"What is the Fedora Project?"

Mike McGrath mmcgrath at redhat.com
Wed Oct 7 15:59:52 UTC 2009

On Tue, 6 Oct 2009, John Poelstra wrote:

> http://meetbot.fedoraproject.org/fedora-board-meeting/2009-10-01/fedora-board-meeting.2009-10-01-16.03.log.html
> At last week's meeting we said we would continue our discussion here. Here I
> go :)
> 1) I'm still advocating that it is our responsibility to move things forward
> and own these issues.  Are there any board members that disagree?  Speak now
> or we will assume you are in agreement. :-)


> 2) We really need to resolve this topic that has been on the board's agenda
> since January 2009.  For some of us, since we joined in July 2009.  I'm
> proposing that we set a hard deadline of "the end of FUDCon."  This means that
> by the time we leave FUDCon the first part of December 2009, this issue will
> be officially closed and off our agenda until there is a reason to revisit it
> and we can start 2010 with a clean slate.  Are there any board members who
> would not be able to commit to this goal?

Committed.  I'd also like to state that I'm willing to admit that I'm in
the minority in my thinking on this subject and will, of course, respect
and honor the final outcome even if it does not align with my personal

> 3) I am proposing a few unanswered questions that must be answered to bring
> greater clarity to why Fedora exists and what it seeks to accomplish which
> will allow us to close this issue.  I'd wager that answering these questions
> will require each of us to sit down and spend some time thinking about them
> vs. replying in 5 minutes to this email. Naturally we'd also love feedback
> from everyone on this list.
> (a) Define a target audience for the Fedora distribution (or maybe narrow the
> definition to "default spin")--without a clear target audience for our product
> there is a lack of clarity around when we are "done."  It also makes it
> difficult to make decisions about release quality and release composition.

Experienced users and people that wish to aid in leading our industry
through contribution, experimentation and science.  (inventors,
tinkerers, hackers)

> (b) Set some broad goals for where we want the Fedora Distirbution to look
> like a few release from now--say when Fedora 15 is released.  What should
> those be?

1) An easy automated way to provide tests and the answers to those tests.
IE: QA, targeted metric for some given configuration.

2) More ISVs and start-ups have packages in the distribution.

3) More Architectures.  "Does Fedora run on $TOASTER?"  Yes.

4) A better reputation as a place to bring new ideas to be tested and
presented as well as a better acceptance that failure of a new idea is not
a bad thing.

5) By F15 I'd like to see a killer virtualization management system in
Fedora.  What we have now is a lot of disparate tools.  All of which are
getting better, none of which are on the level with the likes of vmware.

> (c) Set some broad goals for where we want the Fedora Fedora Project to look
> like a few release from now--say when Fedora 15 is released.  What should
> those be?

1) Fedora is a laboratory where all the cool stuff happens.

2) Stronger ties to educational institutions for the purposes of using
Fedora in education (like POSSE) and also a place where academics can come
to communicate, present works, do demonstrations, etc.

3) A place where businesses and employees can come to work and collaborate
towards common goals.  Many businesses have started using FOSS, Fedora
should lead them in how to take a step further and become a FOSS business.
Also putting together better documentation on how and why employees are
better employees when they work with FOSS projects.

> (d) Set a goal of five things we believe should be improved or fixed by the
> release of Fedora 13 that will make the Fedora Distribution a better product
> or the Fedora Project a stronger community.  What should those things be?

1) QA.  I list this first because not only does it obviously need to get
better but it seems obvious it will get better.  The QA team has lots of
neat things coming down the pipe.

2) Better communication around how rawhide works.  Both in terms of best
practices in making changes to it and in communicating when updates are
safe. (probably relates to 1, but can't entirely rely on that)

3) Related to 2) I'd like to see a way for our rawhide developers to have
their own rawhide branches.  Similar to how there are different kernel
trees.  This isn't so they can have their own distro.  But so they can
more easily put massive changes in place to be tested for some small
period of time before it is merged with "Jesse's tree" :)

4) Better messaging systems for contributors and end users.  Just in
general a better experience in letting our users know what's going on in
Fedora (news), what features are coming down the pipe (feature update vs
just a normal update), etc.

5) Additional ways for people to contribute to via the Fedora Project that
are not the distribution itself.

Since I know there's a lot in the above, I'm going to blog, individually,
about each statement made here for a clearer picture of what I mean.


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