A record number of nine candidates have been
for this year's Debian Project Leader elections and the
campaigning period has started. The platform statements were not posted in
time for this article, but a few questions to the candidates have been
posted to the debian-vote mailing list. Here's a look at what the
candidates are saying.
We have quotes from Wouter Verhelst, Gustavo Franco, Sam Hocevar,
Raphaël Hertzog and Anthony Towns. Aigars Mahinovs, Sven Luther,
Steve McIntyre and Simon Richter have not responded to any questions so
Curt Larson asked:
As kind of a follow-up to the basic 'what would you do as DPL that you
could not do as DD?' I would like to know more about how you would
handle marketing Debian. The very hot topic this week is Dell's move
to offer open source alternatives. Buried several clicks away from
Dells 'Ideas in Action' page is a vague reference to Debian pertaining
to 8G servers. Would you as DPL make it a primary goal to attract as
many DD's as you could to work specifically on eliminating the gotchas
of installing Debian on Dell Desktops, Laptops and Servers working
towards putting Debian at the top of Dells (and maybe others to
follow) list of approved and pre-installed OS's?
First of all, I would like to make clear that I do not view marketing as
the DPL's primary job. It's one of the DPL's responsibilities to be a
central point of contact to non-Debian folks, which does indeed involve
marketing, but there are other, more important, jobs the DPL has.
I don't think there's very much a DPL by himself could do to help Dell
in this regard. However, I do think Debian as a whole could do much, and
someone to guide Dell and its employees in our community, to bring them
into contact with the right Debian Developers and/or contributors would
most likely be very helpful. This someone could very well be the DPL or
one of his delegates.
I would promote more the email@example.com mailing list
that we started after the last Debconf.
People started submitting stuff to improve our marketing, now we needs
some more volunteers who start playing a more active role and actually
organize this group.
The problem is reversed, once Dell understands that people are asking for
Linux, they will start checking how they can properly support it and then
we need to make sure they understand that Debian is one of the most
important distribution out there (given that the Ubuntu distribution that
is so popular on www.dellideastorm.com is a Debian derivative) and that
they should work with us to ensure their hardware is properly supported.
This is a great question. I've a chapter in my platform that covers
the Debian relationship with major hardware vendors and their approach
handling server and desktop support. Based on HP results, i'll do my
best to push more vendors to support us, even hiring developers to
make sure that Debian works well over their hardware.
I also want to push more ideas out of the paper in terms of marketing.
There is a chapter on my platform about this too. You will be able to
No -- I think that's a great thing to do, but it's not something I could
work on myself. If someone else were to, I'd be happy to provide support
for them to do so -- whether that just be being able to call themself
"Debian's representative", or funds to ship donated machines to someone
who can work on checking them, or similar.
However I see no reason to make it a primary goal. I have little
knowledge of what the gotchas could be, but my feeling is that the major
ones are not Debian-specific at all anyway (ACPI woes, 3D drivers,
wireless firmware...) and the NM process does not train us into
low-level hacking, so I wouldn't see how to attract DDs anyway.
If the DPL approaching Dell as the project representative and asking
for specification documents, test laptops or a privileged communication
channel with Dell engineers qualifies as "attracting DDs", then I'd
happily do that or appoint someone.
Anthony Towns is the current DPL, running for a second term. He was asked,
"Is there anything you regret doing in the past year (as DPL of
I'd prefer a bunch of things to have worked out differently; but I can't
say there's much I regretted *doing*. I certainly regret *not* doing more
on the "maintainers" thing after debconf, not proposing the constitutional
amendment to shorten the DPL nominations/voting period, and not getting
anywhere with regular, semi-automatic beta releases of testing.
As far as doing things goes, mostly that ends up being at worst a learning
experience, and as far as I can see, you should be spending your time
learning from it, not regretting it. So the only thing I can come up
with on the regret score is going overboard with John on -legal, but
ultimately that's ended up okay anyway.
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