On Fri, 2007-12-28 at 10:35 -0800, Chris Gianelloni wrote:
> On Fri, 2007-12-28 at 11:05 -0500, William L. Thomson Jr. wrote:
> While I find your ideas engaging, there's really no point in discussing
Still holding out that hope can be restored via effort. Just don't want
to put forth effort without discussion and authorization.
> Your grasp on how things work currently is quite skewed and
> you're making massive leaps based off those faulty assumptions.
Well many state time and time again things presently don't work. So not
sure why I need to grasp that fully to come up with another way that
might work. But I am trying to grasp how things are. There just seems to
be abnormal separation and I am unable to find a similar model for
> Let me simplify some things:
> The Gentoo Foundation is *independent* of Gentoo Linux. Please, get
> this one in your head immediately. The *only* thing the Gentoo
> Foundation does is retain the legal filings and standing of the
> Foundation itself and act as a container for funds and intellectual
It's that separation I don't agree with and I think has failed.
> The Foundation has no say in the direction of Gentoo Linux,
> and vice versa. This was by design to keep the Foundation, which is
> allowed membership outside of Gentoo Linux, from ever being able to
> "take over" the distribution.
Ok, so let me understand this. The foundation has nothing to do with
Gentoo Linux. But is legally responsible for it's actions? With no ties
in between the two managing entities?
> If you think the Foundation will change any of this, you're delusional.
Not sure what you mean there. I do think a functioning NPO business
model for Gentoo would have the potential to bring about change.
> This all must be changed from within Gentoo Linux, by Gentoo Linux.
And where and what am I? I am in Gentoo Linux, nothing to do with the
foundation per the separations mentioned previous. And trying to bring
about change there. Just seem to only find bitterness with the way
things are and anything but things to be hopeful for.
> other words, this if fodder for gentoo-council, not gentoo-nfp. The
> Gentoo Foundation is, once again, nothing more than a container for
> legal and financial responsibilities. The entire idea was to have an
> entity that was independent of the distribution so that the developers
> had no need to concern themselves with legal matters.
And again I don't agree with that design. It was enacted way before my
time. Those that came up with that structure are obviously over it. Much
less who in their right mind would want to voluntarily be legally and
financially responsible to a bunch of rogue volunteer devs managed by a
completely separate entity. That's craziness.
> You're proposing "solutions" without identifying the problem(s) you're
> wanting to solve.
What solutions? I have proposed a very abstract theory of a potential
model. In which creating such model would identify any problems and
solutions for them. It's very typical in taking an existing entity in
new directions, or creating one from scratch.
Your telling me every business plan/model starts with identifying the
> If this was not your intent, then you'll probably
> want to *stop* giving specific examples of how you think things should
> be done when you cannot even describe what potential problems with the
> current structure you're trying to resolve.
I threw out some random thoughts for specifics when pressed for them. It
wasn't my intention to discuss those at the time. Others brought that up
and pressed there. So I came back with some thoughts, rather than
nothing. Called out for not citing specifics, then called out again for
the specifics. Damned either way, but am still playing the game.
> This is compounded by your
> mixing of "Foundation" and "distribution" as if they are the same thing.
> They are not. They have independent problems sets that need to be
> investigated and resolved independently.
I am mixing them because I believe they should be one. The separation
clearly doesn't seem to be working. I can't find other similar working
models to compare, to identify our problems with that model.
> Did you ever think that the project isn't "moving forward" because those
> that have the time, energy, and ability to do so gave up a long time ago
Yes, and should we just leave it at that and all go home? Or lay the
foundation for new ones to come, and maybe others return? Since my time
and observing those that leave. I question most reasons short of lack of
time due to personal things or etc.
> because we've allowed those that do *not* have those things an equal
> voice and they're drowning out those that can actually make a
Agreed and that's why I wanted to be more silent observing to learn,
rather than being vocal. But in the absence of anyone else being vocal.
I am stepping up pre-maturely.
> Ever wonder why *nobody* wants to run for trustees? Ever
> wonder why almost none of the previous Council ran for re-election?
Yes, so why continue one with positions and roles no one wants to fill?
That's obviously a sign of the existing model not working. On other
front, even with the separation.
That said some that I voted for on the current council like
Petteri/Betelgeuse, had no hesitation to run or etc. For any reason,
much less experience of previous council.
Heck look at Mike/vapier, if he didn't want to run again or be on
council. He wouldn't be. Maybe he is not ecstatic about being on the
council. He is for the second year in a row, or maybe longer. Maybe some
others, those two were just on the top of my mind.
> Noticed that we're dropping more and more experienced developers every
> day for other projects where they have less politics to deal with than
And when will that change? Will that change if we do nothing? We are
shedding them anyway. What's the harm with at least attempting to take
things a new direction and improving things? Or just sit on the ship,
watching others bail off and swim. Waiting for the ship to sink so we
are forced to swim.
> Now, you think that by involving developers *more* in what is going on
> that it'll make people happy?
What makes you think developers would be more involved? Maybe the ones
that were both developers and employees would be. But those that are
just volunteer developers, as they are now, would likely remain
unchanged. Just with some leadership, and maybe funding for any
resources or etc.
> Umm... Listen, just because people don't bother to actually use the
> mechanisms in place, doesn't mean they're ineffective.
Um use is usually a good sign of both effectiveness and worth. Why do
some excellent TV shows get canceled? Even the most brilliant inventions
must be used or popular, or fall aside. Or technologies given up on or
given away, the mouse :)
Or even technologies like when At&t funded a paint program for pen point
operating systems. Then withdrew funding due to lack of a perceived
future. Before Palm became a company and pen point OS/devices were every
where. Much less that app went on to become Flash ;)
Even if what is in place is the most bitchen the world has ever seen. No
one is working it, so how bitchen can it be really? Maybe some retooling
and it can live up to it's perceived effectiveness and worth.
> Are you a Foundation member?
Was thinking about running in summer of 08, once I had 2 full years
under my belt. Also if I am nominated. Guess I could have run this past
summer, but wanted to be a bit more experienced. Didn't want to get in
the way, or stop others that did have more experience and more to
> Thought about holding a vote of your own?
I would if I had the power or ability to, without stepping on others
toes or etc. I am not inquiring for others to enact. I am looking to
take action myself. But there is only so much I can do, and have the
power to do.
> all, as a Foundation member, you're entitled to question any and every
> decision made by the trustees and they can be overridden by a vote.
So no one else has any influence there?
> are the oversight. So yes, every single Foundation member has failed in
> their job, not just the trustees. Gentoo is full of self-absorbed
> people who enjoy pointing fingers at everybody else to have things done,
> but when it comes to stepping up and taking some responsibility
> themselves, you suddenly don't hear from them.
Great, so now what? I am not looking to point fingers, and I really
don't care who didn't do what. All I do care about is what needs to be
done, and who is doing it now. So I know where best to spend my time and
effort to be most efficient and effective as a whole.
> Given the projects that I am a member of that I see dying/understaffed,
> such as PR, Events, GWN, Trustees, QA, x86, amd64, ppc... I wonder how
> we function, at all. Oh, right, we added some new VDR app, rather than
> fixing those bugs in glibc...
Well other areas are doing well like Java, and I am trying to spread
that to other areas. Not sure if it was my influence there or what. But
things are doing Ok, which seems to be considerably better than the rest
of Gentoo as a whole.
> I'm long past the point where I think "Gentoo" needs to be scrapped.
Ok, so why waste your time? I understand how you feel, but should your
feelings and experience stop me and others from trying to improve
things? Seems like if you didn't care shouldn't matter either way no?
Either way, I very much value you input from your experiences. But that
does not replace or override my own direct experiences.
> It is a failed experiment.
I think the oversight and management structures have failed, but surely
not the project as a whole. New people come to Gentoo every day, as
users, contributors, developers, etc. The failures are at the top, not
the bottom in the trenches. The top has failed, but surely not the whole
thing. I am sure the media would love lines like the above. Much less
from those in certain positions.
> Give it to the little ricers who still seem to
> care about the name. Gentoo's name hasn't been worth anything for well
> over two years. It's not worth keeping a hold of, as all it gives to
> most people is negative connotations and years of baggage that we really
> don't want or need.
That's just crazy. Two years ago Java on Gentoo was NOTHING like it is
now. Much less there was barely 2-3 people futzing around with it. Much
less being serious about maintaining it and pushing it all forward.
While I get the changed experienced on the Java subproject/team has not
happened else where. Doesn't change what's going on there, or preventing
it from spreading to the rest of gentoo.
I have only been around gentoo as a contributor for 2 years, and a dev
for almost 1.5. So what does the above say about my contributions, time,
effort etc. I surely could have spent that else where.
> Umm... You're comparing apples and oranges. The USA has 3 branches of
> the same government, designed to balance each other. Gentoo has 2
> separate entities responsible for specific aspects of Gentoo with no
> oversight and no overlap. They are completely independent.
And that is a failed concept and model. Which I am still looking for
others similar to it. That idea and model should have been contested and
I would say seems to stem from those thinking about things ideally. But
not having established businesses directly and the practicalities and
After all the most important step in most anything is follow through.
Which whom ever came up with and enacted the present model. Didn't do or
something. But that's moot and in the past. I am looking for what can be
done today going forward. Which includes putting scrapping our current
structure and model on the table.
> > And there is no one else to care about the foundation if the devs don't.
> ...exactly... so why are we even bothering?
Because I am a dev, and I care. I will find others like me and recruit
them as well.
> > Nor is there anyone responsible for the duties the foundation didn't
> > perform. Does the council take over when the foundation falls short, or
> > visa versa?
> No. The members of the Foundation are responsible... every single one
> of them. See, I'm sick of this bullshit attitude of trying to blame the
> trustees for everything. We've been trying. The problem is simply that
> nobody knows what they want and nobody is willing to do anything but
> bitch and complain like a bunch of little girls.
I am not blaming the trustees. Oversight is not blame. Just means
someone is responsible to take over if someone else fall short. More of
a fail safe, than blame mechanism.
I am not looking to bitch or blame. I have a shovel in hand and am ready
to dig. I can do allot rather quickly but again don't want to do things
I am not authorized for.
Like I could do a legal filing for Gentoo as a NPO in Florida in
minutes. I could take care of other things as well. But I don't want to
do anything with discussing it first. Much less am not really the person
who should be doing that. Not on the foundation, not a trustee, etc.
> > But I don't recall much of a push or talk about the foundation elections
> > in general. Which normally is done to spark nominations and the rest.
> We did. Nobody paid attention.
I did, but from my perception. Due the the difficulty, lack of people to
hold the election, and etc with the council one. The other fell to the
way side. Again election officials burned out, due to bs with the
> > Like what was done for the council elections. It's allot of work, and I
> > think maybe those with the ability to hold and administrate the
> > elections. Barely pulled off the council election, and were burned out
> > there. No clue where that would put us for next year.
> > I guess elections are a responsibility of the ? :)
> Foundation members...
So will we ever be having one? Not sure devs can enact this or not?
Should I post to -core about this and see about getting a election for
foundation members going.
William L. Thomson Jr.