From: "Dan York" <email@example.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: LPI News - May 18, 1999 Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 06:14:48 -0400 ============================================== May 18, 1999 Linux Professional Institute News ============================================== Greetings! It's been over a month or so since I last sent out a summary of what all is going on within the various parts of the LPI project. This message, as per usual, will be quite long as there is simply too much to report! First, though, I just have to make the comment that this project is a classic case of the incredible power of many people working together to accomplish a common goal. We've come a very long way in a very short time - and could not have done it without all the help and support of all of you out there reading this. Thank you! In this update, I will cover: - What You Can Do, including: > Test objectives > Distribution Differences Project > Logo Contest > Sponsorship Program > Publicity - LinuxExpo News: BOF, HotStuff Challenge, Advisory Council, Board - Advisory Council: New members! - Development Plan - Job Analysis Survey: Preliminary Results & Recognition - Exam Delivery Timeframes: July! - Unsolicited Email to Our List Members - Mailing-List Archives - LPI Incorporation If you have any questions or comments about this update, please do not hesitate to contact me. Thank you again for your support. Regards, Dan --------------------------------------------- Dan York, Chair, LPI Board of Directors email@example.com http://www.lpi.org/ Phone: (603)268-0691 Fax: (603)268-0103 --------------------------------------------- ============================================= WHAT YOU CAN DO ============================================= There are a great number of ways you can help make the LPI project a reality. Here is a quick "Top 10" list: 1. JOIN US AT THE LINUXEXPO BOF SESSION If you are going to LinuxExpo next week in Raleigh, NC, there is a "Birds-Of-a-Feather" session scheduled for Thursday, May 20, at 6:30 pm. It is currently being held in Room D and is called "Linux Skills Certification". We'll have the whole Steering Committee there, as well as some Advisory Council folks, so come on by and join in the discussion face-to-face. 2. ATTEND THE LINUXEXPO "HOT STUFF CHALLENGE" Do you like hot sauces? Do you want to watch our own Evan Leibovitch break into a sweat? What started as a dare is turning into a major event at LinuxExpo... Evan will be squaring off against Jon "maddog" Hall (Linux International) and several others to see who can handle the hottest sauces out there! Join the fun on Friday, May 21, from 12:45-1:45. The location is apparently in the "arena," wherever that might be. Watch for signs. 3. VISIT THE LPI WEB SITE Okay, it's not as fun as hot sauces, but if you haven't checked out the LPI web site lately, you really should visit http://www.lpi.org/ Chuck Mead has joined Evan in maintaining the site and they've given it a complete facelift! Chuck has more ideas, too... so watch for more coming soon. Chuck and Evan also want all the feedback you can give them, so please visit and send comments to "firstname.lastname@example.org". 4. HELP FINALIZE OUR FIRST LEVEL OBJECTIVES We would like your feedback on the draft test objectives for our first two exams. After the extensive job skills analysis we undertook back in April, Scott Murray, Tom Peters, Alan Mead, Chuck and others have spent a considerable amount of time analyzing the data and constructing exam objectives based on the survey results. Those draft objectives for the first level of exams (two exams) are now posted online in a system through which you can provide feedback. Please visit: http://www.lpi.org/cgi-bin/poms.py Your assistance in finalizing these objectives is critical! 5. HELP ANALYZE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN LINUX DISTRIBUTIONS We need your help documenting the detailed differences between the distributions of Linux. Faber Fedor (email@example.com) has agreed to coordinate a project to document the differences. He is looking for other volunteers to assist. Visit: http://userweb.interactive.net/~revf2/LPI/ to see the work that has been done to date by Faber and other volunteers. Please send any feedback you can to Faber. You can also visit the archives for the "linux-cert-program" list at: http://lists.linuxcare.com/linux-cert-program/threads.html to see messages relating to the project. All of this work will go into creating the distribution-specific exams that are part of our first level of certification. 6. PARTICIPATE IN OUR LOGO CONTEST If you haven't checked out the latest round of LPI logos, visit: http://www.lpi.org/logo_contest.html We're running an informal poll on our web site. Let us know what you think about the designs! The page certainly shows that there are some very talented people out there! Thanks are due to all those who have submitted logos... they look great! By the way, we're still accepting more logos if you'd like to contribute one. See the page for details. 7. BECOME A FINANCIAL SPONSOR Creating a high-quality certification program such as this costs a significant amount of money. We recently unveiled our sponsorship program for both businesses and individuals at: http://www.lpi.org/sponsorship.html We will be announcing some major corporate sponsors at LinuxExpo and would ask you all to circulate the news to others. If either your company or you individually would be interested in donating, we would certainly be interested to talk to you. If you think your company might be interested, but are uncomfortable bringing the matter up, please feel free to contact us and we'll be glad to make the approach. Please direct all sponsorship inquiries to either myself (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Chuck Mead (email@example.com). Please note that while we are incorporating as a nonprofit corporation, we are not (yet, anyway) a "tax-exempt" entity by U.S. IRS tax guidelines. Donations to LPI are *not* tax-deductible in the U.S. as charitable contributions. (But there may be other ways to deduct such contributions - contact an accountant for details - and hey, it's for a good cause anyway!) 8. HELP WITH OUR PUBLICITY WATCH With so many information technology publications out there - both in print and on the web, it's next-to-impossible to stay up-to-date on what's being said all over the place about Linux certification. We'd like your help. When you see an article (either in print or online) about Linux certification, can you please send us the info (article title, publication, date, URL if on the web). Either send it directly to "linux-cert-pr" if you are a member of that list (if not, consider joining!) or email it to Evan (firstname.lastname@example.org) You can see the list of what has been posted at: http://lists.linuxcare.com/linux-cert-pr/threads.html Messages sent to linux-cert-pr appear on the archive within an hour. 9. WRITE OR SPEAK ABOUT LPI AND LINUX CERTIFICATION To date, much of the writing and speaking about LPI and our efforts to create a Linux certification program has been by members of the Steering Committee such as Evan and I. But please know that we are not at all exclusive about that and would encourage others to help out with writing and/or speaking about LPI and Linux certification. Many web sites are looking for people to write articles and we'd love to see more articles out there about Linux certification and LPI. If you know of a site looking for articles, please go ahead and write one. We'll be glad to provide some information or assistance if you need it. Also, if you'd like to write articles, drop us a note and we may be able to steer you to places where they are looking for writers (usually the online sites are looking for writers who will write for free). Print publications are good, too. For instance, I'll have an article in the June ";login:" published by USENIX and then an article in the July "Linux Journal." Scott Murray & Alan Mead are planning to submit an article on their survey process to a psychometrics journal. Articles might be appropriate for local or regional newsletters for training organizations, user groups, etc. Also, if you're interested in speaking to local groups, we will soon be making some presentations available online (in Applixware format so far, probably HTML, too) that you could use. For instance, Faber may soon be speaking to a local association of technical educators in his state. If you are interested in writing or speaking, please feel free to contact either Evan (email@example.com) or I (firstname.lastname@example.org). Feel free, too, to go ahead and just write... we'll be glad to look over articles if you'd like us, too. 10. WRITE QUESTIONS FOR OUR EXAMS Very shortly, Scott Murray, our director of exam development, will be putting out a call for "item writers" to write questions for our first level exams. Item writers will receive some instruction in the types of questions we are seeking and then will write items that will be submitted to an extensive technical review and evaluation process. Writers of items that survive the initial screening and alpha testing will receive compensation for their work. If you want to be sure that our exams are much tougher than MCSE and CNE, than participate in the item writing process and give us your toughest questions. Please contact Scott Murray (email@example.com) now if you would be interested in being an item writer when we begin the process. 11. JOIN OUR MAILING LISTS Okay, there's actually an eleventh point. If you haven't joined one of our committee mailing lists, where more of the work is going on, visit: http://www.lpi.org/involved.html and sign up to help us out! ============================================= LINUXEXPO NEWS ============================================= As mentioned previously, the entire LPI Steering Committee/Board will be at LinuxExpo next week in Raleigh, NC. We would like to thank three LPI Advisory Council members for their assistance with this: - Caldera Systems for providing airfare - Linuxcare for covering hotel costs - Red Hat Software for covering LinuxExpo registration fees With their help, we will be able to have the first face-to-face meeting of the entire board. As stated earlier (#1 & #2 above), there will be a BOF session at LinuxExpo where many LPI members will be present. Evan is one of the BOF hosts, and we look forward to a great discussion with as many of you all as can make it. The schedule calls for it to be in Room D on Thursday at 6:30pm. We would also like to thank members of the LPI Advisory Committee who are taking time out of their busy schedules to attend a special meeting of the Advisory Council at LinuxExpo. We appreciate their willingness to provide feedback and support. ============================================= LPI ADVISORY COUNCIL ============================================= Speaking of the Advisory Council, we will be making some major announcements at LinuxExpo of organizations and corporations that have joined the LPI Advisory Council. Laying it all out now would spoil the surprise... but I'll get the word out here as soon as the news releases are public. The web site will also be changed at: http://www.lpi.org/ac.html to reflect the new members. Suffice it to say that it will represent significant backing from within the computer, publishing and training industries! ============================================= DEVELOPMENT PLAN ============================================= On our web site, you can now find our plan for the development and implementation of our first level of certification. The plan, developed primarily by Scott Murray and Tom Peters, is available at: http://www.lpi.org/public_plan.html The document will be updated over time as our plans evolve. Please check it out and send any feedback to Scott (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Tom (email@example.com). ============================================= JOB ANALYSIS SURVEY ============================================= Many of you are aware of the job analysis survey we undertook in early April. Scott Murray and Alan Mead, our psychometrics experts, have finished analyzing the data and have released some preliminary information at: http://www.lpi.org/jasreport.html There is also a page recognizing many of the 1400 people who participated in the survey: http://www.lpi.org/jasrecognition.html The survey analysis has lead directly into the development of draft objectives mentioned earlier in this message. (What You Can Do #4) ============================================= EXAM DELIVERY TIMEFRAME ============================================= We are pleased to announce that we intend to deploy our first three exams through VUE during the first week of July 1999. That's a very ambitious goal, and there are a number of issues that could delay that date, but that is our current target. In any event, all three exams will go live during July. Why are we deploying first with VUE (http://www.vue.com/) and not with Sylvan Prometric (http://www.prometric.com/) who is more widely known? First, a brief history of computer-based testing is in order. Drake Testing started up many years ago delivering computer-based tests. They were acquired and over time became Sylvan Prometric. Sylvan essentially had a near-total monopoly on the delivery of exams, especially in the IT field (and still does in many ways). Some of the people who originally started Drake thought there ought to be a better way to deliver exams (from an infrastructure point of view) and started up VUE as an alternative to Sylvan. In the past couple of years, VUE has emerged as a strong competitor to Sylvan, and is now delivering Microsoft, Novell and other certification exams. Today VUE has 1,022 testing centers (compared to Sylvan's 2400) around the world, with more signing up on a daily basis. There may not be eight testing centers within a single city (as there sometimes is with Sylvan), but the geographic coverage is comparable. To us, Linux has always been about the freedom to choose: your operating system, your distribution, your editor, your exam preparation path, your training center, your author/publisher, and even... your test vendor. From the very beginning of our efforts we have maintained that we would support multiple test vendors (including both VUE and Sylvan) and specifically indicated to the vendors that we would not be exclusive. Second, we learned last month that a for-profit certification program had signed a contract with Sylvan where it would be the only Linux certification program offered through Sylvan for six months from when it signed the contract (April). Given that this means we are free to use Sylvan starting in October 1999, should we so choose, we viewed this then (and continue to do so) as a trivial issue and are continuing right along with our deployment plans. We will reiterate to you all, though, our committment to operate in the most open and inclusive fashion possible. We believe that our program - and our activities - should withstand open competition and the harsh light of public scrutiny. Only through that process, we believe, will we create the strong program that Linux deserves. ============================================= UNSOLICITED EMAIL TO OUR LIST MEMBERS ============================================= We have received questions from a number of people about an unsolicited newsletter sent out by another organization this past weekend. Specifically, the question asked was whether we had provided email addresses as the individuals in question did not recall asking to receive such newsletters and the messages did not come through any LPI lists. We have not provided any such information, nor would we as we do not believe in sending unsolicited email. However, we run open systems and the addresses may have been obtained from our majordomo list management system or from our web archives. We would, in fact, encourage other organizations to just send such messages relating to Linux certification to the "linux-cert" mailing list. We don't mind. The list is for the open discussion of Linux certification programs. It's interesting to see what other programs have to offer. ============================================= MAILING LIST ARCHIVES ============================================= FYI, archives of all LPI mailing lists can be found at: http://lists.linuxcare.com/ Messages posted to an LPI list are posted to the web archives within an hour. Note that we are still working on restoring the historical archives after a server crash, so they only contain recent information. There is, however, an archive of the "linux-cert" mailing list going back to last November when this all began. It is still active and can be found at: http://linux.codemeta.com/archives/linuxcert_archive/ but again, because most of the activity has moved to the committee mailing lists and the web site, the archive does not reflect the full range of LPI activity going on today. ============================================= LPI INCORPORATION ============================================= And finally, just a brief note about our legal status. Having already received corporate sponsorship donations, we have initiated the process of establishing a not-for-profit corporation based in New Brunswick, Canada. New Brunswick was chosen as it is one of the places (similar to Delaware in the U.S.) where the board of the organization does not have to physically meet for an annual meeting. While we hope that face-to-face meetings of the board will be possible, given the global nature of LPI's operations we did not want such a meeting to be required. The initial Steering Committee (Evan, Scott, Chuck, Tom and I) will serve as the initial Board of Directors and may also be considering others for inclusion on the Board. Board membership is a completely volunteer activity and is admittedly a heavy time committment. More information, including by-laws and other such documents will be made available on our web site soon.