Wednesday, October 28, 2009

My first day as distmaster

Starting from today, I will be officially starting my work as distmaster. Nokia has gracefully sponsored this position for the community at the request of the community council.

The current team cover areas such as bug management, system administration&collaboration spaces, documentation, forums and maintaining software repositories. All these positions facilitate development and collaboration in the community - one based around the Maemo platform and the Nokia devices. But one particular area is missing: the facilitation of tablet/device operating system development.

While currently targets developers building on top of the OS, many people within the community is interested in improving the OS, since it is what they have to deal with daily - as Maemo users. In my time within I've found there's been a reliance on Nokia to provide fixes for problems - instead of looking within the community for people who were capable enough to fix the problem, deliver the solution and publish it in a manner that non-developers can utilize the fix.

One of the 2010 Agenda goals is to provide Maemo variants - which would be the pipeline for delivering community fixes.

Maintaining a Maemo variant is not a easy job - you have to deal with a lot of different stakeholders in a diplomatic manner, mentor and engage new developers, often do a lot of the heavy lifting yourself, faciliate the developing and invent new collaboration spaces for this.

Facilitating and engaging the community in this manner is a day job - which is why we have the team.

I will have 20 hours per week (part-time until January of my own choice) where I will be doing mostly community work and some internal Nokia work as needed.

The primary role as a distmaster is defined as facilitating the development of Maemo variants (Mer, Diablo/Fremantle Community Variants, etc):

* Developing collaboration spaces for developers of Maemo variants
* Mentoring and engaging developers in order to move the Maemo platform and variants ahead
* Communicating with stakeholders (Nokia, distributions implementing the Maemo platform, users and developers)

Secondary role is serving as a paid system developer for the community:

* Developing fixes and features for the Maemo OS & variants either on his/her own based on the input of community council
* or through activating, mentoring for and collaborating with community developer(s) in order to get it completed in collaboration with upstream developers.

As I am also maintaining the ports and base system area for Mer, I will focus myself on the hardware support for Nokia devices and let other team members deal with other device communities/vendors to avoid any potential conflict of interest situations.

As primary facilitator for the Mer project I've successfully helped activate many developers within the community in order to get Mer to where it is today. A lot of these developers came to the Maemo project at the hope of being able to develop the OS but ended up contributing few pieces to move ahead - but there was noone to group all these things and incorporate them in the system, so the brilliant pieces ended up gathering dust - until now. Now there's a official community position to make this work happen.

Looking forward to working even more closely with this community.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Maemo Summit talks of interest to Mer team members

So, Maemo Summit 2009 is coming up - and many people who are contributing to Mer are going to this event.

From my perspective, there are some interesting talks that apply to Mer contributors and I can recommend seeing:


10:15 Maemo 5 and the Nokia N900 by Ari Jaaksi, VP - Maemo Devices @ Nokia

12:15 Harmattan Highlights - Developer Opportunities by Janne Heikkinen, Director - Maemo Product Planning @ Nokia

14:15 Why the Maemo Community matters to Nokia - Alan "qole" Bruce of Maemo Community Council interviewing Ari Jaaksi, VP - Maemo Devices @ Nokia

15:00 N800 room: Cross-platform with Qt - live - Ariya Hidayat, Software Engineer, Nokia
15:00 N900 room: UX panel (Tim Samoff et al)
15:00 N810 room: UI design of Maemo 5 apps - Annu-Maaria Nivala, UX team, Digia

15:30 N810 room: Developing widgets on Maemo 5 - showcase Foreca Weather,Juha Järvi, Software Designer, Foreca
15:30 N800 room: Mer - how the community innovates - Carsten Munk, Lead Developer, Mer project

16:00 N810 room: Developing apps with Qt for Maemo5 - Kate Alhola, Forum Nokia, Chief Guru on Maemo
16:00 N800 room: Your foundation for open-source innovation: TI’s OMAP processor-based Zoom platform. - Ameet Suri, Texas Instruments

16:30 N810 room: Developing apps with Qt on Harmattan - Ville Lavonius, Product Manager Developer Offering, Nokia and Jussi Mäkinen, Maemo Marketing, Nokia

17:00 N800 room: Harmattan Architecture Overview - Juha Tukkinen, Principal Engineer, Architecture and Sys, Nokia

20:00 Maemo Party in FlexBar coordinated by Jussi Mäkinen. It's a public bar and the doors are open to anybody. Our program will go until 23h or so, but the bar is open until really late with good music. Don't forget the Saturday schedule, though. :)

- where I'll have Mer stickers for your devices along for registered Mer contributors :)


11:00 N900 room: Designing UI for Maemo 5 - Mox Soini
11:00 N810 room: PyQt application development on Maemo - Attila Csipa

12:00 N810 room: Introducing the Harmattan UI framework - Tomas Junnonen
12:00 770 room: BOF, Extras/autobuilder/interfaces round-table (for those interested)

14:30 Lightning talks:

Development Nirvana: How Maemo Application Development Should Be - Andrew Flegg

DVCS? git? - How does that work then? - David Greaves (you'll want to know this skill)

15:45 N810 room: Adapting GNOME applications to Maemo Fremantle - Joaquim Rocha
15:45 N800 room: Contributing with Git & Gitorious - Johan Sørensen (we use Gitorious extensively in Mer)

16:15 N900 room: Mer - a year after - Carsten Munk (a talk on what has gone on in the last year regarding Mer)
16:15 770 room: Git hands-on workshop - David Greaves (useful skill)

16:45 N900 room: Bug Management - Andre Klapper

17:30 N800 room: The Qt Mobility Project - Alex Luddy

18:00 N810 room: Maemo and oFono - Aki Niemi, Rémi Denis-Courmont
18:00 N900 room: The Maemo 5 Address Book - Mathias Hasselmann, Travis Reiter
18:00 N810 room: Publishing your software through
Niels Breet
18:00 770 room: BoF: The future of GTK+/Hildon in Maemo Harmattan, Alberto Garcia, Claudio Saavedra


11:00 N800 room: Building for Mer - David Greaves

11:30 N800 room: Designing QT application for Maemo 5 and Maemo 6 - Sergiy Dubovik, Ian Monroe

12:00 N800 room: Maemo Platform Security: Principles and Concepts - Elena Reshetova
12:00 770 room: Extending the Hildon desktop - Marc Ordinas i Llopis (we are switching to Fremantle hildon-desktop in 0.17)

12.30: N900 room: Towards painless and quality translations - Dimitris Glezos
12.30: N810 room: Telepathy on Maemo - Marco Barisione
12.30: 770 room: What to do about /opt in Fremantle - Marius Vollmer

14.30 lightning talks:

How to speed up your Maemo application development - Raul Herbster
N900 HW architecture overview & power management - Igor Stoppa
From corporations to communities: responsible and effective engagement - Randall "Texrat" Arnold
Mer from a user's perspective - Tomasz Dominikowski