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Bits from the DPL


It's been a while since my last bits post, rather longer than it
should have been. Sorry. :-( I blame the idiot who suggested a big
survey of the teams in Debian. Oh, wait...

So, what's been happening?

The teams survey
I won't bore people with all the details again - I've already
announced them once [1]. Most of our teams seem to be working OK, but
many could do with more help and some have real problems. I'm going to
be working through my list of actions in the coming weeks and
months. Chief amongst them will be to help identify the places where
new people can help; many people have been asking already.

There was a followup to the survey - a brief piece in the Register[2]
unfortunately focussed a great deal on just one part of my write-up,
but I suppose that's probably to be expected sometimes.

I'm waiting on a few more press interviews (about the survey and other
topics) to happen in the upcoming weeks; I'll pass on pointers to them
as they happen.

Upcoming events and talks
I've been invited to a couple of conferences to talk about
Debian. First, the region of Valencia in Spain are holding their 3rd
Open Source Software Congress [3] in the first week of November. I'm
hoping to meet up with lots of enthusiasts there who are pushing hard
to promote the use of Free Software in education and government. Then,
later in November I'll be visiting HP Dutchworld [4]. Hewlett Packard
have long been supporters of Debian, and this should be a good
opportunity to speak with some of their people and some of their
customers and tell them all about Debian.

Between now and then, I'm going to be helping to man the Debian stand
at two events closer to home in the UK. This coming weekend, we'll be
at LugRadio Live UK [5] in Wolverhampton and then in October we're
going to be exhibiting as part of the .ORG village at LinuxLive[6] in

Team updates and delegations
As Christoph Berg moved on from the NM Front Desk to join DAM, he left
a gap behind him. Wouter Verhelst and Michael Koch have volunteered to
fill that gap, so hopefully the FD team should be able to cope without
him now. [7] As always, we'd still like more people to work as AMs -
please contact the FD folks if you want to help out [8].

As the constitution requires [9], I've spoken to Manoj and
re-delegated him as Project Secretary for this year. He and I have
also had further discussions about the secretary job and we agreed
that it would be useful to appoint an assistant to help in times where
he might be busy or unavailable. We have asked Neil McGovern to be the
assistant, and he has accepted the post.

Collaborating with Debian derivatives
I've spoken with Mark Shuttleworth a couple of times recently about
how we can improve collaboration between Debian and Ubuntu. I've also
started similar conversations with folks at Xandros and Linspire,
although I'll admit that I've not progressed those very far at all yet
due to lack of time on my part. Recent events may have changed the
landscape here a little [10], but I'm still convinced that there's a
lot to be gained if we can work together more closely with the
developers who use Debian as a base for their own distributions. I
want to talk about this more at Debconf, and I'd love to hear your
ideas on this front.

Talking of which... We're less than 4 weeks from the start of this
year's Debconf in Mar del Plata, Argentina [11]. The organising team
have been working incredibly hard to get things done in time, and I
can't wait to head south and meet up with friends old and new. I've
also got the dubious honour of the opening talk when we're there, but
I'm more interested in hearing what others have to say. Oh, and maybe
the dancing and beer! I'll be wearing my Debian kilt with pride, and I
hope to see others too. Does anybody know if we can find sauna in
Argentina? :-)

Coming Real Soon Now. The freeze is in progress as I write this, and
we should be making the last push to get the RC bugs list [12] reduced
and prepare for the release. There's still a lot of work to be done,
and I'm told there's another release update coming from the Release
Team very shortly. Let's come together and help make Lenny our best
release yet!

[1]  http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2008/06/msg00009.html
[2]  http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/07/03/debian_death_threats/
[3]  http://www.edu.gva.es/congreso
[4]  http://www.hp.nl/dutchworld/
[5]  http://lugradio.org/live/UK2008/
[6]  http://www.linuxexpo.org.uk/
[7]  http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2008/06/msg00007.html
[8]  http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2008/06/msg00005.html
[9]  http://www.debian.org/devel/constitution#7
[10] http://www.xandros.com/news/press_releases/xandros_acquires_linspire.html
[11] http://debconf8.debconf.org/


Steve McIntyre, Debian Project Leader <leader@debian.org>

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