Canonical Voices

What Joey Stanford talks about

Posts tagged with 'ubuntu'

Joey Stanford

Rest in Peace Ian

Ian Clatworthy died 2010-08-31. Rest in Peace my dear friend Ian. You were too young to go. http://ianclatworthy.wordpress.com/about/

Edit 2010-09-03: What a difference three years can make when you’re ill. The first picture of Ian is from 2007, the second from 2010.

Read more
Joey Stanford

Help Wanted: Become an Ubuntu Ham

Ham Radio

Have you heard of Amateur radio, often called “Ham” radio? If you don’t have a positive perception of it, chances are you have an inaccurate understanding. Two common myths:

  1. “Ham radio is Ham radio operators using a Ham radio on Ham radio frequencies in order to talk to other Ham radio operators about Ham radio.”
  2. “It’s too hard and expensive to get the license and equipment and once you get it you can’t do anything of value.”

The truth is:

  1. Ham radio is been called the Original Open-Source Project
  2. When the power goes out and communication methods fail, Ham radio is there helping others
  3. There is something for everyone in Ham radio
  4. If you don’t have a license, no problem! It’s easy to get one now especially since there is no Morse code requirement any longer in many countries. In fact, a 5 year old boy in Boulder, Colorado, USA was just licensed. Similar stories about “young Hams” exist around the world.
  5. If you like to fiddle with hardware and software, there are plenty of ways to be MacGyver.  Speaking of which, let’s get on to the reason for this blog post…

Ubuntu Hams

Ubuntu has a Ham Radio community and we need your help!  We need help with packaging, bug triaging and fixing, software development, and kernel enablement.

Please join us:

* IRC: #ubuntu-hams on irc.freenode.com
* Launchpad team & mailing list: https://launchpad.net/~ubuntu-hams
* Wiki: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuHams

Read more
Joey Stanford

In October I penned the “To Sprint Again” lyrics just for fun.  (We do travel a lot making Ubuntu.)  As it turns out, my buddy Dustin has a similar idea and with a rocking Canonical band did his own variation at UDS (free download).   Not be outdone, I asked USA Country Western star J. Gale Kilgore to put my lyrics to music (low-fi). The song is available for free download.

As an aside, J. Gale Kilgore is a long time singer and songwriter. He had his own TV show in the 1970s.  He’s best known for “I Sure Do Miss You Tonight” (video). He also maintains a low-key website with free music and demo services.

Read more
Joey Stanford

It’s not often you run across a profound presentation.  This is one of them.   Ubuntu encompasses both East and West, and all points in between and far outside. One of the comments on the talk: “What I got out of it was to be empathetic to others and expect them not to understand where you are coming from. Great talk for anyone dealing with almost anyone.”   That would be us.

Devdutt Pattanaik: East vs. West — the myths that mystify

Edit: Fixed URL

Read more
Joey Stanford

Help Wanted: Taipei Project Manager

Do you live in or near Taipei? Do you have your PMP cert?  Come talk to me about a job.  Please spread the word to interested parties.

Read more
Joey Stanford

Ubuntu Tribal Leadership

The Ubuntu community is a tribe.  In fact, inside Ubuntu we have different tribes (some represented formally by teams like MOTU, Core Devs, LoCo Teams, and the like).  Canonical, the commercial sponsor of Ubuntu, is a different tribe. Canonical as well has different “sub-tribes”. Upstreams, the valuable authors of programs inside Ubuntu, each have their own tribe.   How do we lead and cooperate with all of these tribes and “sub-tribes” and do it well?  Or, in Ubuntu tribal speak, one might ask how do we advance the vision of Ubuntu?  To get a better sense of the question and some answers, I encourage you to watch David Logan’s talk on tribal leadership.

Read more
Joey Stanford

Off to a sprint again

Got an update from Kiko as he was boarding another plane and it prompted me to write this as I too am getting ready for the airport.

Sung to the tune of Willie Nelson’s On the Road Again.  Feel free to make it hit at the next UDS.

To sprint again
Just can’t wait to get to a sprint again
The life I love is makin’ Ubuntu with my friends
And I can’t wait to get to a sprint again
To sprint again
Goin’ places that I’ve never been
Seein’ things that I may never see again,
And I can’t wait to get to a sprint again.

To sprint again
Like a band of gypsies we go down the jetway
We’re the best of friends
Insisting that the world be turnin’ our way
And our way
Is to sprint again
Just can’t wait to get to a sprint again
The life I love is makin’ Ubuntu with my friends
And I can’t wait to get to a sprint again

To sprint again
Like a band of gypsies we go down the jetway
We’re the best of friends
Insisting that the world be turnin’ our way
And our way
Is to sprint again

Just can’t wait to get to a sprint again
The life I love is makin’ Ubuntu with my friends
And I can’t wait to get to a sprint again
And I can’t wait to get to a sprint again

Read more
Joey Stanford

From FSF France:

PARIS, France — Tuesday, September 22, 2009 — In a landmark ruling that will set legal precedent, the Paris Court of Appeals decided last week that the company Edu4 violated the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) when it distributed binary copies of the remote desktop access software VNC but denied users access to its corresponding source code. The suit was filed by Association pour la formation professionnelle des adultes (AFPA), a French education organization.

“This decision should raise awareness about free software licensing for everyone involved with it,” said Olivier Hugot, attorney of Free Software Foundation France. “Companies distributing the software have been given a strong reminder that the license’s terms are enforceable under French law. And users in France can rest assured that, if need be, they can avail themselves of the legal system to see violations addressed and their rights respected.”

The events of the case go back to early 2000, when Edu4 was hired to provide new computer equipment in AFPA’s classrooms. Shortly thereafter, AFPA discovered that VNC was distributed with this equipment. Despite repeated requests, with mediation from the Free Software Foundation France, Edu4 refused to provide AFPA with the source code to this version of VNC. Furthermore, FSF France later discovered that Edu4 had removed copyright and license notices in the software. All of these activities violate the terms of the GNU GPL. AFPA filed suit in 2002 to protect its rights and obtain the source code.

“We’ve long said the GNU GPL is enforceable, and of course we’re pleased to see another court reaffirm that fact,” said Loic Dachary, president of FSF France. “But what makes this ruling unique is the fact that the suit was filed by a user of the software, instead of a copyright holder. It’s a commonly held belief that only the copyright holder of a work can enforce the license’s terms – but that’s not true in France. People who received software under the GNU GPL can also request compliance, since the license grants them rights from the authors.”

The Court’s ruling is available on the web at http://fsffrance.org/news/arret-ca-paris-16.09.2009.pdf.

Read more
Joey Stanford

Launchpad is now Open Source!  Congratulations Launchpad Team!

Read the announcement: http://blog.launchpad.net/general/launchpad-is-now-open-source

Join the fun: #launchpad-dev on freenode

Read more
Joey Stanford

Calling all Chumby Owners

Own a Chumby? Come join the Ubuntu Chumby Hackers team and mailing list. We’re trying to find new and interesting ways to use them with Ubuntu and even run Ubuntu on them.

Don’t have a Chumby? Go get one!

Read more
Joey Stanford

Calling all Ubuntu Hams

Are you a licensed amateur radio operator? Use Ubuntu? Great! Come join the new Ubuntu Hams team! And don’t forget to join the mailing list!

Steve had this great idea last week to start an Ubuntu Amateur Radio Club of sorts that also got into the programming and packaging arena. He discussed it with Hugh and me in person last week and we enthusiastically signed on. Come join the fun!

ps. We need a team graphic? Any ideas?

Read more
Joey Stanford

After attending the latest Canonical employee gathering (called All Hands) the behind the scenes secret of the company was plainly obvious, even in several of the brand new hires.

When you work for a traditional company where many of the employees are co-located, you often have a power structure at play which dictates to a large extent the culture. This culture usually involves some sort of dress code (often informal, peer driven) and at times the installation of utter fear and unapproachability of executives.  There is often an overlay of formalness, and some times rigidness, as well. You will often see bitter internal competition between managers and teams.

In Canonical we don’t have this. We replace all of that with a simple (unwritten) concept (or really, a culture): Brotherhood (or Fraternity if you prefer).  Everyone is your brother or sister. Everyone is approachable.  This feeling is so strong that we often hug each other in greeting and parting or at the very least give each other a two arm handshake, high five,  or a strong slap on the back.  If you thought this was the exclusive realm of Daniel Holbach, or something tied to romantic interests, think again. This is the only company I’ve worked for where I can meet the COO in the hallway and a spontaneous hug ensues, and likewise get bear hugged by one of my employees.  Even Mark, who is normally reserved, will walk up to you and give you a slap on your back and ask you have you have been.

You want proof? Scour the Internet for pictures from Canonical company events and Ubuntu UDS events. Or better yet, go to one of these yourself. Here are some pictures I took in passing last week:

Once you’ve worked in such a supportive and close-knit group it’s hard to imagine working anywhere else. The good news is that you don’t have to work for Canonical to gain access to this spirit. You can practice this at UDS and in your local Ubuntu teams. Some people may start refering to this concept as the “Church of Canonical” or some other weirdness but in fact it’s not. It’s Ubuntu. Remember, Ubuntu is an African concept of ‘humanity towards others’. It is ‘the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity’.  Canonical simply is “drinking the Ubuntu Kool-aid” and I for one am damn proud of it and to work here.

If you have photographic evidence of this culture, please post links in the comments to this post!  Maybe some cultural anthropologist Ph.D. candidate will want to examine this further. :-)

Read more
Joey Stanford

Leading with Kindness

I did some analysis work for a group in Canonical last November and December.  It was really interesting for me and a rewarding experience but as I was writing and revising my final report I kept feeling more and more uneasy about the way I articulated my findings. I realized a bit too late that I still had some New York attitude left in me.  It’s good to be engaged and excited about what you are doing, especially when it helps others, but to do so with an aggressive posture is not.  I’ve been trying to cultivate “champa”, “Loving Kindness” in Tibetan, and “Sheshin”, “Awareness” in Tibetan,  and after all was said and done this report showed me I had more room for improvement.

One of the nice things about practicing and leading with kindness at work is that it makes your workplace a better, more enjoyable, and more productive place. One study suggests a 30% improvement in productivity.

Last night I saw a wonderful show on PBS called “Leading from Kindness”.  It’s based on the book “Leading with Kindness: How Good People Consistently Get Superior Results”. The show really resonated with me and what I’ve slowly been learning over my career.  I do believe that cultivating this style of leadership is essential in engaging and retaining superior employees as well as transforming organizations into very high performance teams.

I’ve had good luck practicing this style on my direct reports in Canonical.

The only caveat seems to be that folks who have never been in an organization that respects them as individuals can sometimes confuse kindess with weakness.  When you see this mistake being made, a gentle nudge seems to resolve it.

My hope is that others can benefit from this approach.

Read more
Joey Stanford

Using BitTorrent instead of a mirror

I’ve been playing around with an experiment using BitTorrent to get my normal updates and install files.   Speed-wise for me, it’s slower than a local mirror (except when the mirror is under heavy load at which point it’s much faster (e.g. beta release)). Note: If you’re not comfortable with the command line, despite how cool this looks, you’ll not want to do it. Stop now. :-)

  1. Install apt-p2p (e.g. sudo apt-get install apt-p2p)
  2. Backup your sources.list (e.g. sudo cp /etc/apt/sources.list /etc/apt/sources.list.backup)
  3. Replace your local mirror with “localhost:9977/”.  Note: DO NOT REPLACE security.ubuntu.com. It probably would work but that would be an unwise security decision. Do not use this Launchpad PPAs.
  4. Do an apt-get update (e.g. sudo apt-get update).  The first update will take some time but future updates are close to normal speed.
  5. You will want to forward the ports for apt-p2p to your system (9977 TCP and UDP) so you can receive regular updates via BitTorrent. If not, you’ll have to get them on-demand which will be slower.

Yes, it is possible to use upgrade-manager to move to the next version of Ubuntu but I would caution against it. It’s much better to just download the .iso torrent, burn it, and do a disk upgrade.  However if you are adventurous, it will work.  To go back to normal, just copy your backup sources.list back to /etc/apt/sources.list (or you can use System->Administration->Software Sources and select a new mirror), uninstall apt-p2p, and run an apt-get update.

Here’s an example sources.list for Jaunty:
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ jaunty-security universe main multiverse restricted
deb http://localhost:9977/archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ jaunty main universe restricted multiverse
deb http://localhost:9977/archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ jaunty-updates universe main multiverse restricted
deb http://localhost:9977/archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ jaunty-backports universe main multiverse restricted
deb http://localhost:9977/archive.canonical.com/ubuntu jaunty partner

Read more