GNOME Foundation: Minutes for the Board meeting of January 21st, 2014


= Minutes for Tuesday, January 21th, 2013, 15:00 UTC =

== Next Meeting ==
* Tuesday, February 4th, 2013, 16:00 UTC

== Attending ==
* Rosanna Yuen
* Andreas Nilsson
* Karen Sandler…

Development: GNOME 3.11.91 TARBALLS DUE TODAY

only a quick reminder that release tarball due for 3.11.91 is today!

Please make sure that your tarballs will be uploaded before Monday 23:59
UTC: tarballs uploaded later than that will probably be too late to get in
3.11.91. If you are not abl…

GNOME: GNOME Contributor Allan Day Identified in Shortlist of Award Nominees

The GNOME Foundation congratulates Allan Day on being included in the shortlist of candidates being considered for the individual category of the UK Open Source Awards for his “positive impact on Open Source software in the UK.” Allan won the prestigious annual award for key contributor in the GNOME community last year at GUADEC in Brno and is recognized in the GNOME community as a critical contributor to the project.

The winner will be announced at the award ceremony on February 26th, 2014 in Edinburgh at the Informatics Forum. We’ve got our fingers crossed and we’re proud that Allan has been already recognized in this way!

GNOME: Pitivi launches GNOME-hosted fundraising campaign

GNOME is pleased to announce that it is hosting a fundraising campaign for Pitivi. Their fundraising page launched today, with a video explaining the campaign (which was made with Pitivi). As they say in their announcement:
Free and Open Source vide…

Development: GNOME 3.11.90 release


the first beta release of the GNOME 3.11 development cycle is here!
With the 3.11.90 release, most of our feature work for 3.12 is wrapping
up and we’re heading into the “Freeze” [1]:

– UI Freeze: No UI changes should be made without prior consul…

GNOME: GNOME.Asia Summit 2014 is now Calling for Papers

GNOME.Asia Summit 2014 invites proposals for presentations at the conference. GNOME.Asia Summit is Asia’s GNOME user and developer conference, spreading the knowledge of GNOME across Asia. The conference will be held in BeiHang University, Beijing, China on May 24 -25, 2014.  The conference follows the release of GNOME 3.12, helping to bring new desktop paradigms that facilitate user interaction in the computing world.  It will be a great place to celebrate and explore the many new features and enhancements to the GNOME 3.12 release and to help make GNOME as successful as possible. We welcome proposals by newcomers and experienced speakers alike.

Click here to submit your presentation!

Possible topics include, but not limited to:

How to Promote/Contribute to GNOME in Asia

  • GNOME Marketing
  • Promotion of Free / Open Source Software
  • How to run a Local GNOME Users Group
  • Asia success stories / Local GNOME Projects
  • GNOME and Educations
  • GNOME Outreach Program for Women
  • Google Summer of Code

Hacking GNOME

  • Latest developments in GNOME
  • GNOME 3 & GNOME 3 Usability
  • GNOME Human Interface Engineering (Icons and Graphic Design)
  • QA and testing in GNOME
  • GNOME Accessibility
  • GNOME Coding How-to
  • Writing applications for GNOME 3
  • Integration of web life into the desktop

Adapting GNOME to new types of devices

  • Developing GNOME on mobile devices (smart phones, tablets)
  • Developing GNOME on embedded systems or open source hardware
  • On-going projects and success stories
  • Finding Free and Open Source friendly hardware manufacturers

Localization and Internationalization

  • Translations
  • Input methods
  • Fonts

Other topics could include any topic related to Free and Open Source Software not listed above.

Lightning talks! A five minute presentation to demonstrate your work or promote an interesting topic. These talks will be grouped together in a single session.

A standard session at GNOME.Asia 2014 will be scheduled as 45 mins (35 mins talk + 10 mins Q&A).  Please take into consideration any time you will need for preparation. The session could be a technical talk, panel discussion, or BOF.

If you’d like to share your knowledge and experience at GNOME.Asia 2014, please fill in the form at before March 3th, 2014.  Please provide a short abstract about your proposal (under 150 words). Include your name, biographical information, a photo suitable for the web, a title, and a description of your presentation . The reviewing team will evaluate the entries based on the submitted abstracts and available time in the schedule. You will be contacted before March 16th, 2014 on whether your submission has been accepted or not.

All interested contributors are highly encouraged to send in their talks.  Please help us to spread the invitation to other potential participants. Even you do not plan to be a speaker, please consider joining GNOME.Asia 2014. This is going to be a great event!

Development: TARBALLS DUE: GNOME 3.11.90, The Freeze, and other things

Hello all,

We are now at 3.11.90, you should publish your tarball on Monday, so
that the release team and friends get enough time to assemble and test
it all.

Also we are reaching “The Freeze”, API/ABI changes, UI changes, and
new features should now…

Development: GNOME 3.11.5

The fifth release of the GNOME 3.12 development cycle is here. See [1] for
the new features that have been proposed for this cycle. See [2] for some
visual impressions of GNOME 3.11.5.

To compile this release, you can use the jhbuild [3] modulesets [4…

Development: TARBALLS DUE: GNOME 3.11.5

Hello all,

It’s FOSDEM weekend, if you’re there, come and say hi! to the GNOME
booth. Tomorrow, after you safely got home, it will be time to roll
some tarballs for 3.11.5.

You know the drill:

Tarballs are due on 2014-02-03 before 23:59 UTC for th…

GNOME: GNOME Documentation Hackfest Concludes in Norwich, UK

The GNOME Documentation Team met in Norwich, UK, this week for a five day hackfest. Held from January 26 to January 30, the event was hosted at the University of East Anglia’s School of Computer Science. The hackfest was very successful, and included …

Development: GNOME 3.11.4 Development Release

Hi everyone,

The new development release for GNOME 3.12 is available, providing
new feature and fixes to our libraries and applications. A detailed list of
planned features is available here[1].

To compile GNOME 3.11.4, you can use the jhbuild[2] mod…

Development: TARBALLS DUE: GNOME 3.11.4 due on Monday January 13th

Hello all,

The work towards 3.12 continues in 2014, this is the first call for
tarballs this year, happy new year!

Tarballs are due on 2014-01-13 before 23:59 UTC for the GNOME 3.11.4
unstable release, which will be delivered on Wednesday. Modules wh…

Development: GNOME 3.11.3 Development Release

Hello all,

Here’s a new snapshot of what we are building for 3.12; among many
things it comes with changes made during the WebKitGTK+ hackfest that
happened earlier this month; it also now completely builds against
tracker 0.17.0 (that will later beco…

Development: TARBALLS DUE: GNOME 3.11.3

Hello all,

Let’s wrap up the year with a new release; tarballs are due on
2013-12-16 before 23:59 UTC for the GNOME 3.11.3 release, which will
be delivered on Wednesday.

Please make sure that your tarballs will be uploaded before Monday
23:59 UTC: ta…

Confirmed: Canonical Is Forking GNOME Control Center And GNOME Settings Daemon For Ubuntu 14.04

A couple of days ago I was telling you about the possibility of Canonical forking GNOME Control Center and GNOME Settings Daemon for Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr. Well, this was confirmed by Robert Ancell, Technical Lead at Canonical, on the Ubuntu Desktop mailing list.The forks will have a limited lifespan and there won’t be any […]

GNOME: WebKitGTK+ Hackfest Underway in A Coruña


The annual WebKitGTK+ hackfest is currently underway in A Coruña, Spain. Going into its fifth year, 2013’s event is the biggest so far, including an unprecedented 30 participants.

The four day event is focusing on everything web in GNOME and GTK+. WebKitGTK+ developer Claudio Saavedra reports that multiple web processes and user interface improvements to the GNOME web browser are both priorities for the hackfest.

You can follow all the action on the @WebKitGTK+ Twitter feed.

The event has been made possible by sponsorship of Igalia and the GNOME Foundation. Other sponsors are helping with travel costs, accommodation, coffee and snacks. Many thanks to Samsung, Adobe, Company100 and Cable Labs.

igaliaGNOME Foundation Sponsored Badge

GNOME Foundation: Minutes of the Board meeting of November 12th, 2013

[sorry for the delay: "nurse" duty at home turned into sick birthday
and weekend.]


= Minutes for Tuesday, November 12th, 2013, 16:00 UTC =

== Next Meeting ==
 * Tuesday, November 26th, 2013, 16:00 UTC

== Attending ==
 * Marina Zhurakhinskaya
 * Emmanuele Bassi
 * Tobias Mueller
 * Ekaterina Gerasimova
 * Joanmarie Diggs

=== Regrets ===
 * Andreas Nilsson
 * Sriram Ramkrishna
 * Karen Sandler

=== Missing ===
 * Rosanna Yuen

== Board Meeting Agenda ==
 * Implement a Foundation employee policy for COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment)
  * At the face to face board meeting we discussed having employee
salaries increase when inflation increases, as other comparable
nonprofits do.
  * Blocking on the budget
  * We may have enough coverage for the next 5 years, but we are
missing actual figures
   * GUADEC and hackfest may be over budget
   * Income from adboard fees should be able to cover the needed amount
  * Decision should be deferred until we have a proper budget

 * Reimbursements
  * GIMP
   * Last GIMP reimbursements were 6 months late, we must do much
better than that
   * The treasurer should be kept into the loop with a reminder every month
   * Michael Schumacher sent a series of ideas for improving the process
   * Joanie has been working on a series of ideas of her own on the wiki
   * '''ACTION''': Joanie to go over Michael Schumacher ideas on the
Gimp funding processes and merge them with her ideas on the wiki
   * Sindhu has not received hers, can Rosanna verify that it has not
been returned?
   * '''ACTION''': Rosanna to check if the reimbursement for Sindhu
has been returned
   * The account number was missing from the payment instructions. How
can problems like this be avoided?
   * Updating the GNUcash file should make these things apparent in the future

 * Scheduling an IRC Foundation meeting
  * '''ACTION''': Emmanuele to send a proposal to foundation-list
about possible IRC meetings

 * GNOME Asia Summit update
  * Co-hosting with the SUSE conference is not on the table any more
  * But we may be able to co-host with the Fedora conference in Asia

 * Behnam Esfahbod volunteering with the Foundation
  * Should we get some form of report?
  * Either email to the board, or blog on Planet GNOME
  * Every couple of weeks would be adequate
  * '''ACTION''': Marina to ask Behnam to (regularly) report on his
state and work

 * Budget (October 2013/September 2014)
  * Karen/Marina report on OPW income and expenses for next year
   * Could the Foundation sponsor 2/3 interns?
   * We should get around 30 interns in total for the last 2013 round
($250×30=$7500 for administration)
  * Kat needs up-to-date accounts/gnucash file
  * budget is 6 weeks late

 * World of GNOME Forums hosting
  * '''ACTION''': Joanie to ask Karen to report on board-list about
the World of GNOME Forums

 * Handling Pitivi funds
  * '''ACTION''': Joanie to ask Karen to report on board-list about
handling the Pitivi funds

 * Upcoming Advisory Board Agenda
  * '''ACTION''': Joanie to ask Karen to report on board-list about
the adboard meeting status

 * Post-release teams meeting
  * From the minutes of the September 3rd board meeting
   * At the Board Q&A one of the proposals was to have a regularly
scheduled meeting between the various teams involved in the release
   * An effort similar to the reports for the AGM and the annual
reports, but for the benefit of collaboration between teams
   * Emmanuele proposed to have a "post-mortem" after the development cycle ends
    * Conference call or IRC meeting between teams discussing what
went right and what went wrong during the cycle
     * Maybe blue sky planning for the next one
  * Emmanuele is contacting various members of the release, design,
engagement, a11y, i18n, and docs teams
  * Seems that the idea is getting buy-in
  * '''ACTION''': Emmanuele to draft a date and time for the
post-release meeting

== Completed Actions ==
 * Rosanna to set up an account for Kat to access the Foundation's PayPal
 * Joanie will ping the Release Team again for the Foundation IRC
meeting after the 3.10 release is completed
 * Joanie and Kat to draft a new travel assistance form to replace the
current one (Kat, Joanie and Zana to discuss and come up with a

== Pending action items ==
 * Andreas to put together a GNOME supporter card for our donors
 * Emmanuele to send Zana and Tobi an update on FoG donors gifts
 * Emmanuele to send hackers up for "adoption" the list of donors that
want a postcard
 * Emmanuele to send a proposal to foundation-list about possible IRC meetings
 * Emmanuele to draft a date and time for the post-release meeting
 * Joanie to draft a proposal for the photography policy at GNOME
conferences to discuss on foundation-list
 * Joanie and Karen to meet and discuss about the photography policy
for GNOME events
 * Joanie to go over Michael Schumacher ideas on the Gimp funding
processes and merge them with her ideas on the wiki
 * Joanie to ask Karen to report on board-list about the World of GNOME Forums
 * Joanie to ask Karen to report on board-list about the adboard meeting status
 * Kat to create a private wiki page on the web services accounts
holders and passwords
 * Karen to write the Privacy policy for GNOME services
 * Karen to contact Tor, EFF, OTI for feedback and eventual funding
for privacy work
 * Karen to "call for ideas" for privacy work related bids at GUADEC
and by blog/email to foundation-announce
 * Karen and Tobi to continue pursuing the fund collection in Europe
 * Karen to circulate a new draft of the OPW mentor/student contracts
 * Marina to ask Behnam to (regularly) report on his state and work
 * Rosanna to check if the reimbursement for Sindhu has been returned
 * Sri to investigate better uses of adwords on the GNOME websites
 * Tobi to talk to Andrea to move the PayPal data extraction scripts
over to the GNOME infrastructure

Development: GNOME 3.11.2

The second release of the GNOME 3.12 development cycle is here.
See [1] for the new features that have been proposed for this cycle.

To compile GNOME 3.11.2, you can use the jhbuild [2] modulesets [3]
(which use the exact tarball versions from the off…

BillReminder: Linux Exploded For Several Reasons

You can’t work in the information technology sector and not be touched by Linux in some way, even if it’s only in a debate about what role Linux might play in your organization.

Linux is an Open Source operating system developed by a team of programmers lead by Linus Torvalds and originally targeted at the Intel x86 platform. Linux is a UNIX-like operating system, but since it was written completely from scratch, it uses no original UNIX source code. On the positive side, that means there are no copyright restrictions on the code. The biggest disadvantage, however, is that the operating system isn’t built upon a base of heavily used code. It also doesn’t have all the features you’d expect from a production UNIX system, like large-scale storage management.

Red Hat recently introduced an Enterprise Edition that includes Computer Associates’ AcrServeIT. The tacit admission is there’s a 100 percent Open Source operating system that still leaves high-end users wanting.

cusLinux began in the early 1990s and has moved from Intel to Motorola, Alpha, Sparc, and other major platforms. Because of its broad base of programmer support and its ability to run software from the large GNU software library, Linux is a viable alternative to both commercial UNIX servers, and Microsoft Windows and NT client machines. Ease of use–a common concern with UNIX–is less of a problem with two widely available desktop environments, KDE and GNOME, both of which are easy for Windows or Macintosh OS users and developers to learn. Both environments support a variety of themes that affect the appearance of windows, buttons, and scrollbars, letting users adopt a Windows or Macintosh look and feel.

To be a serious contender in the e-business market, Linux needs to offer more than a pretty desktop, and it does. First, it’s becoming the operating system of choice for high-end server vendors, such as IBM, Silicon Graphics, and Compaq Computer. Other vendors, such as Dell Computer, offer Linux preconfigured on its servers. Customer support is available from hardware manufacturers, as well as from Linux distributors like Red Hat, Caldera, and SuSE.

Also, Linux tools abound. The most popular Linux distributions include web and FTP servers, as well as other Internet applications such as Gopher, Domain Name Services (DNS), Mail, News, Proxy, and Search servers. The breadth of applications available with the widely supported, inexpensive operating system makes it an ideal candidate for web server applications. Industry analysts report more than 30 percent of web servers run on Linux.

Apache: Web server of choice

The Apache Web Server is a freely distributed HTTP server developed by the Apache Group and managed by the Apache Project ( Evolving from the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) web server developed at the University of Illinois, Apache has become the most popular web server. According to a Netcraft survey of more than 13 million web sites conducted in March 2000, (, Apache is used by 60 percent of the respondents. The next most popular server, Microsoft IIS, came in at just under 21 percent.

Popularity, though, is hardly the only consideration in judging e-business software. Scalability, reliability, and integration with other applications is crucial. Apache has been a stable platform on UNIX for some time, but Windows implementations haven’t proved as reliable. The Apache Group’s recently announced Apache 2.0 includes better support for non-UNIX platforms, which should improve Windows stability.

On the performance side, Apache 2.0 supports a hybrid multiprocessor/multithreaded mode that promises to improve scalability, though more real-world use is required before we know how well it meets that promise. The Apache Software Foundation supports projects focused on integrating Apache into the larger e-business environment, including XML-Apache, Java-Apache, and Java Servlet and Java Server Page support. The mod perl project provides developers the tools to create Apache modules in Perl that eliminate the need to run CGI scripts in a separate process, thus avoiding costly process instantiation.

Web servers also must provide access to middle-tier business services, especially those driven by database applications. Apache is recognized as a viable HTTP server by high-end web applications servers, such as the Oracle Application Server and IBM WebSphere.

Like Linux, Apache’s wide market acceptance demonstrates that Open Source development can create an essential tool for e-business. The release of Apache 2.0 (which was in alpha testing at press time) further shows that Open Source software can keep up with the demands of changing needs. However, while Apache is a solid choice for UNIX and Linux platforms, until a stable Windows version is available (and perhaps it’s close), Microsoft IIS is probably a better alternative for NT.

Perl: Portable programming

While C/C++ is a portable programming language, the learning curve and time required to develop fully-functioning applications is oftentimes prohibitive. While Java has eliminated some of the most (potentially) problematic aspects of C–especially pointers–and offers a rich set of libraries like C/C++, development is still coding-intensive. The Perl programming language has emerged as the programming tool of choice by as many as one million developers, according to The Perl Journal.

Perl was originally used as a systems administration tool on UNIX platforms, but was quickly adopted for Web development and data-intensive programming because it includes many features found in other tools, such as C, awk, sed, and BASIC. According to, Perl is the most popular web programming language, due in large part to its powerful text manipulation. From an e-business perspective, the fact that Perl runs on so many platforms and can handle operating system administration tasks, as well as more traditional database-oriented tasks, makes it an ideal candidate for a development tool. Since Perl applications can be written to run as embedded modules in Apache, web server processing can improve as much as 2,000 percent.

Can Perl pass the muster in an e-business environment? and are two of the major dot-coms that use Perl to run their sites. In addition to Apache integration, the nsapi_perl module embeds a Perl interpreter in a Netscape web server so e-businesses don’t have to trade the faster performance of an embedded interpreter if they don’t use Apache.

The Perl language is also widely supported by third-party developers, offering more than 400 modules at the Comprehensive Perl Archive Network (CPAN) (http:// Perl has been ported to major UNIX platforms, as well as Microsoft Windows and NT, and Macintosh. Also, Perl can easily integrate with databases through DBI modules, making it an ideal tool for creating applications from database-centric web pages to data warehouse extraction, transformation, and load scripts.

While popular, the Perl syntax can be cryptic. This is understandable given its origin as a systems management- oriented tool, but this limits its use for large-scale software development. Python, an object-oriented scripting language, is a better choice if you’re looking at larger applications where reuse and object orientation will pay off.

Databases: The weak link

When we think of e-business and databases we generally think of the big names: Oracle, IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, Sybase, and Informix. Occasionally, we’ll hear about the two most popular Open Source offerings–MySQL and Postgres–but not too often. Why not? Those offerings simply can’t compete with the features and functionality of today’s commercial relational database management systems. In some cases, the lack of features makes the Open Source databases unusable in an e-business environment.

For example, MySQL’s lack of subqueries and right outer joins require developer work-around solutions. More seriously, the database’s lack of transaction support completely eliminates it as a serious contender for e-business. The transaction support found in major commercial offerings makes it possible to define a logical unit of work consisting of a series of steps that must all occur for the transaction to be completed. For example, transferring funds from your savings to your checking account may consist of two distinct steps–withdrawing money from savings and then depositing it into checking. Without a way to group those two steps, it would be possible for the withdrawal to be made without the corresponding deposit. That could occur if the server crashed in the middle of the operation, and no server is immune to crashing or other problems that could disrupt a transaction.

PostgreSQL, originally developed at the University of California at Berkeley, has many of the features found in commercial databases systems, including transactions, stored procedures, and extensive SQL support. If you’re looking for an Open Source database, this is probably the best. However, you must remember there’s much more to a database than what meets the programmer. If you need to consider integration with enterprise resource planning systems, failure recovery, parallel query optimization, advanced partitioning options, support for data warehousing (such as summarization and query redirection), then the commercial offerings are your best bet.

Conclusion: No simple answer

Can an e-business succeed with Open Source? Of course. TCP/IP and other core Internet protocols were developed in an Open Source environment. The key to success is to not blindly ignore or embrace Open Source any more than you would a particular vendor’s offering.

Open Source offers strong programming tools, Web servers, and a popular operating system that’s making steady inroads into production environments. In terms of databases, like your Web server, the database must be reliable, scalable, and easily integrate with your other systems. If you stick to the most widely supported Open Source solutions, including Linux, Apache, and Perl–to name just three–you can build a stable, reliable e-business platform.

Linux isn’t as established as UNIX, and it may not scale or promise the kinds of uptime you expect from UNIX, but for small- and mid-sized web sites, it may fit the bill. Apache and Perl both have strong developer support and in key areas, such as database access and performance, they get as much attention as any commercial product would.

For real-world, large-scale e-business, Open Source mixed with commercial applications is the best approach. While making significant inroads, Open Source still can’t marshal the resources to keep up with changes in technology. Red Hat’s alliance with Computer Associates for high-end storage options is a case in point. While advanced storage applications and robust databases may emerge from Open Source development, there aren’t any now–and we need them now.

Development: GNOME 3.10.2 Release

Hello all,

Here comes GNOME 3.10.2, the second update to GNOME 3.10, it includes
many fixes, various improvements, and translation updates over 3.10.1,
we hope you’ll enjoy it.

For more information about the major changes in GNOME 3.10, please
visit …