It is great to see that the collaboration between Debian and Ubuntu is improving; and I don't say that just because it probably can't be much better within the Debian/Ubuntu Games Team, we have people from both distributions working inside the team and most of the packages don't carry Ubuntu specific patches (anymore) because of that.
Actually, seeing that things do go pretty well in that area made me consider signing up to become a MOTU. To do that one has to sign the Ubuntu Code of Conduct (CoC) which is a fairly good document, actually. I wish there would be something similar within Debian that is considered binding, it would be able to reduce quite some tough and rough times, actually. It is about and explains to be considerate, be respectful, be collaborative, what to do when you disagree, when you are unsure and wants you to step down considerately. If these principles would be carried out amongst all the free software communities (and I really mean carried out and not just be there and grow old) I expect it would be much more welcoming for new people. And it's not too hard to do your part for it (... says the person who just recently had to excuse for her behavior).
Anyway, there is this one part with the CoC that itches me. It's not that one has to sign it with their GnuPG key, but related to it. Making it a requirement to sign it gives the document a much more official character, actually gives it the feeling and impression of a contract and I expect it is meant to carry that feeling. Though, there is this one part in it that I consider off for such a document:
Nobody knows everything, and nobody is expected to be perfect in the Ubuntu community (except of course the SABDFL).
Given that the acronym SABDFL refers to Mark Shuttleworth it means that one has to expect him to be impeccable—which I am sorry but cannot sign. I don't expect that from anyone else but myself, even Mark is only human and can make mistakes. Even though it's obvious that this is a tongue-in-cheek kind of joke which might be meant to make it clear that the Ubuntu community isn't just sterile having this in a document that is expected to get signed by contributors is just an extremely bad idea.
Sorry, Ubuntu, as long as this joke is part of the CoC I can't sign it with clean conscience, no matter how much I would sign the rest of it a thousands' time. It really makes me wonder how many others actually did read the "contract" carefully that they are signing but on the other hand simply didn't care. There is too many site signup stuff out there that noone reads neither.
In my last blog entry I used the term "image-hack". It seems like it has been considered to have a negative feeling attached to it. Even though I consider this very amusing in a community that likes to pride itself with the term "hackers" I guess I can understand why people consider it a negative term. Even though technically a mockup of a website in image form actually feels just a crude hack it wasn't meant to belittle what pixelgirl has produced. Her image-hack looks extremely well.
Unfortunately no further contact after the debconf was established and personally I'm not convinced how the tiny image would work for other pages besides the start page—and removing the DSAs and News from the start page is a no-go, we actually do receive positive feedback for that. So it is what it is, an image-hack. An extremely well done one, but still just that.
Like written in a former blog entry I am working on preparing for getting Kalle's Debian Redesign tested and installed. Even though some unfortunate events happened which made me reconsider my efforts and a lot of things changed for me I am still up with the effort. Mostly because I didn't became part of the webmasters just to chicken away in the face of obstacles, and also not just because yet another image-hack did pop up that neither showed anything usable or overall-thoughts or actual code/concepts or even tried to get in contact with the webteam.
I only remember to have received positive feedback in which I also include minor change suggestions like that the exact hits and other hits sections in the packages site aren't as clearly distinguishable as before. I have of course forwarded these to Kalle and we are looking for a solution that would go with the style. Speaking of the packages site I finally managed to get the packages from the main pool displayed too so it shouldn't behave differently to the old one anymore in that respect (see e.g. wesnoth for some more distributed package).
The next step I finished these last days was setting up a testsite for www as you can find it on www.deb.at. Please notice that you might want to surf that site in English (either change your Accept-Language settings or click on the English links at the bottom of the pages) because some of the changes are only recognizable there; like, the main page in other languages look immensely different.
Where to go from here? Kalle also has proposal for the BugTracking System and the Planet so that targets are the obvious next steps. I can't tell yet when they will be done, depends on how complicated it is to set up an environment for it, but I will keep you updated.
Since I returned from this year's debconf quite a lot things have changed in my life. One thing I knew way before debconf already, I switched jobs. I was working for a pretty long time (and also through great times) for Silver Server, for well over 6 years. Let's see what I can do in and for my new job. I'm still only pretty short there yet and I being to understand what's going on (and what could need improvements in some workflows) but it's too early to see that more precisely.
On a small side-note, the job change also required me to switch my mobile phone number because the old one was a company's number. I now have a private one that I don't fear of losing anymore. If you subtract the number 3933309527644 from my old one you have my new one. On the other hand you can always ask me for it in case you had my old one and wonder. ;)
Besides my mobile phone number other smaller things have changed over time too. Most of you noticed that I'm neither using my @ist.org nor my @debian.org address anymore because they did carry the wrong nick. And given that everyone was switching their gnupg keys I did so too. Like before I again created separate keys for private usage and for Debian usage. I'm not really following the procedure of sending out signing requests to people who have signed my old key(s), personally I don't follow them myself so I don't expect others to do. They are though cross-signed with the old ones just to be on the save side to keep the WoT not losing connections.
Also I finally got around to set up my own ejabberd server and did create my a new jabber ID that I also plan to keep. It is the same as my private mailaddress as you can see linked above in the key for private usage. ;) One of the reasons for the server is by the way also a testbed for the packaging of ejabberd which will get moved into team maintenance with the next upload which will be the next upstream version, 2.1.
But the biggest and most important change in my life is that I will have to rethink my spare time spending quite a lot because there will be something demanding a lot of time starting in about march next year. An extremely fortunate change and almost as happy one even though it means that I won't be able to attend next year's debconf in NY, but I hope the people whom I told that I will be there aren't too disappointed by this announcement. Sorry! :)