Month: June 2010

Fedora 13 Press, Dear Lazyweb, and MOAR!

First, some weekend storytelling:

Ryan Rix came up to my lovely town of Flagstaff, Arizona on Saturday and we were able to go grab lunch together at Sakura, the lone teppanyaki place in town.  After I went home (“HONEY!!! Lauryn has a bloody nose!!”) he meandered over to the local Barnes and Noble.  Apparently our discussion of whuffie inspired him to pick up some Cory Doctorow-authored reading materials, and he also took a moment to send me this picture, with the attached txtmsg of “Have you read this yet? It’s by jzb.”:

Fedora vs. Ubuntu? By jzb?? I'm so there.

What?? Fedora vs. Ubuntu on a glossy magazine cover? Written by zonker?? I’m SO THERE!  I dashed over to the bookstore, grabbed the magazine, came home… promptly had magazine stolen from me by the boyfriend… finally got to the article late last night.  (And by the way: the article is very good, and I encourage everyone to read it if they have access to a copy of Linux User and Developer, issue #87.  There is also a clip of the article, Ubuntu 10.04 vs Fedora 13, online.  Zonker invokes one of the most awesome analogies ever at the end, loved it.)

Moving along to the actual meat of this blog post: I got to thinking that, along with the aforementioned magazine article and online links, I should probably add the most recent [in the news] postings to the marketing mailing list onto the Fedora 13 Press Archive page.  (More on this… tedious work in a minute.) So I did, and it’s a great list we have this time around – right now, we have 65 articles in the archive, up from 44 in the F12 cycle.  (My favorite article title: “Oh My Goddard! An Early Look at Fedora 13,” btw – that should win a pony right there for the lulz.)

And I’d like to give props to Rahul Sundaram, Kara Schiltz, Jonathan Nalley, Ryan Rix, Robert Scheck, Paul Frields, and Henrik Heigl for contributing these items to the list.  It is awesome to have people keeping on top of the press articles that come out, making sure they are accurate, and passing them along for others to read. THANK YOU!

AND NOW FOR WHAT YOU HAVE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR:

Dear Lazyweb,

I love getting all these links to stories from people on the marketing mailing list – but entering them into the wiki really is kind of a bummer.

Is there a way to have a web form where people can add links, author name, etc. and have it add those items to a table in the wiki – and then perhaps have a Comments area that doesn’t get added to the wiki, but instead gets copied to the marketing mailing list for further discussion?

Perhaps it would be wise to also convert these things into some sort of Blog-of-its-own, RSS Feed, or similar so that people can subscribe and see these articles, without having to keep up with the wiki page or marketing list? (Even though I know EVERYONE wants to subscribe to the marketing list… I know it!)

Thoughts welcome. And appreciated.  Adding 20+ articles to the wiki in table format is kind of a bummer, although it is great to see so much press.

Cloudy with an excellent chance of AWESOME. And possibly ponies.

Okay. Here’s the situation (and my apologies to those of you who now have DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince stuck in your head for the duration of Friday, HAH!):

The Marketing Team has been looking for awesome things going on in Fedora that we can produce marketing content for – stories, magazine articles, blog pieces, podcasts, you name it. (If you’ve got ideas, btw – not to distract from this particular blog post, of course – you can read one of my previous blogs on this topic, or catch up on this mailing list thread, to find out how to contribute to that cause.)   Now, as I’m sure you know, we have no shortage of Cool Things going on in Fedora to write about, which is excellent.  However, I keep hearing things along this line:

“Can we do something about Cloud?” “How about a marketing campaign about what Fedora is doing in the Cloud?” “Maybe we can do a piece on Fedora on Amazon?”  In summary: I get it. We want to see a story on Cloud and what Fedora is doing in that space.

But here’s the catch: I don’t want to write a bunch of fluff (no pun intended, sorry) about our Cloud story.  I want to have a solid, compelling Cloud story to write about.  And part of that means this: We need to be more proactive in this space.

The Master Plan.

I’m just going to be blunt here: This is Fedora.  This is a community of talented people who consistently churn out amazing, innovative things.  From coding to infrastructure to marketing to design – and docs and translations and awesome packagers and testers and ambassadors and websites folks, and plowers and ponies, and everyone I’ve unintentionally left out but still love dearly – We, generally, Kick Ass.  We are constantly at the leading edge of technology.  We do new things – First.  And we are completely, without a doubt capable of doing anything we put our minds to.  And that includes having a solid plan in place for what we want to do in the Cloud space – and the ability to follow up on that plan by DELIVERING.

Despite being an incredibly nebulous term, I don’t think that anyone can disagree with the fact that Cloud is HOT right now. It’s buzzwordy and sexy and everywhere.  This week’s Red Hat Summit has a whole Cloud track; the upcoming O’Reilly Open Source Convention (usually referred to as OSCON) also has a full-day track on Cloud “stuff,” not to mention lots of other sessions during other days of the conference.  While this may be indicative of someone, somewhere, being really good at marketing, it more likely means that people are interested in doing Cloud stuff in FLOSS-land.  People want to participate, contribute, try it out.  We should want those people to be doing these things in Fedora.  Whether they’re developing things that run in or manage the cloud, are system administrators who want to try Cloudy things out at home, or people who want to have an awesome OS image to load up in their cloud – Fedora should be the place they want to go when they want to scratch those Cloud itches.   And I know, know, know, in my heart (yes, I have one – don’t believe the rumors!), that there are many of you, reading this RIGHT NOW, who fall into those categories I just listed.

And so, I call upon YOU.  Many of you know that we’ve been trying to get things going on Amazon for some time now (you can check out David Nalley’s post from yesterday on this subject, as I’m sure his explanation is far better than mine could be about this topic).  We need to see that through, and get it done.  Beyond that – I think that there is no better time than NOW to start talking about long-term goals.  The awesome thing here is this: Cloud SIG long-term planning is really undefined right now.  This means there exists a plethora of opportunities for people who are interested in Cloud – both for people who want to contribute but aren’t sure how, and for people who have ideas about EXACTLY what they want to do.  And those people include YOU, dear reader.  Things like:

  • Cloud SIG needs a freakin’ task list of what needs to happen.
  • Participate in discussion about what packages would be advisable to have on an image.
  • If those packages aren’t packaged – let’s get with the packaging.  If we need to all get together and have Weekend Cloud Packaging FAD to knock it out, let’s do that.  Better yet – start engaging with other cloud projects and encourage them to start packing their own stuff, get involved. etc.
  • Documentation.  WTB. Let’s start making a list of what to do.
  • cloud.fedoraproject.org – Would be a great thing to have when we arrive at the “F13 is up on Amazon” goal.
  • Images for private cloud deployment.
  • Coordinating getting images going on other cloud provider’s infrastructure.
  • Oh, yes, Marketing!

And yes: There is a Cloud SIG.  And a mailing list. This week’s Cloud SIG meeting on IRC had an awesome uptick in participation – and I expect this to keep growing. The bottom line is this: Cloud SIG is going places – and you can be part of the plan.  If you’re looking for something exciting and innovative to work on, this is a fabulous project to get involved in.  So sign up for that mailing list, come to the weekly IRC meetings, and get involved. Let’s step up and show the world what Fedora can do.

Marketing slides on the fly.

A quick update:

I’m hanging out with several of the fine Fedora folks, as well as many other awesome people, at the Southeast Linuxfest in fabulous Spartanburg, South Carolina.  Managed to catch the wiki czar Ian Weller‘s very interesting presentation this afternoon, discussing some of the lifting he’s doing to gather more statistics about the Fedora project – from distro downloads and connections, to wiki activity, all the way to future goals of understanding commits, bugzillas, and mailing list activity – all soon to be captured in one location.  The best part about his summer project, aside from the truly awesome name (Datanommer. Om nom nom. I eat data!) is that this is not just an enhancement to Fedora infrastructure and a way for our community to know more about our own activity – but he’s going to turn this into an open source project, so that other communities can take what he’s doing and start using the tools to assess the contributions of their own community members.  Also caught Jono Bacon’s morning keynote, although it was at 8am, which is really 5am in the time zone where I normally reside… combined with the fact that I went to bed at 3am local time….. well, you get the picture. 8am keynotes should be outlawed. Seriously.

So – what did I do between 9am and 1pm, you might ask? Well – I received a task request to put together a brief slide deck to talk about Fedora which would feed in a loop in session rooms, during transitions between speakers. So I, miraculously, somehow, threw something together.  But: bonus!  Max sat down and talked to me and said, “Wow! Now we have that presentation set that Ambassadors can use on laptops as booths all done!”  Ohh….. yessss… of course.  I definitely had that in mind….. no, no, I didn’t, so I have to thank Max for actually reminding me of that other thing I wanted to do at some point.

Oh, yes. You wanted to check out the slide deck? Voilà! Check it out.  I haven’t actually had a chance to post this on the marketing or ambassadors mailing lists – or post them to the Fedora Marketing wiki page – but that will be coming soon. (If I don’t do it, please kick me and remind me.  Gently, though. Gently.)  And keep in mind these were done in a short time – by all means, please provide feedback.  If it’s ugly, if it could be more informative – whatever. I’m all ears. Really.

(Please note: If you’re looking at these slides and you’re thinking they’re not as beautiful as they could possible be – you should probably check to see if you have the mgopen-modata-fonts package installed.  Using these fonts gives it the nice, clean Fedora look and feel.)

All in all – having a lovely time.  More updates as the weekend goes on!