Formal board meeting minutes from 2010 through present. Please Note: The board typically approves minutes from one meeting during the next board meeting, so minutes will be published roughly one month later than the scheduled date. Other corporate records are published, as is an alternate categorized view of all board meeting minutes.
Thanks for everyone's patience due to my low availability over the last 3 weeks. I'm catching up. While there have been a number of directors traveling, the focus of the board list was on a fairly short burst of activity around the budget and fundraising, as noted in the President's report and discussion items. We have some work to do to bring this together in the next month. Following the last meeting, I sought to clarify the understanding of board voting in the case of abstentions, given the current wording of the bylaws. It has been the consistent understanding of the board that abstentions are not considered "present" at the meeting and do not contribute to the majority requirement. I'd like to thank the directors that started capturing some central pointers to ASF policy. I propose that we hold the Annual Members Meeting on March 28-30, 2017, however welcome input from any directors or officers - particularly President, Secretary, Treasurer and vote monitors - as to whether later dates in April would be more suitable. I will start preparations immediately this week.
The item from the December meeting regarding the Role of Brand Management as it relates to PMCs has continued to generate vigorous discussion over the last month. The agenda this month draws several conclusions from that discussion. During the meeting, a question was raised regarding the ability of a director, who serves as an officer, to participate in a discussion or vote pertaining to their role. As a result of this discussion, I’ve added an agenda item for the board to confirm that this in itself poses no conflict of interest. This led to a separate perceived conflict of interest being raised, which unfortunately became heated and singled out an individual, appearing to question their integrity. The concern was found to be without merit and withdrawn, and there is no outstanding concern over the individual's actions in any capacity. The incident highlighted the need for Directors, and officers participating in board discussions, to maintain a respectful attitude toward each other during difficult conversations. I have not yet proposed a date for the Annual Meeting, but will do so on the board mailing list in the next couple of weeks. It is to be held no later than 22 April, however I expect to maintain the timing we’ve used in March if practical.
The majority of discussion over the last month has been around the way in which project's enforce their brand, as covered in the President's report. In the next month, I'll start preparing for the Annual Members Meeting again, looking to set a date in March again.
Having been on holidays most of the month, I have nothing to report other than being a long way behind on email.
The board continues to discuss the possible appointments for officer roles, particularly in light of Ross' resignation as President as he conveys in the following report. On behalf of the board, many thanks to Ross for his service in the role over the last 3 years, committing significant time as a volunteer to the smooth operation of the Foundation.
This month saw the continued discussion of officer roles as noted in the August minutes. While further discussion continues around these roles, one clear outcome has emerged, with Ross informing the board of the appointment of Greg Stein as an Infrastructure Administrator. As a result, Greg has notified the board and membership of his intent to resign his post as Director, Vice Chairman and VP Subversion. Greg has served on the board continuously for more than 15 years, including several years as Chairman and later as Vice Chairman. We are incredibly thankful for his service to the Foundation in these roles. While we will miss his presence as a member of the board, we look forward to his new role within the Foundation. Thanks Greg!
The focus of the board over August have been the issues Ross highlights in the President's report, and covered in the discussion items. Other than that, several directors have been assisting a small number of projects working through community issues.
Nothing to report.
The main topic of discussion for the board this month has been the possible need for additional staffing, and what that role should look like. This has considered everything from an infrastructure lead to a "general manager" role, and continues from the topics raised in Ross' report last month, as well as the Infrastructure Lead discussion item in February. At this point, no action has been taken. Thanks to everyone involved in publishing our second annual report earlier in the month. It looks great, and did pick up some positive attention.
I'm glad to report that we received the paperwork from all 58 new members elected at the Annual Members Meeting in March. Welcome! Michael Armbrust Paul Benedict David Bosschaert Mihai Chira Tom Chiverton Richard Downer Stephan Ewen Sharan Foga Uma Gangumalla Lars George Mark Giaconia Steven Gill Adrien Grand Konstantin Gribov Dennis E. Hamilton Luke Han Gavriel Harbater Sterling Hughes Julian Hyde Damjan Jovanovic Flavio Junqueira Georg Kallidis Mark Kessler Paul King Peter Klügl Guillaume Laforge Julien Le Dem Jacques Leroux Jesse MacFadyen Val Mallder Suneel Marthi Colin McCabe Xiangrui Meng Robert Metzger Jacques Nadeau Pepijn Noltes Rohini Palaniswamy Tom Pappas Bob Paulin James Peach Bryan Pendleton Remko Popma Andriy Redko Josh Rosen Kay Schenk Christopher Schultz Venkatesh Seetharam Sujen Shah Konstantin Shvachko Srikanth Sundarrajan Tsz Wo Nicholas Sze James Taylor Jochen Theodorou Giuseppe Totaro Shivaram Venkataraman Markus Weimer Chathuri Wimalasena Joe Witt Allen Wittenauer We again thank Chris Mattmann for his service as Treasurer for close to the last 4 years, as he steps down from the role.
Welcome to the new board, elected by the members last month! I’d like to particularly welcome Isabel, Marvin and Mark, each serving as a director for the first time. Our gratitude goes to the outgoing directors Rich, David and Sam for all that they did during their term. Everything went well during the meeting. We elected 58 new members, and will announce them next month after the final paperwork has been received. We also passed a resolution to convert a number of inactive members to emeritus status, but would certainly welcome them back again in the future! Thanks to the STeVe project for their work on a new voting front-end that was used at the meeting. I’ve included my report from the Annual Members Meeting below. ----- It has been another outstanding year for the Apache Software Foundation, marked by continued growth and success of our top-level project communities, and the steady addition of new top-level projects. Since the 2015 Annual Members Meeting, we have added 15 new projects: Parquet, Orc, Whimsy, NiFi, Lens, Ignite, Usergrid, Serf, Yetus, Brooklyn, Calcite, Kylin, Groovy, REEF and Arrow; while 6 existing projects have retired to the Attic: Lenya, DirectMemory, Deltacloud, Shindig, Onami and Rave. Overall we find ourselves with 171 top-level projects, with 45 additional projects under incubation. At the last meeting, we easily met quorum after the challenges the prior year. This is something we will continue to monitor and address through encouraging proxies, and reaching out to inactive members who may be considering emeritus status. Nevertheless, with over 200 members joining it is extremely encouraging to to have such a large number of our members participating in the governance of the Foundation. In 2015, we elected 108 new Members, expanding our representation across the various project communities to a total of 603 members as of February 20. We also elected a new board, with Shane Curcuru returning to the board, and David Nalley joining for the first time. I thank all the directors for their service to the Foundation over the last 12 months! The board has functioned well, bringing diverse opinions but making clear decisions. The board has balanced discussion of Foundation issues with a focus on projects and their reports. We’ve continued to improve tooling in several areas, and formed the Whimsy PMC, in addition to the existing Steve PMC, to build tools that help the Foundation run smoothly. We have seen continued success from our operations, as detailed in the President’s report, and inline with budget. We have made a transition to new staffing arrangements that have increased costs, which will need to be addressed in the budget over the next couple of years. For the first time, the ASF released an Annual Report, a significant effort that helped share specific details of the ASF’s impact with our sponsors and the public. Thank you to the President, EVP, VPs and the committees they work with, many of which expended significant time as volunteers, to keep the Foundation ticking day to day. We also thank Chris Mattmann for his service as Treasurer, as he prepares to transition the role to a new volunteer in the next board year. Through these Foundation-level developments, we support the communities that make up our top-level projects. I can report that the Apache Way continues to show the benefit of community-led development throughout our existing projects, and an attractive reason for other projects to join through the Incubator. I’m pleased that in the last year we have managed to initiate some changes that have a potentially significant cultural impact, while carefully ensuring that we retain the unique Apache DNA. We have had additional projects take advantage of proposing TLPs directly to the board where incubation was not deemed necessary. We have also expanded support for GitHub use by ASF projects, and began experiments through the Whimsy project to assess some of the technical (and later cultural) impact. One of the Foundation’s strengths is that by building communities, we not only build software but also build relationships that extend beyond that development. Therefore, we acutely feel the loss of valued members of the community. It is with great sadness that we saw the passing of Ian Lynch, Nóirín Plunkett, and Adrian Crum in the last year. Their memory, and their contributions, will carry on through our communities, and our thoughts remain with their families and friends. Thank you to the entire ASF community for making it such a wonderful place to contribute, and for the privilege it has been to serve as Chairman.
The focus over the last month has been on preparations for the Annual Members Meeting. I'm pleased to report that we have a healthy number of nominations for new members, as well as candidates for the board. Thanks to those who have helped with the agenda resolutions, and the preparation of the new voting tool! I am currently working with Sally on a write up for the upcoming anniversary of the ASF. As this is the last meeting of this particular board, I'd like to express much gratitude to all of the directors for the time and service they've dedicated to the ASF over the last year.
Preparation is nearly complete for the Annual Meeting, with notices to go out shortly. This year, I've spent some more time writing down the process as I go and created a tool to generate the meeting from templates to make it easier for future boards. I've accepted an offer to join the advisor board for the China OSS Promotion Union (COPU), which came after attending the Apache Roadshow in Beijing last year. This doesn't entail any relationship with the ASF, however I'll certainly share anything relevant that comes from it, particularly if we look to participate in future events in the region.
A Happy New Year to everyone at the ASF. On the board list, we agreed on an Annual Meeting date of 22 March 2016 (concluding 24 March). I plan to formally announce that in the next couple of weeks once we are within the 60 day window. There's some preparation to do to ensure the quorum and voting tools are all set, as well as the usual record preparation.
First up, apologies to those I've missed emails from recently - I've been running quite behind for the last few weeks. Aside from that, nothing specific to report from the last month. In January, I'll propose a date for the next Annual Members Meeting, so that we can aim to hold it in March again. I intend to run this past the board list shortly.
Last month I attended Apache Roadshow - China in Beijing and spoke about the Apache Way. The event was well executed, and it was helpful to meet a number of Apache contributors, and other individuals interested in understanding more about how the ASF operates. I hope the success of the event will provide an opportunity for it to continue in future years, particularly with an increasing number of local Apache committers that can present and collaborate. My thanks to the organisers, and to David, Aaron, Niclas, and other Apache committers that gave keynote presentations or spoke about projects at the event. Earlier this month I had a call with some large organisations seeking to open source a new project and looking for information about the various foundations. I walked them through the principles of the Apache Way, incubation process, and foundation structure; I'll guide them towards the Incubator list and proposal process if anything further arises. A relatively busy month for the board with some discussion around source code control policy, which is listed later in the agenda.
The main discussions during the last month have been related to the Incubator. After a lengthy thread, which is now closed, the conclusion seemed to be that there was no immediate board-level issue to be addressed, and concrete proposals have been appropriately raised on the Incubator lists. As Ross mentions, I'll be in Beijing tomorrow for the Apache Roadshow event, giving an Apache Way presentation (combined with some amount of the State of the Feather).
Encouragingly this month we have received the most reports that we have in recent months, with just a handful not submitted. This helps reduce the effort of shepherds and the knock on effect of extra reports in the next month.
I have nothing additional to report this month, other than what is already covered throughout the agenda.
It has been a relatively quiet month. We still have a few missing project reports. There has been good progress on resolving some outstanding action items. We also have a good number of resolutions to consider in this meeting.
A discussion has started over the last month about potential updates to the bylaws, related to quorum requirements and the requirements for transition to and return from emeritus membership. This may develop into a concrete proposal in future months. As others detail in their reports, we have produced an annual report, which is great to see! Many thanks to all involved.
We welcome to the ASF the 106 new members that have accepted their invitation after being elected at the March Annual Members Meeting: Shazron Abdullah Sharad Agarwal Tim Allison John D. Ament Kiran Ayyagari Andreas Beeker Andrea Del Bene Ignasi Barrera Konstantin Boudnik Maziyar Boustani Francis De Brabandere Alexander Broekhuis Annie Bryant Burgess Sean Busbey Ioannis Canellos Richard Eckart de Castilho Jarek Jarcec Cecho Jerome Charron Avery Ching Christofer Dutz Johan Edstrom Josh Elser Peter Ent Robert Evans Freeman(Yue) Fang Sergio Fernández Thiago H. de Paula Figueiredo Peter Firmstone Ray Gauss II Brian Geffon Violeta Georgieva Georgieva Johannes Geppert P. Taylor Goetz Issac Goldstand Thomas Graves Andrew Grieve Hasan Hasan Steve Hay Les Hazlewood Lars Hofhansl Michael James Joyce Giridharan Kesavan Shakeh Khudikyan Aaron Kimball Marcel Kinard Kishore G Robert Kowalski Nick Kwaitkowski Marcus Lange Dave Lester Jason Lowe Myrna van Lunteren Renato Marroquin Nathan Marz Milamber Kevin Minder Omprakash Muppirala Aaron Twining Myers Prescott Nasser Chris Nauroth Tyler Palsulich Jitendra Nath Pandey Milinda Pathirage Travis Pinney Pinaki Poddar Werner Punz Jun Rao Benedikt Ritter Steven Rowe Bikas Saha Antonio Sanso Uwe Schindler Udo Schnurpfeil Robert Scholte Siddharth Seth Hitesh Shah Patricia Shanahan Daryn Sharp Zhijie Shen Alexander Shorin Gordon Sim Sami Siren Krzysztof Sobkowiak Maxim Solodovnik Phil Sorber Kasper Sørensen Amareshwari Sriramadasu Dominik Stadler Carl Steinbach Oleg Tikhonov Joan Touzet Greg Trasuk Keith Turner Leonardo Uribe Martin Veith Rob Vesse Melissa Warnkin Volker Weber Patrick Wendell Rupert Westenthaler Till Westmann Kim Whitehall Reynold Xin Eric Yang Edward Yoon Xuefu Zhang This month we are trialling some new processes in the meeting to better keep track of reports needing attention, and action items. Thanks again to Sam and those that have tweaked Whimsy to help make that seamless, and Greg for taking on responsibility for following up stale action items. It looks like we had a hiccup with the report reminders later in the month, which may have contributed to a higher than usual number of missing reports. I will follow up to make sure the next reminder goes out successfully. I'm planning to submit a report later this week as part of the Annual Report that is being prepared. James Carman has indicated that he plans to step down as Assistant Secretary. On behalf of the board, I'd like to thank him for his service!
On March 24, we held the Annual Members Meeting. There are still a couple of days for the remaining applications to come in, so we'll hold off the formal announcement of who the new members are, but I'm pleased to say that we added more than 100 new members this year! Our gratitude goes to the Secretary & assistant for processing all of the applications in addition to their regular workload. We had no concerns reaching quorum this year, in part due to the easier method of requesting a proxy. This will still remain a topic of some interest as the Foundation continues to grow. This is the first meeting of the newly elected board, and we welcome back Shane Curcuru, and for the first time David Nalley. I'd like to again thank Doug and Ross for their service to the ASF on the board after they stood down at the meeting. Below is the report that I shared with the members for the Annual Meeting: ------ I'd like to welcome all of our Members to our Annual Members Meeting for 2015. Thanks for taking some time out to participate in the governance of the ASF, including electing new Members, and electing the new Board of Directors. A special welcome again to the 40 new members elected during 2014. This year the meeting is being held slightly earlier than it has been in recent years. This allows the new board to be in place before the end of our fiscal year, and to review and approve the budget for the next year - a pattern I hope will be continued in the future. Even with a shorter period of time since the last meeting, there has been a lot happening within the ASF! We have added 13 new top-level projects: Tez, Celix, VXQuery, Storm, DeviceMap, Drill, MetaModel, BookKeeper, Falcon, Flink, Samza, Aurora and Zest. We retired just one project, with Whirr moving to the Apache Attic. Finally, we wound up our second oldest committee - Conference Planning - with responsibility moving to the President/EVP and our event and community partners. We now have 162 Project Management Committees, with a further 37 podlings in the Incubator. This means that within the next month we should expect to cross the milestone of having 200 projects under management at the ASF. Further to that, we've appointed replacement PMC chairs 29 times, showing that PMCs continue to rotate important positions, share the load and avoid volunteer burnout. We have grown at this steady rate while continuing to ensure that our projects operate under the pattern of open, collaborative and independent development known as "The Apache Way". Over the last year we have streamlined some processes to support this growth - adding to and expanding the tools that help manage PMC membership, monthly project reports, and management of the monthly board agenda. I expect this to continue, and thank the volunteers who have initiated and contributed to those efforts. The operations team are building a stable base for future growth. Our income and reserves have to date kept pace with growth, and we have gradually seen a transition from a day-to-day mode of operation towards a mode of planning and execution as we move forward each year. This helps ensure that these areas are able to provide the support that the Foundation and projects need, with a minimum number of distractions from producing software and building communities. Communication between the operations team and the board has been effective, and the board has adequate oversight and input into the work without needing to get more directly involved. Many thanks go to the President, EVP, and the VPs and committees that work with them for their significant efforts. We thank the sponsors and individual donors that contribute financially to the success of the ASF and its projects. Our thanks also go to the Treasurer, Secretary and their assistants who as volunteers put significant amounts of time into those roles and have kept them running extremely smoothly. As we looked back in 2014 at the 15 years of incorporation of the ASF, we recognised the massive impact that the Foundation has had on both the open source landscape, and computing in general. Every committer, PMC member, and contributor to our projects should be proud of what we've achieved and the part they have played in it. While many aspects of hosting and developing an open source project have become easier to do independently over the years, the benefits of being backed by a Foundation are routinely recognised within the open source development community. The ASF will certainly play a valuable role for many, many years to come. Finally, I'd like to thank the directors who served in 2014-15 for their dedication to the ASF and their regular contributions to its success both inside and outside of the board's activities. Particular thanks go to Ross Gardler (who will continue to serve as President) and Doug Cutting, who have opted not to stand at the coming election. Their presence among the board will be missed. We are therefore assured of welcoming new directors to the board this year, and the members have once again put forward a wonderful group of nominees. I wish the new board all the best for the coming year!
The availability of a new tool to help projects prepare their reports has been very successful, with several projects making use of it and including a note of thanks. Hopefully this will help take care of the regular comments about release/committer/PMC change dates. However, the board will need to continue to monitor reports that seem to become driven by the template and don't offer insight into project or the health of the community based on those data points. Preparations are in full swing for the Annual Members Meeting next week, being held earlier this year as discussed in previous reports. Despite a slightly shorter period of time for nominations, we have received a solid number for both the board and for new members. I'd like to thank the board for all their hard work over the last 10 months, and for enjoying a productive working relationship together. I wish all the same to the incoming board. It has again been a joy to serve you as Chairman and I thank you for the opportunity.
I've started to pull together the resources for the Annual meeting in late March (after the next and final meeting of the current board). I plan to set the record date and send out formal notices in the next week. I hope to encourage people unable to attend the meeting to submit non-voting proxies well in advance of the meeting, and will see what we can do to make that process easier. I also expect to perform the Omnibus resolution using the voter tool again, so that we do not need to pass any resolutions during the meeting itself.
Happy New Year! Following on from the discussion about budget timing, an early Annual Members Meeting has been suggested. This would require starting the process in the next week or two. We will also need to work through the questions about quorum raised at the 2014 meeting. Several other discussions have started among the board this month, but have been pushed out to committees such as Community Development and the Incubator. We have a higher than normal number of reports missing this month, likely due to the missing reminder emails and the holiday period.
Nothing specific to report this month.
Over the last few weeks, there has been quite a bit of activity celebrating the 15 year anniversary of the ASF. With such a long list of achievements, there is much that every contributor to the ASF can be proud of! We look to the future with excitement about what is still to come.
Last month, I asked all PMCs to review their committee records, and highlighted some known issues. Overall, I believe the records are in good shape. Thanks to the PMCs that responded quickly to the request. I was also encouraged that some took the opportunity to think about inviting new members they'd noticed were not listed. I updated the reporting guidelines for PMCs to include more detail about how the reporting process works, and to address some regular comments made [http://svn.apache.org/r1628351]. I intend to send them with a reminder to the PMCs this month. Opportunistically, I was able to meet with Ross and David Nalley while in San Francisco last month, which is described in the President's report. I also attended a meeting of the TODO Group while there, though have nothing to report from it. I was contacted by a project looking to join the ASF, and directed them to the Incubator proposal process. I've not received any further response. As Sally reports, I've been writing an introductory blog post for the series she is planning - a draft is on the press list for anyone that wants to provide input.
There has been some discussion about the maintenance of PMC records, with a couple of people interested in streamlining the process to reduce duplication and chances for human error. Other than that, another quiet month with nothing else to report.
The last month has been on the quiet side, possibly owing to summer vacations. Nothing new to report from my end. While I didn't complete it in time for this meeting, I've picked up on working to improve the signal-to-noise ratio of the board list, as discussed in June and July.
We have now received all membership applications resulting from the May Annual Members Meeting, and I'm pleased to announce the following new members of the Apache Software Foundation: Rajith Attapattu Tom Barber Jeremy Boynes Joe Brockmeier David Brondsema Bryan Call Hyunsik Choi Adam Estrada Jake Farrell Sebastien Goasguen Jamie Goodyear Thilina Gunarathne Lahiru Gunathilake Chathura Herath Benjamin Hindman Jan Iversen Jan Willem Janssen Markus Jelsma Jay Kreps Ross Laidlaw Brian LeRoux Romain Manni-Bucau David Meikle Kevin McGrail Justin Mclean Jean-Louis Monteiro Sebastian Nagel Thejas Nair Achim Nierbeck Brock Noland Andrew Purtell Ben Reser Gilles Sadowski Christian Schneider Roman Shaposhnik Christoper Tubbs Rob Weir Andy Wenk Aki Yoshida Matei Alexandru Zaharia Over the last month there has been some discussion about the authority of project VPs to enter into binding agreements with third parties on behalf of the ASF. While the need for this is extremely rare, we reiterated that this can occur as long as it is contained to the scope of their project, the agreement has been reviewed by the Legal Affairs Committee and any other relevant officers, and that prior approval has been given for any associated expenses. A suggestion has been made that this be formalised through policy. I've started a discussion about streamlining the monthly report process in a way that may reduce the amount of traffic going through the board's mailing list. I plan to tie that up and make any changes to the reporting guidelines by the end of the month, before reports start appearing for the August meeting.
The last month has been one of high activity, largely centred around the annual members meeting held on May 27. At the meeting we elected 40 new members of the Foundation, and will be able to announce them as soon as the last acceptance comes in. It has been encouraging to see a number of the new Members introducing themselves, and I hope it is a practice that continues! We also elected a new Board of Directors, welcoming back Rich Bowen and Ross Gardler for another term. Thanks go to Shane Curcuru and Roy Fielding for their service in the last year. The meeting resulted in a number of discussions being kicked off, particularly in relation to the difficulty we had in achieving quorum. There was also a lower voter turnout than the last few years (probably being the first time it was under 50%). There have been several suggestions made including simpler proxies, following up inactive members, and changes to the bylaws. These are all still open to pursue over the coming months, and I suggest we think about having a half-yearly meeting again this November to elect new members and try some incremental improvements. Other discussions this month included clarification of the release policy, and policies regarding the canonical source repository requirements for projects. Those are ongoing, with no need for further board intervention at this point. Below is the report I shared with the Members at the annual meeting. ---- The ASF recently marked its 15th year of incorporation, and I'm pleased to report that the Foundation remains strong and continues growing. Not only do ASF projects impact almost every area of computing, but the Apache License, our CLAs, and our pattern of open, collaborative development continue to influence and see adoption within the wider open source community. Over the last year, we've added 16 new top level projects and retired 4, bringing the total to 146 active projects. In addition to that, there are now 34 podlings in the incubator. From those projects, we've seen a number of major releases in the last year, as well as the usual steady stream of improvements, and the addition of new committers and Project Management Committee members to our expanding community. We again have a healthy slate of new member nominations, and nominations for the Board of Directors, which are promising for the future of the Foundation. The board has functioned well and been well represented in the last year, with directors from a number of different backgrounds within the ASF. Despite often holding quite different opinions, they have consistently worked well together and made forward progress on the things that matter to the Foundation. We have continued to focus on delegating operational responsibilities to the President and associated officers and committees. We have seen the expansion of the Executive Assistant role, started a new relationship with The Linux Foundation to produce ApacheCon, and begun working with Virtual for accounting and other needs. We are now well poised to complete a long-awaited Audit, and to ensure the smooth operation of each aspect of the Foundation going forward. We have also seen a number of changes in executive roles this year, with a new President Ross Gardler, Executive Vice President Rich Bowen, Assistant Secretary James Carman, VP Infrastructure David Nalley and myself in my first term as Chairman. Our particular thanks go to Jim Jagielski, Sam Ruby and Doug Cutting for their prior service in these roles which ensured that the transition was seamless, as well as their long standing and ongoing contributions to the ASF. Our thanks also to Roy Fielding, who is standing down as a director at this meeting. I'd like to thank all of our executive officers and directors for their service over the last year, which they do as volunteers. Finally, our thanks go to all of our sponsors, and to all of the committee members and committers that contribute their time to building great open source software, furthering the ASF's mission.
While some discussion about directed sponsorship and expanding project resources continued this month, the recent focus has been on immediate needs and the budget, as covered in the President's report. We have also been busy with preparations for the Annual Members Meeting, which will be held next week. We have a very healthy number of nominations for both new Members, and for the Board of Directors. This being the last meeting of the current board, I'd like to thank you all for your time, effort, and service to the Foundation, and for the privilege of being able to serve you as Chairman. It has been an honour!
I sent a notice to members, advising them that the Annual Members Meeting will be on May 27, and calling for nominations of new members and nominations for the 2014-15 board. This was sent via the members mailing list, with a separate notice sent to those members who are not subscribed to it. At the time of writing, we don't have a 2014-15 budget to approve for this meeting, so I've requested an update from Ross. ApacheCon recently completed, and while I wasn't able to attend, it sounds as if the event went well and was of great benefit. Many thanks to those who volunteered time to make it happen, and all the members of our community that participated! Jim volunteered to set up the voting tool for the Members' meeting.
At the last board meeting, we agreed on May 27 and 29 as the dates for the Annual Members Meeting. I will send out the formal notice to members and call for nominations of new members and the board in the next couple of weeks, once we're inside the required 60 day period. ApacheCon is coming up soon. Unfortunately, I'm not able to attend this year, though I'm interested to hear which other directors will be present. Given the timing, I don't expect there's a need for the board to formally meet face to face.
The main topic of discussion on the board list over the last month has been release practices. As it progressed, it was good to see that ongoing operational concerns were handled separately from discussion about how to do more frequent releases within the bounds of current ASF policy. Releasing open source software to the public is one of the most fundamental things we do, so it is important that it is handled diligently. We're getting closer to the time where we need to prepare for the Annual Members Meeting, so I've started to canvas dates. Currently the first week of June seems the most feasible, but I've included a discussion item in the agenda to decide. The ASF received an invitation to participate in the "2014 Future of Open Source Survey", which Sally has taken forward with the PMCs.
Nothing additional to report this month.
As the Secretary reports, there are some PMCs that have not kept their records up to date after making PMC changes. Many of these have been followed through, but I intend to pick up an action to remind all PMCs to check their records, and to follow up any that may find discrepancies. There didn't appear to be a great demand for a mid-year members meeting when it was put forward in October, so I haven't pursued it any further. I expect we would hold the annual meeting in May again, and will start to canvas dates in the new year.
Over the last month, we've seen a number of threads spill over to the board mailing list, which were at times quite heated. These all appear to have been resolved, with the relevant committees able to take the next action where necessary. One encouragement I took from the threads was seeing a few new faces among our members and officers contributing helpfully. The status of the audit, which we discussed last month, remains a prominent topic. It appears positioned well to move forward. Overall, projects at the ASF are going well and the reports list no major issues. Information on community health in the reports is steadily improving.
The last month has been rather quiet at the board level, with no particular issues needing our attention. In contrast, there is plenty happening on the operations end of the Foundation, and of course within our projects. That is a good thing. We do have some long standing items on the agenda for the meeting, which I hope we can bring some closure to. I've also raised the question of whether we should hold a special members meeting this year as we are at about the time where that process would need to start. I will be on holidays during the first week of November.
Last month's experiment to reach out to PMCs with comments on their reports the day before the meeting had moderately successful results. Many responded or amended their reports before the meeting, or soon after. It seems worthwhile pursuing more tools to ensure PMC chairs are aware of comments as they come in. We seem to have a higher than usual number of PMCs missing reports this month, which hopefully is an anomaly. Marvin Humphrey has edited the PMC documentation related to adding a new member to the PMC, allowing the chair to optionally run the notice and vote period simultaneously. Thanks to Doug and Cloudera for organising continued access to a conference bridge for the board calls.
Overall it has been a quiet month. The board received some requests to assist with PR, which various Directors responded to. The Attic has taken responsibility for the transition of two projects that were terminated in the July meeting. As agreed previously, there will be no face to face meeting of the board like we have had at around this time for the last few years. The next board may revisit that option again in 2014. Thanks go to Sam for adding web-based tools to manage the meeting agenda, which a number of directors and officers have been able to make use of.
At the June meeting, the Board appointed a new slate of Officers for the coming year: Chairman - Brett Porter Vice Chairman - Greg Stein President - Ross Gardler Execute Vice President - Rich Bowen Treasurer - Chris Mattmann Asst Treasurer - Sam Ruby Secretary - Craig Russell Asst Secretary - James Carman Our thanks go to Jim for his tireless efforts as the President, and his service in the many executive officer appointments he has held in the years since the Foundation was established! Thanks also to Doug for serving as the Chairman for the last 3 years, who leaves big shoes to fill. I'm honoured to be able to serve as the current Chairman, and thank the Board for the opportunity. Congratulations to Ross and Rich in their new roles as President and EVP, and James as the new Assistant Secretary. The new process for notifying the Board of PMC changes seems to have transitioned smoothly. Thanks to Greg for communicating and documenting the change. One PMC addition was pushed back in the last month. The handling of inactive PMC members continues to come up from time to time, but the documentation we have seems sufficient. We haven't yet been asked to approve a removal under the revised process. Overall, the Board is operating effectively.
We held our annual members meeting last month. 36 new members were added to the foundation. A new board was elected, adding Chris Mattmann and Shane Curcuru. Thanks again to Rich Bowen and Ross Gardler for their service on the board. My report from the annual meeting follows. --- It's been another great year for Apache. We've graduated about 25 new projects from the Incubator and now up to 139 projects. Folks in these projects successfully collaborated to produce hundreds of software releases. Hundreds of new committers have also been added, demonstrating the vitality and openness of our communities. Things look rosy looking forward too. We are fortunate to have sufficient sponsors to fund operations. Our organizational structures seem to mostly still be scaling well and not in need of major revision. The board has worked well together and has proven capable of making evolutionary changes as needed. Thanks to everyone who helps out here: the infrastructure team, officers, and every committer. As a primarily volunteer organization, we accomplish amazing things. Thanks especially to the membership for being the heart of Apache. We depend on you to ensure that we stay true to our mission.
Our annual members meeting is next week. Nominations have now closed. We have a strong slate of nominees for both membership and next year's board. Today is the final meeting of the current board. Thanks to those who served this past year. You effectively guided Apache on its mission. Thanks also for having me as your chair. It's been an honor.
I announced this year's members meeting, which will be held on IRC this May 21st and 23rd at 10:30am Pacific.
We intend to hold our annual members meeting this May 21 and 23, to elect a new board and add new members. We're now entering the 60-day advance notice window and should hence start publicising the meeting, soliciting nominations, etc.
There was a brief board discussion of the chain of command within the ASF. We agreed that our infrastructure contractors report to the VP of Infrastructure, who in turn reports to the President. While we try to keep things informal, it's still best to know where everyone stands formally. When the authority of our words are different depending on which hat hat we wear, whether officer, contractor, PMC member or ASF member, then we are wise to clarify.
Nothing to report.
At last month's meeting we decided not to hold a mid-year members meeting this year. We didn't hold one last year either. There doesn't seem to be much demand these days to add new members more than once a year. We intend to hold our next annual Members meeting this May. My preference is for the week of the 20th, unless I hear objections.
Thanks to Greg for running the meeting in my place last month when I could not make it.
No report was submitted.
We held our annual face-to-face board meeting last month, this year in the Washington DC area. We rapidly reached consensus in several areas that might have taken considerably longer to discuss over email, demonstrating the effectiveness of this annual tradition. Many thanks to Adobe for hosting the meeting. My summary of that meeting follows. --------------- We appointed the following new officers: Executive Vice President - Ross Gardler Treasurer - Chris Mattmann Assistant Treasurer - Sam Ruby Many thanks to exiting EVP Noirin Plunkett. We currently engage six paid contractors. Over time this number will likely increase, and long-term we may need to hire an Executive Director. In anticipation of this we decided to slightly re-organize the Foundation to better permit such a role. We now place all operational components of the Foundation under the President, rather than having some report directly to the Board. The groups that report through the President now include: Branding ConCom Fundraising Infrastructure Press Travel Assistance In particular, these groups will now submit their monthly reports to the President who will compile them into a single report to the Board. The President is now responsible for answering questions to the these groups from the Board.
The Board will hold its annual face-to-face meeting on the 28th of this month in the Washington DC area. The morning will be a closed, executive session with the afternoon open to visitors. At this meeting we'll discuss changes to our executive officer assignments. Folks who are interested in getting more involved in the Foundation's executive functions are encouraged to contact the Board. Greg has initiated the convention of listing expected travel expenses in a file (foundation/board/travel-data.txt). My expectation is that, going forward, Foundation-funded travel (except that funded by the Travel Assistance Committee) should be first listed there so that others have a chance to review such expenses before they're incurred. The Board has tasked Hadrian Zbarcea to develop a plan for an audit of our finances. With his advice, we hope to hire an accountant to perform either a review or a full audit before the end of the year. ConCom seems to be struggling to arrange a successful ApacheCon EU. The Board is concerned that such events expose the Foundation to excessive financial and legal risks. The Board and ConCom should establish event guidelines to limit these risks in the future.
Nothing to report this month.
The board's annual face-to-face meeting this will be held on August 28th this year in Washington DC, hosted by Adobe. We elected a new board last month at our annual members meeting. Rich Bowen and Ross Gardler were added to the board. Thanks again to Shane Curcuru and Daniel Kulp for their service on the board. My report from the annual meeting follows. --- It has been an outstanding year for the foundation. Our communities continue to release great software. The incubator has hatched a raft of new projects. Lots more are incubating and will soon join the ranks of TLPs. Our position as the leading community-based open source foundation has grown even stronger. We must be doing something right! We should congratulate ourselves for all our success. As we grow we require more resources. We've slowly increased the size of our infrastructure. Various other expenses have increased as well. But income from sponsors has thus far kept pace and our path seems sustainable. My thanks to everyone involved here. A special thanks to the directors, officers and project chairs for going the extra mile to keep our foundation running so well.
The annual members meeting will be held next week. Nominations are complete for both new members and for the new board. This is the last meeting of the current board. Thanks to all of you for your service!
I spoke about the ASF at an Open Source Think Tank meeting. Several groups there are using the Apache license but have created their own foundations, usually some form of pay-to-play. I argued that one of keys to Apache's success is a meritocratic, level playing field, and that a pay-to-play consortium works against this. Folks from Citrix contacted me about bringing their CloudStack project to the ASF. I outlined the incubation process to them. They also had some questions around publicity and sponsorship so I introduced them to the responsible ASF officers. The Incubator has since accepted their proposal for incubation. I announced the May 22 members meeting to the membership and sent out the calls for board and member nominations.
The board recently accepted the resignation of director Larry Rosen. In resigning Larry cited differences in the appropriate strategy and tactics for the foundation with the majority of the board. We thank Larry for his service to the foundation serving on the board and wish him well.
I remind folks that our annual members meeting will be held on IRC Tuesday 22 May from 10-noon Pacific, and resume on Thursday 24 May from 10-noon Pacific. Please start thinking about board and member nominations now.
No report was submitted.
There were a few protracted discussions on ASF internal mailing lists this month involving foundation members. Not all dialog was constructive. In general, I encourage everyone in the foundation to think before posting both whether they are making (1) a positive contribution to the conversation; and (2) good use of everyone on the list's time. I also encourage officers that manage lists to step in promptly when a thread goes out of control. More specifically, a question about how the foundation operates emerged from these discussions. I remind folks that board members do not individually set foundation policy. The board as a whole either directly votes to create policies or delegates the setting of policy in an area to an officer. Once an area (legal, fundraising, branding, etc.) is delegated, then all decisions for that area belong to the officer, not to the board, unless or until the board revisits that delegation.
We had a great face-to-face board meeting in Vancouver. Thanks to Microsoft and Gianugo Rabellino for hosting this. After a full days discussion and dinner we better understand one another's views about the foundation. This understanding improves our ability to work together on a day-to-day basis and is not easy to gain during our monthly conference calls and through our mailing list discussions. We agreed that we should continue to hold such annual face-to-face board meetings, but that it would be better to hold them sooner after board elections each year. We felt that OSCON is a good conference to hold these near, as many board members already attend. This is held in Portland, Oregon during July. Thus we decided that board elections should be held in April to better give newly elected board members time to plan their travel. We also decided not to hold a "special" mid-year meeting to elect members this year, as the board and member elections will take place soon enough in April.
The ASF has operated smoothly without major events this month. CouchDB and infrastructure are experimenting with git, to help determine out how this popular tool can reasonably be used at the ASF. The Board will hold its annual face-to-face meeting early next month at ApacheCon in Vancouver.
I travelled to Japan to speak at IDG's "Next Generation Data Center" conference. While there I gave five interviews to journalists. The primary topic of interest was Apache's Hadoop ecosystem, but I also tried to promote the ASF more generally whenever reasonable. Other than that, a quiet month.
In the past month I've done some ASF outreach. I gave a talk at Visa about open source and the ASF. I also met with folks from Huawei to answer their questions about how they might get more involved in ASF projects. I have scheduled a face-to-face board meeting for 7 November in Vancouver, BC.
We conducted our annual members meeting last week, electing a new board and 21 new members. The omnibus resolution easily passed, approving the board's actions over the past year. For the record, here is my annual report to the members: The ASF is the leading community-based software foundation. We provide legal, social and technical structure to nearly a hundred project communities. Our unifying theme is not any particular kind of software, but rather our way of collaborating. The past year has had its landmark events: in September we counted our millionth commit; in December we left the JCP; in February our software helped play Jeopardy; and in June we accepted OpenOffice.org into the incubator. We've taken positive steps in clarifying the Apache way. Thanks to Shane and others, our trademark policy is now better documented, understood and practiced. This has not been uncontroversial or painless, but as our projects become sucessful we must defend their identity. But let's not permit these highlights to blind us to our substantial everyday accomplishments: the myriad bugs fixed, features developed, releases cut, and committers added. Today we have ten more top-level projects and 21 more incubating than we did a year ago. We are a well-functioning foundation: we nurture communities that create great software. I'd like to welcome Larry and Brett to the board and thank Noirin and Geir for their service last year.
I have been travelling for the past month and have not been involved with much Apache business.
After months without measurable progress towards getting Sonatype to publicly acknowledge our Maven trademark, I gave the Maven PMC a deadline. Late last month I told the PMC that, if Sonatype does not publicly acknowledge the mark by the time of this board meeting then the board will find a way to resolve the issue itself.
A quiet month with few significant board-level events.
Little has happened at the board level since our last meeting outside of the normal business of the foundation.
I met with Mike Milinkovich, Executive Director of the Eclipse Foundation. We had a wide-ranging, friendly discussion of our commonalities and differences. Our trademark policies are very similar while our licenses and governance have some fundamental differences.
A special members meeting to elect new members is currently in recess. We had no trouble reaching quorum and have a good number of nominees, so I expect this to be a fruitful meeting. Beyond that, little of note has happened since the last board meeting. Question: should minutes of members's meetings be publicly published? AI Craig: publish minutes for the January 2011 meeting. Up for grabs: publish minutes for previous meetings.
The most notable action of the foundation since our last meeting was to leave the JCP EC. Jim and Geir discuss this more below. We plan to hold a Members meeting January 18-20. The primary purpose of the meeting will be to elect new members.
Thanks to all who helped put on another successful ApacheCon. I talked to a number of folks there who very much appreciated ApacheCon as a place for them to meet. The board has published several Java-related statements in the past month. We restated our support for the Harmony project in the light of IBM's reduced involvement. We expressed our pleasure at being re-elected to the Java Community Process (JCP) Executive Committee, but also our concern that we might be forced to soon leave the JCP if Oracle does not start honoring its agreements there.
Overall, a quiet month for the board. The board is considering making a public statement on the impact of IBM's departure from the Harmony project. Related, we're contemplating the ASF's ongoing role in the JCP EC. No final decision has yet been made in either regard.
Thanks again to Sally for helping to arrange our annual face-to-face meeting earlier this month! This tradition pays throughout the year. With the opportunity to better know other directors, we reduce our chances of wasteful flamewars and increase the likelihood of teamwork. Also, dedicating a full day meant we could take the time required to discuss some difficult issues in depth. Last weekend, the Board's mailing list saw another airing of a project's desire to switch from Subversion to Git for source code management (SCM). The Board declined to address this beyond remarking that SCM for ASF projects should continue to run on hosts that the ASF controls and that further details should be worked out directly with the infrastructure team. In particular it seems that infrastructure volunteers are needed to resolve various issues before read/write Git can be fully supported.
Congratulations to the following newly elected members, voted in during last month's ASF members meeting: Bill Barker Andrzej Bialecki Max Bowsher Paul Burba Stephen Butler Branko Cibej Ben Collins-Sussman Chris Custine Chris Douglas Karl Fogel Simone Gianni David Glasser Lieven Govaerts Jonathan Gray Christian Grobmeier Leif Hedstrom Mark Hindess Greg Hudson Simon Laws Pierre-Arnaud Marcelot Philip Martin Michael McCandless Simon Nash C. Michael Pilato Peter Samuelson Stefan Seelmann Daniel Shahaf Jeremy Thomerson Hyrum Wright Blair Zajac Ivan Zhakov The foundation is currently coordinating the appointment of the Exec-Officers of the ASF; nominations have been submitted and discussions are proceeding. We expect the appointments to be performed at next month's board meeting. Before then, we will be having a semi-formal f2f meeting in Boston the weekend of Sept 10th, coordinated by Sally. Thanks to Sally, et.al. for setting all this up (and the various polls, surveys, etc...). Finally, we are sorry to see Henri tender his resignation from the board. He would be truly a valuable asset to the board but we do hope he continues to attend board meetings when he can. Approved by general consent.
The big news regarding the foundation over the last month is, of course, the members meeting which was held last week (via IRC). Of 34 new member nominees, 31 were elected in. They are currently being contacted in order to offer them membership to the ASF. Also at the meeting, the 9 slots for directors were filled. We have 5 returning directors from last year (Shane, Doug, Roy, Jim and Greg), 3 returning directors from previous years (Bertrand, Sam and Henri) and one "totally" new director, Noirin. Noirin is also noteworthy for being our first female director. Welcome to the new board and the new members. And a note of great appreciation for our outgoing directors and officers. Attendance at last weeks meeting was quite high, making attendance quorum with quite some room to spare. The percentage of members who voted was also high, averaging around 50%, with the board election garnering 63% participation. No doubt, the creation of the web front end GUI to the voting tool was a significant factor in this. Thanks again to JoeS and infra. I spoke yesterday (Tuesday) at the US Library of Congress in a panel discussion regarding Open Source and Open Source Communities. The community aspect of the ASF, and how we build and maintain highly dispersed but also highly functional communities was a specific item of interest at the event. The foundation is healthy and active. Re: Executive Officer appointments. I am more that willing to remain on-board as Chairman. Last year, there was also some interest in me taking on the task of President instead of Chairman, and I'm more than willing to do that as well... whatever spot the board would like to fill.
After last month's Chairman report, and the resulting discussion at the board meeting, I sent an Email to the membership and the PMCs with the main point of: I encourage all members and all PMCs to really, really review what it means to be an ASF member and what it means to be an ASF project. After that, be honest with yourself and ask whether or not the ASF is the place for you and/or for the project. And for projects, that decision should be discussed in the open, with the entire community. They deserve that much. This resulted in quite a bit of discussion and debate, some good and useful, some less so (imo). After maybe a week or so of intense email postings, the issue has died down. One good result of the discussion was a blog post  spearheaded by Bertrand Delacretaz regarding some "basic, invariant" guidelines and rules for/of Apache projects. As far as how many members and PMCs actually performed the requested "naval gazing", no one knows. I'll be speaking at the US Library of Congress July 2010 NDIIPP Partners meeting next month as part of a panel discussion. My focus will be on the history and "lessons learned" behind the creation, growth and continuance of the ASF. I scheduled the next Annual ASF Members meeting for July 13-15; as with most of the previous ones, this will be held via irc. As a reminder, it is at the annual meetings that we elect not only new members but also new directors for the board. My own personal opinion is that this board and officers have done quite a good job and my thanks and appreciation goes out to them.
Over the last month, there have been some questions, issues and topics discussed on the various mailing lists that have caused me to reach an unacceptable level of concern and, dare I say it, even alarm. Some may object to the tone of what I say, but it is due to the continued and growing "disconnect" between some projects and the ASF, and the huge amount of turmoil, resources and personal energy that it sucks out of the foundation to respond to and handle. The ASF is more than just a project-hosting location. It is, or should be, a place where like-minded people share a vision on how Open Source should be done. Certainly we are not so vain to suggest that our way is the only way, but we do feel that it results in long term, sustainable projects with code with as few restrictions as possible and with IP governance that provides a level of assurance that others can use it with minimal risk. And yet it is surprising to me how many projects within the ASF either don't understand, or follow or even appreciate some of these core ideas. It is also upsetting that when the Chairman or any director makes a comment about the situation, the content of the comment is ignored (or seems to be). We don't have process or procedures for the "fun" of it, but for clearly defined and logical reasons. And yet that is not understood and a small minority chaff at it, or blow it all out of proportion. Logos and marks are important assets to the foundation and our developer and user community, and yet again, a small minority don't appreciate that and feel no need for even minimal protection. For this small (but vocal) minority, I wonder where we went wrong. Why join an organization to just ignore or disregard the very aspects of it which made it useful and prosperous? Or why join an organization but be totally ignorant of who they are and what they do? And for us, the foundation, what can we do about it... and what *should* we do about it, if we really want the ASF to continue to live long and prosper? In happier news, Welcome to the newest ASF members, elected during March's member meeting: Ian Boston Isabel Drost Brian Dube Jonathan Ellis Gurkan Erdogdu Senaka Fernando Otis Gospodnetic Niklas Gustavsson Andreas Lehmkuehler Aristedes Maniatis Kathey Marsden Chris Mattmann Fred Moyer Marcel Offermans Christopher Rhodes Bob Schellink Vincent Siveton Michael Stack Mark Struberg Tim Williams Donald Woods Selvaratnam Uthaiyashankar Tony Wu Shane: I share Jim's concerns, and we need to figure out how to address it. We need to make it clear what is expected, as it is not as clear as it could be. Geir: I am concerned about the way this is being described: "us" vs "them". Brian: I second what Geir is saying. There clearly is a disconnect. Doug: This is a result of growth. I agree with Shane. Henri: we had people leaving Commons for similar reasons: requiring consensus of people who aren't contributing the work. The expectation outside of the ASF is changing, in particular 72 hours is a being perceived as a signficant delay. Sander: when do we require 72 hours? When does -1 block a release? Henri: in commons, we previously treated -1 as a release blocker. We need more education. 72 hours is a meme that allows everybody to participate. Justin: I'm concerned that this never surfaced in any board report. Jim: we need more F2F get together to share the knowledge. Documentation does help, but is not sufficient. Sam: From http://www.apache.org/foundation/voting.html: "Releases may not be vetoed" <== in bold Jim: we were blind-sided. We take IP and IP tracking very seriously. We want to avoid any kind of risks. Sander: my suggestion is to require PMC chairs to dial in to board meetings at least once. Brian, Philip: people who report should dial in Geir: adding more people would change the call (duration, focus) Brian: it also adds more (perceptions) of overhead Doug: one call every three months is not that much Jim: it is all perception. It can be perceived as a chore or an opportunity. Geir: what is missing is a chair with an affinity to the foundation Shane: we need to set the expectation that the chair is associated with the ASF Sander: we should ask new chairs to attend the first call Sam: I think that the terms used in this board report sets the wrong tone. Jim: I agree, but I also see the need to be the bad guy to communicate the need that we are serious Doug: I think a less confrontational tone would be productive Justin: It is Jim's sometimes you need to not be oblique, sometimes you need a stick Henri: if there is a carrot and a stick, I suggest that the carrot goes first Jim: While I share Sam's and Doug's concern, I would prefer to keep my report largely as it is, but will change the wording. [these minutes reflect the updated wording]
Of significant note for the last month is, of course, the (special) ASF Members Meeting, that was held via irc between the dates of April 23 thru the 29th. The reason for the long recess was due to some issues with the minotaur server, which hosts people.apache.org, and is the server used for voting via the ssh voter-tool. Infrastructure quickly brought minotaur back up, but I decided to allow some extra days for people to confirm their votes, as well as give infra some breathing room, just in case the server started acting up again. We had about 120 members (out of 277) counted towards the attendance quorum and 156 members voting. Although, historically, this is a "good" showing, the large number of members who didn't attend or vote is somewhat concerning. The requirements of being a member are not the least bit onerous, and yet many members cannot even achieve the bare minimum. The main task of the meeting was to allow for the nomination and election of new members. Due to the fact that a few of the newly elected members have not yet returned their signed member application, I am holding off announcing any specifics regarding the outcome. There was spirited discussion on the lists regarding ApacheCon and membership (what it is, what it means, etc...). Regarding ApacheCon, the board's position on ApacheCon was re-iterated and some misconceptions regarding the board position were (hopefully) cleared up; Concom is now taking all the input under advisement. Some suggestions regarding membership included a "new member Mentor" possibility, as well as trying to get some agreement and alignment among members on "what do you look for in a new member." This discussion has, unfortunately, died down without any clear consensus. The current status of our taxes and our CSC corporate status is still unknown. The number of missing reports this month is quite concerning...
A relatively quiet month, but with a few important items to report. First, of course, is the coming members meeting, to be held via irc next week. We look to have a nice set of nominated members. Secondly, our Delaware Annual Report was due March 1st, but, last I checked, despite numerous reminders and Emails starting from December of last year, had not been prepared or submitted. A status update would be appreciated. I echo Justin's thanks to the committees for their efforts in submitting their budgets. The hope and expectation that this years budgeting process will be much smoother than last years (no doubt it will be; last years was our first successful and completed effort and so some "difficulties" was to be expected). The foundation appears to be on solid ground.
From a board and foundation point of view, things have been relatively quiet. It looks as though most projects are running smoothly, with an even flow of activity, although that activity seems kinda quiet itself (note the number of reports that sum up as "not that much going on"). I don't consider that a concern. Kudos to infra for the LDAP migration. I've updated my script that generates the projects.html and committers.html page to be LDAP aware and have placed it in the foundation:board/scripts repo. Will be sending out notice of the ASF (Special) Members meeting after this meeting. Although this could become a somewhat "charged" topic, I feel the need to bring up a growing concern that I've been having. No doubt, some will see this as just a grumpy-old-man rant about the "good old days", but I hope not. I've observed that even though a number of projects "get" the ASF way of managing and overseeing projects, their affiliation to or "loyalty" to the ASF itself seems quite limited. The closest analogy I can come up with is the difference between people who, after graduation from University, stay in touch with the school, join the Alumni association, etc and those who say "I did my time, I have my degree and it has their name on it, which is all I wanted.". As more and more ASF projects become cornerstones of IT and web infrastructure, and as more and more companies continue to leverage ASF projects, this has the potential, I think, to disrupt the whole community structure of the ASF. It's just something I want the board to maybe consider and keep in the back of their minds. Is this something the Incubator can help with? I continue to be contacted regarding speaking at events, which I have had to refer to other ASFers due to some limited time availability these last few months. (If they are online interviews, I accept.) Come March, I should be able to accept a lot more of these in-person requests. General agreement on Jim's concern; splitting umbrella projects is a good first step; beyond that no action taken. 23-25th March proposed for members meeting; Sam is unavailable for the 23rd (W3C AC meeting), Craig will be the acting Secretary for that meeting.
After the last board meeting there was quite a rigorous discussion thread regarding the board's modification of the submitted Axis TLP resolution before voting on it. It was noted as a reminder that the board has ultimate responsibility and authority over the content of resolutions, but it was also suggested that what the board "should have" done was table the resolution and bounce it back requesting the changes be made and re-submitted. It was noted that the former is actually an indication of a "well-running" board and that a dysfunctional board would have taken the former action. A legal issue was brought to the board's attention and was referred to the legal cmmt for follow-through. I sent a reminder to the board that our Delaware Annual Report, for our corporate status, is due by March 1. A member's meeting still needs to be scheduled. Big uproar on the mailing lists over the board taking initiative, but the general consensus of the board is that the board did what it should have done. Waiting wouldn't have served any purpose.
Not a lot to report. I've been watching the results of the disbanding of the PRC (and the subsequent creation of the separate offices) and have been pleased with the progress so far. I am concerned about the impacts of the sponsorship transition, but that is just the paranoid in me coming out. We are due for our "special" ASF members meeting, and have pinged the membership regarding the feasibility of it being held in mid/late January of 2010. board@ and members@ have been relatively quiet. At the start of the year, I'd like restart discussion regarding an EA, a formal audit of our books and a review of our current budgeting projections.
The last month has been spent pretty much on board-related and ApacheCon (and our 10th anniversary/birthday) events. There's been a lot of very good discussion, both f2f as well as on-lists and we are making headway into some very hairy issues, as seen by the PRC re-org as well as our feedback to Concom. But there is more to be done, witness allowing the new post-PRC cmmts to work and flourish as well as EA issue. At ApacheCon (as well as the weeks heading into it), I spent some time providing interviews and the like, related to the ASF and our 10th birthday. This is winding down now. At ApacheCon, Greg, Sander, Justin and I met with most of our sponsors to get feedback as well as provide some insight into what has been going on. As a result, Greg will be/has requested a sponsors@ mailing list that we can use to streamline communications between ourselves and our sponsors. I am starting to draft our "year in review" letter. We will be appointing new officers this meeting. No matter how it shapes up, I have enjoyed my time as Chairman and feel that I have been quite successful in its duties and under my Chairmanship, the board has achieved some goals which had been on our plates for quite some time. I have appreciated your trust.
Over the last month, quite a few interesting items popped up. First, we had a committer who was "abusing" their committer perks (mostly use of their apache.org Email address and their association with the ASF) for some questionable MLM promotions. After numerous discussions, I considered it prudent to temporarily suspend the committer's privileges (this is the item noted in the Infra report). Discussions are ongoing and I anticipate a smooth closure, and reinstatement of said privileges. There has also been discussion on the members@ list about the "should directors also be allowed to be officers" thread, of a couple of months ago. This discussion was just rebooted but the debate looks healthy. Our board get-together is imminent, to be held at Ovid Vineyards on November 1st. Current consensus is that all non-PMC chairs are also invited and encouraged to attend. We still need a status update regarding transportation to and fro. Quite a number of resolutions are in the agenda regarding changes in PMC chairs. I don't recall any other meeting with so many. Quite interesting. I worked with CSC and the State Of Delaware after it was discovered that our corporate status had been suspended. I am still working on finding out where the communication breakdown occurred, but at least, in the meantime, all has been resolved. The board seems to be working quite well and quite smoothly, as does the foundation itself. That is not to say that we don't have some significant issues that need to be handled. Ongoing Sponsor- ship, calendar-and-contract-tracking, and standard office support, still are open issues that have yet to be worked, much less resolved. Again, we seem to do quite well reactively, yet still leave something to be desired for proactive work. We need to knuckle under and drive some of these things, and that's something I intend to start working on immediately. Discussion: Brian will arrange transportation. Jim clarified that the board meeting is open to all officers except for PMC chairs per board direction.
We are in the process of finalizing plans for our board "get- together", set for November 1st. There are 2 candidate locations for the event: one in Napa Valley and another closer to to the Oakland area. You will see that this is a discussion item for later on. I have renewed our D&O Insurance; we remain with the same broker and same coverage but the price is a little less than last year. Kudos to Infra for handling the security incident with speed, professionalism and openness. The board list has been mostly quiet this month, but there is a lot of foundation work being done at the PMC and committee level, and the level of activity is quite nice. This is especially true in TAC, PRC and even Incubator (as related to foundation-issue). Even so, the main concern at present still seems to be documentation of all existing policies, since there are still some that lack a single definitive "write-up" of such, resulting in the mistaken conclusion that either non-exists or there is no consensus. This has been obvious within PRC but also within Incubator as well. Again, kudos to both entities for closing this loop. Two interviews with myself were published within the last month, one with Linux.com and another with eWeek. Also, Justin, Sally and I had a general talk with Microsoft (Sam Ramji and Robert Duffner) about several topics, including ASF sponsorship renewal, their sponsorship of ApacheCon and their hopes for feedback and insight regarding their CodePlex foundation. My email summary of the board meeting will now go to committers@ instead of members@. At the risk of (re)opening a can-of-worms, I'd like reboot the EA effort. You will also see that PRC is discussing a re-organization, and we should discuss if there are any reorgs which we would find unacceptable. We had delayed officer appointments until this month, but I have not seen any requests to follow up with this; my hope is that it is because the current set of officers are doing well enough and not because of apathy. Whatever the case, I am certainly willing to remain Chairman and, should we decide to schedule appointments, would be willing to accept any nomination to remain so. In any case, we should decide whether we want to schedule appointments and when.
The big news since last month is that we've received all the accepted and signed member application from all candidates elected in at the last members' meeting. Therefore, we officially would like to welcome the following new members to the ASF: Cezar Andrei David Bertoni James Carman Maria Odea Ching Brian Fox Janne Jalkanen Damien Katz Luc Maisonobe Benson Margulies Kevin Menard Simon Pepping Asankha Perera Gareth Reakes Greg Reddin Julian Reschke Peter Rossbach Carlos Sanchez Dain Sundstrom Carl Trieloff Julien Vermillard Hadrian Zbarcea I renewed the foundation's D&O Insurance for another year, with similar terms and pricing as last years. The renewal process was a bit more involved, due to insurance companies being much more circumspect in their renewals. We are hoping to have a director's get-together, with the most likely "venue" being located on the east coast sometime early-to-mid October. We should discuss this and try to finalize a date and location. See Infra's report regarding possibly also having a softball game at the same time. There's been a request to have the get together in the Boston area. We're seeing quite a bit of "leakage" between the prc@ and the members@ mailing lists. Topics related to this leakage are mostly regarding trademark policy and branding. I have attempted to describe the policy that the ASF has been operating under for the last ~15years with some success. Also regarding members@, there was an interesting thread regarding the Incubator as well. I was interview by Linux.com regarding a wide-range of topics, from the ASF 10 Year Anniversary, to the Apache License, to the growth of Linux. This was facilitated through PRC. We now have a new ASF concall account. All PMC chairs have been made aware of the new account info, and they have been asked to contact directors if they need the "host" account info. All in all, a relatively quiet and well running month.
The big news of the month is that we had our annual ASF members meeting, held via IRC, on July 7th ("thru" July 9th). Although official numbers aren't posted yet, we had an extremely large turnout, both in attendance as well as in the poll, casting votes. We voted in 21 new members; the names are not yet public until all new members have been contacted and we receive their signed member applications. By next months meeting, however, we'll be able to note their names for the record. We also saw a large turnover in the board as well, with 5 new directors joining 4 returning directors. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the previous directors (Bertrand Delacretaz, J Aaron Farr, William Rowe Jr, Sam Ruby and Henning Schmiedehausen) and to welcome in the "new guys" (Shane Curcuru, Doug Cutting, Roy T. Fielding, Brian McCallister and Brett Porter). Because of the large turnover, the board has decided to postpone Executive Officer appointments until September. Still an open topic is the question regarding directors also being officers. The general consensus seems to be that having a formal rule in place pre- venting it seems overkill, but that it should be strongly discouraged. The overall responsibility for the decision rests on the board (and the individual as well). As per our policy, raw board ballots have been committed to SVN. Good, healthy discussion is continuing on members@ regarding topics such as additional fundraising techniques (eg: store.apache.org) and others. Work is also continuing regarding our presence at OSCON. The old conference-call account is going away the end of this month. We are getting a new service, also donated by SpringSource. I will forward account info to directors and officers later on this week. As with the old, this is an ASF-specific account for foundation use. Without a doubt, this year will be an interesting one.
Since the last board meeting, there has been continued discussion and debate regarding the budget and the budget process. It would be a mistake to call these smooth. However, the hope and the goal is that we have learned from this process and that the next go-round with be more smooth and more reserved. With the upcoming members meeting (and board election), there has also been ongoing discussions regarding more general aspects of the ASF, mostly related to marketing and PR and its alignment (if any) with our mission. Also under discussion has been the sponsorship program and its influence and impact (if any) on our mission. I created an Email thread specifically about this to try to gauge what the specific issues are and what specific, actionable remedies may exist (if required). It is, btw, somewhat ironic, that 2 major action items that the foundation have been trying to accomplish for years (the budget and the sponsorship program), once they have been realized, have created so much conflict. Regarding the board elections, we will see another large turn-over in directors; at the very least, 3 current directors have chosen not to rerun. A reminder that the ASF members meeting is scheduled for July 7th (and 9th) and that time remains for new member and new director nominations. With the conflict of the last several weeks, it is easy for that to influence the perception of the board and the effectiveness of the board over the last 12 months. That is, imo, a darn shame, because we have successfully made some major changes and major strides in getting the ASF on auto-pilot. Back when we were much smaller, it was easy for volunteers to do all the "foundation infrastructure" work, since there wasn't much. As we have grown significantly larger, that is no longer the case and getting us to a place where we can continue to allow and empower volunteers to do that, while ensuring continuity and closure of issues is a difficult task, which this board has been very crucial in handling. My personal thanks go to each and every director and officer.
On April 28th, we held a board special meeting, via concall and irc. The topic of this meeting was discussion regarding the draft and proposed 2009-2010 budget. The concall was held because it appeared to me that we were not making much progress at all trying to handle this via Email. Most line items of the budget solicited no negative feedback, and the only areas which seem to be a point of discussion are: (1) The EA position's full-time/part-time status; (2) The requested additional amount for focused sponsorship handling and (3) the connection between #2 and the external PR Agency contract handled by PRC. To further clarify the expected time-requirement for the EA position, I again queried various committees to obtain their "usage stats" on such a position, should it exist ("how much could/would you offload to the EA?"). Responses clearly seem to indicate that, as expected, a full-time EA (though with a varying cyclic load) would be required. The options regarding the dedicated (or focused) Sponsorship liasion task included officially adding this, at the required level, to the current contract with HALO or "outsourcing" this to another person/agency. If bundled with HALO, then the scope of the contract was also discussed, and whether the required "normal" PR/marketing aspects would be reduced due to budgetary reasons. Although there appears to be consensus that typical PR/marketing for the ASF is expected, required and allowed, there does not seem to be complete consensus on the levels, budget-wise, this should be held at. Nevertheless, I feel that we can no longer continue to operate with- out an approved budget. We have a fiduciary responsibility to this foundation and, therefore, am calling on a vote for the proposed budget. It would be nice for it to be unanimous, but I feel that instead it will be one of our very rare "split" votes. In addition to the budget (and related) debates, there has been continued discussion regarding git, as related to our infrastructure as well as our culture. So far, the discussion has been measured. The past month has been incredibly busy with board and foundation related activities, in support of various tasks. Additionally, I will be presenting a "Tux Talk" for HP, one of our Sponsors, next month regarding the ASF and Open Source in general. Finally, we are due for our annual ASF members meeting with an election of new members and a new board. I have proposed a date of June 30th for this meeting. Bertrand indicated that he is unavailable the week of June 30th. Sam questions whether the feedback indicated a full time EA was needed. Geir asked what the ramifications are for not having an approved budget. Jim simply responded that it reflects very badly on us. Legally we could proceed as we had been. There would be no operational ramifications.
Over the last month, we have seen quite a bit of activity, interest and discussion; some good, some not so good. On the good side, the treasurer transition appears to be going well, with the only remaining action item being the actual taxes themselves (admittedly, a major item). Also, other action items, such as the budget and EA search are progressing, although maybe not at the speed that some would like. Regarding the budget, there was an informal meeting at ApacheCon with JAaron, Sander, Sally, Justin, Bill and myself (also in attendance was Leo) to try to scrub some of the numbers in the current draft budget, mostly from a PRC, Infra and Concom point of view. These were committed back to the draft version. Regarding the EA search cmmt, a draft "task list" is, and has been, available in SVN for quite some time. Some updates and changes have been made, mostly by myself, with additional updates by Bill and Sam. The general consensus is that all directors are under close agreement, although there are differing "semantics" on how we are phrasing some tasks. The biggest discussion point was regarding the "accounting/bookkeeping" aspects of the position, especially since we just tagged a new treasurer. Sander is working on drafting a true Job Description based on the task list. As mentioned in the PRC report, there was a lot of activity and interest centered around the ASF's 10th Anniversary, primarily at ApacheCon EU but also elsewhere. This is expected to continue and to culminate at the ApacheCon US show in Oakland. In support of ApacheCon and the ASF, I did quite a number of f2f and online chats and interviews. Speaking of ApacheCon, from my own point of view, the conference was quite successful; it was especially interesting to see the huge success of the various Meetups, and to see so many of the sessions and informal presentations with packed rooms. I was also pleasantly surprised with how well the Chat and Chew sessions went, including my own (regarding the ASF Sponsorship program). I am currently working with HP to organize and schedule a "Tux Talk" session with them, regarding the ASF and Open Source. These sessions are online based. On the 'not-so-good' side (depending on one's point of view, this may not be an accurate adjective... some may consider it "healthy", others as "very bad") there was quite a heated thread on board@ regarding personality conflicts between some members of the board. In my opinion, unless such conflicts hinder the operation of the board, this is not a major board concern. After all, although it would be great if all directors were BFFs, the reality is that such an ideal viewpoint would be almost impossible to achieve in reality, and would not necessarily result in a "better running" or more efficient board. In any case, we are due for our annual members meeting and for the election of a new board. I anticipate scheduling this for June and will float some candidate dates past the membership for feedback. I expect, of course, it to be held via IRC and using the ssh-based voter tool. The SecAssist postion was renewed for another 3 month period. At last month's report, it was just noted that it was "received." It has, in fact, been accepted, signed and filed.
We are less than a week away from ApacheCon EU 2009, which is note- worthy because it kicks off our decade of the ASF media push. Sally is coordinating interviews and other media-related engagements to promote this very cool event. The membership application for us to "join" W3C is still, at last check, still "in process." It feels good for us to be better at handling paperwork than other organizations! Both the board and member mailing lists have been relatively quiet. The foundation and the board are ticking along. I have sent a contract renewal to our current secretarial assistant for a duration of 3 months. It is expected that we will have our EA on board before the contract expires, and we can let the EA provide feedback on whether to continue the contract as well as what changes may be required. At present, I have not yet seen the contract filed, but there were issues with the faxing to the eFax line; If the SA has not rec'd it after I refaxed it on 3/17/09, I will scan and Email. I will be presenting and attending ACEU09, and have a number of interviews and meetings already setup. Sally will be coordinating my schedule for these events.
This month saw a lot of discussion regarding a number of issues. At times the discussions were relatively heated. The main discussion was regarding the EA role, which the board created a President's cmmt last month to review, define and search for. Unfortunately, the majority of the discussion was during the time when Sander was offline, so he was unable to weigh in and provide his comments. Nevertheless, the discussion was helpful and did bootstrap the cmmt's task. I created a draft EA position description which Bill and others have updated. There was also discussion regarding the CouchDB project. There was some concern, based on posts from the dev@ and user@ mailing lists, that some aspects of the project may be deviating from ASF norms. Since part of the concern was based on the interaction between the VP and the community, and since the VP is the "eyes and ears" of the board, I brought this up on the board list. The CouchDB report refers to this and brings the matter to current closure. The non-availability of the Treasurer continues to be a problem and is a major input to the current description of what an EA should be. The board thanks Geir for stepping in and stepping up and helping close some of the major holes and open issues regarding invoicing and payments. It should be noted that it is the board's understanding that the tax filing have still not occured and that we are late in the filing and incuring penalties. Justin has informed us that we are able to file for yet another extension, which is currently in process. I have signed the Member Agreement with the W3C on behalf of the ASF with myself the ASF representative. Due to the legalities of the W3C, this agreement can only be postal mailed. We have, as of this date, not received confirmation. Work on a budget has continued. I created and updated an initial budget and Justin provided substantial edits to it. This budget is being verified with the representative cmmts (eg: PRC, ...). Also I have been working on the position description for the EA as part of the Admin Search cmmt. The one membership application noted in last months report as being "in transit" as been received and recorded by the Secretary.
This year marks an important point for the ASF and for the FOSS community in general: In 2009 we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the incorporation of the ASF. Little did we realize at that point just how viable and valuable the ASF would be and continue to be. The PRC is working to ensure that this important event receives the notice it is due. During 2008 we saw continued agressive growth within the ASF, with new members and new PMCs and new podlings. We have kept pace with this growth via outsourcing some basic functions as needed, and keeping our infrastructure up to date and being pro-active. The board, and I personally, wish to thank every volunteer, committer, PMC member and ASF member who helped make 2008 a great year. Last month we held an ASF Members Meeting and we voted in 17 new members. All elected members have accepted the nomination and have provided their signed member applications (one is still in transit). It is my pleasure to announce the following new members of the ASF: Assaf Arkin Afkham Azeez Nathan Beyer Alex Boisvert Eric Covener Nigel Daley Thomas Fischer Michael Glavassevich Paul Hammant Andreas Hartmann Oleg Kalnichevski Xiao-Feng Li Karl Paul Luciano Resende Lawrence Rosen Thorsten Scherler Bojan Smojver I have agreed to serve as the ASF's Advisory Committee Representative to the W3C. This finally creates a bridge between these two organizations, hopefully to the betterment of the Internet community at large. On a somewhat uncomfortable note, I am somewhat concerned about balls being dropped at the board and officer level. We are starting to see a drop, imo, in the level of responsibility towards tasks and roles (for example, see some of the various PMC reports which appear to be whipped together at the last minute). Accepting a board and/or officer position requires an honest assessment that one can fullfill those duties. Of course, we are all volunteers who do these tasks when we can, and things (personal, work or otherwise) pop up which can affect our ability to do them in a timely manner. There is (and should be) no shame in saying this and asking for help if needed. For the most part, we are all people who have a hard time doing that however. We need to get past that. I certainly do not claim being immune from this phenomena. We agreed to accept membership applications based on the postmark date
Repeating what was submitted at the Members Meeting on December 16th. Oh yeah... We're holding a members meeting. Credit cards for Sander and Paul were received and FedExed out to them. Both Sander and Paul reported getting them. An invoice for CSC was received via postal mail and it was FAXed to the secretary for processing. The invoice was recorded and approved for payment. Since we are in December already, this will be an "almost end-of- year" report for the ASF. Over the last 12 months, including last December, we've seen an addition of 48 new members: 32 in Dec. 2007 and 16 in June of this year. Unfortunately, we have also tragically lost a valued and dear member, Dion Gillard, and a noteworthy Wicket member, Maurice Marrink. We miss them both. The ASF has also seen a large growth in the number of TLPs. New over the last 12 months are 12 projects: Synapse, Hadoop, Continuum, Archiva, CXF, Tuscany, TAC, CouchDB, Buildr, Attic, Qpid and Abdera, most of which graduated from the Incubator. At the members meeting in June, the new board was voted in. All previous directors were re-elected except for Henri Yandell, who chose not to run. Bertrand Delacretaz was elected to fill the open position. Thus, the board is: Bertrand Delacretaz Justin Erenkrantz J Aaron Farr Jim Jagielski Geir Magnusson Jr William Rowe Jr Sam Ruby Henning Schmiedehausen Greg Stein Also new this year was the separation of the Executive Vice President (EVP) and Secretary roles. The board appointed Sander Striker as EVP. Paul Querna was also appointed as Chair of the Infrastructure team. The ASF Sponsorship Program has been a great success. All previous Platinum, Gold and Silver sponsors are renewing and we welcomed many new sponsors (*) as well: Platinum: Google Microsoft* Yahoo! Gold: HP Silver: SpringSource (Covalent) / Progress (IONA) Bronze: AirPlus International. / BlueNog* / Intuit* Matt Mullenweg / Tetsuya Kitahata / Two Sigma Investments We wish to officially thank all of our Sponsors. Continuing our pattern, we held ApacheCon Europe earlier in the year (April actually, in Amsterdam) and ApacheCon US later on (in November in New Orleans). Both shows were very successful. Additionally, after the US show, many members and attendees stayed in New Orleans to help with additional community service by rebuilding a fence that was destroyed during Hurricane Katrina. The Travel Assistance Committee (TAC) also finally obtained the right mix of people and were able to help provide financial assistance to some worthy attendees. The ASF Infrastructure continues to grow, both as the number of projects and people increase, but also due to the deligent oversight of the Infra team itself, being proactive in obtaining additional resources and hardware to meet our requirements. Members may have noticed an increase in the public relations activity related to the foundation over the last 12 months as well. Some of this is, of course, related to the Sponsorship Program, as encouragement for organizations to sponsor us. That is not the whole story however. It is also due to the fact that we realize that we have a compelling story to tell and that people and other organization are honestly interested in us, our history, our philosophy and how we do what we do. Many thanks to HALO Worldwide for helping us define and implement this PR strategy. Finally, 2009 marks the 10th anniversary of The Apache Software Foundation. Little did we realize, when we created the ASF, just how important, crucial and respected the ASF would be a decade later. But maybe all of us should not be surprised at all.
Foundation-wise it was a busy month. Of course, there was the ApacheCon conference in NOLA which was very well received. During the event, we took the opportunity to connect with many of our Sponsors, specifically Progress/IONA, Springsource/Covalent, HP, Yahoo! and Microsoft. The intent was to get some feedback from them regarding their impressions of the Sponsorship program, what has worked and what could be better. HALO helped coordinate these meetings. Full feedback will provided as available, both to the board and to the PRC. In general, there were 3 main points from the Sponsors: (1) A desire for more direct and frequent communication with the ASF; (2) a better understanding of how we are utilizing our funds; and (3) how Sponsors and the ASF can work together to increase the "brand" and overall use of ASF technologies. More information is in the PRC report. There were a number of interviews held at the event as well, most notably with Michael Cote and with Pam Derringer. The former was foundation general whereas the latter was mostly around the httpd server project. We also had a meeting with Ted Guild of the W3C regarding better ways for the 2 organizations to "work" together. As you know, the actual mechanics on how to do this had been a sticking point for years. At the meeting, however, we came to a very easy and simple agreement: that the ASF would be a participant in W3C in a very similar manner to how we are in the JCP; we would not be required to pay any sort of "membership" fee. Alternatively, interested individuals within W3C would be encouraged to get more involved in the various ASF projects which interest them and their groups. I will be the main point of contact/liason in the ASF/W3C relationship for the time being. As with previous ApacheCons, I presented the State of the Feather and ASF Sponsorship talks at ACUS. The SotF talk will form the basis for our end-of-year release as well as content for our Sponsorship communications. On a personal note, due to the time constraints with the SotF talk is always under, the format of this talk should be changed. The Sponsorship talk was held during lunchtime. This is, to be charitable, an extremely bad time for that talk to have been held. In keeping with that topic, the (special) ASF members meeting is scheduled for December 16th and 18th, 2008 at 16:00 UTC. As with previous meetings, it will be held via IRC. The main topics expected for this meeting will be the election of new members. I was invited to present at a "Tux Talk" at HP. This is basically an opportunity for outside experts to speak to teams within HP to increase awareness and usage of Open Source, and Apache technologies specifically, within HP. This is still being scheduled. I am encouraged to see such a large number of TLP resolutions this month. The last 6 months had been somewhat dry in that regards. It is great to see the continued growth within the foundation. Because of our continued growth, as well as due to feedback from our Sponsors (as noted above) and because of possible large expenditures in the near future (and also, quite frankly, because it is our fiduciary duty), I feel that it is very important that we actually work towards crafting a real, honest to goodness budget. We have subcontractors, real expenses and financial committments. We have operated without a budget for too long. I am also happy to see that Concom did such a good job at ACUS. The event venue especially was a great fit for the crowd. Also, the sessions themselves were, from all accounts, for the most part very successful as well. Kudos also to the TAC. Finally, it's also good that we are starting a mechanism to handle "stale" projects, which, no doubt, will be an issue as we continue along. It is great when people just step up, see a need, and work towards it. Discussion: Perhaps the audit committee could help with the budget?
Just recently, there was (and is still somewhat ongoing) an interesting discussion on members@ concerning the use of git at the ASF. Leaving aside this exact issue for the time being, this does bring to mind a topic which has been on my mind for quite awhile. Specifically, what are the major challenges that the ASF will meet in the future. There is a PoV that scaling and growth is likely the biggest thing to affect us in the short term, but I don't agree. History has shown that we've been able to handle this and, even assuming a sudden large increase, I just don't see how it would result in such a cultural or infrastructural shift as to significantly change who or what we are. No, IMO, the biggest hurdle for us with be in encouraging and fostering innovation, and remaining relevant in the community. We see quite a number of projects just "ticking along" which, in and of itself, is not a bad sign, but when we also see a decrease in energy and innovation within that project, then obviously, we should have some concern. So the question is how to encourage innovation? Obviously this is at one level a cultural issue; it must be clear that this sort of innovative, "flash of genius" development (such as Roy described in his "Apache 3.0" keynote) is not only allowed but welcomed. But also, we should have the tools available to make this easier. In other words, if our current (approved) developer toolset is a limiting factor, we should drop them in favor of more "innovative" tools. Of course, this all implies that innovation and relevance is something that, as a foundation, we value and want to foster. I am sure that there are members who really couldn't care at all if we are "relevant", as long as we are able to create the kind of s/w we currently are. And this is a valid point. My main question is whether we are, right now, at the end of our evolutionary development, or if we are still allowing change. After all, this is really under our control. There has been continuing but somewhat reduced discussion on the the PMC-member ACK policy. It appears that there is no clear consensus that this needs to be changed. We are coming up due for a members meeting, most likely in December. I will query the membership regarding potential dates. There will likely be a town hall meeting at ApacheCon New Orleans. We will coordinate this on board@.
Foundation-wise, the last month has been relatively quiet. However, there are some outstanding issues related to board and board-level activities, such as contract renewals (past due and soon-due) and invoicing and payments. Note that an extension for filing our tax return was requested and handled by Aaron and Sam. It also worthwhile to note that many reports from PMC indicate projects which are simply "ticking along" with no real active development, but no real issues either. Is this an issue of stagnation, or simply the result of software which does what it is supposed to do, and that's good enough? The board list has mostly been quiet, with just a surge of activity recently regarding the "ACK policy" with PMC changes. I gave 2 small interviews over the last month, one regarding Open Source in general and the other about the ASF specifically. I am also currently working on the State Of The Feather talk scheduled for ApacheCon US.
Since the last board meeting, the major foundation-wise news was the announcement of Microsoft as a new Platinum Sponsor (as noted in the PRC report). The significance of this should not be minimized: The ASF is seen, by Microsoft as well as others, as the pragmatic yet steadfast voice (and organization) in the FOSS space. Our committment to FOSS, our charter and our (for lack of a better term) "moral compass" is never in question, yet we are also considered as reasonable and realistic people. In addition to creating an organization which allows us to develop code and grow communities, we are also in a unique position to help other entities understand more about open source (and open source collaboration and methods) as they make their transitions towards embracing FOSS. We should be proud. Our D&O Insurance was renewed but with a higher liability coverage this cycle as compared with last year. We are also looking at extending coverage for other items as well. Thanks goes to the EA for handling this effort. As noted in the Action Items section, I worked with the EA to get the Parallels partition (which contains our QB installation) up and running on his Windows machine (via WMWare). It's good to know, for future information, that the Parallels->VMWare partition converter works just fine, since I know that Aaron has expressed some interest in migrating to VMWare. There was some (healthy) discussion regarding the level of detail we "want" included in the board minutes. This is noted as a discussion item for this meeting. There were no other board related issues/discussions during this time, nor any TLP graduations. There were a handful of PMC change requests, which have been acked as normal. Justin was concerned that no officer had approved the renewal; Jim confirmed that he had done so. All agreed that this constituted adequate oversight. Jim expressed that overlap between assigned tasks is normal and expected, the only area where improvement could be made is on communication.
Sam has reported that we have received signed Membership applications from all newly elected members (from the June '08 meeting). The new members of the ASF are: John Casey Ugo Cei Bernd Fondermann Jarek Gawor Rick Hillegas Rainer Jung Guenter Knauf Grzegorz Kossakowski J. Daniel Kulp Martin Marinschek Norman Maurer Gavin McDonald Tony Stevenson Emmanuel Venisse Roland Weber Tom White I have tasked the Exec Assistant to coordinate with our insurance broker to ensure that all is ready for the D&O renewal, as well as to look into the viability (and costs) of insuring our increasing h/w assets. I have also been busy speaking with representatives of external organizations (both FOSS and non-FOSS) regarding the ASF. From all appearances, it looks like both Justin and I are sharing the community outreach and contact tasks; within previous boards, either the President (eg: Brian) or the Chairman (eg: Greg) was the main "representative"; within this board this is being somewhat evenly "shared". I would appreciate some board feedback on this. This is the first board meeting in a *long* time in which we did not have a scheduled vote on a new TLP or changing a PMC chair or changing the roster of a board committee. Interesting. There have been a few discussion threads on members@ and board@ but nothing of serious note. All in all, the ASF is doing well and ticking along.
The big news is, of course, the annual members meeting from earlier this week. We added in over a dozen new members, and are awaiting word of acceptance from just the last one or two people. Once we've heard back from all new members, we can officially announce their names. One way or another, this will be done at the July board meeting. Also at the meeting the new board was elected. All directors from the 2007-2008 year, except for Henri, were up for re-election and, in fact, all were re-elected (the new director filling the open slot vacated by Henri is Bertrand Delacretaz). I find this quite noteworthy. Despite the obvious (as well as exaggerated) "difficulties" the board had in finding its groove, the membership still considered the board doing a well enough job to be re-elected. This "outside view" is a good thing to keep in mind; when too close, sometimes perceptions are distorted (this does not imply, of course, that there are not problems that need further fixing). It is quite likely that at this meeting we will take another growth step, by separating out the role of EVP to help better distribute workload for directors and officers. IMO, we have always been better served with evolutionary rather than revolutionary changes and enhancements, so this is a Good Thing. It is anticipated that this will result in better utilization of the EA, through no fault or inadequacy of his own. Without a doubt, 2008-2009 will be an interesting, yet fun and exciting, year for the ASF.
On May 5th I speak at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta regarding "What is Open Source" and "How the ASF Does Open Source". I will make the slides available for others to view, use, expand, etc... Final preparations are underway for the annual ASF members meeting, set for June 3rd. Yesteday I sent out a generic reminder but later on this week I will send out a more specific reminder about ensuring that member and board nominations are noted in their respective files and pinging board candidates regarding their acceptance. Attendance records for the 2 meetings in 2007 have been updated. This has been one of our quietest months, with the ASF just ticking along. This will also be our last board meeting with the current roster (no matter who are re-elected) and so I'd like to personally thank all the directors for their hard work and dedication this last year.
The last month has seen vigorous discussion and debate on the members and board mailing lists, regarding a variety of topics. It is nice to see in most of these, voices and opinions from other people than just the usual group. ApacheCon was held last week and from all reports was a success. The ASF itself sponsored the hackathon. We are due for the annual members meeting, with June 3-5 as the leading date. Upon final confirmation, I will start the process of organizing the meeting.
Over the last month, the most obvious activity has been the ongoing discussion regarding the 3rd party licensing policy, including comments and debates regarding the current "draft" policy. One thing that all parties agree to, however, is that this needs to reach closure. I am looking at candidate dates for the next ASF members meeting. The possible dates are: May 27-29 June 3-5 June 10-12 June 24-26 Preliminary checking indicates that all of these dates are acceptable to the current board, and so I will be pinging the membership regarding which are the most viable. As with previous meetings, this will also be held by irc with all elections/voting done by the voter tool. I anticipate that this will result in another round of "discussions" on the members list *grin*. The contract for the new secretarial assistant was signed on Feb. 26, 2008, with a start date of March 1, 2008. I did a small podcast for ebizQ with Dennis Byron concerning the ASF. Additionally, I was invited to speak at a seminar for The National Center for Public Health Informatics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta on May 5th, regarding "Open Source 101".
From a PMC and project point of view, the ASF appears quite healthy. There is a wide range of efforts underway, with PMCs varying from very quiet to very active. I do not consider that a Bad Thing. As long as PMCs are still able to provide oversight, respond to the developer and user community and are able to "kick-start" themselves if a release is required (able to get the required 3 +1s for a release), then non-activity (measured as time between releases) is not troublesome. From a community point of view, things don't look so rosy. We seem to be in yet another phase of navel gazing, prompted by various Emails on the board and member mailing lists (eg: 3rd party licensing and release guidelines). What is particularly "unsettling" about some of these is how quickly they degrade into personal attacks, or extremely bitter and antagonistic tirades. Debate, of course, is good, as long as it results in either re-validation of beliefs and/or guidelines, or in changes to address the shortcomings or problems that caused the debate to commence in the first place. It is, of course, quite possible that we have accepted as rule some aspects which are really more valuable guidelines than anything else, but that does not diminish their usefulness. If they were learned by experience, then there is a rationale behind them. After all, you don't just change a section of code that does something a specific way without looking over the mailing list archives and learning why it's coded the way it is first. In any case, we are in an interesting situation. We are always accepting into the Incubator new projects, and a key aspect of the Incubator process is to indoctrinate those projects into the various ASF processes, procedures, rules and guidelines. Yet we have a very vocal subset of members who feel that many of those very rules that are key to podlings graduating from the Incubator should be removed or redfined. Personally, I feel that the more we grow, and the more varied the membership, we will need to basically refine what our core tenets are. This is not a concern... my only concern is that we do so as adults and as peers.
2007 saw pretty impressive growth within the ASF, both in membership as well as projects and committers. Resulting from the 2 members meetings held last year, we increased our membership ranks by 56 new members. 32 were from the November elections alone, and they are: Andrei Adamchik Rahul Akolkar Matt Benson Tobias Bocanegra Nick Burch Alan Cabrera Arjé Cahn Jacopo Cappellato Hiram Chirino Martijn Dashorst Tim Ellison Manfred Geiler Gary Gregory Stefan Guggisberg Grant Ingersoll Kevin Jackson David E. Jones David Jencks Dennis Lundberg Felix Meschberger Kevan Miller Guillaume Nodet Daryl C. W. O'Shea Owen O'Malley Ajith Ranabahu Marcel Reutegger Matthieu Riou Martin Sebor Angela Schreiber Bruce Snyder Thomas Vandahl Matthias Wessendorf We also graduated 15 TLPs: Apache ActiveMQ (Incubator) - January 2007 Apache Roller (Incubator) - February 2007 Apache Felix (Incubator) - March 2007 Apache OpenEJB (Incubator) - May 2007 Apache OpenJPA (Incubator) - May 2007 Apache Turbine (Jakarta) - May 2007 Apache POI (Jakarta) - May 2007 Apache Quetzalcoatl (HTTP Server) - June 2007 Apache Wicket (Incubator) - June 2007 Apache Commons (Jakarta) - June 2007 Apache ODE (Incubator) - July 2007 Apache ServiceMix (Incubator) - September 2007 Apache HttpComponents (Jakarta) - November 2007 Apache C++ Standard Library Project (Incubator) - November 2007 Apache Synapse Project (WS) - December 2007 2007 was also significant because we saw the Sponsorship program really kick in gear. Currently we have 2 Platinum Sponsors (Google and Yahoo!), 1 Gold (HP), 1 Silver (Covalent) and 3 Bronze (AirPlus International, Tetsuya Kitahata, and Two Sigma Investments). Infrastructure also did very noteworthy upgrades and improvements over the past year. As mentioned in previous minutes, the board elections (and subsequent officer nominations) saw the larger turnover in directors and officers in the history of the ASF. Even with all this, from an oversight point-of-view, I see no potential problems with us scaling to handle this growth or ensuring that 2008 is easily as "successful" as 2007 was.
The month since the last board meeting has been a busy one for the ASF. First, of course, was the success (both critical and financial) of the ApacheCon US 2007 show in Atlanta. Secondly, an ASF special members meeting was held, via irc, on December 11th through the 13th. The main item of business was the election of new members into the ASF ranks. There were 40 candidates nominated, 32 of which were elected in. Invitation letters to those elected in have been sent, and we have received acceptance from a large number already. Turn out on the meeting was acceptable, with over 85 members attending the meeting (as applied to quorum requirements) and with around 99 members casting ballots. Due to scheduling mistakes, 2 executive officers were not present during the 1st half of the meeting but attended and reported during the 2nd half. As expected, the meeting and election process re-kicked off discussion regarding what makes a good member, what are the responsibilities of membership, whether there should be some sort of automatic emeritus status mechanism in place and the pros and cons of the ssh-based voter tool. Whether these discussions will actually lead to any concrete and actionable proposals remains to be seen. A more formal Year In Review report will be presented at the January 2008 meeting, but in general, we have seen healthly activity at the PMC level with good progress within the Incubator and good graduation-to-TLP with the Incubator and Jakarta projects, with initial efforts of the WS project to also promote subprojects to TLP status. Even with all this, from an oversight point-of-view, I see no potential problems with us scaling to handle this growth. Discussion: a request was made that the chair posts meeting attendance information from previous members meetings. Jim agreed to pursue.
Over the last month we've managed to set and announce the dates for the Members Meeting (Dec. 11 - 13); as with previous years it will be held via IRC. In general, PMCs seem to be doing well; I'm pretty impressed that PMCs and the chairs were able to coordinate their reports as quickly as they did, due to the issue with Marvin forgetting to send out the reminders (itself due to a missing library from the people.apache.org server upgrade). This is a good sign.
The ASF has seen continued energy over the last month, both internally, with PMC efforts and releases, as well as external, with another Platinum sponsor. Infrastructure also continues to grow and expand. The board itself is gelling into a more smoothly running group. Regarding transition, it appears that the secretarial transition is finally getting back on an even keel. Mis- communication and unverified assumptions seem to be at the core of the issues seen over the last few months. To expedite this, I met with the sec-assist directly to get to the root causes. Since this is no longer required, I will be removing myself from this issue. The big events for next month are the two ApacheCon events: ApacheCon US 2007 in Atlanta, GA and the OS Summit Asia 2007 in Hong Kong. The membership itself was pinged regarding a possible IRC-held members meeting in December. A discussion item regarding this is scheduled for this meeting.
Not too much to report this month. The biggest item of notice is the board's continuing effort to get into a groove and the officers getting settled into their roles. Thankfully, this has not affected the ASF itself, which is still ticking along nicely. The Incubator is still seeing proposals for new projects and podlings are graduating periodically. The various projects themselves run the range of high-activity/many releases to low-activity/almost-hibernation.
The new board, and officers, are starting to gell and find their own way. This is most clearly indicated by the reduced direct activity regarding the JCP (and the jcp-open list), and allowing others to express their points of views and opinions. There was a slight issue during the renewal of the D&O insurance where, due to the officer changeover, the invoicing and payment was not as streamlined as it could have been, but this was quickly resolved and the policy was renewed on time. There has been, as one would have expected, much discussion within the foundation regarding the events of the last month regarding Java, the JCP and the ASF's involvement. Even so, the membership and the PMCs are not being distracted and activity seems very good and healthy. On a more personal note, the board, as well as the membership and, indeed, countless others outside of the foundation, wish Greg Stein a speedy recovery from the injuries received when he was mugged. This is on top of the broken leg he already had from an accident earlier in the summer. Kevin Burton has setup a fund to help Greg out. This fund is not affiliated with the ASF.
Tabled until next regular meeting
The board is currently making the expected adjustments required to get back "into the grove" and smoothly operate after the changeover of almost half of its directors. Also in transition is the full roster of executive officers themselves, something unique in the history of the ASF. Activities on the board@ and jcp-open@ list indicate that we still have some ways to go, but are making these transitions surprisingly well. A special board meeting was called for July 09, 2007 to focus on the current ASF/JCP issues being discussed on the board@ and jcp-open@ lists. A general consensus was achieved and some action items were created to write-up that consensus and share that with the membership and, eventually, the JCP itself. More information can be obtained from the minutes of that meeting. Status updates of those action items will be discussed today. In general, the ASF is handling the transition well, and continues to grow and prosper.
Tabled until next regular meeting
Greg reported that there was no new information to report since what was reported at the members meeting.
Greg had nothing to report.
Greg had nothing to report this month.
Greg presented at a conference in Beijing with his Apache hat on, and with great interest and questions from Chinese attendees. His presentation covered the role of Apache in the rise of the web, open source, and its eventual impact on the software industry in general. Greg is scheduled to attend and/or speak at several more conferences over the next few months, answering similar questions. He has nothing to report on the Foundation at this time... we appear to continue running on all cylinders with rapid growth and interest, and the various committees appear to be operating properly and covering their areas of responsibility.
Greg noted that he's been speaking at a few conferences lately, talking about the ASF (and other things). He suggested that when people give talks about the ASF, that they contact the PRC so the word can get spread.
Greg had nothing to report at this time.
Greg had nothing too much to report. He remains happy with the progress of the foundation.
Nothing to report for the short time since our last meeting.
Over the past month, the Foundation has seen a couple challenges related to the Incubator and to our position around patent grants in our CLAs. The Incubator has been getting a lot of projects, and some of them seem quite static or even nearly unwilling to leave. In an informal Board meeting at ApacheCon, the Board came up with a slight change in reporting for the Incubator which will hopefully focus the podlings on their goal. Regarding the patents, discussion continues on the legal minutae and interpretation of the language in our CLAs. It is a very difficult problem, especially in terms of getting some of the legal folks to contribute solid opinion in writing. It was further reported that a main concern is the amount of legal discussions being held offlist. Efforts will be made to strongly encourage our legal counsel to use the mailing lists more often.
Greg said that there was very little to report. He asked if anyone had questions about any issues or topics, and no one did.
The organization continues to move forward with its business. There have been no significant discussions at the Board level, and only a bit at the Members level. The attention of a number of Directors has been focused on the Geronimo project and the PRC, but the Vice Presidents have been handling the situations responsibly and appropriately.
Greg reports that he has been offline or otherwise swamped at work during the few weeks since the last board meeting. He has nothing to report.
Greg had very little to report on, other than he had had spoken at a conference about the ASF.
Greg reported that the board expressed its support for Ken's position regarding the changes and actions taken by Ken regarding the Geronimo PMC (change to RTC and suspension of PMC member status for many people). Greg also reported that it appears that there are 27 Google Summer Of Code projects for the ASF.
Greg reported that all has been pretty quiet. He did note his keynote at EclipseCon, in which we talked about the ASF and Open Source in general.
As with the past few months, much of the activity of the Directors has been advising our PMCs (such as Geronimo, Incubator, and others). I believe this is the right place for us to be. A number of PMCs have been asking for legal opinions and policy, which our VP of Legal Affairs has been working through. A discussion about security disclosure policy generated a long thread on the board list, but that list has been relatively quiet the past month. In a broader sense, the ASF appears healthy, and given this month's Treasurer's report, we're in good financial shape.
Greg reported that in general the board has been quiet, as have any ASF issues which may require board attention. It was noted that some issues, such as the mandate of the PRC, as well as the operation and health of the Geronimo and Incubator PMCs have been "pushed down" to the PMC and member level, since they do not, as yet, require direct board action.
Over the past month, the Foundation has performed its annual navel-gazing. This time, triggered by a multitude of donations arriving within the Incubator. Discussion moved from there to the Members list and even some bits on the PRC list. The net result is some further thoughts on growth, relationships with corporations, and new policies/procedures within the Incubator and the PRC. While these can take a lot of time and energy, we usually come out ahead. Step by step, we're continuing to move the Foundation in directions that will enable us to provide great products to our ever-increasing user community.
Greg reported that since the members meeting, there was no other additional information to report.
Greg reported that he had nothing to report.
Apache activities and processes appear to be operating as we would expect and hope. Most items are being handled by the PMCs and other committees as appropriate. The Board has a couple major outstanding items to take care of (working with the Geronimo PMC and the Treasurer transition).
This past month, I attended the FOSSSL conference where I was invited to give a keynote about the Foundation. This is about the third time that I've given such a talk, and I've been finding that there is a lot of interest in how we operate, what we do, where Apache, and Open Source in general, are heading, and what sort of role we play in the larger community. I have found these types of talks are very good for the Foundation in spreading awareness and in helping to fulfill our missions around outreach and education. There are some high-level issues around licensing, intellectual property, and community. Each of these are being handled at the appropriate level, with the right stakeholders.
Lately, I've been thinking a lot about the "size" of the ASF. Many aspects of size can be (and are) handled just fine. Things like code size, a high traffic site, lots of email, and hardware capacity are all managed fine. However, we are now seeing issues around communication and project growth. As communities grow, consensus can be harder to reach. As a consensus-driven organization, growth can severely hamper what we are trying to accomplish. The number of stakeholders increases and/or the number of people willing to "pitch in" serve to slow down or derail effective consensus gathering. The typical response is to appoint an authority who can attempt to gather consenus, but can decide by fiat when needed. This runs counter to our culture, so another solution may be needed (with a requisite amount of navel-gazing to reach that point). Project growth places a transient burden on our infrastructure team, but it places a continuous, non-terminating burden on the Board to review those projects' quarterly reports. This burden is already quite noticable during Board meetings, and it will simply continue to grow. New structure may be required to handle the growth, and we have talked about possibilities. As an experiment to increase efficiency of review during Board meetings, this month we will assign Directors to shepherd reports during the meeting. All Directors are responsible for all reports, but this extra focus should ensure Directors are truly involved, and it will ensure that all reports get specific, detailed attention.
A report was expected, but not received
The Board held an IRC conference to talk about many issues that are confronting the ASF at this time. No decisions were made in private -- the ideas from the meeting have been incorporated into this agenda. A large part of the discussion, and a concern for the ASF, is better management of legal issues. During the past month, we have also been welcoming our new members into the ASF.
The Membership has been very active over the past few weeks, in preparation for the upcoming Members meeting. A lot of discussion has gone into what the Members would like to see from the people elected to the Board, particularly in terms of their views on hiring an Executive Director (and/or other staff positions at the ASF). This also led into a long discussion of an ED role, its impact on the ASF, and what Members would like to do about it. This involvement and discussion among the Members is refereshing, as the mailing list is usually quite idle. A lot of discussion also occurred around licensing for the new Apache Harmony project, particularly with respect to the GNU Classpath project. The topics varied, but a lot of it came down to a couple questions: what do we want from Harmony [in terms of licensing], and how does Classpath satisfy (or not) those needs? The Harmony team has moved those discussions to the development list to refine the answers before seeking further input on licensing from the Board and our legal team.
Greg reported that the foundation was moving along "fine" with a good separation of concerns.
Greg reported that there was nothing really to report.
It has been a relatively quiet month since our last Board meeting. Much of the "ASF as an entity" work has focused around licensing discussions with the FSF, and PRC interactions with other organizations (e.g. Jinx). The general ASF activity level continues apace, with several projects applying for top-level status this month.
Greg reported that there was really very little to report. Robyn had created the required paperwork to inform the US Patent and Trademark Office of the change of Lawyer of Record for the SPAMASSASSIN trademark application; Greg signed this and the paperwork was submitted.
Greg reported that, in general, things were "quiet" regarding the ASF with no problems or issues. He did note that there has been discussions regarding LGPL, and how it interacts and affects ASF projects, the Apache License and how it is interpreted within Java usage.
Greg stated that there was really nothing to report, over and beyond what was reported at the ASF Members Meeting. In general, the ASF was meeting some challenges, and operating well.
The ASF appears to be moving along, producing code and resolving other issues, as we would hope and expect.
The past month seems to be characterized by continuing legal-related and policy issues. From determining whether we're okay with Playboy being a mirror, to taking positions against patent-encumbered standards, to handling of CLAs, author tags, copyright lines, patents, and the list goes on. I find it very disappointing just how much time is going into legal stuff nowadays. My personal feeling is that we are falling too far into the "cover our ass" territory. I believe that part of this is an effort to protect a limited few of our downstream consumers rather than the public at large; thus, I feel that our time tradeoffs are not being as publicly-minded as we could be. My preference would be to see us back up and reassess the extent and the limits of what we are attempting to accomplish with our legal arrangements; that we should review them with an eye towards maximizing efficiency for ourselves and the public; that we should set a looser regime and get back to coding.
The ASF has been busy over the past month with a number of legal issues. We're getting bigger and broader and running into more of these issues. Thankfully, many of them are cumulative and contribute towards a long-term solution rather than many interruptive point-by-point issues. We have also spent a good amount of time looking at where we want the ASf to go, what kinds of interactions we want to have with corporations, and what kind of information flow (or limitations) we want to have. The discussion has been very good, and is ongoing. An interesting point is that a good number of Members have been getting involved in the discussion about the broader goals of the ASF. The ASF seems to be on a good track although it appears that we're bulging a bit at the seams. If we get some better tools, then we'll probably be able to scale a bit better, but it is certainly interesting to deal with "too big" issues.
Greg reported that most recent activity had been in Avalon, Incubator, Infrastructure and JCP-related, with the biggest being Avalon and JCP. Avalon appears to be correcting itself due to a committer voluntarily resigning from PMC and relinquishing commit rights. Therefore, Avalon seems to be moving forward, working on next steps, and he feels that no board action is required at this time. The JCP activity was noted to be specific to the ASFs J2EE SATCK license, and deferred comment to later as it was a discussion point for the board meeting. Sam noted that there was extensive discussion about the role of the board in proposing new projects. Agreement by Greg with Dirk suggesting and taking as action item making this a discussion point for the next members meeting. Jim noted we need to find a balance between dividing between members and board.
Prefacing his comments with the observation that there was nothing of significant interest to report, Greg reported that the agreement with Robin Wagner for pro-bono legal services has been concluded. She will be providing 10 hours per month pro-bono, and then bill at a rate of $150 per hour for work beyond the 10 hours. Greg will be committing the final agreement to the Foundation CVS. Also, there are three official contacts, currently Greg, Brian and Geir. Brian suggested that we ensure transparency by posting copies of traffic between the ASF and Robin to the legal mailing list. There was general agreement, and Dirk agreed to provide help in decrypting all CC-ed messages to plaintext for list distribution automatically. Greg is going to take further discussion of this offline to work out the mechanics of this process with Dirk, Robin and the three official contacts. There were no further questions for comments for Greg.
Greg reported that, as the directors know, the ASF held a members meeting on May 18th in order to bring the members up to speed on any ASF related news, elect new members and elect a new board. The directors in attendance constitute the new board. Greg noted that, all in all, the meeting went well. There was some discussion over the actual mechanics of the meeting, and such topics as proxies when using the online voting tool (eg: Why even designate a proxy). This would be brought up and discussed on the members mailing list. Greg also reported that he was pleased to see the Avalon project working to address the problems and issues that it had suffered from in the past. He did note that it will be interesting to see how the formation of the ASF Excaliber PMC, if approved, would affect Avalon. Greg's final topic was concerning the generation of a marketing plan for the ASF, in anticipation of the formation of the Public Relations committee. A rough draft will be written and review and feedback will be requested of the board and, eventually, the members.
Greg reported that the ASF is "moving along" and his resources have been directed at our relationship with lawyer Robin Wagner. Robin is still happy to formalise a pro-bono relationship with the ASF and increase the number of hours she is able to spend. There was some discussion about the creation of a new list for the legal discussions.
A lot of progress has been made on the legal front. We have switched over to the new 2.0 license, and we've greatly increased our CLA coverage. There has also been a lot of discussion over the past month regarding copyrights, author tags, and licensing (and incorporating non-ASF code). With all of this, it might be time to sit back and take a breath.
Greg reported that he has been pleased with the current status of the foundation. He noted the number of PMCs being started (either via the Incubator or moving up to TLPs), which indicates a healthy and growing community.
Activity has been relatively low over the past month, mostly due to the holidays. Things have started to pick up again. Looking back to our September meeting, we noted the Incubator had a "low energy level". Today, the Incubator is one of the most active projects at the ASF. From a legal standpoint, things have been relatively quiet. Organizationally, we have a couple PMCs who wish to change their Chairs, but otherwise things seem to be quiet.
Greg reported that the PMCs seem more active than they were 6-12 months ago and appear to be on track and moving in the right direction. The Jakarta PMC has been especially busy in the last month working on increasing their oversight.
Defaulted to presentation given at the Members' meeting earlier that night.
Greg reported that he was quite busy of the last month on non-ASF related items. As such, he experienced some delay in getting in touch with Jason van Zyl and Doug MacEachern regarding the Maven and Perl projects, respectively. Other than that, things had been quiet.
Things keep marching along quite well. The infrastructure team has lately "come into their own" and is doing a fantastic job. The new Geronimo podling is struggling with process questions, mostly based on the "httpd vs Jakarta" question, but also because their Incubation shepherds are not providing adequate guidance. This raises two questions to the Board: 1) should we be concerned about unifying some/all aspects of PMCs' operations, charters, and governance? 2) is there anything the Board can do to increase the productivity/operation of the Incubation process? There has also been some unsettling confusion around the WSRP4J and Pluto projects and their incubation, along with some questions relating to the existing Jetspeed project. The DB Project has finally started seeing some real traction which is great, given their long period of low-level activity. Commons is suffering some of the same issues, although a project (serf) has finally moved into the project. It will be interesting to see if the presence of code can stimulate Commons into some activity (which could be a learning point for the future).
Greg reported that the big news was the launch of the J2EE/Geronomi project under the Incubator. There was significant interest in the project and a lot of good work had already been done. Greg reported that there was also some good discussion regarding members' roles in the foundation.
Greg reported that, organizationally, things are quiet within the ASF. Not to say that there is not continued healthy discussion within the ASF, notably on members@ and licensing@, but that there are no items of concern. Greg was reminded that the PHP group was awaiting some sort of "write-up" on what needs to occur for the PHP project to become more inline with other ASF projects. This was mentioned during some offline discussions at LinuxTag.
Greg reported that we now have 110 members, and that he was pleased with the way the IRC members meeting went. He observed that as membership increases, IRC meetings are the way forward. Ken noted that the Avalon PMC appeared to be running more smoothly.
Greg reported that he was pleased with the state of the ASF. The PMCs have been taking a very active role in managing their respective projects, while at the same time fostering a healthy development environment.
Greg reported that he was quite pleased with the amount of activity, especially under Avalon. The code base was being significantly cleaned up to avoid non-ASF code as well as "single person" code. Greg also expressed some concern that the board received no PMC reports. He had hoped that PMC chairs would have remembered the schedule for reports. Greg indicated that he would continue to send out reminders in the future.
Greg reported that, in general, the individual PMCs were continuing to work well, requiring no board intervention. Greg brought the board up-to-date regarding the status of Peter Donald; the Avalon PMC is considering whether to accept Mr. Donald back into the project. Greg also reported that a growing question among some PMCs is an "old" one: what is a member and what exactly constitutes participation specifically *as* a member.
Greg reported that he mostly worked with Jakarta issues, in particular, Maven.
Greg reported on the refactoring of the XML Project and was mostly pleased with the current status of most of the ASF projects.
Greg reported that current ASF status was OK. He was pleased with the start of Ant and the "restart" of Avalon. He expressed some concern over the status of the Incubator project. Jim noted that he had sent out an email to Incubator that the general consensus of the PMC was that they were at a stage where they could start accepting new products, with Tapestry likely being the first one.
Greg noted the discussion over the ASF reorganization, and the possible impacts in organization, infrastructure and community. Greg also noted a concern over the potential of the ASF hosting "rogue" code and that all PMCs should be vigilent.
The Foundation is quite healthy overall, with a continuing interest and growth in our projects and contributors. There have been some challenges recently, however, in that our growth seems to have exceeded our current capacity for managing the social aspects of the communities. Some committers don't really understand what the ASF is all about, and even worse, some do not seem to understand our basic ideals of community and collaborative development ("the Apache Way" to use an oft-bandied-about term). Over the past couple months, this has sparked an interest in two new top-level projects (Commons and Incubator) as ways to improve our ability to manage projects and to create healthy communitys. Meanwhile, a large number of people have come together to look hard at our organization and several reorganization proposals are being formed and discussed. This is a great process, and has brought together a number of people who don't normally work together. However, it has also hilited some of the misunderstandings and demonstrated that some amount of reorg is needed for the ASF to continue on its mission of building and supporting development communities.
Roy noted that the Annual Meeting of the ASF Membership was held on May 21, 2002 via irc. Details of the meeting can be found in the 'foundation' CVS tree under Meetings/20020521. Roy noted that he was not aware of any litigation against the ASF.
Roy has no news to report
Roy reported that he is continuing his investigation into a "virtual office" setup for the ASF. Regarding the Oracle Small Business solution, it is actually NetLedger which provides the service. Further investigation is being performed. Roy also reported that he will follow-up with the Contributor Logo email of last meeting.
Roy reported on the new CVS repository 'board'. His expectation is that it be used as a "scratch space" for board related items, that don't entail significant amounts of email. The STATUS file will be kept up to date, and all board members are urged to use the repository and STATUS file as needed.
Roy reported that he had more time available to focus on the ASF. First on his agenda was to update the ASF site to reflect reality.
There have been no legal challenges to the Foundation's actions or activities. Board meetings have slowed down due to the difficulty of scheduling a synchronous meeting with our busy schedules, and due to our inability to accomplish things asynchronously on the board list without a hard deadline. We need to find a solution that works on a reliable basis, such as a shorter bi-weekly meeting. I have been attempting to build a secure website and voting forum for use by the board, projects, and members of the Foundation, but have been hampered by the lack of a non-firewalled network connection and the need for a dedicated machine only accessible by ASF members. Suggestions are welcome. The next two months will be very busy for me due to my deadline for finishing the dissertation [final defense August 10, final signed copy by September 13]. In discussion, Brian suggested that we use locus.apache.org as the secure website and simply use group assignment to control access. Further discussion of this will take place on the board mail list.
Roy reported that he was preparing for the member's meeting scheduled for the Saturday after ApacheCon. He was formulating the agenda and the new member list and ballot. Roy also reported that hoped that the member's meeting would provide an opportunity to discuss budgeting. Roy also reported his new role as Chief Scientist at eBuilt.