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bits from the DPL: news, sprints, comm. & collaboration

Dear Developers, I suspect you have been missing DPL SPAM, so let me try to fix that. In the meantime, Squeeze is looking better and better every passing day [0], but we’re not there yet. How about offering as gifts to your closest friends some RC bug fixes? I’m sure they’ll appreciate!


Announcement miscellanea

A few mini announcements to start with:

– events@d.o has been merged with merchandise@d.o and has grown two new
volunteers (Luca Capello and Francesca Ciceri, thanks!); see
www.d.o/intro/organization [4] for the full team. You are invited to
contact events@d.o to notify of events where you plan to have Debian
presence and keep track of them. People in the team can also help in
having merchandise and other Debian promotional material.

– The mail alias antiharassment@d.o has been setup as contact point for
Debian event organizers willing to have an anti-harassment policy
[1,2]. I’m planning to announce one such policy for sprints, based on
a draft available on DebConf wiki [3]. Volunteers from Debian Women
(Amaya Rodrigo Sastre and Patty Langasek) are currently behind the
alias, thanks!

– Following up with the discussion about web bugs on planet.d.o, Planet
maintainers have updated the Planet policy. A news item has been added
to DeveloperNews [5] about that; I re-iterated it here only because
people have been repeatedly asking me about that.

– The press/-publicity team has noticed the lack of a native English
speaker in the press team, which is most needed for embargoed press
releases. Paul Wise has kindly volunteered to help and has now been
added to press@d.o, thanks!



I’ve been proposing and/or approving a couple of sprints since the last
reporting period:

– -www team sprint [6], which has a report on its way past-holidays
– security team sprint [7] (forthcoming)

I remind you that, unless otherwise stated, sprints are organized using
Debian money coming via donations and that you can haz yur sprint too



With the help of the press, kernel, and CD team, we have sent out a
press release [9] about the free-nees of firmware starting with Squeeze;
while it was well-known news among devs, I had the impression it was not
among our users. AFAICT the reaction to that and to further
communication of mine on the matter [10] has been very positive. In case
you want to help, there are a couple of pending documentation tasks
about it (#607191, #607193).


Talks, interviews, & co

I’ve attended events or otherwise represented Debian in the following

– Delivered a talk titled “Debian: 17 ans de logiciel libre, do-ocracy
et democratie” at a Debian-day-like event (the name was “BSP”, but in
fact it was more than that) organized nearby Paris, France by the
Academie de Versailles. Slides are available [11] as well as a report
by LinuxFr [12].


– Delivered a talk titled “Debian, Ubuntu, and 101 other derivatives” at
an “Ubuntu Party” organized by TouLibre in Toulouse,
France. Organizers were keen of presenting the larger ecosystem of
Free Software to the local Ubuntu community: I’ve been delighted to
contribute, together with representative of other upstreams such as
GNOME. Slides and videos (of one of my first talks in French ever,
ouch!) are available [13,14]


– I’ve been notified that a couple of interviews, which I’ve mentioned
in past updates, are now available: OpenWorldForum [15] and footage
for a documentary [16] by some UDS-N attendees


see for info about the project

Collaboration with others

– Vincent Untz (GNOME / OpenSUSE) is organizing a cross-distro F2F
meeting to discuss the topic of integrating third party applications
on top of FOSS distributions, a-la software center / AppStore. No
matter how much I might like (or not) the idea, it’s a topic which is
being discussed in several distributions these days and I see the
interest of setting up a cross-distro working group about it. I’m
currently looking for a Debian representative for their first meeting
[17], please contact me if you are interested.


– I’ve been in touch with Jared Smith, Fedora Project Leader, about
releasing a cross-distro statement about cross-distro collaboration.
ATM it is just an idea, but we are organizing a panel discussion about
it to be held at FOSDEM 2011, in the cross-distro room. If you are
interested and happen to be around, show up!

– I’ve been asked to help in preparing a couple of TWID (This Week In
Debian) podcast episodes [18], one about derivatives and another one
about relationships between Debian and its upstreams. Luckily for me,
others have kindly volunteered to be interviewed about those subjects
(thanks Lars and Jeremiah!).


Looking forward

In January I’ll be attending LCA 2011, debunking Debian myths with the
talk “Who the bloody hell cares about Debian?” [19]. Shoot if you plan
to be around!


If you live in a country which is currently enjoying holidays, I wish
you a Merry Christmas, a Merry Grav-mass, and/or any other $REASON you
might have to be merry. Cheers.

PS the usual boring day-to-day activity log is available at

Stefano Zacchiroli -o- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
zack@{,,} -<>-
Quando anche i santi ti voltano le spalle, | . |. I’ve fans everywhere
ti resta John Fante — V. Capossela …….| ..: |………. — C. Adams

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