[Jaffa Software]

Friday 27 February 2009

Announcing my standing for council membership

I've set the ball rolling, and put myself forward as a candidate (the first) in the second Maemo Community Council election.

I'm proud to have been a member of the inaugural Community Council. In the last six months, we've seen a sea-change in the way Maemo is progressing:

  • the first Maemo Summit, paid for by Nokia;
  • community ownership of maemo.org;
  • better use of Bugzilla by both Nokia and the community;
  • the realistic vision of a community-led "hacker edition" in Mer;
  • a webmaster, docmaster, bugmaster and now debmaster all being paid for for us;
  • open communication and - importantly - progress indicators like the Maemo 5/Fremantle pre-release SDKs, which would've been unheard of back in 2006/2007.

The Council has been involved in many of these, but would claim credit for few. I believe we've truly fulfilled our role as facilitators and would like to continue my role there. We've not got everything right, but I think we've proved the idea; and that it can be a cohesive force within the community.

I think there's still work to be done, though. Nokia are being more open, and projects like Tracker and Rygel are being developed openly. Yet, Modest has slipped back into internal development; some patches to Application Manager have been merged, but the community's vision for application management in Diablo - and Fremantle - looks unlikely to have been realised. The system as a whole, and the application environment which so clearly defines the Maemo brand, are architected internally. Design decisions are taken internally.

Slowly, hopefully, we can change Nokia management into utilising the enthusiastic talent at their disposal in a way which is truly ground-breaking in the industry; with a root-to-tip collaboration between us all.

Thanks for reading this, and I'll happily answer any questions anyone has.


  1. > Rygel (aka GUPnP)

    GUPnP is the framework and Rygel is an application on top of it and they are separate projects. I think you know that already, I am only saying your choice of words are a bit misleading for people who don't know about these projects.

  2. Corrected, thanks. I think there is probably some scope for you to do a blog post on what these projects actually mean to users, and what benefits they give them. Would be interesting.

  3. Dude! If you had closely followed my blogs, you wouldn't be saying that. I've not only been blogging about GUPnP and Rygel a lot but also been providing links to the homepage of both projects in them so if i didn't explained them well in the blog entries themselves, the reader always had the option of clicking on those links and get a nice and short description if he/she is interested.

    I was going to provide you the links of the most relevant blog entries but seems you blog software doesn't allow links.

  4. Oh, I've seen your posts - but you could take advantage of your p.m.o and maemo.org/news/ aggregation to really explain what UPnP can give to a user, rather than toggling virtual lightswitches ;-)

    The details are interesting when you know what's going on, but there are a lot of people who don't.

  5. Great! So *I* am supposed to explain everything in my blog and you wouldn't even care to look at the basic description of projects that you mention in your election campain advertisements? I really want to vote for you now.

  6. Wow, I hope you get chosen again. I do think all the current Council members have done a good job and I kinda hoped that this would be an election to add members rather than replace the council entirely. But I guess, although nice, it'd never work out over a series of elections due to the size of the council becoming too large.

  7. @Zeeshan, there's no need to turn a simple malice-free suggestion into a flamewar. :)

    Honestly, it actually sounds like a great opportunity—a lot of people don't know what those projects are or what their introduction to the platform will mean for them, and they aren't likely to do the research to figure it out. A blog post outlining some of the cool things you might be able to do and demoing a couple of interesting features sounds like both a lot of fun and a great way to advertise your work.

    On the other hand, if you want to lash out at every perceived slight that's your prerogative. Just don't expect it to win you any friends.

  8. Ryan! Maybe i misunderstood but please read the last message form Jaffa and tell me you don't see any sarcasm in there? A sarcastic sentence doesn't really give me any positive motivation to write a blog entry.

    Now that *you* are saying the same thing, let me explain a bit:

    GUPnP is intended for UPnP developers ONLY and anyone who doesn't know what UPnP is doesn't really need to bother about it at all. I believe I've been providing enough information in my blogs for the target audience. I've been explain APIs and the Light Bulb example that Mr. Jaffa used for his sarcastic needs was meant to be a simple example of how GUPnP makes implementing UPnP devices/services so easy.

    Now regarding Rygel, yes! I know I should explain it since that is something that directly affects the end-user but so far I've been working on the foundations and plugin development APIs. Untill I have a user-ready UPnP MediaServer that user can just install and run, I don't see any need to explain what a UPnP MediaServer is.

    Anyway, I can always use some help from Maemo community members. So how about Mr. Jaffa or you help me out by writing this blog entry under question while I try to solve the problem of dealing with multiple network interfaces and (G)UPnP? Or the other way around?

  9. @Faheem: thanks :-)

    @Zeeshan: no sarcasm was meant, honestly. As you say, lightbulbs are a good technology demo but they don't convey the advanttages of UPnP to the average reader. Of course, I'm not saying you must (or even should, it's your blog) write only about user-facing shinyness; and I was really only trying to suggest that there might be scope for a one off article about how it all fits together, and why it's a good thing for users.

    If you don't want to, that's fine. If you'd love to, but are too busy; perhaps someone else could from some sparse notes? I'm sure we could find a volunteer.

  10. > no sarcasm was meant

    In that case, I owe you an apology.

    > I was really only trying to suggest
    > that there might be scope for a one
    > off article about how it all fits
    > together, and why it's a good thing
    > for users.


    > If you'd love to, but are too busy;
    > perhaps someone else could from some
    > sparse notes?

    That indeed is the case. I think the wikipedia article on "UPnP" is a nice source of information for anyone who would like to simplify this all for average users.

  11. Yes, you really do a great job helping people, I would have been proud of such work.