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Paul Hardy: Declaration of intent

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I would like to become a Debian Maintainer, able to upload the
Unifont package that I have been maintaining.  I have read and
agree to the Debian Social Contract, DFSG, and DMUP.  I am
subscribed to the debian-devel-announce mailing list.

I began using Debian with the Sarge release, after buying
a copy of the book _Debian GNU/Linux 3.1 Bible_.

Later on, I wrote graphics conversion utilities for rendering
Unifont glyphs, and then drew thousands of missing glyphs with
those utilities.  I also added glyphs from Wen Quan Yi (with
permission) to give Unifont complete coverage of the Unicode
Basic Multilingual Plane (BMP) for the first time.  That was
in 2008.  This culminated an effort to achieve complete Unifont
coverage of the Unicode BMP begun about ten years earlier by
Unifont's creator, Roman Czyborra.

At the time, the Unifont package had been orphaned on Debian
for several years.  I adopted the Debian package and contributed
this new version.  I also added a TrueType version with combining
character support by modifying a FontForge script that Luis
Alejandro González Miranda wrote (with his permission).

I then began an effort to get all glyphs licensed under the GPL,
so that Unifont could become an official part of the GNU Project.
This was a desire of Unifont's creator as well as something
that I wanted very much to accomplish.  That effort took several
years--much longer than I thought it would originally.  In 2013,
thousands more glyphs later, Unifont finally became an official
part of the GNU Project, with me as the GNU maintainer.

I uploaded that GNU Project version of Unifont to Debian shortly
thereafter in 2013, and have been providing regular updates for
Debian since then.

In addition to supporting new Unicode releases, these updates
have included extending Unifont coverage to scripts in the
Unicode Supplemental Multilingual Plane and adding several
ConScript Unicode Registry (CSUR) scripts; this often involves
incorporating the work of other contributors.  I also introduced
a specialized PSF font to allow use of GNU APL and other APL
implementations in console mode on GNU/Linux systems (coordinating
my work with the GNU maintainer for GNU APL).

I have also updated the Unifont Debian packaging by converting
to the new rules format, simplifying the build process, moving
to quilt, adding watch file support, and adding Multi-Arch
support to the control file.

Matt Kraai has been sponsoring my Debian uploads since 2013,
and has seen me work through all of these changes.

Today, GNU Unifont is the sole source of glyphs for many
Unicode scripts in Debian, as noted on the Debian Wiki page

I also announced an ITP on Debian for man2texi, a package to
convert man pages into texinfo files.  I had hoped to finish
that before the Stretch freeze but the upstream maintainer,
Nelson Beebe, ran into problems with the new version on some
of his (non-Debian) systems.  We are trying to resolve those
issues so that I can upload something that carries his approval.

After my final Unifont upload shortly before the Stretch
freeze, I happened to notice that the Wen Quan Yi font package
xfonts-wqy had two RC bugs (737167 and 808850), one of which
was about three years old.  I communicated with the package
maintainer, ChangZhuo Chen (陳昌倬), about those bugs.  Along
with contributions from Matt Kraai, we got the xfonts-wqy font
package in a non-RC state just in time for the freeze.

The week of the Stretch release, I posted a workaround for
a lintian bug where a maintainer requested help (802721).
I also posted a bug report concerning garbled UTF-8 characters
in an online debian-policy text file (865713), and posted a
patch for a somewhat related bug in less (473227) that had been
open since 2008.

While setting up Stretch on my computer, I noticed that fontforge
and its companion program sfddiff did not have Debian man pages.
I wrote man pages for them based on earlier versions that I found,
updated the contents, vetted them with the upstream maintainer,
and submitted bug report 866690 with those files attached.

I have also supported Debian at Southern California Linux Expo
(SCALE) gatherings over the past few years, helping several
Debian Developers.

Paul Hardy



Paul Hardy (via nm.debian.org)

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