ideas and knowledge and hopefully develop
strategies to better run their LUG and expand their membership. I think
that the teleconf participation by a LUG rep is also an excellent idea
to help LUG-LA communications - possibly putting this on a rotational
basis amongst LUGs (rather than just asking for calls for participation)
may be a good way of ensuring that everyone gets to participate.
perhaps LUG people joining LA ctte for full/half a day at their f2f? a
fly in/out from the most populated areas of the country is pretty cheap
(i'd be fine for springing for a hotel for anyone travelling from one
coast to the other though)
Post by Ben Powell
On the issue of getting speakers, etc. to LUGs - this is something
TasLUG's been discussing for a while. We want to try and have a major
event in addition to our regular monthly meetings once a quarter eg. get
someone (either interstate or overseas) down to talk at least once a
quarter or run some other major event. It'd also be great to get a
LA-rep down for one of these so we can all "touch-base". However, the
limit of 50 LUG members may be a trifle high for many small-yet-active
LUGs (TasLUG has over 50, but many others that are just as active do
not) - the measure probably should be more based on activity with a
smaller min. member number or alternatively on a purely discretionary
grants basis, then the LA community has an opportunity to comment before
making a speaking grant - although this adds extra admin to the LUG and
to LA.
i really think we need a page somewhere that easily lists how to contact
LUGs for the "i'm in your area for work/holiday, is it a good time to
speak at your lug?". A number of us try to be proactive, but are rather
busy and travel does really sneak up on you.
Post by Ben Powell
As far as getting internationals down to talk, maybe try and co-ordinate
these talks with international visits for LCA - eg. after LCA maybe some
speakers would be able to do a talk for a LUG or two. I know many of
them are too busy and only fly-in/fly-out but if LA can even get 2-3 a
year that will reduce the cost as the international leg of their fare is
already paid.
certainly. would be a good plan to encourage this for 08. want to be the
co-ordinator of convincing speakers to travel a bit after the conf?

i know that several international guests have toured Tasmania at various
points and loved it... surely checking out the local FOSS groups would
be awesome too
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:22:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ben Powell
Us down here at TasLUG discussed making this sort of suggestion to LA,
but after much debate we decided that it would not be such a good idea
because if a State/region did not nominate a member it sends a very bad
message firstly to their community and potential members and secondly to
LA and the general Linux community, although reasons for a lack of
nomination are often to do with a lack of time to contribute (I know
that all of the TasLUG executive are totally flat-out most of the time -
and many of our members are too). If a State/region does not have an LA
delegate then it may hurt its chances of expanding as its potential
community of members may see it as not being a 'serious' LUG.
I'd advocate having it be somebody not on the LUG or LA ctte. somebody
else in the community who can use this bit of cross-group communication
as a good way to contribute to the wider community.

e.g. for LUV, I could be the guy for 2007 - neither on LA ctte or LUV
ctte, but pretty well connected to both and understand what's going on.*

[*] this shouldn't be taken too literally as a "give stewart more work"
thing.
Post by Ben Powell
This is why I made the suggestion of the Conference of Australian LUGs -
it means that at least once a year a LUG exec member can meet with
others and LA to share ideas and knowledge and hopefully develop
strategies to better run their LUG and expand their membership. I think
that the teleconf participation by a LUG rep is also an excellent idea
to help LUG-LA communications - possibly putting this on a rotational
basis amongst LUGs (rather than just asking for calls for participation)
may be a good way of ensuring that everyone gets to participate.
perhaps LUG people joining LA ctte for full/half a day at their f2f? a
fly in/out from the most populated areas of the country is pretty cheap
(i'd be fine for springing for a hotel for anyone travelling from one
coast to the other though)
Post by Ben Powell
On the issue of getting speakers, etc. to LUGs - this is something
TasLUG's been discussing for a while. We want to try and have a major
event in addition to our regular monthly meetings once a quarter eg. get
someone (either interstate or overseas) down to talk at least once a
quarter or run some other major event. It'd also be great to get a
LA-rep down for one of these so we can all "touch-base". However, the
limit of 50 LUG members may be a trifle high for many small-yet-active
LUGs (TasLUG has over 50, but many others that are just as active do
not) - the measure probably should be more based on activity with a
smaller min. member number or alternatively on a purely discretionary
grants basis, then the LA community has an opportunity to comment before
making a speaking grant - although this adds extra admin to the LUG and
to LA.
i really think we need a page somewhere that easily lists how to contact
LUGs for the "i'm in your area for work/holiday, is it a good time to
speak at your lug?". A number of us try to be proactive, but are rather
busy and travel does really sneak up on you.
Post by Ben Powell
As far as getting internationals down to talk, maybe try and co-ordinate
these talks with international visits for LCA - eg. after LCA maybe some
speakers would be able to do a talk for a LUG or two. I know many of
them are too busy and only fly-in/fly-out but if LA can even get 2-3 a
year that will reduce the cost as the international leg of their fare is
already paid.
certainly. would be a good plan to encourage this for 08. want to be the
co-ordinator of convincing speakers to travel a bit after the conf?

i know that several international guests have toured Tasmania at various
points and loved it... surely checking out the local FOSS groups would
be awesome too
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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Jeff Waugh
2007-01-03 08:53:02 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Christopher Yeoh">
Post by Christopher Yeoh
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in the
future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots - maybe
only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
There was an attempt a while back to create a forum for LUG leaders to work
together and interact with the LA committee. It was in the form of a mailing
list at that time, but could be something else. I would far prefer something
like that to swelling the committee with geographical representatives. Do we
need geographical *representation* to pursue LA's goals (ie. the community's
goals) or do we need better *communication*? I'd suggest the latter.

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

He's not an idiot.
The doctor said so.
Ben Powell
2007-01-03 10:10:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Christopher Yeoh
Post by Anthony Towns
So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth.
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in
the future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots -
maybe only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?
Even if not taken up by all LUGS, this may help encourage people from
smaller or more remote LUGs to participate in LA who normally wouldn't
feel they are qualified to be elected to the LA committee.
Chris
Us down here at TasLUG discussed making this sort of suggestion to LA,
but after much debate we decided that it would not be such a good idea
because if a State/region did not nominate a member it sends a very bad
message firstly to their community and potential members and secondly to
LA and the general Linux community, although reasons for a lack of
nomination are often to do with a lack of time to contribute (I know
that all of the TasLUG executive are totally flat-out most of the time -
and many of our members are too). If a State/region does not have an LA
delegate then it may hurt its chances of expanding as its potential
community of members may see it as not being a 'serious' LUG.

This is why I made the suggestion of the Conference of Australian LUGs -
it means that at least once a year a LUG exec member can meet with
others and LA to share ideas and knowledge and hopefully develop
strategies to better run their LUG and expand their membership. I think
that the teleconf participation by a LUG rep is also an excellent idea
to help LUG-LA communications - possibly putting this on a rotational
basis amongst LUGs (rather than just asking for calls for participation)
may be a good way of ensuring that everyone gets to participate.

I agree with Jeff - its better communications rather than representation
that's needed and ideas like the LUG-roundup, LUG rep teleconfs and
possibly a COALUG meeting of some form could form an important part of
this. With more communication between LUGs and LA it is likely that more
regional/small LUGs would nominate for LA committee.

On the issue of getting speakers, etc. to LUGs - this is something
TasLUG's been discussing for a while. We want to try and have a major
event in addition to our regular monthly meetings once a quarter eg. get
someone (either interstate or overseas) down to talk at least once a
quarter or run some other major event. It'd also be great to get a
LA-rep down for one of these so we can all "touch-base". However, the
limit of 50 LUG members may be a trifle high for many small-yet-active
LUGs (TasLUG has over 50, but many others that are just as active do
not) - the measure probably should be more based on activity with a
smaller min. member number or alternatively on a purely discretionary
grants basis, then the LA community has an opportunity to comment before
making a speaking grant - although this adds extra admin to the LUG and
to LA.

As far as getting internationals down to talk, maybe try and co-ordinate
these talks with international visits for LCA - eg. after LCA maybe some
speakers would be able to do a talk for a LUG or two. I know many of
them are too busy and only fly-in/fly-out but if LA can even get 2-3 a
year that will reduce the cost as the international leg of their fare is
already paid.

Cheers,

Ben
Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-03 14:39:01 UTC
Permalink
Hey all,

First off, I think AJ's proposal is a great idea.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
What sort of membership would that be - financial or mailing list?

SLUG is one of the larger (largest?) LUGs in Australia, and even we
don't have 150 financial members. I doubt that other LUGs would have
numbers approaching that.

Financial membership numbers have stayed fairly constant over the last
few years, though even with an LCA in our city, I don't expect us to
reach 150 members anytime in the next few years.

I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.

We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.

Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).

Just a thought. :-)

Lindsay
SLUG President
--
http://slug.org.au/ (the Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
Julien Goodwin
2007-01-03 16:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
Hey all,
First off, I think AJ's proposal is a great idea.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
What sort of membership would that be - financial or mailing list?
SLUG is one of the larger (largest?) LUGs in Australia, and even we
don't have 150 financial members. I doubt that other LUGs would have
numbers approaching that.
Financial membership numbers have stayed fairly constant over the last
few years, though even with an LCA in our city, I don't expect us to
reach 150 members anytime in the next few years.
I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.
We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.
Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.

Thanks,
Julien
Secretary, Linux Users of Victoria
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Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-03 16:41:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Julien Goodwin
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.
Wow! That's quite a few. We have 1234 people on the mailing lists (9
public lists, about 4 of them active), and about 80 financial members.

We consistently get at least 60 people to our meetings, and we
approached 90 a couple of times in 2006. As a rough figure, i'd say
that of the people who turn up, 70% of them are regulars.

More figures from other LUGs would be interesting, if they'd like to
chip in. :-)

Lindsay
--
http://slug.org.au/ (the Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
Julien Goodwin
2007-01-03 16:56:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
Post by Julien Goodwin
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.
Wow! That's quite a few. We have 1234 people on the mailing lists (9
public lists, about 4 of them active), and about 80 financial members.
We do sort of cheat with the numbers, there's a significant number of
people in that ~1500 who arn't in Victoria, just like there's quite a
few Melbournians on the SLUG lists.
Still, probably over 50% of the members are in Melbourne or the suburbs.
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
We consistently get at least 60 people to our meetings, and we
approached 90 a couple of times in 2006. As a rough figure, i'd say
that of the people who turn up, 70% of them are regulars.
I'd say thar 70% is about right for us as well (except for the high-draw
meetings). Back when we where in the Telstra auditorium in Melbourne's
CBD we hit 100 fairly regularly, our numbers are slowly moving back up
from the big hit we took moving to Trinity College at Melbourne Uni.

Thanks,
Julien
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Julien Goodwin
2007-01-03 16:56:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
Post by Julien Goodwin
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.
Wow! That's quite a few. We have 1234 people on the mailing lists (9
public lists, about 4 of them active), and about 80 financial members.
We do sort of cheat with the numbers, there's a significant number of
people in that ~1500 who arn't in Victoria, just like there's quite a
few Melbournians on the SLUG lists.
Still, probably over 50% of the members are in Melbourne or the suburbs.
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
We consistently get at least 60 people to our meetings, and we
approached 90 a couple of times in 2006. As a rough figure, i'd say
that of the people who turn up, 70% of them are regulars.
I'd say thar 70% is about right for us as well (except for the high-draw
meetings). Back when we where in the Telstra auditorium in Melbourne's
CBD we hit 100 fairly regularly, our numbers are slowly moving back up
from the big hit we took moving to Trinity College at Melbourne Uni.

Thanks,
Julien
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Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-03 16:41:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Julien Goodwin
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.
Wow! That's quite a few. We have 1234 people on the mailing lists (9
public lists, about 4 of them active), and about 80 financial members.

We consistently get at least 60 people to our meetings, and we
approached 90 a couple of times in 2006. As a rough figure, i'd say
that of the people who turn up, 70% of them are regulars.

More figures from other LUGs would be interesting, if they'd like to
chip in. :-)

Lindsay
--
http://slug.org.au/ (the Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:08:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.
We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.
Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).
We should get a central location on the LA site or something detailing
to potential speakers how they can organise an Australian LUG tour.

Many larger corporations, when sending someone over here for a conf or a
meeting spend a lot of money doing so. Spending an extra few bucks to
get them to a few LUGs and have a good community vibe is pocket change.

hrrm... maybe a calendar of LUG events like linmagau used to have....
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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James Purser
2007-01-10 09:16:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stewart Smith
We should get a central location on the LA site or something detailing
to potential speakers how they can organise an Australian LUG tour.
Many larger corporations, when sending someone over here for a conf or a
meeting spend a lot of money doing so. Spending an extra few bucks to
get them to a few LUGs and have a good community vibe is pocket change.
hrrm... maybe a calendar of LUG events like linmagau used to have....
On a related note, has anyone played with the events module under drupal
to include ical import support? This would be the easiest way to achieve
a calender of LUG events.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-10 10:00:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
On a related note, has anyone played with the events module under drupal
to include ical import support? This would be the easiest way to achieve
a calender of LUG events.
AFAIK, there is no iCal import functionality in the current stable
release of the event module.

We use the events module on the SLUG website for all our event
publishing (both on the website and iCal). Unfortunately the code is a
dog's breakfast, as we discovered at a recent website codefest.

The iCal export doesn't cleanly integrate with the event module (seems
to be hacked on at the last minute). Specifically, the event names don't
show up correctly in the feed.

We're seriously considering rewriting significant portions of the module,
with a view to including things like sane iCal support (both import and
export), and a database schema cleanup.

Cheers,
Lindsay
--
http://slug.org.au/ (Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
James Purser
2007-01-10 10:13:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
AFAIK, there is no iCal import functionality in the current stable
release of the event module.
We use the events module on the SLUG website for all our event
publishing (both on the website and iCal). Unfortunately the code is a
dog's breakfast, as we discovered at a recent website codefest.
The iCal export doesn't cleanly integrate with the event module (seems
to be hacked on at the last minute). Specifically, the event names don't
show up correctly in the feed.
We're seriously considering rewriting significant portions of the module,
with a view to including things like sane iCal support (both import and
export), and a database schema cleanup.
Sweet,

Anyone interested in doing a little hacking around during LCA?
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-10 10:37:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
We're seriously considering rewriting significant portions of the module,
with a view to including things like sane iCal support (both import and
export), and a database schema cleanup.
Sweet,
Anyone interested in doing a little hacking around during LCA?
Unfortunately the coders from the SLUG committee are mostly busy with
volunteering, but maybe we can let them out for a bit. :-)

Lindsay
--
http://slug.org.au/ (Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-10 10:37:03 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Lindsay Holmwood">
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
We're seriously considering rewriting significant portions of the module,
with a view to including things like sane iCal support (both import and
export), and a database schema cleanup.
Perhaps create a Drupal module wrapper for PHPiCalendar (which I've used and
is great)? http://phpicalendar.net/ I'd be willing to help with this a bit!

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

"Man, is there some worldwide consipiracy to supply me with doctored
dictionaries or something?" - Adrian van den Dries
James Purser
2007-01-10 09:16:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stewart Smith
We should get a central location on the LA site or something detailing
to potential speakers how they can organise an Australian LUG tour.
Many larger corporations, when sending someone over here for a conf or a
meeting spend a lot of money doing so. Spending an extra few bucks to
get them to a few LUGs and have a good community vibe is pocket change.
hrrm... maybe a calendar of LUG events like linmagau used to have....
On a related note, has anyone played with the events module under drupal
to include ical import support? This would be the easiest way to achieve
a calender of LUG events.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Julien Goodwin
2007-01-03 16:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
Hey all,
First off, I think AJ's proposal is a great idea.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
What sort of membership would that be - financial or mailing list?
SLUG is one of the larger (largest?) LUGs in Australia, and even we
don't have 150 financial members. I doubt that other LUGs would have
numbers approaching that.
Financial membership numbers have stayed fairly constant over the last
few years, though even with an LCA in our city, I don't expect us to
reach 150 members anytime in the next few years.
I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.
We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.
Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).
The numbers for LUV (which doesn't have the financial distinction), as
defined by our charter are 1536 members (note that's somewhat inflated
due to recent list changes). In terms of people showing up to meetings
IIRC we normally break 40, and I think we broke 70 at least once in
2006. Over the year there were almost certainly more then 200 different
people who've shown up to meetings.

Thanks,
Julien
Secretary, Linux Users of Victoria
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Stewart Smith
2007-01-10 09:08:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lindsay Holmwood
I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.
We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.
Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).
We should get a central location on the LA site or something detailing
to potential speakers how they can organise an Australian LUG tour.

Many larger corporations, when sending someone over here for a conf or a
meeting spend a lot of money doing so. Spending an extra few bucks to
get them to a few LUGs and have a good community vibe is pocket change.

hrrm... maybe a calendar of LUG events like linmagau used to have....
--
Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
Committee Member, Linux Australia

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Terry Dawson
2007-01-08 21:12:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
I've thought for a while (some would say harped on about, perhaps) that
having people you can talk to directly about LA stuff is much better
than only being able to follow what's going on online...
I agree to the extent that there are significant portions of our
community that would welcome the opportunity to discuss Linux Australia
and its activities in a group face-to-face mode. There will other groups
who feel most comfortable in an online mode and they should continue
to be serviced in at least the manner to which they are today.
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
Post by Anthony Towns
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
To make this truly effective I think I'd ammend this to read:

"Each committee member shall speak at LUG-related event or meeting,
other than LCA, that's at least 100 km from their hometown and has not
already been visited by any other committee member at least once during
the year".

I'm not sure what problem you think this solves, but I can see some
benefit in ensuring that the committee are personally active in speaking
on behalf of the Linux Australia organisation to the membership of a
reasonable number of LUGs each year. With the size of the present
executive committee it would result in at least 12 LUGs each year
getting at least one speaking attendance from a Linux Australia
executive committee member each year. Given the number of active LUGs in
Australia this might be viewed as significant.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing. Do you mean that Linux Australia should take on an obligation to
reasonably honour such requests? It seems to me that the existing Grants
scheme might reasonably be extended to cover such requests already. If
there is genuine benefit to be had, it's something we should be considering.

Why do they have to be software hackers? Can they not be other active
and significant community members? For example, if a LUG in some area
were interested in starting a ComputerBank chapter, could they not
invite an existing ComputerBank representative to speak?
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
I'd be interested to know how much value our membership actually feels
is associated with this idea. If, for example, we only had enough money
to do this, or to organise some annual convention of LUGs, but not both,
which would be preferred?

I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?

I personally favour the idea of having Linux Australia sponsor some sort
of LUG representative get-together. A face-to-face get-together would be
expensive, but a regular teleconference could be quite economical.

regards
Terry
James Purser
2007-01-08 21:28:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Terry Dawson
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
To my mind, I can see this benefiting both the australian community as
well as the wider regional community. There are nascent groups starting
up in South East Asia and the pacific that could benefit from hearing
from a group thats managed to do things reasonably right. And in return
we get to here about "teh c00l" people we may not have heard from
before. We can build connections that would allow for greater
interaction between the regional groups. This could lead to visits from
some of the hackers from FOSS.IN or perhaps an up and coming
kernel/Debian/Gentoo/KDE/GNOME hacker from south east asia, doing talks
on what its like to hack in a culture which is quite distinct to our
own.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
"Each committee member shall speak at LUG-related event or meeting,
other than LCA, that's at least 100 km from their hometown and has not
already been visited by any other committee member at least once during
the year".
I'm not sure what problem you think this solves, but I can see some
benefit in ensuring that the committee are personally active in speaking
on behalf of the Linux Australia organisation to the membership of a
reasonable number of LUGs each year. With the size of the present
executive committee it would result in at least 12 LUGs each year
getting at least one speaking attendance from a Linux Australia
executive committee member each year. Given the number of active LUGs in
Australia this might be viewed as significant.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing. Do you mean that Linux Australia should take on an obligation to
reasonably honour such requests? It seems to me that the existing Grants
scheme might reasonably be extended to cover such requests already. If
there is genuine benefit to be had, it's something we should be considering.
I would suggest a complete review of the Grants Scheme. As this year has
shown (yes under my watch as Grants Tzar) it may not be meeting its
targets. Lets have a look at what it should be doing, has the focus
shifted? Do we suck at promoting it?
Post by Terry Dawson
Why do they have to be software hackers? Can they not be other active
and significant community members? For example, if a LUG in some area
were interested in starting a ComputerBank chapter, could they not
invite an existing ComputerBank representative to speak?
Software hackers appeal to some and community hackers appeal to others.
A nice mix would do nicely.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
I'd be interested to know how much value our membership actually feels
is associated with this idea. If, for example, we only had enough money
to do this, or to organise some annual convention of LUGs, but not both,
which would be preferred?
I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?
I personally favour the idea of having Linux Australia sponsor some sort
of LUG representative get-together. A face-to-face get-together would be
expensive, but a regular teleconference could be quite economical.
This could be handled within the framework of LCA perhaps. We may not be
able to afford to fly in every representative who wants to come, but we
could organise something. In the meantime, I'll second Terry's and
others calls for a regular meeting, possibly via teleconference to get
LUGS actually talking to each other (those that want to of course).
Post by Terry Dawson
regards
Terry
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Anthony Towns
2007-01-09 00:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
Depends where the P/VP go. The thing I remember is Pia going to WSIS in 2003,
on her own pocket, cf:

http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/11/20031212c/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/12/1071210888/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/14/1071366692/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/16/1071556511/

Andrew Cowie's been involved with the FOSS.in folks for a while, as they
develop their own top notch community run conference:

http://research.operationaldynamics.com/blogs/andrew/conferences/india/foss.in-2005-always-learning.html

The benefit of having people go out and mingle on the world stage is it
helps introduce you to great ideas from elsewhere, and helps you share
your great ideas with others. For technical stuff, we've got that down
pat with lca; but LA is more than just that: we're also trying to do
good things with legal issues and trying to find ways of helping LUGs
be even better.

If all that means that "in order to promote LA and keep up with events"
should be changed to "in order to promote the goals of LA" or something,
that's fine by me. I'd certainly expect Jon, James and Pia to make it
pretty clear how whatever trip they might end up taking benefits free
software or Linux or whatever.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing.
I think the problem is more that people don't feel entitled to do so;
either because they don't think of it in the first place, or because
they don't think their little LUG is worth the expense, or they figure
LA is some grumpy bunch of people who aren't worth asking for help,
or whatever else.

We've now had two grants of this form -- TasLUG getting a speaker from
Melbourne, and FOMS getting Holger in from Germany, with the latter only
happening because Pia specifically suggested doing it as a grant.
Post by Terry Dawson
I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?
Whatever's most effective and affordable. Flying people in specially is
more costly and requires more organisation, but has the benefits that
it's original rather than perhaps a repeat of something people could've
seen by going to lca or downloading the videos and allows a bit more
flexibility on topics, which might be useful. Basically, I didn't have
anything in particular in mind.

Though it might be worth adding some info to this year's lca wiki about
LUG meetings around the country that people might want to visit if
they're staying on in Australia...

Cheers,
aj

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Jeff Waugh
2007-01-09 00:41:01 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Anthony Towns">
Post by Anthony Towns
The benefit of having people go out and mingle on the world stage is it
helps introduce you to great ideas from elsewhere, and helps you share
your great ideas with others.
I've mentioned LA during most of my presentations, briefly explaining what
it is and what it does. Without fail, a bunch of locals will demand more
info about it, because it sounds like such a mind-bogglingly awesome idea.
We've got a bloody amazing thing going with this Linux Australia stunt. :)
Post by Anthony Towns
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing.
I think the problem is more that people don't feel entitled to do so;
either because they don't think of it in the first place, or because they
don't think their little LUG is worth the expense, or they figure LA is
some grumpy bunch of people who aren't worth asking for help, or whatever
else.
I suspect a large part of what drives this is the limited supply of working
grants. It doesn't feel like a regular and normal thing. I have been trying
to think up excuses to apply for a grant recently, just to demonstrate what
can be done, so others don't feel so timid about it, or feel that it's like
begging.

- Jeff
--
Open CeBIT 2007: Sydney, Australia http://www.opencebit.com.au/

"...and did you know that Twisties have real cheese in them?" - Dave
"I didn't even think they had real twists in them!" - Andrew
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-09 05:55:02 UTC
Permalink
hi folks

i think if we could progress the pli for lugs and foss projects it would be a
good infrastructure thing to be able to do. (declare personal interest - it
would be great to be able to cover bettong so we can do community events without
the 700 overhead) this directly makes it more possible for people to do stuff in
AU. ideally i think it would be good if we could find local councils who
understand foss and who eventually sponsor our pli so that foss funds can be
spent on actual fossness rather than permission to do fossness but where that is
still a work in progress having LA backing would be good.

i think if we pay for a speaker it would be good if it could get to the lugs
generally rather than one decided on numbers.
some people wont want to do a tour and thats fine but it would be great to do a
video of those events. i find videos of moglen and doctorow etc very informative
it would be great if we could collect foss casts and videos of the speakers we
pay for, means that you can have a lug of 3 and still get some interesting
information which you wouldnt have seen without LA support.
does this mean we have a video camera that has an airport proof carry case and
get it sent around for special speaker recordings or is that too high risk?
i am going to see if i can find a group that hires video cameras locally.

barcamp is interesting and challenging
venues which permit sleepovers look to be fewer now that pli has changed fire
safety guidelines or some such.
getting bandwidth on paid for for the event. trying to run an event which doesnt
have the same kind of big ticket profile as LCA, which internationally has an
expectation that sponsors will flock and you'll get to do it free with tshirts
and locally which feels like it will generate around 60 people doing interesting
things for a weekend and will likely be self funded byo type of thing.
it is hard eg to have something which is open to all where you offer to provide
food and drinks and camp freely with a random number of people coming etc.
perhaps we do a card which gets stamped like the adelaide lca icecreams.
how can LA best support that kind of activity? tshirts are a high effort item
because getting all the right sizes sent out is a bit fiddly but perhaps that is
the kind of thing where the economy of scale of doing that across all australian
barcapms would be good? if so we would need to get the sponsorship approved in
time to allow the groups to order and the printers time to do the shirts.
Perhaps there is a better project than shirts which would promote foss for all
barcamps?

would it be possible to use LA money to start a program on the activities
happening around australia for community TV? we probably dont lead with a
sponsor offer to the community tv station but lead with a how do we contribute a
program offer and use the funds as we need to.

long term and far away if we save up i think it would be great for
LA to be able to buy some spaces where foss can be promoted so that
lobbying for a space to show people free software is no longer a problem.
we own our spaces and people will always be able to find access to these
technologies there.

there is a half built building in adelaide across the road from where they are
closing the technology school of the future available for 170k in a
neighbourhood full of 350k properties on the fringe of the city.
it would take a lot of work to make it viable and i dont think we are probably
ready for that kind of thing right now but it did make me think when i saw it
that owning our own spaces would put us in a different league.
http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?a=o&id=103462836&f=0&p=10&t=res&ty=&fmt=&header=&c=45225857&s=sa&snf=rbs&tm=1168292934

And heres one they prepared earlier
http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?a=o&id=103462836&f=0&p=10&t=res&ty=&fmt=&header=&c=45225857&s=sa&snf=rbs&tm=1168292934

Cheers

Janet
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-09 00:41:01 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Anthony Towns">
Post by Anthony Towns
The benefit of having people go out and mingle on the world stage is it
helps introduce you to great ideas from elsewhere, and helps you share
your great ideas with others.
I've mentioned LA during most of my presentations, briefly explaining what
it is and what it does. Without fail, a bunch of locals will demand more
info about it, because it sounds like such a mind-bogglingly awesome idea.
We've got a bloody amazing thing going with this Linux Australia stunt. :)
Post by Anthony Towns
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing.
I think the problem is more that people don't feel entitled to do so;
either because they don't think of it in the first place, or because they
don't think their little LUG is worth the expense, or they figure LA is
some grumpy bunch of people who aren't worth asking for help, or whatever
else.
I suspect a large part of what drives this is the limited supply of working
grants. It doesn't feel like a regular and normal thing. I have been trying
to think up excuses to apply for a grant recently, just to demonstrate what
can be done, so others don't feel so timid about it, or feel that it's like
begging.

- Jeff
--
Open CeBIT 2007: Sydney, Australia http://www.opencebit.com.au/

"...and did you know that Twisties have real cheese in them?" - Dave
"I didn't even think they had real twists in them!" - Andrew
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-09 05:55:02 UTC
Permalink
hi folks

i think if we could progress the pli for lugs and foss projects it would be a
good infrastructure thing to be able to do. (declare personal interest - it
would be great to be able to cover bettong so we can do community events without
the 700 overhead) this directly makes it more possible for people to do stuff in
AU. ideally i think it would be good if we could find local councils who
understand foss and who eventually sponsor our pli so that foss funds can be
spent on actual fossness rather than permission to do fossness but where that is
still a work in progress having LA backing would be good.

i think if we pay for a speaker it would be good if it could get to the lugs
generally rather than one decided on numbers.
some people wont want to do a tour and thats fine but it would be great to do a
video of those events. i find videos of moglen and doctorow etc very informative
it would be great if we could collect foss casts and videos of the speakers we
pay for, means that you can have a lug of 3 and still get some interesting
information which you wouldnt have seen without LA support.
does this mean we have a video camera that has an airport proof carry case and
get it sent around for special speaker recordings or is that too high risk?
i am going to see if i can find a group that hires video cameras locally.

barcamp is interesting and challenging
venues which permit sleepovers look to be fewer now that pli has changed fire
safety guidelines or some such.
getting bandwidth on paid for for the event. trying to run an event which doesnt
have the same kind of big ticket profile as LCA, which internationally has an
expectation that sponsors will flock and you'll get to do it free with tshirts
and locally which feels like it will generate around 60 people doing interesting
things for a weekend and will likely be self funded byo type of thing.
it is hard eg to have something which is open to all where you offer to provide
food and drinks and camp freely with a random number of people coming etc.
perhaps we do a card which gets stamped like the adelaide lca icecreams.
how can LA best support that kind of activity? tshirts are a high effort item
because getting all the right sizes sent out is a bit fiddly but perhaps that is
the kind of thing where the economy of scale of doing that across all australian
barcapms would be good? if so we would need to get the sponsorship approved in
time to allow the groups to order and the printers time to do the shirts.
Perhaps there is a better project than shirts which would promote foss for all
barcamps?

would it be possible to use LA money to start a program on the activities
happening around australia for community TV? we probably dont lead with a
sponsor offer to the community tv station but lead with a how do we contribute a
program offer and use the funds as we need to.

long term and far away if we save up i think it would be great for
LA to be able to buy some spaces where foss can be promoted so that
lobbying for a space to show people free software is no longer a problem.
we own our spaces and people will always be able to find access to these
technologies there.

there is a half built building in adelaide across the road from where they are
closing the technology school of the future available for 170k in a
neighbourhood full of 350k properties on the fringe of the city.
it would take a lot of work to make it viable and i dont think we are probably
ready for that kind of thing right now but it did make me think when i saw it
that owning our own spaces would put us in a different league.
http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?a=o&id=103462836&f=0&p=10&t=res&ty=&fmt=&header=&c=45225857&s=sa&snf=rbs&tm=1168292934

And heres one they prepared earlier
http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?a=o&id=103462836&f=0&p=10&t=res&ty=&fmt=&header=&c=45225857&s=sa&snf=rbs&tm=1168292934

Cheers

Janet
James Purser
2007-01-08 21:28:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Terry Dawson
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
To my mind, I can see this benefiting both the australian community as
well as the wider regional community. There are nascent groups starting
up in South East Asia and the pacific that could benefit from hearing
from a group thats managed to do things reasonably right. And in return
we get to here about "teh c00l" people we may not have heard from
before. We can build connections that would allow for greater
interaction between the regional groups. This could lead to visits from
some of the hackers from FOSS.IN or perhaps an up and coming
kernel/Debian/Gentoo/KDE/GNOME hacker from south east asia, doing talks
on what its like to hack in a culture which is quite distinct to our
own.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
"Each committee member shall speak at LUG-related event or meeting,
other than LCA, that's at least 100 km from their hometown and has not
already been visited by any other committee member at least once during
the year".
I'm not sure what problem you think this solves, but I can see some
benefit in ensuring that the committee are personally active in speaking
on behalf of the Linux Australia organisation to the membership of a
reasonable number of LUGs each year. With the size of the present
executive committee it would result in at least 12 LUGs each year
getting at least one speaking attendance from a Linux Australia
executive committee member each year. Given the number of active LUGs in
Australia this might be viewed as significant.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing. Do you mean that Linux Australia should take on an obligation to
reasonably honour such requests? It seems to me that the existing Grants
scheme might reasonably be extended to cover such requests already. If
there is genuine benefit to be had, it's something we should be considering.
I would suggest a complete review of the Grants Scheme. As this year has
shown (yes under my watch as Grants Tzar) it may not be meeting its
targets. Lets have a look at what it should be doing, has the focus
shifted? Do we suck at promoting it?
Post by Terry Dawson
Why do they have to be software hackers? Can they not be other active
and significant community members? For example, if a LUG in some area
were interested in starting a ComputerBank chapter, could they not
invite an existing ComputerBank representative to speak?
Software hackers appeal to some and community hackers appeal to others.
A nice mix would do nicely.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
I'd be interested to know how much value our membership actually feels
is associated with this idea. If, for example, we only had enough money
to do this, or to organise some annual convention of LUGs, but not both,
which would be preferred?
I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?
I personally favour the idea of having Linux Australia sponsor some sort
of LUG representative get-together. A face-to-face get-together would be
expensive, but a regular teleconference could be quite economical.
This could be handled within the framework of LCA perhaps. We may not be
able to afford to fly in every representative who wants to come, but we
could organise something. In the meantime, I'll second Terry's and
others calls for a regular meeting, possibly via teleconference to get
LUGS actually talking to each other (those that want to of course).
Post by Terry Dawson
regards
Terry
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Anthony Towns
2007-01-09 00:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
Depends where the P/VP go. The thing I remember is Pia going to WSIS in 2003,
on her own pocket, cf:

http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/11/20031212c/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/12/1071210888/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/14/1071366692/
http://pipka.org/blog/2003/12/16/1071556511/

Andrew Cowie's been involved with the FOSS.in folks for a while, as they
develop their own top notch community run conference:

http://research.operationaldynamics.com/blogs/andrew/conferences/india/foss.in-2005-always-learning.html

The benefit of having people go out and mingle on the world stage is it
helps introduce you to great ideas from elsewhere, and helps you share
your great ideas with others. For technical stuff, we've got that down
pat with lca; but LA is more than just that: we're also trying to do
good things with legal issues and trying to find ways of helping LUGs
be even better.

If all that means that "in order to promote LA and keep up with events"
should be changed to "in order to promote the goals of LA" or something,
that's fine by me. I'd certainly expect Jon, James and Pia to make it
pretty clear how whatever trip they might end up taking benefits free
software or Linux or whatever.
Post by Terry Dawson
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing.
I think the problem is more that people don't feel entitled to do so;
either because they don't think of it in the first place, or because
they don't think their little LUG is worth the expense, or they figure
LA is some grumpy bunch of people who aren't worth asking for help,
or whatever else.

We've now had two grants of this form -- TasLUG getting a speaker from
Melbourne, and FOMS getting Holger in from Germany, with the latter only
happening because Pia specifically suggested doing it as a grant.
Post by Terry Dawson
I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?
Whatever's most effective and affordable. Flying people in specially is
more costly and requires more organisation, but has the benefits that
it's original rather than perhaps a repeat of something people could've
seen by going to lca or downloading the videos and allows a bit more
flexibility on topics, which might be useful. Basically, I didn't have
anything in particular in mind.

Though it might be worth adding some info to this year's lca wiki about
LUG meetings around the country that people might want to visit if
they're staying on in Australia...

Cheers,
aj

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James Purser
2007-01-02 22:22:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)
Cheers,
aj
Ya know something? I'm not going to say its stupid, in fact I think its
brilliant.

[Warning - The following is somewhat stream of consciousness, there will
be a more practical post following soon.]

For the entire time I've been involved with Linux Australia, first as a
member, then as a podcaster then as a committee member, a perennial
thread has been "How do we communicate with our members/The LUGs/Joe
Blogs". We've tried tinkering around the edges but nothing this
dramatic.

This also brings up the question of "Where does the money come from?"
linux.conf.au started out as the entire focus of LA, and has always been
our primary income earner (with great thanks to all previous and current
linux.conf.au organisers!). However we are now at a place where we need
diversify our income streams. There will come a time when for whatever
reason linux.conf.au doesn't bring in the money (may that day be a
loooong way off). We need to setup that fund raising committee and we
need it to start raising funds :)

I guess it boils down to this. Linux Australia needs to start acting
like a professional organisation. This means reaching out to our members
and to the wider community, taking a more professional approach to how
we do things like sub committees (which Jons already working on) and so
on. We also need to be more definite in what we are offering our
members.

Also just for the record I would support exactly this proposal even if I
was completely kicked off the ctte at the coming election and was never
elected again.
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Michael Still
2007-01-02 22:26:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)
The goodosity of the idea would depend on whether $34k is a significant
portion of LA's operating budget or not. I'm a little out of touch with
LA's finances, can you clarify that aspect please?

What about other options, like video conferencing international people
in? Or having the international people talk at more than one LUG while
they are out here?

Mikal
Tim Ansell
2007-01-02 22:33:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?
I actually think this would be a great idea! I have to admit I never
actually get around to going to my local LUG, but still think this would
be cool thing to do.

Personally, I would also like to see the LUG's advertise and try to
reach out to getting new users a little bit more. Posters around
Universities, getting free Ubuntu CD's for schools to hand out, etc.

As mentioned on IRC, timing talks around LCA would also help reduce
costs of the International speakers.

Tim Ansell
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 22:35:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
Oh, fwiw, this was inspired by two things, one is remembering this exchange
from a while ago:

http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2004-January/msg00255.html

and still thinking that having the LA President attend int'l functions
is a Good Thing for the organisation; and the other is that Jon keeps
whining about how he never gets to go to a real debconf. ;)

Cheers,
aj

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Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 23:03:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k.
This is wrong. $2,000 x 12 months is a $24,000 budget. I think I'll leave
estimating how much is used until I have some real numbers :(

Cheers,
aj

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Christopher Yeoh
2007-01-03 08:32:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth.
If there are problems with not having sufficently geographic diverse
representation on the committee, then what about changing things in
the future to allow LUGs (say with minimum size and regular meeting
qualifications) to be have the right to internally vote for a
representative on the LA committee (eg additional reserved spots -
maybe only for those areas/LUGs where there aren't existing reps)?

Even if not taken up by all LUGS, this may help encourage people from
smaller or more remote LUGs to participate in LA who normally wouldn't
feel they are qualified to be elected to the LA committee.

Chris
--
cyeoh at samba.org
Lindsay Holmwood
2007-01-03 14:39:01 UTC
Permalink
Hey all,

First off, I think AJ's proposal is a great idea.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
What sort of membership would that be - financial or mailing list?

SLUG is one of the larger (largest?) LUGs in Australia, and even we
don't have 150 financial members. I doubt that other LUGs would have
numbers approaching that.

Financial membership numbers have stayed fairly constant over the last
few years, though even with an LCA in our city, I don't expect us to
reach 150 members anytime in the next few years.

I'm all for it if the barrier of entry is lowered for the smaller LUGs.

We already source speakers from outside SLUG (both interstate and
international), but this sort of LA initiative would be really useful
to smaller LUGs in capital cities and regional locations.

Maybe an Australian LUG survey would be a initiative worth pursued by
the new LA committee (or even a subcommittee)? There are all manner of
interesting questions LUGs can be asked, with the responses analysed
to provide better interaction between LA and the LUGs (like or
building on AJ's proposal).

Just a thought. :-)

Lindsay
SLUG President
--
http://slug.org.au/ (the Sydney Linux Users Group)
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/ (linux.conf.au 2007)
http://holmwood.id.au/~lindsay/ (me)
Terry Dawson
2007-01-08 21:12:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
I've thought for a while (some would say harped on about, perhaps) that
having people you can talk to directly about LA stuff is much better
than only being able to follow what's going on online...
I agree to the extent that there are significant portions of our
community that would welcome the opportunity to discuss Linux Australia
and its activities in a group face-to-face mode. There will other groups
who feel most comfortable in an online mode and they should continue
to be serviced in at least the manner to which they are today.
Post by Anthony Towns
So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events
I'm going to ask the dumb question. What benefit does promotion of Linux
Australia at international events bring Linux Australia, its membership
or the Australian Linux/FOSS community? Could you expand a bit on the
benefits you see and what process is required to translate attendance at
an event into tangible benefit?
Post by Anthony Towns
- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year
To make this truly effective I think I'd ammend this to read:

"Each committee member shall speak at LUG-related event or meeting,
other than LCA, that's at least 100 km from their hometown and has not
already been visited by any other committee member at least once during
the year".

I'm not sure what problem you think this solves, but I can see some
benefit in ensuring that the committee are personally active in speaking
on behalf of the Linux Australia organisation to the membership of a
reasonable number of LUGs each year. With the size of the present
executive committee it would result in at least 12 LUGs each year
getting at least one speaking attendance from a Linux Australia
executive committee member each year. Given the number of active LUGs in
Australia this might be viewed as significant.
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year
I'd have thought that LUGs were already entitled to ask for such a
thing. Do you mean that Linux Australia should take on an obligation to
reasonably honour such requests? It seems to me that the existing Grants
scheme might reasonably be extended to cover such requests already. If
there is genuine benefit to be had, it's something we should be considering.

Why do they have to be software hackers? Can they not be other active
and significant community members? For example, if a LUG in some area
were interested in starting a ComputerBank chapter, could they not
invite an existing ComputerBank representative to speak?
Post by Anthony Towns
- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year
I'd be interested to know how much value our membership actually feels
is associated with this idea. If, for example, we only had enough money
to do this, or to organise some annual convention of LUGs, but not both,
which would be preferred?

I presume the reasonable way to do this would usually be to have the
international speaker be one of the LCA speakers, and to have them stay
on a day or two longer in Australia to speak at LUGs. Is this what you
had in mind or were you thinking we'd actually fly someone in from
abroad specifically to speak at a LUG somewhere for a meeting?

I personally favour the idea of having Linux Australia sponsor some sort
of LUG representative get-together. A face-to-face get-together would be
expensive, but a regular teleconference could be quite economical.

regards
Terry
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 22:35:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
[...] we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. [...] Should we rebrand Linux Australia or LCA
to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. [...]
That doesn't mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the
time has come for a more generalised FOSS organisation of which
LA could be a part, or even just for LA to be more consciously
inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS but
haven't switched out their underlying OS. [...]
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
[...] my aims for 2007 include: to create a way for FOSS groups to
participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux". This last
point is really important, there are many groups out there that
are part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg -
Perl, Python, Open Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be
more formally inclusive of non-Linux FOSS groups so we can all
be stronger together. [...]
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)

Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.

By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.

I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.

Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j

[0] http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2006-September/msg00072.html

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Silvia Pfeiffer
2007-01-03 00:48:03 UTC
Permalink
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.

We have organised FOMS (http://annodex.org/events/foms2007/) as a
media developer conference in the week before LCA to take advantage of
synergies. It has turned out that this has both advantages and
disadvantages.

In order to run a conference - even a small one - you need sponsors.
If LCA and a number of other conferences are competing for sponsorship
by bugging the same companies, this will be negative for the
community. So, with FOMS, we stuck out of the way of potential LCA
sponsors. Since Australia is fairly, this excluded essentially all
Australian open source related companies and turned sponsorhip
acquirement into a rather difficult situation for FOMS.

FOMS will still be a nice little conference with good international
speakers and we have learnt a lot through it. But imaging a collection
of open source related conferences all trying to address sponsors for
different but related purposes - that just won't do.

Then there is the logistics problem: we are seriously considering
where to hold the next FOMS. Will it be possible to organise it in
Melbourne? We have nobody on the ground in Melbourne - organising
location, catering etc over the distance is nearly impossible. So, we
may decide to hold FOMS again - but in Sydney!

So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...

Regards,
Silvia.
Post by Anthony Towns
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
[...] we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. [...] Should we rebrand Linux Australia or LCA
to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. [...]
That doesn't mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the
time has come for a more generalised FOSS organisation of which
LA could be a part, or even just for LA to be more consciously
inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS but
haven't switched out their underlying OS. [...]
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
[...] my aims for 2007 include: to create a way for FOSS groups to
participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux". This last
point is really important, there are many groups out there that
are part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg -
Perl, Python, Open Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be
more formally inclusive of non-Linux FOSS groups so we can all
be stronger together. [...]
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)
Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.
By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.
I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.
Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j
[0] http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2006-September/msg00072.html
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Steven Hanley
2007-01-03 06:16:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Silvia Pfeiffer
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.
...
So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...
This is largely correct, sure the sponsorship issue is one to note, however
a big one is getting people to do the volunteer leg work.

For lca05 we attempted to encourage a number of groups to do big additional
conferences at the same time (or around the same time). We got the open
source in govt one because someone local on th ground was there to volunteer
to run it an worked well with our org team.

Other approaches we made suggesting scaling up a mini conf or similar
however did not bear results, partly due to no local people and partly due
to how remote .au is if there is a major confernece on that subject in the
world already, keeping it at mini conf level attached to LCA was easier for
the people we approached with the suggestion of scaling up.

See You
Steve
--
Steven Hanley sjh at svana.org http://svana.org/sjh/diary
i'm trying to feel my way around a book of promises written in braille
Heartbreak Even - Revelling - Ani
Tim Bowden
2007-01-04 07:14:02 UTC
Permalink
This thread is an interesting one for me, as Im involved in setting up
the Australian Chapter of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation
(www.osgeo.org wiki.osgeo.org/index.php/Australia). I'm cross posting
this to the osgeo international list where discussion about the
formation of the Australian chapter is happening. While this discussion
is way too premature for Aust OSGeo at the moment, I'd like to give a
heads up to those interested in thinking about how to develop synergies
with other FOSS orgs in Aust.

For the benefit of osgeo int. list members who don't know LA: Linux
Australia (linux.org.au) is a very large, active and successful
organisation promoting linux and FOSS in general. It has the respect of
industry, media and govts. It holds one of the best technical
Linux/FOSS conferences in the world. If you want to follow the thread
from start it's here:
http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2007-January/msg00006.html
Of interest to OSGeo Aust is the spiels (halfway down) about developing
the broader FOSS ecosystem in Australia; something I think will become
an issue for us in the fullness of time.
Post by Steven Hanley
Post by Silvia Pfeiffer
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.
...
So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...
This is largely correct, sure the sponsorship issue is one to note, however
a big one is getting people to do the volunteer leg work.
For lca05 we attempted to encourage a number of groups to do big additional
conferences at the same time (or around the same time). We got the open
source in govt one because someone local on th ground was there to volunteer
to run it an worked well with our org team.
Other approaches we made suggesting scaling up a mini conf or similar
however did not bear results, partly due to no local people and partly due
to how remote .au is if there is a major confernece on that subject in the
world already, keeping it at mini conf level attached to LCA was easier for
the people we approached with the suggestion of scaling up.
See You
Steve
With the Australian Chapter of OSGeo we are a long way from thinking
about conf's or synergy with other open source groups and so on (we
don't formally exist /yet/) but sometime in the future we will need to
look at one of the things we will be interested in doing is having a
local annual conf. Being open source there will be some cross over
interest with LA and other FOSS groups, but how much is an open
question; Open source GIS is often also used and developed on windows
(and other) platforms. The question then becomes how much synergy we
get from tagging along with lca and anyone else who also tags along.
Sponsorship conflicts are not an issue for us; we would be looking to a
different set of potential sponsors.

Problems of hosting a conf in a city where we don't have much manpower-
* We can't organise it without local manpower
* Without a strong local following our conf numbers will be seriously
down. At any conf (lca or otherwise), a large proportion of attendees
are local. Without a strong local community the conf is possibly
setting itself up for failure, especially if it is not so big to start
with.

If LA used a professional conf organiser for any 'FOSS conf
festival' (and perhaps a fixed rotation?) the manpower issue would be
partly ameliorated but the lack of local community would possibly be
critical for some locations and we would also be subject to a conf
timetable that wouldn't always suit us. On that count I'd say it mostly
won't work.

As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.

Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-04 19:55:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim

Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?

Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.

The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia

Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.

Cheers from here

Janet
Tim Bowden
2007-01-05 19:05:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim
Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?
So far Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and I think some from Canberra
and Brisbane though we haven't got to the point of working that out for
sure yet.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.
The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/
Any Aust OSGeo's going to lca who whould like to hold a bof?
Unfortunately I can't be there :-(
Post by Janet Hawtin
I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia
Sounds good. Anyone want to do GeoFOSS at a barcamp in March
(Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney)? I'll be up for it in Perth when there
is an event.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.
Will do.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Cheers from here
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Cameron Shorter
2007-01-08 10:45:03 UTC
Permalink
I should be able to put together a GeoFOSS presentation for the Sydney
linux conference.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au Jan 15 - Jan 20.

Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.

Off the top of my head, we can cover:
* The OSGeo Stack and what proprietary tools are being replaced.
* OSGeo Foundation
* OGC standards and what they cover
* Some success stories
* What next, what people are working on for the future, and what needs
to be worked on.

What should our next steps be if we want to get into the LinuxConf program?
Post by Tim Bowden
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim
Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?
So far Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and I think some from Canberra
and Brisbane though we haven't got to the point of working that out for
sure yet.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.
The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/
Any Aust OSGeo's going to lca who whould like to hold a bof?
Unfortunately I can't be there :-(
Post by Janet Hawtin
I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia
Sounds good. Anyone want to do GeoFOSS at a barcamp in March
(Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney)? I'll be up for it in Perth when there
is an event.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.
Will do.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Cheers from here
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
_______________________________________________
Www_international-discuss mailing list
Www_international-discuss at lists.osgeo.org
http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/www_international-discuss
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-08 14:35:02 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).

Sorry. :-)

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

"People who paid for bug fixes in the 3c501 driver also bought MacIIfx
support contracts..." - Alan Cox
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-08 18:00:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).
Open day table?

Janet
Tim Bowden
2007-01-08 21:10:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).
Open day table?
Sorting that now...
Post by Janet Hawtin
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Tim Bowden
2007-01-08 21:10:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).
Open day table?
Sorting that now...
Post by Janet Hawtin
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-08 18:00:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jeff Waugh
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).
Open day table?

Janet
Jeff Waugh
2007-01-08 14:35:02 UTC
Permalink
<quote who="Cameron Shorter">
Post by Cameron Shorter
Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.
*Vastly* too late for anything but a lightning talk (if you are a registered
delegate coming to the conference).

Sorry. :-)

- Jeff
--
linux.conf.au 2007: Sydney, Australia http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

"People who paid for bug fixes in the 3c501 driver also bought MacIIfx
support contracts..." - Alan Cox
Cameron Shorter
2007-01-08 10:45:03 UTC
Permalink
I should be able to put together a GeoFOSS presentation for the Sydney
linux conference.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au Jan 15 - Jan 20.

Are we too late to get a 30 min or 60 min presentation? Maybe a
lightning talk? Also we can put something together for the Open Day.

Off the top of my head, we can cover:
* The OSGeo Stack and what proprietary tools are being replaced.
* OSGeo Foundation
* OGC standards and what they cover
* Some success stories
* What next, what people are working on for the future, and what needs
to be worked on.

What should our next steps be if we want to get into the LinuxConf program?
Post by Tim Bowden
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim
Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?
So far Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and I think some from Canberra
and Brisbane though we haven't got to the point of working that out for
sure yet.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.
The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/
Any Aust OSGeo's going to lca who whould like to hold a bof?
Unfortunately I can't be there :-(
Post by Janet Hawtin
I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia
Sounds good. Anyone want to do GeoFOSS at a barcamp in March
(Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney)? I'll be up for it in Perth when there
is an event.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.
Will do.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Cheers from here
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
_______________________________________________
Www_international-discuss mailing list
Www_international-discuss at lists.osgeo.org
http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/www_international-discuss
Tim Bowden
2007-01-05 19:05:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim
Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?
So far Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and I think some from Canberra
and Brisbane though we haven't got to the point of working that out for
sure yet.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.
The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/
Any Aust OSGeo's going to lca who whould like to hold a bof?
Unfortunately I can't be there :-(
Post by Janet Hawtin
I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia
Sounds good. Anyone want to do GeoFOSS at a barcamp in March
(Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney)? I'll be up for it in Perth when there
is an event.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.
Will do.
Post by Janet Hawtin
Cheers from here
Janet
Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-04 19:55:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Tim Bowden
As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.
Greetings Tim

Sounds like a great new project.
Where are your current folk located?

Perhaps there could be an opportunity for a table or participation at an
upcoming event just to break the ice.

The linux conf coming up in Sydney has all sorts of groups and activities going
on including an open day which may be a good starting place.
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/

I am sure that any of the LUGs would be interested to have some GeoFOSSers
along, and the BarCamp events are basically all kinds of tech hands on.
http://barcamp.org/BarCampAustralia

Post the GeoFOSS events to local lug or the AU list as well so that any of us
who are interested in Geo tech can come along too.

Cheers from here

Janet
Tim Bowden
2007-01-04 07:14:02 UTC
Permalink
This thread is an interesting one for me, as Im involved in setting up
the Australian Chapter of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation
(www.osgeo.org wiki.osgeo.org/index.php/Australia). I'm cross posting
this to the osgeo international list where discussion about the
formation of the Australian chapter is happening. While this discussion
is way too premature for Aust OSGeo at the moment, I'd like to give a
heads up to those interested in thinking about how to develop synergies
with other FOSS orgs in Aust.

For the benefit of osgeo int. list members who don't know LA: Linux
Australia (linux.org.au) is a very large, active and successful
organisation promoting linux and FOSS in general. It has the respect of
industry, media and govts. It holds one of the best technical
Linux/FOSS conferences in the world. If you want to follow the thread
from start it's here:
http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2007-January/msg00006.html
Of interest to OSGeo Aust is the spiels (halfway down) about developing
the broader FOSS ecosystem in Australia; something I think will become
an issue for us in the fullness of time.
Post by Steven Hanley
Post by Silvia Pfeiffer
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.
...
So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...
This is largely correct, sure the sponsorship issue is one to note, however
a big one is getting people to do the volunteer leg work.
For lca05 we attempted to encourage a number of groups to do big additional
conferences at the same time (or around the same time). We got the open
source in govt one because someone local on th ground was there to volunteer
to run it an worked well with our org team.
Other approaches we made suggesting scaling up a mini conf or similar
however did not bear results, partly due to no local people and partly due
to how remote .au is if there is a major confernece on that subject in the
world already, keeping it at mini conf level attached to LCA was easier for
the people we approached with the suggestion of scaling up.
See You
Steve
With the Australian Chapter of OSGeo we are a long way from thinking
about conf's or synergy with other open source groups and so on (we
don't formally exist /yet/) but sometime in the future we will need to
look at one of the things we will be interested in doing is having a
local annual conf. Being open source there will be some cross over
interest with LA and other FOSS groups, but how much is an open
question; Open source GIS is often also used and developed on windows
(and other) platforms. The question then becomes how much synergy we
get from tagging along with lca and anyone else who also tags along.
Sponsorship conflicts are not an issue for us; we would be looking to a
different set of potential sponsors.

Problems of hosting a conf in a city where we don't have much manpower-
* We can't organise it without local manpower
* Without a strong local following our conf numbers will be seriously
down. At any conf (lca or otherwise), a large proportion of attendees
are local. Without a strong local community the conf is possibly
setting itself up for failure, especially if it is not so big to start
with.

If LA used a professional conf organiser for any 'FOSS conf
festival' (and perhaps a fixed rotation?) the manpower issue would be
partly ameliorated but the lack of local community would possibly be
critical for some locations and we would also be subject to a conf
timetable that wouldn't always suit us. On that count I'd say it mostly
won't work.

As far as finding a way to build synergy with other FOSS orgs, I think
it would become very important to us over time. I'm not sure at all how
we would go about this, but it would be negligent of us not to try.

Regards,
Tim Bowden
Mapforge Geospatial
Steven Hanley
2007-01-03 06:16:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Silvia Pfeiffer
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.
...
So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...
This is largely correct, sure the sponsorship issue is one to note, however
a big one is getting people to do the volunteer leg work.

For lca05 we attempted to encourage a number of groups to do big additional
conferences at the same time (or around the same time). We got the open
source in govt one because someone local on th ground was there to volunteer
to run it an worked well with our org team.

Other approaches we made suggesting scaling up a mini conf or similar
however did not bear results, partly due to no local people and partly due
to how remote .au is if there is a major confernece on that subject in the
world already, keeping it at mini conf level attached to LCA was easier for
the people we approached with the suggestion of scaling up.

See You
Steve
--
Steven Hanley sjh at svana.org http://svana.org/sjh/diary
i'm trying to feel my way around a book of promises written in braille
Heartbreak Even - Revelling - Ani
James Purser
2007-01-03 07:52:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)
Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.
By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.
I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.
Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j
Hmm how about this instead.

Instead of one huge fosstival, we have nine smaller ones. Instead of
trying to turn linux.conf.au into this be all things to all people type
event, we run one or two day FOSStivals in each capital city. Run them
say six months before linux.conf.au.

Something like this gives potential linux.conf.au organisers a good look
at what could be required to run the big conferences, as well as
allowing those parts of the FOSS community who may not be comfortable
with partaking in linux.conf.au the opportunity to get out there and
show the rest of the country what they've been doing.

I know there are issues with this approach, the main one being the old
"who's going to run it" problem, however this is something that any
expansion is going to face.

* I haven't been drinking, I'm just naturally this nuts ;)
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Paul Wayper
2007-01-03 08:38:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
Instead of one huge fosstival, we have nine smaller ones. Instead of
trying to turn linux.conf.au into this be all things to all people type
event, we run one or two day FOSStivals in each capital city. Run them
say six months before linux.conf.au.
The problem (to me) is basically one of appeal. One of the reasons that
LCA appeals to me is that I (as a hobbyist, I should add) can pick and
choose which sessions I'll go to - there's almost always something I
want to see. If a smaller conference had just one or two streams on
similarly diverse topics to LCA, I'd have much less chance of seeing
topics that appeal to my interests. OTOH, if the smaller conference was
focussed on a single (broad) topic then I might still not go - even if
it was a topic I was interested in, would all the talks be interesting
to me? This was the problem I had when looking at Ruxcon, for example -
even though I'm interested in security, an entire conference on it would
find me wanting to hear about other cool non-security-related stuff.

I personally think that LCA can grow a little - half a dozen or more
streams starts allowing people to specialise in what they're learning
about, while still allowing them to keep up with other interesting stuff
on the periphery. But I agree that a conference double LCA's size would
be unwieldy, excessively demanding on the organisation team and their
volunteers, and would make me (as an attendee) frustrated that I wasn't
able to go to every cool talk I wanted to. Keeping it around its
current size, give or take 15%, seems to me to be right.

So overall I agree with James's idea of having smaller conferences,
especially as a way to get new organisers 'trained up' and considering
the possibility of running a full LCA.

As an aside, I've always been in favour of having a conference in
Broome, for instance, even though it's always put forward as just a joke
- it's a bit like a bar camp, and I'm sure that the technical challenges
of providing 'adequate bandwidth' (which IMO is less than people want).
Having conferences just bounce between Sydney and Melbourne (as the two
largest usergroup bases) would be boring.

Another aside is to observe what happened with the National Folk
Festival (http://folkfestival.asn.au). For a long time it travelled
around to different states, but this took a lot of extra work as each
new organising crew had to learn the job almost from scratch. Finally
it settled in Canberra, having a reasonable balance of good facilities,
cheap nearby accommodation and interstate and international
accessibility, and it's been getting better ever since. While I'd
personally hate to see this happen to LCA, even if it was in Canberra
(where I live), because I like seeing new places and giving different
groups the chance to be involved. I think the essential thing to have
in this regard is a good set of documentation about what has to be done
when to organise LCA, which I'm sure LA has by now.

Just some more thoughts,

Paul
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-03 09:50:02 UTC
Permalink
Hi folks

I think we have organisations, campaigns and events.
I think we have a good organisation and event.
There are other organisations and events happening in AU and campaigns
which we are participating in.
We can participate in diverse campaigns and events.

My goal would be to look at the events in AU which we are a part of or
which we share an interest in and to see how we fit with those, where
we overlap and can collaborate better with other groups and where we
can join other groups in promoting a common campaign.

Events:
Start with a calendar and look at the kinds of funding profiles
(As per Sylvia's comments) and dates of the events.
Perhaps we could produce a community computing calendar so we can
avoid holding competing events and spot flat spots in the year, or
geographically.

BarCamp (March)is a great international flavour of event which can
bring together people interested in participative technology
generally.

Software Freedom Day(September) is a campaign flavoured event which
can bring together people interested in FOSS from different
backgrounds.

The Access 2 Knowledge movement is starting to respond to the DMCA
based copyright laws and has strong involvement from librarians,
teachers, and could do with participation from foss communities.

LUGs are hands on practical places for building and enjoying
communities using specific technologies. Tuesdays are hot property =).

Specific campaigns and projects with partners:
I think we could do more to bring together the information about what
is happening for the ranges of topic that these all represent, but
feel that we need to make sure we are acting to join and collaborate
rather than to overlap or replace. ie try where possible to make sure
it is distributed growth, that we are facilitating growth in partner
groups and building a wider appreciation of what we are about,
offering specific facets to specific other groups.

We didnt have enough critical mass or momentum to make the
copyright petition effective.

Two possible reasons for this include that we are a finite group and
that other wider groups with parallel concerns were not engaged with
the petition, eg the digital alliance and teacher groups.

Secondly I feel we may be politically resistant / averse to active
lobbying because it is not cool and is contentious. This is
understandable and is not inconsistent with how other Australians feel
about the political process. Sometimes as with responding to the
request for comment on copyright the actions need to be formal. If we
can build a connection between the formal work and fun events,
perhaps posters or information on groups and their focuses? Fun
advocacy:
eg. The Electronics Industry Association was a sponsor for the
AI2Robot project, along with the Advertiser, universities and TAFE.
This project had people scarpering over Adelaide making sure they had
the right components and even buying dead tree news to do it.
It was fun and would have reached a lot of people who could play with
something tangible. It also would have been a lot of work.
Some of the conference events and SFD feel like this, BarCamp has this
potential too.

Aggregation by topic:
eg. Education miniconference is great, there are two edu lists on the
linuxAU site, Bryant also runs an active list related to participating
at the miniconference, there are state conferences such as VITTA which
linuxAU people have been attending and participating in.
openeducation.org.au has some interesting material on foss and
education but when you are at the list of mailing lists on linuxAU the
edu info is not in one spot.
Perhaps doing an edu aggregation/topic for the planet?
Specifically if it attracts people who are not currently involved in
linux/foss/open standards in education.

There are groups which we have a common interest in open standards.
These groups might not be into SFD or other aspects of
our wider goals but could be interested in specific projects.

There are groups which we have a common interest in copyright.
These groups/people/events might not have a deep interest in
technologies but might have a common interest in the role that
information plays in our communities.

I am sure that the subcommittees fit into this connective work,
perhaps this is where we need to build to make things more connected
and visible?

Janet
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-03 11:57:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Hi folks
I think we have organisations, campaigns and events.
I think we have a good organisation and event.
There are other organisations and events happening in AU and campaigns
which we are participating in.
We can participate in diverse campaigns and events.
Trying to be more specific.
There are a range of orgs in AU computing and technology and
information communities.
There are areas where each overlap, and where each represents
domething distinctive.
I see the overlaps as opportunities for joint events and campaigns.

OSIA is about open source and industry, there would be some overlap
with AUUG and some with LA, would be interesting to see if there were
events or projects which were interesting to OSDC and OSIA or AUUG.
Basically the intersections are opportunities to do things together
with other groups?

FOSS essentially about freedom and software.
So far it is a campaign, an event like SFD, It might also be an
interesting federated org, but which groups would be interested? Those
which are specifically interested in OS as distinct from FOSS would
better fit into the previous theme. SFD is an event/campaign/org on
this theme. Does SFD join/partner/parent FOSS.org.au or does LA
express its FOSS through SFD and other events which focus on the
freedom in software idea.

FOSS in education and open education generally is represented on
openeducation.org.au
There are people who are interested in open standards in education and
not FOSS specifically. In a website it is easy to make sections for
the range of ideas.
Making projects/sections out of the intersections means we can reach
more people and not exclude others because we can cover another
intersection next time.

Copyright turns most people comatose, Digital alliance, Access to
knowledge and probably some AU law associations would be interested in
the topic from different perspectives.
Digital alliance is largely focused on the impact for institutions eg
libraries and archives, Access2Knowledge includes education sector but
also includes medical patents and access to knowledge and information
in a broader sense than is core for software folks.
It would be great if we could have events or participate in projects
which build links with these groups. Medicins sans frontiers is
involved in this work, some of our projects are sort of like geeks
without frontiers, there could be some interesting things in common
with these groups even though the connection is not a natural one for
the organisational scope of either group.

Embedded Linux folk could have interest in more custom hardware
oriented events or projects?

Making ride on robots is funky and interesting and not particularly
related to a specific box.
There are people in Adelaide doing bike mashups and riding bikes
sitting two bikes height off the ground. I think there is a
participative culture kind of train of thought which they would share
with us.

Wireless community network group Air Stream participated in Software
Freedom Day.

Free beer recipes are related to free culture.

I took old tech to the spinner and weaver's guild and we made jewellery from it.
We had the participative make culture thing in common, we did talk a
bit about linux, tech, copyright, but an org which included spinner
and weavers as well as programmers and system administrators would not
suit either group effectively. Building a relationship so at some
point when we say, this law impacts on our 'right' to code and
participate, they will have some kind of relationship and hands on
empathy.

Generating an organisation to fully represent the possible overlaps
would make it harder to make statements which respond to different
contexts without compromising relevance for one or other segment.
Projects communications, events which cover diverse issues are more
flexible. Trick is largely keeping connected with other groups. I
think the fosscasts have been an interesting step forward in this
direction.

I think people join organisations which represent something specific
and known, and that they participate in a range of activities events
and projects which might be more variable.
Lets build effective activities and partnerships and see which of
those need to have an organisational structure around them once they
have a critical mass and momentum which makes the whole
scoping/admin/pli/entity-ness thing worthwhile.

Janet
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-03 11:57:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Janet Hawtin
Hi folks
I think we have organisations, campaigns and events.
I think we have a good organisation and event.
There are other organisations and events happening in AU and campaigns
which we are participating in.
We can participate in diverse campaigns and events.
Trying to be more specific.
There are a range of orgs in AU computing and technology and
information communities.
There are areas where each overlap, and where each represents
domething distinctive.
I see the overlaps as opportunities for joint events and campaigns.

OSIA is about open source and industry, there would be some overlap
with AUUG and some with LA, would be interesting to see if there were
events or projects which were interesting to OSDC and OSIA or AUUG.
Basically the intersections are opportunities to do things together
with other groups?

FOSS essentially about freedom and software.
So far it is a campaign, an event like SFD, It might also be an
interesting federated org, but which groups would be interested? Those
which are specifically interested in OS as distinct from FOSS would
better fit into the previous theme. SFD is an event/campaign/org on
this theme. Does SFD join/partner/parent FOSS.org.au or does LA
express its FOSS through SFD and other events which focus on the
freedom in software idea.

FOSS in education and open education generally is represented on
openeducation.org.au
There are people who are interested in open standards in education and
not FOSS specifically. In a website it is easy to make sections for
the range of ideas.
Making projects/sections out of the intersections means we can reach
more people and not exclude others because we can cover another
intersection next time.

Copyright turns most people comatose, Digital alliance, Access to
knowledge and probably some AU law associations would be interested in
the topic from different perspectives.
Digital alliance is largely focused on the impact for institutions eg
libraries and archives, Access2Knowledge includes education sector but
also includes medical patents and access to knowledge and information
in a broader sense than is core for software folks.
It would be great if we could have events or participate in projects
which build links with these groups. Medicins sans frontiers is
involved in this work, some of our projects are sort of like geeks
without frontiers, there could be some interesting things in common
with these groups even though the connection is not a natural one for
the organisational scope of either group.

Embedded Linux folk could have interest in more custom hardware
oriented events or projects?

Making ride on robots is funky and interesting and not particularly
related to a specific box.
There are people in Adelaide doing bike mashups and riding bikes
sitting two bikes height off the ground. I think there is a
participative culture kind of train of thought which they would share
with us.

Wireless community network group Air Stream participated in Software
Freedom Day.

Free beer recipes are related to free culture.

I took old tech to the spinner and weaver's guild and we made jewellery from it.
We had the participative make culture thing in common, we did talk a
bit about linux, tech, copyright, but an org which included spinner
and weavers as well as programmers and system administrators would not
suit either group effectively. Building a relationship so at some
point when we say, this law impacts on our 'right' to code and
participate, they will have some kind of relationship and hands on
empathy.

Generating an organisation to fully represent the possible overlaps
would make it harder to make statements which respond to different
contexts without compromising relevance for one or other segment.
Projects communications, events which cover diverse issues are more
flexible. Trick is largely keeping connected with other groups. I
think the fosscasts have been an interesting step forward in this
direction.

I think people join organisations which represent something specific
and known, and that they participate in a range of activities events
and projects which might be more variable.
Lets build effective activities and partnerships and see which of
those need to have an organisational structure around them once they
have a critical mass and momentum which makes the whole
scoping/admin/pli/entity-ness thing worthwhile.

Janet
Janet Hawtin
2007-01-03 09:50:02 UTC
Permalink
Hi folks

I think we have organisations, campaigns and events.
I think we have a good organisation and event.
There are other organisations and events happening in AU and campaigns
which we are participating in.
We can participate in diverse campaigns and events.

My goal would be to look at the events in AU which we are a part of or
which we share an interest in and to see how we fit with those, where
we overlap and can collaborate better with other groups and where we
can join other groups in promoting a common campaign.

Events:
Start with a calendar and look at the kinds of funding profiles
(As per Sylvia's comments) and dates of the events.
Perhaps we could produce a community computing calendar so we can
avoid holding competing events and spot flat spots in the year, or
geographically.

BarCamp (March)is a great international flavour of event which can
bring together people interested in participative technology
generally.

Software Freedom Day(September) is a campaign flavoured event which
can bring together people interested in FOSS from different
backgrounds.

The Access 2 Knowledge movement is starting to respond to the DMCA
based copyright laws and has strong involvement from librarians,
teachers, and could do with participation from foss communities.

LUGs are hands on practical places for building and enjoying
communities using specific technologies. Tuesdays are hot property =).

Specific campaigns and projects with partners:
I think we could do more to bring together the information about what
is happening for the ranges of topic that these all represent, but
feel that we need to make sure we are acting to join and collaborate
rather than to overlap or replace. ie try where possible to make sure
it is distributed growth, that we are facilitating growth in partner
groups and building a wider appreciation of what we are about,
offering specific facets to specific other groups.

We didnt have enough critical mass or momentum to make the
copyright petition effective.

Two possible reasons for this include that we are a finite group and
that other wider groups with parallel concerns were not engaged with
the petition, eg the digital alliance and teacher groups.

Secondly I feel we may be politically resistant / averse to active
lobbying because it is not cool and is contentious. This is
understandable and is not inconsistent with how other Australians feel
about the political process. Sometimes as with responding to the
request for comment on copyright the actions need to be formal. If we
can build a connection between the formal work and fun events,
perhaps posters or information on groups and their focuses? Fun
advocacy:
eg. The Electronics Industry Association was a sponsor for the
AI2Robot project, along with the Advertiser, universities and TAFE.
This project had people scarpering over Adelaide making sure they had
the right components and even buying dead tree news to do it.
It was fun and would have reached a lot of people who could play with
something tangible. It also would have been a lot of work.
Some of the conference events and SFD feel like this, BarCamp has this
potential too.

Aggregation by topic:
eg. Education miniconference is great, there are two edu lists on the
linuxAU site, Bryant also runs an active list related to participating
at the miniconference, there are state conferences such as VITTA which
linuxAU people have been attending and participating in.
openeducation.org.au has some interesting material on foss and
education but when you are at the list of mailing lists on linuxAU the
edu info is not in one spot.
Perhaps doing an edu aggregation/topic for the planet?
Specifically if it attracts people who are not currently involved in
linux/foss/open standards in education.

There are groups which we have a common interest in open standards.
These groups might not be into SFD or other aspects of
our wider goals but could be interested in specific projects.

There are groups which we have a common interest in copyright.
These groups/people/events might not have a deep interest in
technologies but might have a common interest in the role that
information plays in our communities.

I am sure that the subcommittees fit into this connective work,
perhaps this is where we need to build to make things more connected
and visible?

Janet
Paul Wayper
2007-01-03 08:38:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Purser
Instead of one huge fosstival, we have nine smaller ones. Instead of
trying to turn linux.conf.au into this be all things to all people type
event, we run one or two day FOSStivals in each capital city. Run them
say six months before linux.conf.au.
The problem (to me) is basically one of appeal. One of the reasons that
LCA appeals to me is that I (as a hobbyist, I should add) can pick and
choose which sessions I'll go to - there's almost always something I
want to see. If a smaller conference had just one or two streams on
similarly diverse topics to LCA, I'd have much less chance of seeing
topics that appeal to my interests. OTOH, if the smaller conference was
focussed on a single (broad) topic then I might still not go - even if
it was a topic I was interested in, would all the talks be interesting
to me? This was the problem I had when looking at Ruxcon, for example -
even though I'm interested in security, an entire conference on it would
find me wanting to hear about other cool non-security-related stuff.

I personally think that LCA can grow a little - half a dozen or more
streams starts allowing people to specialise in what they're learning
about, while still allowing them to keep up with other interesting stuff
on the periphery. But I agree that a conference double LCA's size would
be unwieldy, excessively demanding on the organisation team and their
volunteers, and would make me (as an attendee) frustrated that I wasn't
able to go to every cool talk I wanted to. Keeping it around its
current size, give or take 15%, seems to me to be right.

So overall I agree with James's idea of having smaller conferences,
especially as a way to get new organisers 'trained up' and considering
the possibility of running a full LCA.

As an aside, I've always been in favour of having a conference in
Broome, for instance, even though it's always put forward as just a joke
- it's a bit like a bar camp, and I'm sure that the technical challenges
of providing 'adequate bandwidth' (which IMO is less than people want).
Having conferences just bounce between Sydney and Melbourne (as the two
largest usergroup bases) would be boring.

Another aside is to observe what happened with the National Folk
Festival (http://folkfestival.asn.au). For a long time it travelled
around to different states, but this took a lot of extra work as each
new organising crew had to learn the job almost from scratch. Finally
it settled in Canberra, having a reasonable balance of good facilities,
cheap nearby accommodation and interstate and international
accessibility, and it's been getting better ever since. While I'd
personally hate to see this happen to LCA, even if it was in Canberra
(where I live), because I like seeing new places and giving different
groups the chance to be involved. I think the essential thing to have
in this regard is a good set of documentation about what has to be done
when to organise LCA, which I'm sure LA has by now.

Just some more thoughts,

Paul
Silvia Pfeiffer
2007-01-03 00:48:03 UTC
Permalink
Side conferences don't just happen by asking for them. Somebody has to
organise them, be on the ground, get locations, get funding together
etc. Do not underestimate the effort required for even a small
conference.

We have organised FOMS (http://annodex.org/events/foms2007/) as a
media developer conference in the week before LCA to take advantage of
synergies. It has turned out that this has both advantages and
disadvantages.

In order to run a conference - even a small one - you need sponsors.
If LCA and a number of other conferences are competing for sponsorship
by bugging the same companies, this will be negative for the
community. So, with FOMS, we stuck out of the way of potential LCA
sponsors. Since Australia is fairly, this excluded essentially all
Australian open source related companies and turned sponsorhip
acquirement into a rather difficult situation for FOMS.

FOMS will still be a nice little conference with good international
speakers and we have learnt a lot through it. But imaging a collection
of open source related conferences all trying to address sponsors for
different but related purposes - that just won't do.

Then there is the logistics problem: we are seriously considering
where to hold the next FOMS. Will it be possible to organise it in
Melbourne? We have nobody on the ground in Melbourne - organising
location, catering etc over the distance is nearly impossible. So, we
may decide to hold FOMS again - but in Sydney!

So, just to repeat: it's all about the people who organise things!
Organising a miniconf is one thing - organising a whole stand-alone
conference is a very different type of cattle, needs continuity, and
people on the ground! Be carful what you're asking for...

Regards,
Silvia.
Post by Anthony Towns
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
[...] we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. [...] Should we rebrand Linux Australia or LCA
to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. [...]
That doesn't mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the
time has come for a more generalised FOSS organisation of which
LA could be a part, or even just for LA to be more consciously
inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS but
haven't switched out their underlying OS. [...]
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
[...] my aims for 2007 include: to create a way for FOSS groups to
participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux". This last
point is really important, there are many groups out there that
are part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg -
Perl, Python, Open Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be
more formally inclusive of non-Linux FOSS groups so we can all
be stronger together. [...]
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)
Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.
By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.
I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.
Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j
[0] http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2006-September/msg00072.html
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James Purser
2007-01-03 07:52:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anthony Towns
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)
Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.
By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.
I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.
Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j
Hmm how about this instead.

Instead of one huge fosstival, we have nine smaller ones. Instead of
trying to turn linux.conf.au into this be all things to all people type
event, we run one or two day FOSStivals in each capital city. Run them
say six months before linux.conf.au.

Something like this gives potential linux.conf.au organisers a good look
at what could be required to run the big conferences, as well as
allowing those parts of the FOSS community who may not be comfortable
with partaking in linux.conf.au the opportunity to get out there and
show the rest of the country what they've been doing.

I know there are issues with this approach, the main one being the old
"who's going to run it" problem, however this is something that any
expansion is going to face.

* I haven't been drinking, I'm just naturally this nuts ;)
--
James Purser
Ordinary Committee Member
Linux Australia
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Pia Waugh
2007-01-02 04:42:03 UTC
Permalink
Hi all,

even though I urge everyone to log into the LA membership page to pore over
the details of the election and also to get ready to vote, I wanted to post
the voting dates, the nominations and their spiels to the public mailing
list for the communities' information.

Dates
=====
Nominations 01/12/2006 00:00 to 31/12/2006 23:59
Advertise Candidates 01/01/2007 00:00
Voting 09/01/2007 00:00 to 16/01/2007 17:30
Results 16/01/2007 17:31 at the AGM

Description of positions
========================
President (1)
Responsible for ensuring the smooth running of LA according to the LA
vision. The President often has to speak on behalf of LA to the press, other
organisations, and the community. The President effectively need to keep the
committee and other individuals enthused and progressive in their work for LA
and the wider community.

Vice-President (1)
The Vice President supports the President in all Presidential
responsibilities, as well as taking over in these duties when the President is
unable.

Secretary (1)
The Secretary must ensure all member details are kept up to date and
accessible. The Secretary also takes the minutes and ensures that the minutes
are accessible. The Secretary is responsible for any necessary correspondence
between the members and committee.

Treasurer (1)
The Treasurer's job is to maintain smooth running of the organisation from
an accounting point of view. All monies are to be collected and payments
authorised. Correct books need to be kept showing the financial affairs of the
organisation. The treasurer typically also has to work closely with the LCA
(http://linux.conf.au) team to ensure that LCA is properly funded by LA.
See Section 17 of the Constitution for full details: http://linux.org.au/about/constitution

Ordinary Committee Members (3)
The Ordinary Committee Members help with the running of the organisation,
help push initiatives that fall into the scope of the LA vision, and generally
keep some sanity in the organisation.


Nominations
===========
Please note, these nominations are not the final candidates, as some people did
not accept their nominations, but for the record, they are all here. I have
marked all actual candidates with a CCC below.

President
---------
CCC * Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
It would be good to see Jon continue in his role as President
o Andrew Donnellan` (ajdlinux at gmail.com)
Jonathan has done a good job in his
current role as LA president and I
would like to see him reelected this
year.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
Yep - jon should continue in the top job. I don't see his energy waning,
nor his steady leadership needing refreshment. jon for President!
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
I'm seconding the nomination for James as President even though I'm
intending to run for that position myself because I'm sure that if
elected he would do an excellent job. He's been a one-man army over
the last 12 months.
o Andrew Swinn (andrew at swinndesign.com)
A prime example of someone willing to make an impact on the world with
Linux and FOSS.

Vice-President
--------------
Note: Jon had accepted his VP nomination, however as he is running uncontested
for P, he will automatically be removed from the VP option for the voting
process.

* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
If not P then VP!
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
On the outside (and I do consider it an outside chance) chance that I
actually do win the Presidential spot, I really feel that Jon's
experience and knowledge should not be lost to the committee.
Hence I am nominating him for the position of Vice President.
CCC * James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
I think James' enthusiasm for the community, LA - especially the openness
and relevance of the organisation would be valuable in such a role where
he has the ability to get things done.
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
James' drive and energy would be a boon to this position. Having the two
J's in the hot seats is a Force to be reckoned with.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
James for VP!! I think that jon and james would make a good pair at the
helm of LA - however I reckon jon has held steady as president over the
past year and should continue on as president. However james vision and
energy deserves the recognition and authority that an office bearer
brings - and so I nominate him for VP.
CCC * Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org) (Accept Nomination) was nominated by:
o Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)
Pia's passion and pizzazz produce a potent prepapration for a proactive
and purposeful posse. Pia is proficient at public promotion and persuading
the priviliged, without being either pliant or prone to prevarication.
My proposal: purloin Pia, pint-sized prodigy and PC poster-girl, as
perennial VP!
o Julien Goodwin (jgoodwin at studio442.com.au)
Hope to see Pia continue her excellent work with LA.
o Donna Benjamin (donna at mel8ourne.org)
Linux Australia needs Pia's energy. She should continue in her role as
Vice President. Pia's belief in the pillars of Open bring focus to her
work for the FOSS community. I am pleased to nominate her for the
position of VP.

Secretary
---------
CCC * Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au) was nominated by:
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
AJ performance over the last year has shown he is the "man for the job",
and I think LA would benefit from his continued placement in this role.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
aj, has been a good secretary for LA this past year and I believe he
should continue in the role.

Treasurer
---------
CCC * Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au) was nominated by:
o Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au)
It would be good to see Terry continue in his role as Treasurer - ever
improving the organisation of LA's finances. I feel it is important to
have continuity in this role.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Terry has done an excellent job this year of getting his head around the
LA finances. I think he should continue in the position.
o Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)

Ordinary Committee Members (3)
------------------------------
* Stewart Smith (stewart at linux.org.au) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Stewart's long commitment to LA has helped make it the org it is today.
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org) (Accept Nomination) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Alternative allotment in case AJ's alliterative allusions to Pia's
acuity alas affords not the ammunition for more authoritative appointment.
o Silvia Pfeiffer (silvia at silvia-pfeiffer.de)
Pia is a a very well connected and loud voice for the Australian Linux
community. Without Pia, LA would not be what it is. Through her, LA is
part of an international network of Linux organisations, a part that has
taken us out of isolation. Pia is the hear and soul of Linux in Australia.
* Michael Davies (michael at msdavies.net) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Past Committee member, Mr LCA2004, and a well-balanced and respected
member of the FOSS community: what more could we ask for?
CCC * James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com) was nominated by:
o Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
I'd hate to lose James' presence on the Committee just through failing
to make either P or VP, so this is a backup/insurance nomination.
o Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
I see the true commitment that James has for the FOSS community. His
passion and enthusiasm has been displayed clearly in the past year. I'm
sure he will show the same, if not more, if elected for the year to come.
CCC * Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au) was nominated by:
o Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
Karin's work on the Podcasts and radio programmes shows her commitment
to getting FOSS out there and known, a strength and experience LA should
harness and use before someone else does.
o Scott Sinclair (scott-linuxau at sbs.id.au)
Karin has played a big role, with James, to get LUGs and the like to
co-operate with each other, and would as such be an asset to the
committee as a OCM.
CCC * Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
I'm seconding Steve for his depth of experience in the Free Software world,
combined with his enthusiasm, work ethic and willingness to go to great
lengths to make the LA presence at trade shows as successful as possible.
o James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Steve Walsh has been active in both his local community (better known as
CLUG man) as well as the greater LA community volunteering at both Linux
World and CeBIT, as well as other LA events. I think we should harness
this energy and use it for our own purposes.
CCC * Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
Janet has been a champion of Free Software awareness and representation
with government bodies and politicians. It is a role I hope she will
continue and expand upon which is why I'm seconding her nomination.
o Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
Janet is an asset to the FOSS community. Her passion, enthusiasm and
drive have been evident since her appointment to the committee.
o Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)
Janet's continuing work on covering the trek of our digital rights here
in Australia and her strong commitment to FOSS as well as Creative
Commons/Free Culture give her an edge that deserves recognition and puts
her amongst the best in our community. I think she has done a great job
in her work in the past and will continue to do so in future which is why
I third her nomination.
CCC * Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org) was nominated by:
o Craige McWhirter (craige at mcwhirter.com.au)
Whilst young, Pascal will learn a great deal from the great team around
him and as such represents much of the future of Free Software. Being
young is also an asset, as Pascal will bring added enthusiasm and a
fresh perspective to Linux Australia. Hopefully he'll be asking questions
on issues many of us currently take as given.
o Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)
Has been active in Ubuntu group.
Interested in education and advocacy.
* Marco Ostini (m.ostini at uq.edu.au) was nominated by:
o Clinton Roy (clinton.roy at gmail.com)
Marco has consistently shown great zeal for the principles behind OSS and
would be a stabilizing and motivating force for LA.


Spiels
======
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)

In my spiel for the last election I talked about some of the challenges
facing the FOSS community, and then ended with: "my objective is to provide the
community with a healthy, growing organisation that provides the resources
necessary for the relevant people to solve each of those problems for our
collective benefit."

While we've made a lot of progress so far and Linux Australia has
continued to grow in size, relevance, diversity, visibility, credibility, and
activity, the organisation we have today is still just scratching the surface
of the possibilities that are open to us. I'm pretty chuffed about everything
that has been done over the last few years but what really excites me is how
much further we can go. FOSS is continuing to mature both technically and in
terms of acceptance; our community is also growing and maturing; and Linux
Australia needs to continue to grow and mature with it. I envisage an
organisation that in just a few years has many thousands of members who are
provided with a wide array of services and whose collective voice is heard and
respected by the people who right now won't even give us the time of day.

With this in mind, if re-elected to the Committee there are four main
areas that I intend to focus on.

Firstly, over the last year I've become increasingly aware of how little
interaction Linux Australia has with various external groups and with LUGs in
particular. LUGs are the lifeblood of the FOSS community but despite the best
efforts of many people they are still too disconnected from LA and from each
other. Over the last 12 months I've spoken to people in many different
FOSS-related contexts such as conferences, LUGs, and at Software Freedom Day,
and been surprised how little they know about LA. That has to change. Recently
we started inviting LUG organisers onto the Committee teleconf and it's been a
great success so I'd like to see that continue, but I'd like to take it one
step further and actively connect with LUGs directly by having LA
representatives offer to present a "Meet Linux Australia" talk to as many LUGs
as possible over the next 12 months. That can extend to other types of
organisation as well such as local PC user groups but our main mission has to
be to support LUGs so they should be the initial focus.

Secondly, we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. This is a critical issue that I don't have a specific answer
for but we need to think about it very hard: the number of people involved with
FOSS on non-Linux platforms is increasing rapidly and many people who would get
a lot out of Linux Australia avoid the organisation because of the name. I've
personally spoken to many people who I am sure would have the time of their
lives at LCA and get a huge amount out of the LA mailing lists but won't even
think about getting involved because they run FOSS on Windows, or MacOS, or
Symbian, or *BSD, or OpenSolaris, or whatever. Should we rebrand Linux
Australia or LCA to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. We'd
be diluting ourselves too much at this stage of our development. That doesn't
mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the time has come for a more
generalised FOSS organisation of which LA could be a part, or even just for LA
to be more consciously inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS
but haven't switched out their underlying OS. This is an open question that we
really need to examine in the next 12 months.

Thirdly, one of the topics that has come up a number of times is member
services. The question to ask when growing an organisation is what value and
benefits it can provide to members: why should people join anyway? What do they
get out of it? In addition to the existing intangible reasons it's about time
that we started providing some tangible reasons too. Setting up an online store
with LA merchandise, providing email addresses for members, and providing
subdomains for projects are fairly obvious ideas that have been raised recently
and will all likely happen very soon. If we look ahead to an organisation many
times larger with more diverse income then other possibilities open up
including production of an Australian FOSS magazine; different types of events
to complement LCA; and far more extensive lobbying activities. Some of those
may sound like pie-in-the-sky ideas but even with the resources we have right
now we could be providing far more services to our members than we currently
do, so let's start with the easy ones and work up from there.

Finally, something that is becoming more important day by day is the
necessary but unsexy work of planning for and managing the scalability of the
organisation. That includes setting out clear organisational policies and
processes; documenting those processes; assigning authority and
responsibilities for specific tasks and projects; and overseeing projects and
subcommittees. This is the stuff that has to be taken care of if the
organisation is going to avoid imploding. I certainly don't want to create a
bureaucratic monolith but an organisation without processes is like a software
project without documentation. That's fine when the project is small and just
starting out but larger projects shouldn't rely on inherent discoverability:
smart ones smooth the way with user and admin documentation, design documents,
coding standards, and FAQs. Organisations are the same and it's critical that
we continue to appropriately scale up the boring bits of organisational
infrastructure as we go.

Linux Australia is already a vibrant organisation with a lot of energy. I
believe that if the Committee pays careful consideration to those four areas it
will continue to rapidly grow and evolve, and I'd love the opportunity to be
re-elected to the Committee to help make it happen.

Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)

Linux Australia has come a long way, particularly in the last four years.
I feel my efforts in jump-starting LA at linux.conf.au Perth (2003) have paid
off, and with the efforts of great committees and community members, LA is now
a vibrant community with many active and inspiring contributors and members. In
only 4 years we have increased membership from 5 to 1200, gotten into the ears
of industry and Government, brought together a largely geographically dispersed
community and created a transparent and trustworthy organisation that assists
its community by being a tool for community development and FOSS in Australia.

Now we need to work especially hard to take LA to the next stage. I would
like to accept the nomination for VP and my aims for 2007 include: to empower
our community further for growth and local representation; to get FOSS onto the
agenda of Australian Government and mainstream media; to create a better
relationship between the Australian FOSS industry and community; & to create a
way for FOSS groups to participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux".
This last point is really important, there are many groups out there that are
part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg - Perl, Python, Open
Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be more formally inclusive of non-Linux
FOSS groups so we can all be stronger together.

These aims are not short term. I am committed to LA for the long haul as
I see the community voice of FOSS as being especially important now and well
into the future. As our entire lives become more and more digital, trustworthy
and sustainable technologies are vitally important. This is an important part
of my personal commitment to FOSS and LA.

I hope to serve as VP with Jon as President as I feel his well-balanced
and stable leadership is complimented by my energy and connectiveness. I hope
to continue to serve the Australian FOSS community, and help take us to the
next stage in a strong, trusted and participatory national community focused
organisation.

* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)

After much thought and such I've decided that I'm not going to stand for
President. Jon has been doing such a kick buttock job so far and I don't want
to stop the run :)

On the other hand I do believe I can achieve a lot in the position of VP.

In terms of what my plans are in the role, it all boils down to 1 thing.
Making sure that LA stays the premier community body representing the FOSS
Community. This will require a lot of hard work and building of communication
channels between both our brother/sister orgs as well as the other players in
the area such as government and business. Thats only one area, but I don't want
to bore you with more unless you ask :)

Before I finish, I would just like to say that fitting into the shoes of
VP is going to be hard (if I win it) considering the previous occupant. Not
only were her feet a hell of a lot smaller than mine, but she has made such an
impact on the org. Rock on Pia.

Secretary
---------
* Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)

Keep on keeping on.
In particular:
(a) improve record keeping and financial handling for projects like lca
and software freedom day and new/other projects.
(b) improve hosting and admin arrangements for la services
(c) support other projects, and generally making la more open and useful as
time permits

Treasurer
---------
* Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au)

Thanks for the nomination.

I'm keen to continue to work to complete the objectives I set for myself this
year:

- complete the documention of the processes and procedures associated with the role.
- establish clear and logical relationships with the LCA treasurer role and that of
other major LA-related projects.
- automate tasks where possible.

Ordinary Committee Members
--------------------------
* Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)

I've been a member of CLUG since late 2004, and Meeting Coordinator since
mid-2005. I was one of the LCA volunteers at 05, and have worked with Pia on
the 2006 Linuxworld, Cebit and Education Expos, pimping FOSS and LA to the
masses. If elected, I intend to continue this pimping, hoping to convert the
people of this wide brown land to the FOSS way of life.

* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)

See my speil for VP :)

* Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)

Hello I am interested in finding ways to respond to the AUDMCA copyright
act, and to try and put pieces together to try and build some support for
teachers interested in using open source technologies in schools. Cheers Janet

* Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)

I would like to accept my nomination for ordinary committee member.

I do not have any grand plans for the direction of Linux Australia as I
believe it is already on the right track.

I have smaller ideas for connecting the community more, by means of
having an open pathway for User Groups to communicate both with the Linux
Australia team and each other which I believe will give many the opportunity to
contribute and have more input on different projects.

* Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)

---

Many thanks all, and good luck to all the candidates! The results will be
announced as part of the LA 2007 AGM at linux.conf.au:

Date - Tuesday January 16th 2007
Time - 17:30
Place - Mathews A at UNSW (as a scheduled part of linux.conf.au 2007
http://lca2007.linux.org.au/Programme)


Cheers,
Pia
--
Linux Australia http://linux.org.au/

"There is no darkness but ignorance." - William Shakespeare
Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 21:04:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
Secretary
---------
* Anthony Towns (aj at azure.humbug.org.au)
Treasurer
---------
* Terry Dawson (terry at linux.org.au)
Ordinary Committee Members
--------------------------
* Stephen Walsh (steve at nerdvana.org.au)
* James Purser (purserj at k-sit.com)
* Janet Hawtin (lucychili at gmail.com)
* Karin Purser (fireflysummer at exemail.com.au)
* Pascal Klein (klepas at klepas.org)
I've thought for a while (some would say harped on about, perhaps) that
having people you can talk to directly about LA stuff is much better
than only being able to follow what's going on online...

So in that vein it seems like the 2007 committee will be from Vic,
{NSW,NSW}, Qld, NSW, {Vic,NSW,SA,NSW,ACT}, without anyone from WA or
Tas or the NT (or north Qld, or country-NSW, or central Australia,
etc). There was a bit of talk on the teleconference this evening about
getting people who aren't on the committee more directly involved in LA
on a regular basis; perhaps having a monthly get teleconf of interested
folks from various LUGs to try to help everyone keep in contact and
share ideas and so forth. Since we've got lca coming up so soon, that's
probably an ideal opportunity for folks who are going to be there, and
would like to be involved in keeping Linux users around the country in
touch with each other, and make use of LA's resources to achieve that,
to chat with committee members and come up with ways of staying involved.

We've tried to keep in touch with LUGs a bit, particularly when we go
visiting a city for a face-to-face meeting; but I wonder if we should be
more active about that, and have committee members and other Linux folks
fly around the country to gives talks in other cities/towns a bit more
often. I suspect the main reason we haven't done that up 'til now is that
it can be a bit expensive and time consuming getting around Australia,
and the committee's been a bit reluctant to spend money without some more
explicit feedback from the community, such as via the grants project.

So in the interests of pre-election debate, I'd like to suggest something
like this:

- in the interests of promoting Australian free software projects and
hackers internationally, the President and Vice-President of
Linux Australia shall each take one overseas trip a year to a free
software event, to promote LA and keep up to date with events

- each committee member shall participate at an event other than LCA
that's at least 100km from their hometown at least once during the year

- each LUG of 50 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA to invite
an Australian free software hacker to give a presentation at one
of their meetings once a year

- each LUG of 150 members or more shall be entitled to ask LA
to invite an international free software hacker to give a
presentation at one of their meetings once a year

If LA were to pick up the bill for those things, and you assume Australian
travel costs about $600 on average, and international travel about $2000,
that's 2x$2000 + 7x$600 + 20*$600 + 7x$2000 = $4,000 + $4,200 + $12,000 +
$14,000 = $34,200, less if some of those can be done by car, or combined,
or similar. For comparison, the grant scheme has a budget of $12,000 a
year, and uses up probably $6k-$8k. Is an international speaker for each
major LUG worth a similar amount? How about having some good non-local
speakers at smaller regional usergroups?

Go on, tell me how it's a stupid idea and what would be better :)

Cheers,
aj

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Anthony Towns
2007-01-02 22:35:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pia Waugh
President
---------
* Jonathan Oxer (jon at oxer.com.au)
[...] we need to examine how Linux Australia relates to the extended
FOSS community. [...] Should we rebrand Linux Australia or LCA
to remove the Linux focus? Personally I don't think so. [...]
That doesn't mean there's nothing to be done though: maybe the
time has come for a more generalised FOSS organisation of which
LA could be a part, or even just for LA to be more consciously
inclusive of those who have made the step of using FOSS but
haven't switched out their underlying OS. [...]
Vice-President
--------------
* Pia Waugh (greebo at pipka.org)
[...] my aims for 2007 include: to create a way for FOSS groups to
participate freely that aren't specifically "Linux". This last
point is really important, there are many groups out there that
are part of the FOSS community, but aren't Linux specific (eg -
Perl, Python, Open Solaris), and LA needs to find a way to be
more formally inclusive of non-Linux FOSS groups so we can all
be stronger together. [...]
I'd like to note in advance that I've been drinking, just in case I want
to disavow the following later. :)

Towards the end of the AUUG thread [0] there were some off-list
discussions about the possibility of not so much changing lca as adding to
it -- not just having some miniconfs as part of lca, but encouraging other
free software people to run a separate conference in conjunction with lca;
so in 2008 you could go to Melbourne for a week or so, and not just have
the opportunity to go to linux.conf.au and a Debian or virtualisation
miniconf, but to go to an OpenSolaris conference, or a Mozilla conference,
or a free Java conference, or see stuff about free accounting programs for
Windows, or hear about the latest Fink and Darwin stuff if you own a Mac,
or what's up with ReactOS, or whatever. In effect, it could be a festival
of free software conferences, happening in the same city at the same time,
with aims that are similar and complimentary, but not exactly the same.

By the sounds of things Sydney's probably going to max out the current
way of doing lca's -- with the number of papers they've had to say no to,
the number (and quality) of the miniconfs they've managed to accept, and
the number of attendees they're going to have, so working out new ways
to have lca grow is probably worthwhile -- and with lca going back to its
birthplace in 2008, it might be the right time for that sort of change.

I dunno, maybe it's too big an idea, or not the right time and I guess
ultimately it's up to the mel8ourne team, and the candidates for the
2009 lca to tell us what they thing. But I'd love to see it happen.

Cheers,
a "the Australian Festival of Free Software -- www.fosstival.conf.au" j

[0] http://lists.linux.org.au/archives/linux-aus/2006-September/msg00072.html

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