Session Three - Questions for Candidates

kattekrab's picture

Participants in the 3rd session were
* Simon Hobbs (simesy)
* Pedro Cambra (pcambra)
* Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire (HornCologne)

IRC log attached.

Mp3 recording: http://rs2342.freeconferencecall.com:80/fcci/cgi-bin/play.mp3/15302363-1...

Only three new questions this time around.

(20:22:01) simesy_: I'm interested in what the other candidates think about Narayan as a candidate who will fill the gap of having infrastructure representation on the board.

(20:22:55) pcambra: What would be the best way to improve the relationship between the DA and the local communities to build better and bigger events?

(20:24:02) HornCologne: Do you think the DA should work more closely with Dries to make sure that initiatives for Drupal 9 are funded and therefore on time and successful?

AttachmentSize
MTC3-election2013-IRClog-20Sep2012.txt17.83 KB

Comments

jam's answers to the session three questions

horncologne's picture
  1. simesy_: QUESTION: I'm interested in what the other candidates think about Narayan as a candidate who will fill the gap of having infrastructure representation on the board.
    • Narayan, like all of the candidates, could bring real value to the board. However, something as important as the voice of the foundations of our project's home should not be decided by community elections. I'd say the advisory board would be the place to create one or more specialist appointments.
  2. pcambra: QUESTION: What would be the best way to improve the relationship between the DA and the local communities to build better and bigger events?
    • To build bigger and better events, we need to stop creating 100 individual, artisanal, glass-blown events every year. So many camp teams start from scratch and repeat the efforts, failures, and learnings of those who've done it before.

      As a community, we know how to write it once, iterate, and develop best practices *in code*. We should be doing that for other aspects of the project like events.

      One of my pet projects for the last few months happens to be http://drupalcampkit.org which is a **work in progress** and also a growing collection of checklists, schedules, and best practices to help community event teams get a head start on their camps, summits, or sprints. Over time, I have a vision of expressing much of this knowledge in code as well, as additional functionality for COD (the Drupal Conference Organizing Distribution: http://usecod.com/)

      The DA can use this tool and make plans for other similar ones to enable and empower members of our community and others to get more done, better, safer, and faster.

  3. HornCologne: QUESTION: Do you think the DA should work more closely with Dries to make sure that initiatives for Drupal 9 are funded and therefore on time and successful?
    • This is not a completely fair question, since the DA may not interfere in the direction the Drupal project's code takes ... That being said, the current painful experience some Drupal 7 initiative leaders are having getting support for less "sexy" initiative is painful and puts Drupal at risk. I wonder if mechanisms can be developed to do things like aid fundraising, materially support initiative leaders, or spread donations between various initiatives. /thinking_out_loud

Pedro's answers for session 3 of MTC

pcambra's picture

(20:22:01) simesy_: I'm interested in what the other candidates think about Narayan as a candidate who will fill the gap of having infrastructure representation on the board.

I do really like the motivation of Narayan, i think he's totally right, someone form infrastructure team should be somehow in the Board of the DA, however, think that it should be decided in other place than the at large elections, as I see this as community representatives.

(20:22:55) pcambra: What would be the best way to improve the relationship between the DA and the local communities to build better and bigger events?

I would like to know the definitive answer, but as a starting point, we need tools for getting closer to the local leaders that are organizing events and meetups, talk to them and offer them tools and advice, help them with contacts and funding, offering a legal frame like the DA is doing for US events or working with local non profits. Improving the communication in the two directions is the key for this.

(20:24:02) HornCologne: Do you think the DA should work more closely with Dries to make sure that initiatives for Drupal 9 are funded and therefore on time and successful?

The DA shouldn't get involved in driving the community to a given point, but since the initiatives in D8 are a huge step forward that everyone agrees, I think that for D9, the DA could get involved both directly and indirectly, helping with funding, reaching out companies that are interested in the particular initiative and and facilitate this links and contacts.

Si's answers for session 3 of MTC

sime's picture

All of my answers are collated here.

Jeremy Thorson's responses for Session 3

jthorson's picture

Question 1: I'm interested in what the other candidates think about Narayan as a candidate who will fill the gap of having infrastructure representation on the board.

As a maintainer of the automated testing infrastructure, I'm somewhat conflicted on this question. I certainly agree with the perspective that the DA could benefit from having more formal 'infrastructure' representation on the board, given the importance of the infrastructure to the community it supports.

That said, I also recognize this could result in additional obligations which might make it even harder to grab 5 minutes of Narayan's time than it is right now! ;)

The main challenge that Narayan specifically will face if elected is balancing the amount of 'hands-on' work he is involved in on the infrastructure side with the 'hands-off' mandate of the Drupal Association Board of Directors; and more specifically, helping to avoid any community perception that the board is 'controlling' infrastructure activities rather than 'enabling' them.


Question 2: What would be the best way to improve the relationship between the DA and the local communities to build better and bigger events?

Ideally, anything that can be done to strengthen and support the local community businesses and user groups, enabling them to take over the building of better and bigger events themselves; thus freeing up DA resources to help even more local communities. This is not to suggest the DA get out of local event planning ... rather, I envision a long-term view where the DA provides support via consulting, resource libraries, and an array of 'event recipies'; as well as maintaining an index of potential networking contacts who are interested in being contacted regarding sponsorship or advertising opportunities (by region).

By enabling individuals and communities, making it easy for them to take on more responsibility for local event planning, we can increase the number of events without increasing the associated load on DA personnel ... while a transition to this model is something that will take a significant amount of time, effort, and possible frustration along the way; it is a also a model that can provide a significantly larger level of scalability compared to the current approach.


Question 3: Do you think the DA should work more closely with Dries to make sure that initiatives for Drupal 9 are funded and therefore on time and successful?

This question does have the potential of encroaching into some grey areas regarding the DA's 'enable and nurture, but not own or direct' role, depending on your definition of "work with Dries". I do think that the there is an opportunity for the DA to work more closely with initiative leads; from the perspective that initiative leads could potentially leverage the association's event planning and facilities experience when planning initiative sprints (freeing up more of their time to focus on specific initiative issues instead of administrative or organizational tasks), or take advantage of the DA's network of contacts in order to line up potential event sponsors.

With regards to direct DA funding of particular initiatives, I think it would only work out if the selection of what initiatives were receiving funding fell outside of the DA's scope of authority; so as to avoid the perception that the DA were 'picking favorites' and thus unduly influencing the direction of the project. This, in turn, would put the DA in the awkward position of providing financial assistance, but with no real say over where the money goes (and thus no real ability to hold the recipients accountable). With these two considerations in mind, I think that direct funding for specific initiatives is a non-starter; but the DA should otherwise strive to enable (without influencing) project initiative leads at every opportunity.

Session 3 Questions

MatthewS's picture

1) simesy_: I'm interested in what the other candidates think about Narayan as a candidate who will fill the gap of having infrastructure representation on the board.

I know Narayan quite well from the Examiner.com days. He brings a thoughtfulness and intelligence to every project, conversation, and challenge he faces. I said in Session 2's questions:

The board can include anybody who is active in the community and has a desire to serve. It isn't a matter of should or should not, it is a matter of interest in furthering the mission of the Drupal Association and wishes to engage in good governance. I do think having a presence either on the board and/or the advisory board is attractive.

Narayan would fill the current gap nicely and would be easy to work with.


2) pcambra: What would be the best way to improve the relationship between the DA and the local communities to build better and bigger events?

There are two questions here really - one is the notion of building "bigger and better events" and the other has to do with the relationship that the DA has with communities.

I'm not sure that we want much larger events but we might want more them. The events themselves have become large enough that they have lost some of the personal feel they had when they were a little smaller.

That said, anything that strengthens the relationship of the DA with the community is good. Strong bonds are created through transparency and open communication. The DA has a responsibility to reach out to local communities across the globe and to work with them in service of the project and the people who make push the project forward. This could take the form of scholarships, funding Drupal days, helping with local meetups, engaging local groups to host camps, and ultimately for cities and towns to host Drupalcons.

I rather like the TEDx model, where local groups can create their own mini-conferences in the image of the TED conference. The Drupal Association could be central in creating just such a toolbox.


3) HornCologne: Do you think the DA should work more closely with Dries to make sure that initiatives for Drupal 9 are funded and therefore on time and successful?

This is an awful grey area. I think the DA could fund educational opportunities - camps, learning sprints, Drupal Days, and initiatives like Drupal Ladder. These could serve as rallying points where Initiative Sprints could run in parallel. Long and short, as I understand it, we can fund educational opportunities but not building the software itself.

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