openSUSE just announced that I will be joining them. Yay, I'll be part of the masses of Free Software contributors who are doing what they love to do, full time, supported by a paycheck!
Novell has hired me as the new openSUSE community manager. I've got some big shoes to fill, Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier did a great job. I've been diving into openSUSE (way too much to grasp in a short time...) and I've read several comments from people who miss him. I'm no Zonker - different people, different ideas & habits. However, I can tell you I greatly look forward to the work and I'll put all my love and energy into it ;-)
But please be patient for a week or so, as I still have my old job...
For those who don't know me, a short FOSS resume (the 'real world life' ain't that interesting): I've been a moderator on the dutch Mandrivaclub forums (which was very active about 5 years ago) and have hung, like most of us, around in quite a few communities over the last 10 years. Meanwhile I got involved with KDE due to the devious manipulations of Fabrice Mous who used to be the dutch Promo master. After writing about and for KDE for a few years, I kind'a had to become really invested as the KDE promo team was in a bad spot. I worked hard to get new volunteers involved - and now we have an
Last Akademy I proposed a new Marketing Work Group (Stuart, Justin, Pradeepto and Sandro) who will be guiding the promo and marketing efforts in KDE. Thanks to them I can leave my position as team lead now and dive into the openSUSE community. Please don't give the MWG too hard a time and help out where you can!
I'll be moving down the foodchain - distributions have many relationships with other communities like the kernel developers, xorg, the desktop teams, server stuff and much more. I used to be pretty interested in core kernel stuff (once tested much of Con Kolivas' patches and even complained once or twice to Linus about how Con was treated) and I know very little of networking and packaging. So it seems like a perfect opportunity to widen my scope again and learn cool new stuff!
openSUSE is cooool...
As I said I've been reading up on stuff, getting involved a bit, and I must say the openSUSE contributors rock. It's a friendly bunch, dedicated, I love it. So over the next months I will figure out how things are going and see where I can help. The next month will be busy - I'll meet some colleagues at Novell and openSUSE, but I'll also start to dive into the work.
Note - I've seen everyone has been picking up where Zonker left, that's amazing. The work around the 11.3 release was great, the marketing team is growing and things are moving forward. Now I might have this 'manager' in my title, but in the end I'm just another contributor who happens to be lucky enough to be paid full-time. So I won't be telling anyone what to do ;-)
I would however really appreciate it if people let me know what they think, what needs to happen, where help is needed! Especially now there is a big discussion going on about the strategy of openSUSE, the direction we need to take. That's a big thing, which needs careful consideration by everyone involved. So contact me if you want - jospoortvliet at the gmail servers is my address for now.
Love and hugs,