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Re: Debian Consulting

> Indeed. The kind of people who are interested in marketing, and excel at
> it, are often a distinct set from the people who do the development. So
> what you are talking about is a set of volunteers who are interested in
> designing, and executing, a marketing strategy, orthogonal to the task of
> creating the distribution. Either a subproject of Debian, or a separate
> entity (since getting a subproject started implies that at least some of
> the core of the marketing team be debian developers).
I always viewed this as a role that SPI could play, actually.  Right now
that doesn't seem to be SPI's vision though.  BTW, I fully understand as
both a Debian developer (with one fairly insignificant package) and a
member of SPI, I could make this SPI's vision.  Like everyone else, my life
is about priorities and promoting Debian is a low priority compared to
work, family, etc.  (Although I can claim to have done several Debian
installations as a consultant, in server applications, with one still
running years later.)

[Snipped stuff about GUI installs and distros based on Debian]

A gui install isn't going to help me at all, particularly since I'm not
going to make much headway on the desktop - at this point.  (It would make
no sense for most companies, although the time is getting closer.)

Personally, as a consultant, if you want to know what I think our distro is
missing for wider adoption...  I want out-of-the-box integration with
Windoze...  When I set up an email server, web server, whatever, on Debian,
I want to plug the machine in and turn it on and get hooked straight into
Windows network for authentication.  Or provide authentication to the
Windows machines seamlessly.  I want tools to easily allow me to backup the
Windows machines without any complex setup on my part, or any burden on the
people who will be swapping tapes.

I suppose that's enough rambling.
> Popularity in what niche? Popularity amongst the general public may never
> be within Debian's grasp, but that is, in my opinion, not important, as
> long as people who can contribute to the development recognize the
> qualities of Debian. I am pretty sure that marketing to this audience is
> unlikely to be effective.

I don't think Debian in it's current state has much to offer anything to
"the public" directly.  But I think that a bunch of meta-projects around
Debian could have that impact.  Debian-desktop could form the basis for one
level of meta-Debian, debian-edu, debian-lex, etc could from the next

Personally I think what makes Debian great is the number of choices one has
for any tool, and the granularity with which one can control what gets
installed.  But face it, that's not what "Joe Sixpack" wants, he wants
things to "just work" and to not have to know much.  (Which is another
thing I think is ironic; would you buy ANY complex tool other than a
computer and expect to use it effectively without any training - say a
plasma cutter or something? ;-))  Anyways, I see this meta-projects as
forming the basis for a consumer-friendly Debian at some time in the

This time it's _really_ enough rambling ;-)

Take care,
Dale E. Martin, Clifton Labs, Inc.
Senior Computer Engineer
pgp key available

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