Fedora, it’s time for me to call it a day

This is the hardest blog post in years for me. I’ve seen some admirable folks leaving the Fedora Project during all this time I’ve been a contributor and I always imagined how they felt. It’s my turn, and I know how they felt now.

It was more than 6 years as a Fedora contributor and I’m pretty proud of all of those years, from the yearly days of the Brazilian Portuguese translation team to the two FAmSCo terms, and all other projects: the Spin SIG, internationalization and quality assurance. The Fedora Project is something very important in my life. It is the longest thing I ever did. Longer than high school, longer than college, longer than any job so far. I’m glad that I was able to meet and work with so many interesting and intelligent people from different parts of the word. It was a wonderful experience.

FUDCon Porto Alegre

Most of my classmates at college made the choice of doing internships and others decided for scientific initiation scholarships. I decided to contribute to Fedora during college. I still remember how many times I though about stopping to contribute because of finals, papers and classes. Things were pretty hard during the first semesters. Right after those second thoughts something interesting to do appeared at the Fedora land: a new software to translate, a test case that could be improved or a talk at an important event. Frequently I was busy with college related stuff and its many deadlines and Rodrigo always came to me saying something like: “I was invited for writing an article about Fedora to an international magazine. Do you want to write it with me? The deadline is next week!”. Those things were hard to accomplish but they were also fun.

FUDCon Santiago

I’m leaving because there are many other things to be done in my life right now. I got my bachelor degree last year and next year I want to go back to study, besides I need to get some rest. Now it’s time to look forward and figure out what else is possible. Of course Fedora will keep powering my computers and open source software will continue to be my main choice. I also realize that there another interesting things going on like open government initiatives and the application of open source principles on other areas beyond software development. I’m definitively going to pay more attention to those subjects in the next years.

FUDCon Tempe

I want to say a special “Thank you” to the folks who supported my first contributions to the Fedora project: David Barzilay and Rodrigo Padula. If today Fedora has a growing community in Latin America is because of the groundwork of those two folks. They started out our regional community from scratch, so don’t forget about them. I also want to thank all the Fedora Projects Leaders I had the privilege to meet and work with: Greg DeKoenigsberg, Max Spevack, Paul Frields, Jared Smith and Robyn Bergeron. Thanks for all the support during those years. I’m not forgetting all the fedorian friends who joined the project over the years. I learned a lot from each of you. Feel free to keep in touch! Thanks, everyone!

FUDCon Panama

FISL 13 – Event Report

The 13th International Free Software Forum took place in Porto Alegre, Brazil on July 25-28 and the Fedora Project was there once again. In addition to FISL, we also held two Fedora Activity Days to put translations in shape for Fedora 18.

During our two hour long community event we had several short talks about Fedora. I opened the talks session introducing the audience to the Fedora Project, explaining how our community is organized, our core values and how people can get involved. Jorge Lopes, the coordinator of the pt_BR translation team was next and talked specifically about the L10N project. Then Daniel Bruno, one of the FAmSCo members, presented the features of Fedora 17 and the upcoming Fedora 18 release. After that, Itamar Peixoto, who was awarded with the Fedora Scholarship talked about the ARM architecture and how Fedora currently manages it. Next, Wolnei Junior delivered a talk on Fedora Spins and how to build and customize them. To wrap it up, Hugo Lima presented the RHN Satellite and Spacewalk features. We also took some time to give an interview to the Free Software Radio Station. The chat was about what Fedora stands for and how education can benefit from open source.

The FAD took place at the hotel, so we had the time and space necessary to concentrate on the actual work that needed to be done. We updated the translations for the Fedora website, Anaconda, virt-manager, virt-viewer and setroubleshoot. I am glad that we managed to do a FAD the way it should be done along with other bigger event. Although the main event can be distracting, it is also a great opportunity to get people together and do some work.

I want to thank Daniel Bruno for helping me on the organization of our community event, Neville Cross for his help on the budget side and all folks who attended to our activities and made our participation at FISL happen this year.

9th CONTECSI – Event Report

Last week took place in São Paulo the 9th International Conference on Information Systems and Technology Management. My mission: present my paper named “The Effect Of Collaboration On Knowledge Creation And Production Of Goods”. For further information about the paper take a look at my previous post about the event.

It was the my first time I attended to an academic conference and was an interesting experience to talk about the open source way in such kind of event. Another interesting aspect of that conference is its interdisciplinary characteristic, less focused on code and technical aspects, and more focused on management, business, education and the impact of technology on different areas. I believe it was a good conference to publish the paper due to those characteristics and more important than that: an excellent place to talk about the open source way.

Open source is well established in many universities in Brazil. Several universities have labs exclusively to deal with open source software. That is great, but when it comes to community management, process transparency and the open source way of making business the academic sector in general is not aware of the benefits of those approaches. Therefore was nice to have the paper published on a conference like that and to go there and talk about all that exiting stuff. Plus: São Paulo is an awesome city!

Upcoming FAmSCo elections and a special nomination

As you probably have heard, FAmSCo elections are coming earlier this year. 7 seats will be up for next election and 3 up for the December election. The anticipated elections are a side effect of the FAmSCo election reforms made on the current term. Personally I’d prefer this transition to be made on December, when we usually have FAmSCo elections and when the current term was supposed to end initially. IMHO having elections on the middle of the current term means that the rule is being changed during the game. On previous elections the ambassadors voted for a full term, and my position is that – ideally – we should have fulfilled it in respect to the voters. On the other hand the majority of FAmSCo realize that there are more advantages than disadvantages in making the transition now, for instance the possibility of filling vacant seats.

Although I do not agree with the transition timing, the reform in FAmSCo elections is a great improvement. FAmSCo chair, Christoph  Wickert, bravely conducted this effort and now more people will be involved in the elections and the next FAmSCo term hopefully will be better than the previous ones. Despite the initial polemic regarding the transition, the new rules in place are solid and are the result of a work made by people committed to future of our community.

I believe that this was a short but intense term for everyone in FAmSCo and for me it ends with the feeling of mission accomplished. The previous term, which I was also a part of, was completed and more devoted to small but numerous changes, in contrast with those few big changes promoted by the current term. After those two terms I feel like my mission as a FAmSCo member is now fulfilled and I’m not running for reelection again. Therefore I would like to nominate Daniel Bruno as a candidate for next FAmSCo elections. Daniel has been on the road with us for a long while now and has been an excellent mentor for LATAM. He also did a good job maintaining our local infrastructure at projetofedora.org as well as on building up the open source community in northern Brazil.

After the elections I’ll concentrate myself on organizing the Fedora participation at FISL and do some groundwork helping the Brazilian Portuguese Translation Team. The team needs to improve it’s documentation and put some translations back on shape. That’s what we are willing to do on our upcoming Translation FAD and since I have some experience on translation processes from my early days on Fedora I’ll be glad to help them.

How we fixed media production and shipment in Brazil

First of all I’m writing this post because it can be useful for other countries in Latin America and even other regions like APAC. I realize that countries and regions are different from each other but we can share experiences in order to improve things and make them work better for our ambassadors everywhere.

In Brazil and LATAM in general, we always had problems when producing and shipping Fedora media. The first problem was the budget. Money was hard to get and the process used to take at least a couple months. The second problem, a consequence of the first, was that media was produced too late in the release cycle, sometimes not in time for the events or sometimes shipped using a faster shipment – usually more expensive – so that ambassadors could get them in time. The third problem, was receiving the reimbursement for shipping, what usually happened only in the next release cycle.

An attempt to solve this issue was buying a media duplicator. Unfortunately that didn’t work in the long term. The machine was way too low to copy and print the amount of discs needed, the ink could only be bought in the United States and the maintenance costs were not worth it. Even so, that was a good idea by that time and I supported it. Although not ideal, the media duplicator gave us agility to produce media right before a Fedora release and was appropriated for small events.

Then the machine broke, I was elected for FAmSCo for the first time and fortunately the community credit cards were in place some months after. The community credit card was the first step to get this fixed and I came up with the idea of mass production. For Fedora 15 we tried this for the first time. I sent the original media for production in São Paulo and the company gave us the shipment as courtesy due to the quantity we asked them to produce. A couple weeks after that they shipped the produced media back to me and I started to ship to our ambassadors.

I would like to thank Neville for supporting this as the community credit card holder in LATAM. Without his help that would just not work. This model worked pretty well but we ended with some undesired leftovers. In order to avoid this, for Fedora 16 the Brazilian Ambassadors were asked to post by forehand in a Track ticket how many media they would need during the first six months of the life cycle, so I could base the production on those numbers. I considered a production a bit bigger then they initially asked to make sure we would be able to cover future requests as well and I’m really glad that this time we were able to ship everything and on time.

We still need to work to improve the swag production, but since we figured out the media issue this will be easier now. All Fedora 16 media is now shipped to ambassadors around the country and it is time to start working on quotations for Fedora 17 media.

9th CONTECSI

Almost everything is set to the International Conference on Information Systems and Technology Management (CONTECSI), the first event I will attend this year. This conference will take place in the University of São Paulo and will be groundbreaking for me because it is mostly an academic conference, unlike the open source events I have been attending during the previous years.

At this event I will present a paper based on my final graduation monograph entitled “The Effect Of Collaboration On Knowledge Creation And Production Of Goods”. You can check the original paper in Portuguese on a previous blog post I wrote last year or, as you may prefer, the sneak peek written in English.

Although this is not an open source event, the paper is heavily related to the open source way of producing knowledge and software. My own experience being part of Fedora community was crucial to understand how collaboration works in a global level and I am glad that I was able to use Fedora as one of the successful projects studied for the paper. I am really thankful for everything this community taught me and I would like thank the former Fedora Project Leader, Jared Smith, for giving me a short interview for the paper. In addition I would like to thank my employers at Strema for enabling me to attend to CONTECSI and the co-writers for supporting the paper concept.

We are just starting our engines. FLISol, FUDCon Margarita, FISL, and Latinoware are on the horizon as well.

Latinoware 2011

A 8ª edição da Latinoware contou com a participação do Projeto Fedora representado por mim, pelo embaixador argentino Valentin Basel e pelo paraguaio Juan Lin. Foi muito bom estar de volta a essa conferência que eu não participava desde 2008. O evento bateu recorde de público esse ano com 4231 participantes registrados, incluindo pessoas de vários países, principalmente da tríplice fronteira e outros vizinhos da América Latina.

Inesperadamente a organização do evento nos presenteou com um estande para o Fedora. Aproveitamos para distribuir várias mídias, esclarecer dúvidas e ajudar participantes com problemas em configurações específicas. Por várias vezes recebemos “hispanohablantes” no nosso estande. Eu sabia com um argentino seria extremamente útil no evento! :)

Nossas palestras foram no último dia do evento. Valentin começou o dia em uma oficina de robótica, juntamente com membros da comunidade brasileira de robótica livre. Pela tarde, apresentou sua palestra sobre robótica educacional com Fedora e Sugar. O público acompanhou com curiosidade as demonstrações feitas por ele com uma placa eletrônica ligada a um laptop educacional XO. Logo após Valentin terminar a apresentação dele e antes da palestra de encerramento com o Maddog, apresentei minha palestra intitulada “Projeto Fedora: construindo um futuro aberto, participativo e transparente”. Felizmente o Juan pôde me ajudar com o notebook durante a apresentação. Os slides estão disponíveis aqui para quem se interessar.

No final do evento, Maddog e os organizadores comemoraram os 20 anos do Linux juntamente com a plateia, finalizando assim um evento que permitiu muita troca de conhecimento e experiências que serão muito úteis e benéficas para a comunidade latina de código aberto.

L10N/I18N Test Week recap

The L10N/I18N Test Week is now over and it’s time to look at whole picture.

Unfortunately I was very sick during the first couple days of the Test Week, but got better in time to run my own test and help others.

I’m glad to see that translators did a wonderful job testing the UI and catching a lot of bugs. Fortunately, Anaconda is in pretty good shape regarding i18n support as well as the overall desktop applications. On
the downside, the lack of a language selector in GDM still breaks the LiveCD experience and LibreOffice langpacks are not being pulled in by yum install libreoffice.

I want thank everyone who helped with ideas and contributions, specially our worldwide community for taking some time to run the tests and share the results.

Don’t forget that we will also be running a Input Method specific Test Day on September, 22nd!

Here are the bugs filed during the test week:

L10N:
718906 NEW – [te_IN] Disk format message is out of screen during installation
734308 NEW – All the interface strings are not showed in localized ones
734301 NEW – zh_TW] zh_TW does not install the fonts listed on fonts list
734654 NEW – ImportError while installing
734700 NEW – Some string are unlocalized for sosreport message
734298 NEW – abrt has many strings not to be able to translate
734735 NEW – [zh_CN] system-config-rootpassword some unlocalized strings and password tips displayed as question mark.
720240 NEW – [as_IN][gtk][Translation] – Translation Error with “????” appearing
734437 NEW – gnome-utils: the desktop menu for screenshot appears in English
734439 NEW – fedora-release-notes: the desktop menu for the relnotes appears in English
701021 NEW – Translations not loaded when Authencation Dialogue prompted
706756 NEW – No translation on Login-Page of the reboot-menu
726878 NEW – Semi-translated messages (translated strings missing)
734635 NEW – [zh_CN] Redundant question mark in the weak passwords dialog
734643 NEW – [zh_CN] Unlocalized string for authconfig messages
734665 NEW – [zh_CN] im-chooser Unlocalized strings and Gtk-Message: Failed to load module “pk-gtk-module”
734683 NEW – [zh_CN] Some unlocalized string and warning message from system-config-selinux/selinux-polgengui
734717 NEW – [zh-CN] system-config-language the language list is not fully localized.
734303 NEW – Some messages showing in English
734355 NEW – [jp_JP] UnicodeDecodeError [ja-JP]
734434 NEW – Messages isn’t translatable
734283 ASSIGNED – Message showing in English
734709 ASSIGNED – An error message pops up for system-config-boot
734628 ASSIGNED – Some cities and countries are missing in PO file
734387 ASSIGNED – “English” and “To English” isn’t translatable
734656 ASSIGNED – Unable to run with error messages
666038 ASSIGNED – [all languages] yum untranslated words
734309 MODIFIED – im-chooser: Messages showing in English
734305 MODIFIED – [zh_TW] firstboot does not show all the translated strings for zh_TW
734668 MODIFIED – [gu_IN] Missing firstboot translations
734631 ON_QA – The string translated in transifex shows up in English
734338 VERIFIED – translation error in system-config-firewall
734278 CLOSED DUPLICATE – String showing in English
734279 CLOSED DUPLICATE – Message showing in English
734280 CLOSED DUPLICATE – Message showing in English
734302 CLOSED NOTABUG – ‘System’ term missing on the toolbar
734658 CLOSED NOTABUG – Unable to run with error message
734294 CLOSED DUPLICATE – Some strings not translated
734299 CLOSED NEXTRELEASE – mixing up both half-width and double-width characters for parenthesis in authconfig
734314 CLOSED DUPLICATE – “Troubleshoot” in Help menu is not translatable
734723 CLOSED UPSTREAM – [zh-CN] system-config-printer unlocalized string “Settings”.
678583 CLOSED ERRATA – When using pt_BR locale, some tags are not translated like @@NOME_DO_PRODUTO@@

I18n Installation:
734301 NEW – zh_TW] zh_TW does not install the fonts listed on fonts list
681750 NEW – No Language Selection/Language List in GDM

I18n Desktop:
734976 NEW – libreoffice-langpack-*-* not pulled in by yum install libreoffice

L10N/I18N Test Week Coming Up

Fedora 16 is a few months ahead and next week will be localization and internationalization test week for our next release. This time we decided to keep the tests rolling all the week regardless of test days specific dates. The test days pages were created as a suggestion for which day you can participate but if you can’t contribute on that particular day don’t worry, you have the whole week to run the tests and post the results.

Here are the test days wiki pages so you can prepare yourself:

2011-08-30: Localization Desktop

2011-08-31: Localization/Internationalization Installation

2011-09-01: Internationalization Desktop

The L10N/I18N Test Week has been planed on QA ticket #222. Feel free to drop a note, give suggestions or edit the wiki pages. And don’t forget to show up next week and help us to deliver one more release with high quality internationalization and localization support.

Update: we have changed the dates a bit due to the recent schedule sleep.

We got media!

Depois de um extenso ticket para encontrar qual a melhor maneira de produzir mídias do Fedora em larga escala em território nacional com verba estrangeira, finalmente recebi aproximadamente 1.300 mídias do Fedora 15, entre LiveCDs Desktop e KDE, além DVDs de instalação em maior quantidade.

As mídias serão distribuídas para os embaixadores nos diversos estados do Brasil. A primeira remessa vai para o Amazonas, onde será realizado o Fórum Amazônico de Software Livre no final do mês. Uma boa parte das mídias será destinada ao Latinoware, o maior evento de Software Livre no Brasil no segundo semestre.