Community-led development "The Apache Way"
This was extracted (@ 2021-06-16 22:10) from a list of minutes
which have been approved by the Board.
Please Note The Board typically approves the minutes of the previous meeting at the beginning of every Board meeting; therefore, the list below does not normally contain details from the minutes of the most recent Board meeting.
Meeting times vary, the exact schedule is available to ASF Members and Officers, search for "calendar" in the Foundation's private index page (svn:foundation/private-index.html).
It's been a relatively quiet month. The only material item of note is that I received a CoC complaint; though it seems the project is resolving the issue on their own. I continue to be happy with the work from the Treasurer's Office to provide us with a greater measure of controls while dramatically increasing visibility and flexibility. The latest addition of Ramp provides even greater insight to what each card is spending as well as making it a lot easier for virtual or physical cards to be issued. Update from verbal report during the board meeting: Gris Cuevas has resigned as VP D&I. After two years, Gris has done a ton of work to help us better understand the scope of diversity issues at the ASF, and I appreciate all the work and believe she has left us in a better place due to that work. I’ve appointed Katia Rojas as VP, Diversity & Inclusion. Katia has been involved in a lot of the D&I work and is picking up additional responsibilities as part of this transition. Expect more in next month’s board report. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
It's been a busy month for me from a non-ASF perspective. However the bulk of my month's ASF activity was budget-related. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
Most of my work this month has been spent with the budget. While it's not 100% final, it's in relatively good shape and hence I've added a discussion item to the agenda. I've received and dealt with some regulatory matters for the state of Tennessee and the City of Wilmington. In addition, I've spent some time with Ruth Suehle around division of our labor and strategic items we want to tackle for the coming fiscal year. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
I continued to spend time working on a single incident that generated multiple code of conduct complaints. I am behind on overall budget work, but most of the officers representing the bulk of the budget have pushed their draft requests forward. I had hoped to have a first pass ready for this board meeting but failed to meet that. Expect to see more on operations@ this week. Otherwise, things look to be running relatively well. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
As we close out CY2020 and open CY2021 the Fundraising folks pulled together an impressive month taking advantage of the end of fiscal year for a number of our sponsors. I've spent some time this past month working with the Treasurer on the initiation of our TD Bank account and services. We have an ongoing Code of Conduct issue that's being worked and a fresh complaint that arrived shortly before drafting this report. We've filed the 2021 Annual Report with the state of Delaware as required to keep our corporation status active. I'm just starting work on the budget, and more coming on that as we enter February. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
This month has been busy. We successfully moved all of our employees to a new Professional Employer Organization (PEO) thanks to the ongoing work of Greg Stein. By the time of the Board meeting we should have completed the first pay cycle with the new PEO. We've additionally submitted our business license request to the city of Wilmington, DE and that has been approved. I've been working to help the Treasurer mitigate a single point of failure risk for banking by working on opening a backup account at another institution. The minimum paperwork is in place, but we are waiting for some options to mirror our service offering from Citizens. Tom Pappas has tendered his resignation as VP Finance. At present, I don't have plans to make an immediate replacement. I've also, with the help of several others, been dealing with a code of conduct complaint. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
From an administrative perspective the past month has been busy. Headquarters location has been settled. This took longer than expected due to exploring the potential for our HQ location to be in another state. The statutory requirements varied from state to state on whether we'd have to register as a foreign corp in that state, the rules around charities soliciting funds, and municipal business license requirements. Ultimately, the path of least resistance was for us to use a Headquarters service located in Delaware. Because we are a Delaware corp, no foreign entity registration is required. Our reporting and licensing requirements stay the same and we add a zero cost municipal business license filing to the mix. Our new corporate address is: The Apache Software Foundation 1000 N West Street, Suite 1200 Wilmington, DE 19801 Our new phone number is: +1.302.295.4884 I've tasked our attorney to handle the business license registration and the upcoming (March) Delaware Annual Report. Tom helped us swap out our point person for our registered agent service. There are now three points of contact at the ASF who have accounts in Incorp's system for reporting deadlines and service of process. We also swapped out payment methods from a Virtual corporate card to one of the ASF's credit cards. I've also been working with Greg on PEO switch - primarily focused on benefits for our employees, though Greg is doing the bulk of the heavy lifting in collecting information and agreements and attending the majority of the vendor meetings. This remains the highest priority task as it effects our employees. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
I attended ApacheCon@Home and gave a keynote presentation. It's been and remains a busy month. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
This month was relatively quiet. I received and handled one code of conduct complaint. I intend, shortly after this report is submitted, to appoint Christian Grobmeier as VP, Data Privacy. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
This month has been relatively busy with a lot of administrative activity. The Fedora project approached us with a need for a venue for their virtual conference which they weren't going to be able to acquire on schedule on their own. Their primary fiscal sponsor, Red Hat, agreed to compensate us for our cost if we could make our recently contracted platform available. Due to Rich having a conflict of interest, he brought the matter to me. I consulted the contract, Myrle Krantz as Treasurer and Tom Pappas in his role at Virtual were brought into the conversation and Tom sought additional guidance from our CPA. After clearing those hurdles I approved the request as a zero-cost way to help another open source community. This month we also spoke with a number of attorneys and engaged one boutique firm who can be on call for administrative matters similar to that of a in-house general counsel. (The attorney we used in the ApacheCon matter specialized in real estate and hospitality matters which was especially needful in that case, but that area isn't our primary need.) Since then we've initiated one contract review matter. This is following on the need Operations has for basic attorney functions and direction we received from VP Legal to source this function on our own. Thanks to help from Tom, we solicited and executed on renewals for D&O insurance and have received our confirmation of insurance. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
I received 4 code of conduct complaints this month. Conflict of Interest Impact =========================== The conflict of interest process continues to generate work. While I am sure that we'll end up being faster and more aware of processes the next go around, I still suspect that it will take us 3+ months to be able to properly execute, at least for volunteers, who can't devote their full-time energy to this. The upside is that there are very few officers who have conflicts that will require us to move through the process. Still outstanding on the process front is the canonical way to report conflicts and for conflicts to be reviewed. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
Overall things appear to be running relatively smoothly given the disruption past months have provided. Conferences has finished canceling all of the in-person events. We've run into a situation where we had an unpaid invoice from our legal vendor from last FY. We've now paid that, but it's highlighted that while we've had litigation expenses in the past, we've typically charged them against the Brand Management budget. Thus we have some unplanned litigation expenses that are for non-trivial amounts. The fact that it isn't budgeted is my fault. I've asked Myrle and Virtual to ensure that we have a litigation expenses GL account going forward and we'll try and track backwards historically and figure out what we should budget going forward, though I'll note that the cost is likely to be highly variable as it is dependent on the actions of outside parties. We've also begun sending contracts out for legal review before signing. As a user, I've been thrilled with the work on our new AP system. It's made it much more transparent and obvious what is outstanding, who is approving, etc. It also appears, from my vantage point, to be better for our vendors as well. They have a dedicated email address to send invoices to, and rather than pay them once per month, they can be actioned faster. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
This month has largely been spent focusing on rebuilding the budget to deal with the impact of the pandemic. This month has uncovered some contract issues that have led me to believe we should be getting a bit more review of contracts that have a material impact on us. I broached this subject at the Ops meeting on the 13th. Ruth is going to end up leading the charge on this and we're working with Roman as VP Legal to understand how we might streamline this function. Expect more details on this in the coming month on the operations list. I've also spent a small bit of time working to get Ruth up to speed as EVP. She's settling into the work well and picking up plenty of things. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
At this point, David is effectively (in both senses of the word) operating as President. I am ready to step down as President as soon as the board is ready to name my replacement. It is my recommendation that the board does so at the time of the April board meeting, and it is my further recommendation that David be named as my replacement. If the board chooses not to do this at this time, I am willing to continue for a short while, and will continue to defer to David to the extent possible. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as ASF President these past three plus years. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
As a reminder, I would like David Nalley to be considered the acting President at this time. I've forwarded on the rare emails I have received as President to David, and have not noted any problems that have occurred due to my deferring to David. To the contrary, I've been very pleased with the changes he has already instituted, in particular the monthly operations calls and the more rigorous checking that expenses that are incurred are actually charged against the right line items in the budget. At the present time, I'm assuming that the official changes in positions will be done by the new board. I don't foresee that being a problem. I contributed to the COI policy that is being drafted and am supportive of its adoption. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
We continue to be on track to be on budget, modulo some timing issues of sponsor payments. No officers in operations are reporting issues requiring board attention. I'm continuing to transition responsibilities to the EVP in preparation for my stepping down. I'm open to discussion as to when it would be best to step down - should it be the current board or the next board that names my replacement? My recommendation for my replacement continues to be David Nalley. Should the current board wish to defer this transition to the next board, my plans are to have David effectively acting as the President by the next board meeting, with me supporting him. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9. @David: determine top ten CI issues affecting projects
Finances again seem to be on track, with expenditures overall under budget and income now back on track and converging on plan. Conferences is the lone area that is exceeding budget, but that was a known risk, shared with the board before it occurred, and amply covered by other underspending. All areas operating normally. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 9.
Financially, expenses are more comfortably under-running budget than they were last month; but income continues to under-run. It looks like it will work out, but perhaps we should plan differently next year. Highlights for areas that I cover (David covers infra and TAC), where highlights are things that are notably different than last month: - Central services is working on a new landing page and on a number of updates to existing pages. - http://events.apache.org now shows an impressive line up of 2020 events - Diversity survey launched and has received over 500 results to date - Our first Outreachy intern has been selected In the new year, I'll be looking to re-balance work with David. One thing we have tentative agreement on is his taking the lead on the FY21 budget. Additionally, I expect that David will take the lead in the oversight of the Data Privacy role, should that resolution be passed in its current form. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8. @Gavin: document results of fundraising/TAC call
Regarding finances, "we are on pace to meet our budget". This is a quite notable change from previous months. Not a cause for concern, but definitely something to watch. Highlights from various areas: * Brand management is essentially treating direct to TLP projects the same as podlings for the purposes of name searches at this point. * Fundraising has modified its link policy to include rel="sponsored" on all links going forward. * Marketing and Publicity helped drive the Petri faq. * M&P published the Q1 report for FY2020 https://s.apache.org/a6s40 * ApacheCon NA 2020 is tentatively the last week in September in New Orleans. Four (and possibly more) roadshows are in various stages of planning. * Conferences has also assumed responsibility for small event planning. * A new photos.apachecon.com site is live. * New Expected time for a full report on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion analysis is May. Comms plan for D&I committee is on hold due to bandwidth to work on it and the survey. Focusing on the survey first. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
Quiet month. Which is a good thing. Financially, we continue to be we ahead of plan, though timing considerations may reduce this. I don't see anything to be concerned about, though we continue to monitor this. See also: EVP report. No issues for the board in Brand Management, Fundraising, Marketing and Publicity, Travel Assistance, or Finance. Highlights: * Consolidation of an ASF and Targeted Platinum sponsorship has been finalized * A targeted sponsorship for D&I was received and processed * We continue to build our Central Services support team. * ApacheCon Europe will be held in Berlin next week. Sponsorship sales remain an issue. * There is one roadshow (Seattle) in planning. * ACNA 19 Insurance Completed and filed Sales tax exemption. No report received from D&I (Gris is offline for two weeks), but as Craig noted, a contract was signed with Bitergia. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
Financially we are ahead on revenue and behind on expenses. Timing considerations may moderate this a bit, but we are doing well. The most notable activity this month was ACNA which involved the coordination of a number of operational areas. Otherwise a mostly quiet month, where quiet is good. No significant issues in Brand Management, Marketing and Publicity, Finance, and Diversity and Inclusion. Fundraising is exploring changing no-follow policy for bronze sponsors in response to a blog entry describing the ASF as selling links for SEO purposes. Conferences is exploring ways to manage costs for the ACEU. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8. @Roman: Update docs around legal FAQ
Financially, we are doing very well even after taking into consideration timing considerations, which generally are breaking in our favor at this time making the picture look even better. Brand management responded to four queries, processed four registrations, and resolved one infringement. Fundraising is operating smoothly, and focusing on restructuring and conference sponsors. Marketing and publicity focused on cross-committee, graphics, and events liaisons, while also producing an annual report as well as handling a number of informal announcements and one analyst query. ACNA is coming together, with strong sponsorship, though possibly falling a bit short on attendees. ACEU is tying up loose ends. Finance renewed D&O and is working closely with conferences and fundraising. Diversity and Inclusion made progress on each of its three initiatives, outlined a moderation policy, and added one new committee member Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
Financially, we are starting off as we have now for years, ahead on income and behind on spending. As always, the caveat this early in the year is that timing of payments affects these results. Quiet month for Brand Management Fundraising has secured additional sponsors and is pursuing process improvements. In addition to keeping on top of things and having a pipeline of future announcements, Marketing and Publicity has begun on the new tasks recently approved in the FY20 budget. Finance, Conferences, and Marketing & Publicity continue to work closely together. Diversity and Inclusion has begun reporting on each of the three initiatives identified in the budget request. Conferences is wrapping up last minute details for ACNA. Sponsorship levels for ACEU to date is a concern. --- Meta-governance discussions Despite the resolution to establish the position of VP, Diversity and Inclusion being rescinded and replaced, confusion continues. This is impacting the ability of the committee that Gris established to get on with their important work. As I did last month, I will once again state that unless and until I hear otherwise, I will assume that the board agrees to the following: * VP's reporting to the President can add or remove members of any committees that they oversee, and can even create and disband entire committees, all without prior board approval. * VP's reporting to the President (or anybody they delegate to do so) can place any individual on moderation if they feel that they need to do so to improve the tone and effectiveness of their lists. Similarly, the President and EVP can do that for lists like operations@. * VP's reporting to the President, as well as the President and EVP, can talk to third parties using media such as telephones and videoconferences without being required to invite or even provide prior notification to others. If I'm incorrect in any of these assumptions, I ask the board to speak up now. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8. @Roman: Discuss metagovernance of VPs
Much of this past month has been spent on cat herding related to the budget; syncing with our new EVP; clarifying leadership expectations for any potential Africa events in 2020-21; diversity and inclusion; and meta governance discussions. --- Budget: Biggest change is the more accurate picture for conferences in terms of both income and expenses. This shows a net investment (i.e. expense) of 160K mostly for big conferences with some additional roadshows and small events. Net risk may be a small multiple of this number, but I believe it is containable. Next biggest change is Marketing and Publicity which kept their base services to the same level as last year, but added anniversary promotions and central services. Next comes infrastructure where the biggest change is staffing, and the biggest factor in this was the decision to fill open head count with more senior people. Then comes Travel Assistance with a proposal to support committers travel. A fifth major change is the introduction of Diversity and Inclusion expenses, which is partially offset by a targeted donation which Daniel and Gris are working through. This consists of roughly equal budgets for Survey Design, Contributor Experience Research, and Outreachy funding. As it is an entirely new budget item, I encourage the board to consider the request carefully. Overall, this is a lot of change with respect to the FY24 projections, but represents a prudent response to the results of those projections: we projected a surplus and decided that we should instead be working to spend down our ample cash reserves, a direction that was validated at our recent F2F board meeting. This does total a whopping $520K projected deficit with potential more risk from conferences. --- President/EVP split I met several times with David. We continue to have a similar outlook and approach. As opposed to the relatively static split of responsibilities I had with Ross, the division will be more dynamic between David and I. At the moment, I'm focusing on finances and D&I, he's covering infrastructure and TAC, and everything else will be done on a case by case basis. Over time we expect this to be a sliding scale, with David taking primary role over more over time. By early next year I expect David will be primary on most things, and by mid next year I expect to be formally stepping down. I want to emphasize that none of these dates are cast in stone, but if they move, at most I expect they will move by a handful of months at most. Nor does this represent any dissatisfaction I have in the role, it just represents my belief that rotation is good both for the individual and the foundation. --- Potential Africa events There has been confusion about the level of official approval, appointment of leadership, and state of progress towards potential ASF hosted or sponsored events in Africa in 2021. The current state is that all that has occurred is explorations, nothing has been approved, and no leaders have been appointed. Despite this, we continue to hope that we can work towards having one or more Africa events in the upcoming years. --- Diversity and Inclusion The first month has focused mostly on infrastructure setup and the like. There has been some minor growing pains in the committee, which is totally expected. This is a group of people, many of which hadn't previously worked with each other, some of which had only seen one way of doing things and not realizing that there is much variety in how things are done. Despite short deadlines and other commitments, both a board report and a budget request were posted. In both cases, the first time is the hardest, it should get easier as time progresses and process improvements are incorporated. --- Meta-governance The Apache bylaws state "The officers of the corporation and the members of each existing Project Management Committee shall be appointed by the Board of Directors or appointed by an officer empowered by the Board to make such appointment" yet there has been continuing confusion as to whether the board has, in fact, empowered anybody else to make such appointments, and even whether the board can do so. Unless and until I hear otherwise, I will assume that the board has not delegated the creation or removal of VP roles outside of the narrow exception created for naming VP, Sponsor Relations following the process defined for the creation of that role. I will, however, assume that any and all roles that have been identified as serving at the direction of the President serve at the pleasure of the person currently occupying the role of President. I will further assume that creation, maintenance, and even destruction of any committees by officers reporting into the President do not require prior approval by the board. If I'm incorrect in any of these assumptions, I ask the board to speak up now. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 8.
I've posted a draft budget as a discussion item. I don't think it is fair or appropriate to ask for it to be approved at this time. My ideal is that we should do the budget in two passes: one a rough cut where we identify priorities, and then a second pass where we commit to expenses. That is the basis for the 5 year projection and 1 year budget rhythm. This failed for a number of reasons, all of which point back to me needing to make the process more clear. The key failure was where in previous years we had projected significant deficits and that suggested fiscal conservationism in what we attempted to do, this time we projected basically a balanced budget and large bank balance. So I requested that people come forward with their wish lists, which took longer than expected. Unfortunately, once it arrived the 1 year projection did not line up with the 5 year plan: it once again showed a significant deficit. Another complicating factor is that my instructions were unclear. Some broke out wish list items. Others included them in their FY20 budget requests. This needs to be sorted out. The good news is that we continue to be acting fiscally responsibly, and we continue to have a substantial bank balance. There is no need to rush a budget. - - - Brand management is seeking review of a downstream distribution policy. Sponsor Ambassadors are current in Fundraising; working with Virtual on business development/growth As always, Marketing and Publicity is not only chugging along, but providing invaluable assistance in fundraising and conferences No issues in infrastructure Conferences are doing well Travel Assistance has gotten to a late start, but I've chatted with Gavin and there should be progress by the board meeting. - - - Much of the effort this month has surrounded supporting the proposal for a Diversity and Inclusion President's committee. I'm sad to see that this contributed to Ross's need to step down. I'm recommending David Nalley as his replacement. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Despite 4 of the 7 operations reports not being posted at the time of this writing, I believe all areas are operating normally and without any items requiring board attention. Despite a late start, quite a number of good ideas have been posted for potential FY20 budget items, enough so that I believe that the board will need to prioritize the list. A budget proposal will be submitted at the May board meeting. A proposal for a Diversity and Inclusion President's committee is being drafted, again targeting the May board meeting. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Items requiring board attention ------------------------------- Marketing & Publicity has a two proposals for substantial, one time investments in recognition of the ASF's 20th anniversary. If there aren't objections, these items will be included in the upcoming FY20 budget where they will receive final approval at that time. Financials ---------- Overall, we are continuing our pattern of under-running expenses and over-producing on income. The under-running will slow down a bit with the hiring of new system administrators. Our finances are in such good shape that I approved of the pulling forward of 75% down payment on ACEU19 (which was approved by the board last month) into this fiscal year. The net effect of this will be to reduce the amount by which we overachieved this year in terms of budget and will reduce the amount requested in the FY20 budget. Summary ------- All areas operating normally. * Brand management responding to queries, working with council on registration and privately with third parties on infringements. * Fundraising have established a division of labor for working with existing sponsors, outreach, and events. This is resulting in timely renewals, invoicing, and sponsor contacts. Notably, there are two new sponsors. * Marketing and Publicity in addition to the normal media contacts, M&P is completing development of promotional materials, and working closely with event planners. As mentioned previously, there is a proposal for the board to evaluate. * Infrastructure completed hiring of two new system administrators. Otherwise operating normally with the exception of a bit of downtime on our TLP servers which has been resolved. * Conferences now has 4 events in flight; each with a dedicated volunteer event chair overseeing the report. * Travel assistance no report posted as of yet; I've sent an email reminding Gavin of this responsibility, and will follow up before the next meeting. * Finance there was an uptick of activity with respect to filings, fundraising, events, and meeting with banks. Most notably, there was a conversation with a possible wealth management firm. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Items Requiring Board Attention ------------------------------- ApacheCon EU 2019 proposal (agenda item 8A) Overall ------- Finances continue to be in an excellent position, with income exceeding both budget and previous year, and expenditures under budget and previous year. Notable changes from last month (all positive): we now have the number and ApacheCon US made a modest profit; per the advice of the firm preparing our tax returns, the Pineapple fund donation is treated as ordinary income and included in cash on hand; and at this late point in the fiscal year, a number of areas (most notably infrastructure) are running far enough behind that they can't reasonably catch up in expenditures. I'm not sure how to proceed in the five year projections. The only sized estimate that was produced in this past month was the estimate for ApacheCon EU 2019. There clearly is value in having such an event; we could conceivably again make a modest profit on the event, but that's not the point of the event; the remaining question is one of risk. There is a small chance that we could lose a relatively large sum of money, but even worst case, that amount is bounded and one that we could absorb. My input is that it is worth the risk. Brand Management ---------------- Operating normally, providing guidance, registering marks, and resolving potential infringements. No items requiring board attention. Fundraising ----------- Actively reorganizing; transferring that previously was done by Kevin to a mixture of paid staff and volunteers. Thanks go out to Kevin: we are in a much better place than we were two years ago, and wouldn't be where we are today without his hard work. The transition itself is going to take months to work out. While things look promising, there may be occasional bumps that are encountered along the way. My request is that we give the team the space to work things out, keeping intervention to a minimum. Finance ------- Again a month of research and review. I expect Finance to take a larger review in the FY20 budget. Generally, the categories we have date back to Justin's original budget. Tom is already working with groups proposing different categories to align with accounting principles. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7. Shane notes that it is difficult for projects to initiate cross-project proposals. Sam suggests that if there are proposals that might benefit just one project, then the projects could bring them forward. And then other projects might see how it might benefit them.
Issues for the board: * FY24 projections are posted as a discussion item. At this point, the perfect is the enemy of the good, and I feel that we have enough data to make a decision. More later in this report. * Last month, Rich asked for a Fundraising plan to be posted (possibly privately) by the previous board meeting. At the time, I said the timing wouldn't work out, and ultimately the plan was posted shortly after the meeting. Details are included in the fundraising report (some of them are indeed marked as private), and a link to the December discussion is present in the report. I believe that this satisfies the request. * Finance continues to be quiet. Unless I hear otherwise, I am going to assume that the board is OK with this. If anybody is concerned about something not happening on a schedule, please speak up. Details: Brand Management and Finance continue to operate smoothly. Fundraising continue to be ahead of plan in terms of revenue, and has posted a new long range approach to how work will be divided between volunteers and paid staff. I typically summarize the treasurer's report, but this time I will lift a direct quote: "At this point in the FY we are doing very well, ahead in Revenue and well under budget in Expenses, even taking timing variances into account." This brings us to the FY24 outlook. It shows a plan which includes a modest surplus. I am going to say that that presents a significant problem - in a good way. Given a track record of under-running expenses and producing more income than projected (as an example, the projection for the operating cash at the end of the fiscal year increased by $80K since last month), coupled with a healthy reserve, these numbers should be treated as highly conservative. In prior discussions, it was observed that (and I'm paraphrasing here): we don't solicit money for the purpose of sitting on it. This implies that now would be a good time to brainstorm on ideas for additional things that we should be investing in. This could be large, one time, expenses. Or smaller, ongoing expenses. I suggest that the board come up with (or collect and cull) ideas, and I'll see to it that operations help size the costs for these ideas. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall, we continue to be significantly under budget in expenditures, and ahead of plan in terms of income. Brand Management is operating normally, and Finance has been quiet. While I expect most areas input to to the upcoming five year plan to be incremental changes, this will not be the case for Fundraising where the team has been building an entirely new plan. Expect a draft of that plan to be posted to board@, most likely by the end of the year. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Financially, we continue to significantly exceed income (by more than we did last year), and significantly under-run expense (by less than we did last year). I neglected to kick off a bottoms up effort to collect input for a five year plan, which I will do by the end of the week. Other areas: Brand Management has a private matter seeking feedback from the board. Fundraising is operating smoothly and is exceeding targets. Low to average month in terms of activity for Marketing and Publicity, which generally is a good thing :-). Infrastructure is operating as expected, one notable item: the team will be moving from HipChat to Slack. Conferences has chosen a date for ApacheCon NA in Las Vegas, September 9th through 12th, 2019. DC road show has been postponed. Other events are still in the planning stages. No Travel Assistance activity this month as we are between conferences. Finance continues to work on an Endowment proposal. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
As we are moving into the year and past the point where timing considerations dominate, an all too common picture is emerging: fundraising exceeding targets, and spending below authorized levels. This argues for either a change in the way we do planning, or (and probably more likely) an increased tolerance for risk as we approve plans, particularly given our large buffer. Brand Management operating normally, tracking 26 issues. Marketing is also operating normally, and providing considerable extra value through cross-committee liaisons. ApacheCon was a success, four events are "in flight". TAC provided assistance to 10 individuals and the dinner was notable. Finance remains a quiet area. As of this posting, infrastructure hasn't posted. The fundraising report merits special attention (and in a good way) and the "Endowment Preliminary Research Report" part merits brief board meeting time this month. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Issues for the board: none There are a number of meta-issues that the board should be aware of / overseeing and that every ASF Member is welcome to chime in on. The common theme is documenting policy/procedure. Areas include credit cards, GDPR, expense guidelines, endorsement policy, and use of tools such as G Suite. There is continuing tweaks being made to the targeted sponsorship program. All are making progress, and I will continue to monitor each and prod as necessary should any one of them stall. Also coming up next month is a number of things: first results/recommendations on an Endowment, early input to a six month review of hiring of a Fundraiser, and input to the five year plan. Financial summary: income is on budget, expenses are under budget. Some of the under-budget expenses are due to timing considerations (TAC, Conferences) meaning that the money will be spent, just not yet. The other major expense under-run is infrastructure which is looking to hire. Brand Management is operating normally. Fundraising is on track. Event revenue as reported in the Treasurer's report is just over $70K, and in the Fundraising report is reported as about $174K. The difference is Accounts Receivable. Rich and Ruth are scrambling, but we need to do a better job in future events to make sure that potential revenue doesn't fall through the cracks. Finance is continuing to make slow but steady progress. I'll touch bases with Tom to ensure that we have what we need for next month. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall, expenditures are under budget, and income is too. The latter is attributable to timing issues, which by now we are good at identifying with precision. Still makes me nervous :-), but all signs are that we are still good. Brand Management remains under control with no board issues. Fundraising remains busy, again no board issues. Finance is off to a slow and deliberate start, with a meeting planned on Monday. Given the miscommunication last month, I asked that no endowment discussions with potential sponsors be held until this board meeting. Just so it is crystal clear: after today, I will be giving the green light to Daniel and Tom to have or approve discussions with potential sponsors with the explicit understanding that such discussions are limited in scope to refining and validating the content of a potential future proposal for the board review, currently targeted for September. This approval specifically EXCLUDES solicitation of funds. Other things to be aware of: the team is working with legal affairs to determine how GDPR will be implemented by the ASF. More details on this can be found in the Legal Affairs report. Separately, a discussion is underway on operations@ on a proposed set of ASF wide expense guidelines. A concrete proposal has been made, and there are a number of "red lines" on the document. This work will continue, with no concrete target date yet for completion. All ASF members and officers are welcome to participate. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Issues for the Board ==================== See VP, Finance resolution. Overall ======= Income running under plan. Expenses running slightly under plan. Neither are a concern. Expenses are easier to plan for and we consistently under-run the plan. Income is notoriously difficult to determine when individual donations will be received, so it will require a quarter or two before we can determine any real trends. Brand Management ================ There are currently 36 tasks being tracked/monitored by the brand management team. Mostly "business as usual". Most notable: Registrations have been submitted in the US for APACHE. Fundraising =========== Significant cycles spent on endowment. Details in the report. Quick overall summary: based on a suggestion from Phil, this will be split out into a separate role and generalized to overall financial planning. Tom has been nominated to lead this, with work to be done or brought back to a new finance@ mailing list. Everyone that has contributed to the endowment discussion is welcome to participate. No increase of expenditures to Virtual are being asked for at this time. Some of the expenses budgeted for Bronze Sponsor relations that have not yet been started may be redirected to expenses related to the development of an endowment proposal (e.g., third party review of proposals). Informal target for bringing a completed proposal for ratification by the board is the September board meeting. No funds will be solicited until we have a board approved plan. Meanwhile, I plan to operate under the assumption that I (The President) can approve or delegate the approval of reasonable expenditures and discussions with third parties (specifically items like a review of proposal seeking input, and specifically EXCLUDING actual solicitation). Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
No issues for the board. Good fiscal year overall. Every expense line item was essentially at or below budget. Fundraising was significantly over budget, and that is without counting the Pineapple Fund donation. Thanks to the board for approving the FY19 budget. My personal vision is that we complete the next five year plan by the end of this calendar year, and that five year plan be where we focus on strategy and the one year budget be where we focus on tactics that implement that strategy. Every area is operating smoothly. - - - Selected Highlights: Brand Management: * There are currently 24 open issues across 14 PMCs Fundraising: * Executed PCCC PSA for paid VP Fundraising * Amended process for nominating VP Sponsor relations * Working to increase targeted sponsorship * Working to gel the Sponsor+ program * Ready to launch ASF endowment program Marketing and Publicity: * New "VP Sponsor Relations" title * Promoting ApacheCon and two Apache Roadshow events * Worked with vendor to correct their promotional practices * 9 blog entries, 30 tweets, 9 LinkedIn posts, 5 media queries Infrastructure: * Status moved to StatusPage.io / NodePing * mail-search has been replaced and will ultimately be retired * new TLP server under Azure * Jenkins server difficulties hope to be resolved with new server Conferences: * Current focus is on Apache RoadShow Europe in June * ApacheCon North America schedule has been posted * Proposals and venues are being evaluated for conferences in 2019 Travel Assistance: * 28 completed applications were received and scored - - - After talking to Kevin, Tom, and Daniel, the costs for converting Fundraising from a contract to a PEO are likely to be in the $15K range annually. Our joint recommendation at this point is to NOT proceed with this. If the board sees this differently, give me action item and I will continue to pursue it. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Items requiring Board attention: Two resolutions: budget, and sponsor relations. - - - Overall, we continue to be in a good position financially, running a surplus where we had budgeted for a deficit. The FY19 budget discussions appear to all have run their course, and it is time for a decision and to move on. Should the budget be approved as is, I will request the Fundraising team to develop and post a full review by the September board meeting so that the board can decide whether to terminate or proceed the SOW at the six month mark (which would be the October meeting). Also, if the budget is approved, I will be naming Daniel Ruggeri as (a?) VP, Fundraising. As a part of that discussion, we can decide what title, if any, Kevin will be retaining/assuming. The proposal is to develop a team of individuals doing fundraising, and to have each member of that team empowered to "close the deal" with sponsors. Our project websites are a underutilized resource for bringing awareness to visitors of matters such as upcoming ApacheCons, and we continue to look to ways to reduce the effort required to add images and links across our site. This hasn't been discussed recently, and merits revisiting. See discussion item 8B. Brand Management is operating smoothly. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Issues for the board: None this month. Next month there will be a FY19 budget to be approved, and I will highlight the need to come to a decision on how to proceed with Fundraising. Overall Yet another month where income exceeds targets, and expenses are under budget. And that is not including the Pineapple BTC donation. No major issues to report across operations. Sally and Mark are actively working on issues related to companies not working with our trademark policy. I'm confident that they both have matters under control and/or will ask for help if/when they need to do so. Fundraising The key line in the fundraising report is: "the ability for me to volunteer as VP Fundraising comes to an end". Next month, I intend to recommend that the board fund this position for up to two years. I encourage any returning or new directors who may be inclined to reach a different conclusion to reach out directly to Tom, Sally, and Kevin for their perspective; either 1-on-1 or collectively as each of you see best. Sponsorship thanks page now includes targeted sponsors: https://www.apache.org/foundation/thanks.html Kevin attended events at GMU NSF / Smartcities, OSLS & Google UC Berkeley Tech Talk, and ISSA-NoVA. Expenses and results are detailed in the Fundraising report. Brand Management The transition from Shane to Mark has gone smoothly, as expected. Mark has established a new issue tracking process and reviewed emails dating back to June 2017. Currently there are 25 issues, and all are awaiting action from (P)PMC, external parties etc. to progress them. Mark is requesting input on the content and level of detail provided in his report. I'm very happy with the report. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
A very busy month in terms of both budget and personnel activities. Issues requiring attention of the board ----- FY23 budget. My plans are to collect a FY19 budget in March for approval by the board in April, so that we have a budget at the start of the fiscal year. Budget ------ We continue to exceed income targets and keep under the allowable expense targets. Net income for this month is an additional $222K over plan. The FY23 projections have been revised as follows: the expected cash on hand at the end of FY18 has been revised upwards based on Virtual's current projections and assuming that we are able to convert the recent Pineapple Fund BTC donation to $600K USD; and the "G&A" expenses have been corrected to reflect that the EA position has been eliminated rather than a linear ramping down of this expense. Note that everything about this plan is conservative. The projection of cash on hand at the end of the year is conservative. Neither the FY18 numbers nor the FY23 numbers have been adjusted based on actuals observed this year. We should be able to convert the BTC donation to more than $600K. Presuming that we stay vigilant, this should reduce our need to aggressively look for areas to cut. Areas of note in the proposed budget: * Both Fundraising and Brand Management have brought forward requests to expand professional support for these areas within the next five years. I'll note that approval of this plan is no more and no less than a green light to create concrete proposals for consideration in future 1 year budgets. * The proposal was to drop TAC budget in FY23. That proposal was made at a time when the frequency and style of future conferences was in question. It is not necessary to revisit that now, we can revisit as a part of the one year FY19 and five year FY24 budget processes. At a minimum, the expectation is that the board will approve the expenses for ACNA in Montreal for FY19. Conferences/TAC ------- Lots of great progress with respect to Conferences: signed contract, updated web site, new roadshow events. This led to a request to reactivate the TAC committee. After verifying that Melissa understandably doesn't have time to continue the role of VP, TAC; I accepted Gavin's offer to reprise his role. For the past few weeks he has been acting VP, TAC; and as of today, I'm making that official. He's certainly hit the job running. Brand Management -------- I spent considerable time with Chris and Shane (and to a lesser extent with Mark and Sally) to see if we could come up with an approach that everybody could agree on. At times it appeared within grasp. At times it appeared elusive. At a minimum, I believe that we made substantial progress. I'm going to optimistically claim that we have rough consensus on the following two points: * There is value in educating PMCs on their need to police brands that are associated with their projects. * There is value in registering marks on behalf of PMCs that have demonstrated that they are willing and able to defend their brand. Neither of these are absolute. For example, it makes sense to limit the set of geographic regions in which we register a mark. While in theory there may be disagreements about what the limits are, in practice there has been no issues with how any of the recent actual requests by PMCs have been handled. Of those willing to volunteer for this effort, there is a general sentiment that the amount of work required exceeds the amount that can be expected from volunteers. Assuming something resembling the FY23 budget proposal is accepted by the board, be on the lookout for a proposal along the lines that Sally has been patiently shepherding to appear alongside the FY19 budget requests. Fundraising -------- A change in his employment situation has raised the question as to whether Kevin can continue to devote the amount of time and attention that he has to date on Fundraising. This effort already is being supported by HALO Worldwide and Virtual, Inc. Just a heads up: we may need to rely more heavily on one or both of these (or perhaps somebody else entirely) in the future. Again, at the moment this is only a heads up with respect to the possibility of a proposal to be considered as a part of the FY19 budget process. Infrastructure -------------- The infrastructure team has identified a general issue with projects whose demand for infrastructure services go well beyond what other projects need, and one concrete case for specific consideration. Input on how to handle these needs would be appreciated. Other ----- An individual raised what they consider to be a CoC violation with respect to one of the infrastructure team's bots that update JIRA when a pull request comes in on one of our repositories. I consulted with Legal Affairs early in this process and now (with Chris's concurrence) have referred the matter to them. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Effective immediately, Mark Thomas was appointed chair of the Brand Management PMC. Thanks to Shane Curcuru for his service.
Items requiring board attention: * Budget (can be deferred to discussion items) * Three minor questions in Fundraising Report * First has been discussed on board@ * I recommend the second be delegated to Legal Affairs * Third is not ready for this month ### Executive Assistant Despite the best efforts of myself, Ross and members of the board, the ASF has come to the conclusion that it no longer has a need for an Executive Assistant. This position has now been eliminated, and Melissa has been laid off. I've enjoyed working with Melissa, and will enthusiastically give her a reference. If anybody knows of a good match for her ample talents, I encourage them to act quickly! I have no immediate plans to replace Melissa as VP, TAC. This will be revisited once we have a large scale conference again. ### Finances and Budget I agree with the Treasurer's report that income is exceeding targets and expenses are under control, with the possibility that this year we will show a modest surplus. The only caution is that $171K of this is due to income that was not received last year, attributed at the time to timing issues. If that is removed, we will see a deficit; but even so a much smaller one than budgeted. The impact of the laying off of the EA will be a modest increase in expenses in January (to be reported in the February meeting), a modest decrease in expenses for FY18, and a significant reduction ($100K, which not only covers salary, but benefits, employer taxes, PEO management overhead, etc.) in General & Administrative expenses in subsequent years. I encourage the board to complete their efforts on the 5 year plan by the February meeting as that input is needed in the preparation of the FY2019 budget. Delaying the FY2019 budget past the beginning of the fiscal year will inevitably result in Tom and I having a shadow budget that is unapproved by the board. Let's not do that. My observation remains that both Brand Management and Fundraising activities are beyond what can reasonably be expected to be sustained by volunteers; with Brand Management being the more urgent of the two. Ross has additional input on this matter. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Items requiring board attention: * Budget Most of the areas not covered by the EVP report are covered by the budget. I particularly encourage careful reading of the Brand Management and Fundraising reports (the later having a discussion item that can be deferred to the mailing list in my opinion). On the topic of the budget, first some overall thoughts: 1) The five year budget is a plan, not a commitment. As such, it should be based on reasonable assumptions, such as the recent conference investment decision won't fail spectacularly, and that there will be continued need to hire in areas where volunteers prove to be insufficient. 2) A five year plan is where the board SHOULD in my opinion explore potentially radical ideas; even if those ideas had been explored years ago with a different conclusion. My one caveat is that the expectation should be that those ideas would be executed over the course of five years; and this exercise SHOULD NOT be the vehicle for driving sudden and rapid change. Next for some specific thoughts: 1) Infrastructure remains the biggest ticket item. Given that the largest costs within that item are people costs, this expense is thought to be largely independent (at least within the five year horizon) of either the rate of growth of the foundation or increasing dependency on services hosted elsewhere. 2) The next biggest items is labeled Marketing and Publicity. I say labeled as this item really encompasses so much more - pretty much every operational area (with the possible exception of infrastructure) is directly affected by this area; as are many PMCs. Satisfaction with the work done is also quite high. 3) The next biggest area is Fundraising. The level of incomes specified in the plan are thought to be achievable, but not without some risk. Nothing is certain, so the risk is never 0% or 100%; but it is thought to be highly unlikely that those numbers will be reached without hiring a fundraiser (probably initially part time, then ultimately full time) during the next 5 years. Doing so doesn't make the risk 0%, but makes the income numbers comfortable in my estimation. What level of risk the board is willing to undertake is an open question. 4) After that comes Brand Management. The proposal we have is based on what was the board majority (but not consensus) opinion at the time that encouraging PMCs to register their trademarks early was prudent and cost effective in the long run. Since that time, costs have gone up, and questions have grown as to whether that approach is sustainable with volunteers. It is time for the board to revisit this question, and either reaffirm the previous direction or start the planning process for a new direction. 5) The fifth biggest item is General and Administration. The amount chosen there reflects us NOT pursuing a paid position for President / COO / ED; but continuing to have an EA. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Items requiring board attention: * Fundraising VP resolution. I believe that the bylaws question has been resolved. I believe that need for a VP title has been established. I see that there has been some calls for additional process; I don't see the need for such, but if the board chooses to table this resolution again, I ask that clear guidance be provided. * Conferences discussion item. I suggest that this not merely be discussed as if it were a one time expense, but as input to the five year plan. * In order to reach they goal of having a top-down five year plan by year end, there really should have been some draft numbers produced by now. Certainly no later than by the end of this month so that they can be approved in the next board meeting. Overall, expenses remain under control. Working with Virtual, it was determined that Infrastructure incorrectly forecasted FY18 costs. This should be covered this year, but may result in the need to revise upwards future budgets. Income appears to be on track, with the normal comment about sponsor timing considerations make this difficult to be sure. Ross and I talked about what can be done to ensure that the EA is fully utilized, and we are exploring a number of options. Brand Management continues to work to produce a proposal for board consideration. Ideally, this would also be included in the five year plan discussion. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Items requiring board attention: * See resolution to establish the position of VP, Sponsor Relations. Overall, expenses remain under control. Infrastructure remains an anomaly (slightly running over despite being under headcount), and Tom and Greg are working to resolve this. Income remains difficult to project given that it tends to come in large chunks, and with timings that are impossible to pin down. I continue to be mindful of the fact that we we were under revenue in FY17 by $171.2K, which we attributed to timing issues. We are currently over budget by $244.6K, which would be excellent, but it has positively benefited from timing issues (in both directions). Phil and I had a conversation regarding revisiting our five year outlook by year end, a conversation that has been brought back to the members@ list. Conferences and TAC remain dormant. Other areas are running normally. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7. Mark asks has there been progress with making effective use of the EA. Sam responds that that is still on the todo list. Ross asks about infra being over budget. Mark/Tom clarified that this is a YTD. Tom and Greg have a meeting tomorrow to get to the bottom of this. Greg's initial conclusions is that this is a matter of front loading costs.
My current priorities: EA/TAC/Conferences, Brand Management Items requiring board attention: * Brand Management continues to face scalability issues. See Brand Management reports for details. No immediate action required, options and alternatives will be brought back to the board in upcoming months. * Unless directed otherwise, the ASF infrastructure leadership team will continue to work with the ASF Treasury team in setting up a location to secure and track personnel related documents, balancing oversight and privacy. See January minutes for context. * We are still relatively early in the fiscal year, so projections will vary widely month to month, but for the first time this year we are not projected to make up for last year's underrun; which was attributed to timing of sponsor payments. No cause for concern about this year, but does suggest that we should revisit our five year forecast this fall. Input on whether this should be done bottoms up again, or should be done top down would be appreciated. * Fundraising Would like to give Fundraising Ambassadors VP Titles. Possible idea: VP Sponsor Relations. This is yet another example of a common theme where ASF titles are important externally. While amply reported elsewhere, I would like to also commend the organization's coordinated and professional response to the Equifax breach. Early reports from others on the cause of the breach were incorrect, and our initial response stated the known facts and enumerated the possibilities. As additional facts became known, we provided updates. As others have reported, this was a total team effort, with Sally as usual shouldering the bulk of the load. Not called out by others but Mark Cox played a crucial role in framing the initial message. While I have stayed on top of mailing list traffic, much of my time this month has been spent on converting various Whimsy tools from React.js to Vue.js. Three of the four tools have been converted, and work has begun on the remaining tool: the board agenda. I'll post on board@ with the implications of these change before they are deployed. Meanwhile, I will note that this would be an ideal time to look at any additional requirements (e.g., automating chair activities?) that people may have for this tool. Seeing if we can utilize our EA better remains on my todo list. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
My current priorities: EA/TAC/Conferences Items requiring board attention: Fundraising is planning to revisit the idea of Directed Sponsorships. Perhaps we can have a brief discussion on the topic at the board meeting, take the discussion to the fundraising mailing list, and return back to the board at a later date with a complete proposal? - - - Financially, we continue to be on track. FY18 looks great, but again I remind everybody that the amount we are projecting to be over almost exactly matches the amount that we missed in FY17 due to timing issues. It has taken a lot of work to get us here (and both Sally and Virtual have been instrumental). We continue to find low hanging fruit in terms of unbilled sponsors; but at some point further growth in revenue is going to depend on the harder (and longer lead time) problem of attracting new sponsors. Quiet (in terms of questions) but busy (in terms of renewals, etc.) month for Brand Management. Lack of volunteers is an ongoing issue. Seeing if we can utilize our EA better remains on my todo list. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
My current priorities: EA/TAC/Conferences Items requiring board attention: None. - - - Financially, we continue to be on track. Timing considerations make us look like we are ahead on fundraising, but this is primarily due to a number of large FY17 sponsorship payments hitting the books this calendar year. We currently project to be $185K over budget vs being $171K under last year. Similarly, we are $11K over budget for infrastructure, again this primarily timing considerations. Marketing an Publicity collected and published the FY2017 annual report: https://s.apache.org/FY2017AnnualReport The infrastructure team continues to migrate machines to the cloud. The team is also working with the Whimsy community to automate worklfows. It is also looking to fill one open headcount. Conferences is awaiting a bit for ApacheCon 2018, and is exploring a greater presence at other conferences. Things seem to be settling down in both Fundraising and Brand Management. In the upcoming months, my focus will turn to seeing if we can utilize our EA better, which will involve discussions with each officer in operations, starting with Conferences. If people have any ideas along these lines, please let me know or reach out to Melissa directly. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
My current priorities: Fundraising, EA/TAC, then Brand Management. Items requiring board attention: None. - - - Financially, we started off the FY strong. I caution everybody that much of this is due to revenue that we should have received last year hitting the books this year. And we have a one time revenue windfall due to converting bitcoins to cash. That being said, all things considered, in one month we made up for the larger than expected full year deficit in FY17 and then some by over $20K. The Fundraising president's committee has updated its roster and divided up the list of sponsors and is making great progress in re-establishing connections. In particular, Sally has stepped up and is leading this charge. Virtual's role in fundraising has been expanded, and the additional expense should be containable in the current budget. Fundraising has a new nofollow policy, rewarding Bronze level sponsors who have a sustained committment. An audit of ASF sites shows that many foundation requirements for links to such things as sponsorship and conferences are being ignored. Each of the operations areas are going to work together to determine a way to resolve this in a centralzed way. See https://whimsy.apache.org/site/. Brand Management continues normally, including working through legal issues related to registrations for two projects. EA's focus has remained primarily on conferences. In the upcoming months, I plan to get with Rich, Melissa, and others to revisit this. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= My current priorities: Fundraising, EA/TAC, then Brand Management. During the process of converting the FY18 budget into monthly allotments, Virtual identified a number of small discrepancies. Nothing to be concerned about, in fact the net was a small positive. As predicted, timining issues of payments led to a missing FY17 budget targets overall. This does not seem to be a problem, but is something we will need to recognize and account for when accessing budget vs actuals for FY18. Exceeding targets by FY18 anything less than fundraising shortfall should not be considered a "win". I plan to get with Rich and Ross to determine if conferences is something that I should add to my priority list and help with. Fundraising =========== Virtual's increased role in terms of invoicing continues to show results. The bigger problems previously identified are all either resolved or are well on their way to being resolved. Virtual is continuing to look at the entire set of sponsors to see if there are any other problems that need to be addressed. Hadrian has resigned as VP, Fundraising. I'm naming Kevin as his replacement. I wish to take this opportunity to thank Hadrian for his contributions which helped keep the foundation afloat all of these years! And look for Hadrian's continued help. I'm pleased to see Kevin hit the ground running and not waiting until he has been officially named into this new role. In particular, I've been pleasantly surprised to see Kevin revisiting two previously "third rail" topics, namely nofollow and certification. We intend to take the opportunity to meet with a number of Sponsors here at ApacheCon. EA/TAC ====== While I haven't seen a final report yet for this month, I am unaware of any issues. Brand Management ================ A quiet month, and no issues for the board. Thanks go out to Mark Thomas for setting up a BRAND JIRA instance. New members have joined trademarks@ which is good. There has been little feedback on policy, which is both good and bad. Trademarks is continuing to look at which registrations are cost effective to renew. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= My current priorities: budget, fundraising, EA/TAC, then Brand Management. We have a distressing number of instances where invoices and checks have not been forwarded and lost; accordingly we are seeking to update all of our records in places that are sources for each to be Virtual's address. A number of income and expense items are not aligned with our fiscal year and (both in the present and in the past) have not been paid on a consistent schedule. My guidance on each is to ignore for the moment the arbitrary FY17/FY18 boundary and focus on getting items paid and received. As we have ample reserves, don't pay taxes, and interest rates are low, there is no long term impact to the foundation. In the short term (both this past FY and the upcoming one) this will make comparing budget to actuals a bit more difficult, but I believe that this is manageable. Let me know if the board sees this differently. My thanks to the outgoing board for providing unanimous closure on Brand Management Policy. My request to the incoming board is to continue to focus on providing clear, stable, long term guidance. Budget ====== A draft FY18 budget has been posted for approval. I believe it to be consistent with the guidance the board provided for the five year outlook. As with last year, I encourage the board to not table this as this will effectively result in Virtual, Inc. and the President operating with a shadow budget. Tweak it as required, but I request that larger questions as to priorities be deferred until the point where we revisit the five year outlook. Fundraising =========== A face to face meeting was held last month. Thanks to Capital One for graciously providing facilities, and to Jim for hosting. A number of TODOs were created, and a number of immediate actions were taken. We had a soft relaunch of the Individual Giving program with a new https://donate.apache.org/ site, using Hopsie as our outreach platform. We announced our 18th anniversary and linked to the donate page from a number site wide and PMC specific web pages. This was done on short order, but I don't believe it quite met the expectations of an annual fundraising drive. We will need to evaluate the results and make changes. One option to be explored: having a few individual giving programs throughout the year vs. an annual drive. we have identified and resolved a number of invoicing issues. Tom can talk to both the short term actions and long term plans to prevent reoccurance of these problems. Both Virtual and HALO are making changes to provide additional professional support for Fundraising. We are working to re-establish Fundraising as a formal committee. Additional organization changes are in the works, and should be ready to announce by the next board meeting. Letters have been sent out to the contacts we have for all Platinum, Gold, and Silver level sponsors asking them if there is anybody that they would like to meet up with at the ApacheCon and Big Data conferences in Miami, and taking the opportunity to once again thank them for their sponsorship. EA/TAC ====== Judges made their calls, and acceptance letters were sent out. Brand Management ================ I've asked Brand Management to take re-engaging with the PMCs that haven't been following the Brand Management policy slowly. I welcome input from the board on my prioritization of this item. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= My current priorities remain: budget, fundraising, EA/TAC, then Brand Management. Budget ====== Thanks for the input last month on the FY22 budget projections. Based on that input, I am going to presume that the board is OK with expenditures as they are, specifically that infrastructure staffing levels remaining where they are, for TAC to continue for the next few years, that the choice of trademark attorney are all OK. Please let me know ASAP if any of these assumptions are incorrect. Otherwise, I look forward to presenting a FY18 budget in the next board meeting that should hopefully be uncontroversial. Fundraising =========== We continue to be under forecast for revenues; this is now a growing concern. There also doesn't seem to be a common understanding of what an appropriate "SLA" would be for responding for sponsor requests. As an example, one sponsor provided early input into what information they would like to see the next time their sponsorship was up for renewal, that input was ACKed, and the plans were to comply with that request when it was time for renewal - which is not for several months. Apparently, this was not well communicated as a number of people were unhappy that a response was not sent out promptly. I'll work with Hadrian and others involved with fundraising to make this process more transparent and predictable. The target is to make progress on this by the meeting in Miami in May. We have a F2F planned for the 23rd of March in Virginia; graciously hosted by Capital One. Agenda will be to build a plan to get us to the fundraising targets provided by the board last month, and any remaining time left in that meeting will be devoted to process. EA/TAC ====== EA continues to work on TAC and dealing with things that might otherwise fall through the cracks like CSC renewal. Last call for ApacheCon NA 2017 closed on March 8th. Brand Management ================ Per my direction, Brand Management is continuing to defer working with PMCs that either don't recognize or aren't following the documented policy. I could understand if the board felt they needed to step in and ratify and/or give a stamp of approval if there was a history of Brand Management destroying communities or not accepting feedback, and if the President wasn't resolving this situation; but to preemptively require prior approval without that history doesn't make any sense to me; particularly coming literally one day after the board came to consensus that the Brand Management policy is indeed ASF wide policy. Now an additional two months have gone by. There has only been cosmetic feedback on the policy; and a good faith effort has been made to address this feedback. What does it take to get this to closure? In addition to being a significant impact on morale, having policy that only applies to some but not all PMCs is not a sane strategy. My recommendation remains that the board reaffirm the position made two board meetings ago, and go further: namely to clearly delegate the setting of Brand Management policy with the understanding that (a) all members are welcome to contribute to the development of the policy, (b) early warning is provided to the board on all significant changes and/or potential issues, and (c) the board reserves the right to step in should Brand Management and the President prove to be unwilling or unable to successfully resolve issues with PMCs on their own. Unless the board comes to consensus on how to proceed in the next few months, I believe that it would be better for all concerned if we were to begin the process of shuttering Brand Management and archiving the current policy. What would remain is the interface to counsel to handle such matters as trademark registrations; perhaps this could be folded into Legal Affairs? The consequences of such an approach would be an increase in PMCs inadequately enforcing their trademarks, the potential for third parties to be presented with different requirements from different PMCs, and PMCs following the lead of PMCs that chose to unfairly apply different policies to different third parties. What the board needs to balance is the demoralizing consequences of the delegation of responsibility without the associated authority; the theoretical but to date unrealized potential for an entire Brand Management committee composed of trusted ASF members destroying a community; and the consequences of letting each PMC decide how to approach Brand Management. Overall ======= Adding in Bertrand's comment, Rich's ping this morning on fundraising, and a recent board-private thread that I won't share specifics on; and Chris's comment last month, there is a common theme. But first, a story. When Geir was treasurer, he would generally make payments within a month of the approval. This caused much anxiety as people would often worry about when a payment would go out. When I became treasurer, payments would generally go out within 72 hours of approval. To my surprise, the anxiety didn't go away. On my way out, I stated to bring Virtual into this, and this was completed when Chris was treasurer. One of the first changes made was that payments only went out at the end of the month unless prior arrangements were made. For two months, there was confusion and anxiety... and then... calm. From time to time we have had individual Directors wade into infrastructure, TAC, fundraising, brand management, or where-ever and make demands. Often times they were intended as requests, but were perceived as demands; and the next result was the same: context switches thrashes, confusion, and reduced productivity. Earlier this month, a single Director made a request to me, copying board private. I indicated that I would evaluate the request and report back in May. A number of Directors supported the original request, and the original individual reminded me that when the board asked me to do something, I had a duty to comply. At this point, Brett weighed in, and stated that the board as a whole had not asked me to do something, and while the board could operate in that way, it should not. A number of Directors agreed with Brett on this, as do I. And I'd like to extend that response to include Bertrand's comment; yes the board's input was non-binding and the board can (but shouldn't!) change its mind at any moment. My problem with emphasizing the CAN without balancing that with SHOULDN'T is that doing so has the effect of rendering the whole five year planning exercise as useless. Let's not do that. I understand based on Chris's comment that he hopes that the next board radically changes Infrastructure's budget targets next month. Let's not do that either. Next week, I'm bringing together some of the best talent within the ASF to focus on fundraising. I will insist that the plans that they come up with will be published and that the board and membership in general will have an opportunity to comment on those plans. I will also request (hopefully not futilely) that the board give this fundraising team something that it has to date denied of Brand Management - the assumption that they can operate via lazy consensus - i.e. unless their is a specific objection they are free to take action. As to how I would like to see board members operate: 1) with respect to budget, I would prefer to only see major changes of direction be proposed when we discuss five year plans, and not out of cycle or when we review individual years budgets. 2) we have a number of Directors productively contributing as members of various committees - this is welcome and encouraged. 3) for everything else, I would prefer that the board provide its input during board meetings and assign and track actions to completion. Of course, if there is a true emergency or significant new information that comes in between board meetings or the times that we revisit the five year plans, I will work with the board and the relevant officers to address the issue. But just like with Virtual and out of cycle payments; this should be the exception rather than the norm. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= My current priorities: budget, fundraising, EA/TAC, then Brand Management. Input from the board on budget will likely affect my priorities going forward. Budget ====== A draft FY22 budget has been posted as a discussion item. It contains the approved FY17 budget, and three projections for FY22. Feel free to challenge assumptions, pick from the available options, or even come up with an entirely new target. If the board can provide quick feedback on these numbers, we may have time for a total of three iterations; otherwise the next numbers the board will see posted is a FY18 budget for approval. I encourage the board to come up with targets for a balanced FY22 budget. Clearly the intervening years won't be balanced, but with both a target and enough time, we can define a path to get there with minimum disruption. The biggest single lever under the board's control that would affect multiple expense categories is to find a way to significantly limit the rate of growth of the foundation; more specifically to throttle the arrival rate of accepted podlings by the incubator. On the expense side, I'm most concerned about infrastructure as this one item is simultaneously (1) the largest expense, (2) the least discretionary, and (3) the item with the most inertia in that it will take the most time to make a change without substantial disruption. For this reason, I request that the board make a priority of setting a FY22 target for this item. Once this target is set, I will ask David and Greg to prioritize building a plan to get us there. This plan may include a temporary increase followed by a drop off - which would be OK as we have the funds. On the income side, I don't see any magic bullets that we can rely on to provide us with significant year over year compound growth UNLESS we manage to identify something of significantly more direct value to our sponsors than what we have offered to date. A part of this may be a willingness on our side to be more accommodating when a sponsor makes requests (e.g., for a Privacy Shield amendment) that would make selling the sponsorship easier by those within the potential sponsor. Fundraising =========== Input has been provided into the budget process, and work is being done to identify the list of sponsors that we need to follow up on in order to meet our FY17 targets. EA/TAC ====== EA has resumed work on TAC preparations for Miami. Nick Burch has been most helpful. Brand Management ================ Brand Management is continuing to work with the Podlings and PMCs that are willing to work within the constraints of the published ASF Trademark Policy, and per my direction is deferring activity related to the remainder of the projects. Less than a day after I thought I had closure from the board on whether or not the published Trademark Policy was a policy or set of best practices, multiple board members indicated that this Policy needed to be ratified and/or given a stamp of approval from the board. So, for now, I've moved on. I've not added any discussion items or resolutions related to this matter to this month's agenda. While I will continue to ask for actionable feedback to be sent to trademarks@, I am no longer optimistic. So, to be clear, we currently have a policy that applies to most. At this time, all it takes for a PMC or PPMC to be excluded is to simply state that this policy doesn't apply to them. That will mean that PMCs are free to continue to come up with their own criteria and apply it unfairly to one third party but not another. Or for one PMC to apply a different policy than other PMC does, perhaps even to the same third party. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7. @Brett: pursue resolution of Brand Management Policy issue
Overall ======= My current priorities: brand, fundraising, EA/TAC, then FY18 budget. Depending on timing, FY18 budget will likely rise in priority. Thanks go out to the board for approving the FY17 budget. As mentioned in the last board meeting, I'd like to discourage the board from deferring the FY18 budget to the next board as revisiting the budget mid-year is always a possibility. See the budget item below for more detail. Discussions have resurfaced concerning the equity of last calendar year's compensation. As a part of this, I'm working with Greg and David to revisit whether FY17's budget needs to be tweaked and to see if there are better ways to plan for FY18. Operations is also working closely with the Treasurer and Virtual to revise how compensation related disbursements are approved and tracked in order to maintain privacy. Other discussions have made it clear that there is a need to reestablish and maintain a safe working environment for officers. To help address the specific and immediate problem, I've added a resolution that gives the board an opportunity to reaffirm that Brand Management has been operating in the best interests of the foundation. More generally, the scope of Brand Management is not the last of the contentious issues that I will need guidance from the board on. We need to work together to ensure that there is an environment where the relevant officers can not only participate but even are free to take uncomfortable or unpopular positions, and not allow those with differing opinions to seek to question their integrity. Finally, I'd like to once again apologize for the frequency which with I contributed to the discussion. I should have allowed a greater opportunity for others to speak and instead focused on re-teeing up the discussion items for this month's board meeting as well as preparing one or more resolutions. Brand Management ================ Brand Management is continuing to work with the Podlings and PMCs that are willing to work within the constraints of the published ASF Trademark Policy, and per my direction is deferring activity related to the remainder of the projects. A summary of those policies has been published at: http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/policies.html I continue to seek clarification and guidance from the board on this matter. And have added a discussion item again this month to cover this topic. Additional background can be found in the Brand Management report. Meanwhile, Mark is making progress on producing a private JIRA instance for tracking trademark (as well as security) issues, and will be starting with some pilot projects. Fundraising =========== In conjunction with the Assistant Treasurer and VP of Marketing of Publicity, the possibility of making use of the facilities provided by Hopsie (https://hopsie.com/) are being explored. Benefits include an (as of yet unknown) increase in funds raised (largely by providing gentle reminders to repeat donors), and to improve on our ability to send out thanks. The plan is to proceed with the free trial period and if the expectation is that this will pay for itself in increased donations, to select one of the paid plans going forward. EA/TAC ====== As we are in the lull between conferences, not much activity to report this month. The EA also took some much needed time off. Melissa did add three new members to TAC. It turns out that two of these individuals are not ASF members, and this was done without consulting with the existing TAC members. This is being revisited. Budget ====== The first thing to be aware of is that the FY17 is that it doesn't include substantial strategic investment beyond the normal (and continual) focus on retiring technical debt and aging hardware. In other words, it is the new normal. In fact, the infrastructure costs for FY18 are likely to go up as the plan will be to be fully staffed for the full year, and little (if any) savings resulting from the investigations into reducing the infrastructure cost per project will be realized in this timeframe. On the plus side, we have more than adequate cash reserves, so none of this is an immediate problem that needs to be addressed. But back of the envelope calculations indicate that we will run out of money in four to six years. So in addition to a year+1 (i.e. FY18) budget, I plan to start exploring what a year+5 (i.e., FY22) budget outline would look like. The hope is that this will give us an opportunity to discuss topics like whether or not we need TAC or need an ED five years from now, and to work backwards to determine what steps we should be taking along the way to make that happen. My ideal would be that the board has complete say over the five year plan and individual officers have complete say over the one year plan subject only to the constraint that their plan conforms to the five year plan. I recognize that this ideal isn't practical as officers will need to have some say in what is possible, and the board isn't a mere rubber stamp for the one year plan. I'd like to discourage the board, however, from selecting individual contractors (DLAPiper was discussed in board meetings a few months ago), and making use of a line item veto. A few illustrative examples as to why that might be: Fundraising's input may be that given one level of investment we can expect a given level of income; with additional investment we can expect more. Selecting a lower level of investment and a higher level of return isn't an option. More subtlely, there are some variables, like the rate at which new projects are accepted, that affect multiple line items. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= My priorities remain: budget, brand, fundraising, then EA/TAC. EVP will be reporting on other areas. Virtual has changed from outsourcing Professional Employer Organization (PEO) services to a third party to bringing this in house. The only immediate change that contactors will see is a modest reduction in the number of days they have to select a health care provider should they be interested in taking advantage of this benefit. The end date remains the same, it is only the start date that is slightly delayed. There is a possibility that there may be some cost reductions that Virtual can pass on to us down the road, but that has yet to be seen. I'm working with the Treasurer to review a policy for ASF issued credit cards which was prepared by Virtual. Budget ====== We now have a draft FY17 budget for review and approval. It's not perfect, but I encourage the board to approve it as is and to provide feedback on what changes should be made for the FY18 budget. The budget reflects direct input from the following officers: Brand Management, Fundraising, Infrastructure Administrator, and Marketing and Publicity. In all other areas, I'm carrying forward the data provided by Virtual as these areas are low risk and are likely to come in on budget. This budget includes a modest amount of funding for Fundraising activities. I see this as experimental: we are going to try things to see what works and what does not. Monthly fundraising reports will identify specifics as to how the money is spent and attempt to relate those expenditures with potential future sponsorships. In my opinion there has been an unwarranted amount of attention on Brand Management budget. While it is true that for the first time Brand Management expenses are expected to exceed TAC, it still remains under both EA and Marketing and Publicity expenses. If funding were tight -- which it most definitely is not -- I personally would recommend looking elsewhere for savings first. To be fair, the pushback to date hasn't been so much on the amount but whether or not alternatives have been explored to see if lower cost options might be viable. I'll merely observe that similar questions could productively be asked of each budget area, and that Brand Management isn't in my opinion a priority in either likelihood of finding savings or in the amount of savings. My top priority for that remains infrastructure; not because I feel that it is poorly run (it is not), but due to the size of that budget item even a small change could produce a substantial savings. Brand Management ================ Prior direction to this area was to decentralize where possible. I'm now seeing signs that this approach will need to be modified. More data is needed, and -- heads up! -- some board guidance and perhaps intervention may be required. I've added a discussion item to the agenda for this purpose. Overall, my feeling is that having EITHER Brand Management OR the PMCs be responsible for marks (as an either/or) is problematic. As PMCs will rarely need to worry about marks, this responsibility can be quickly forgotten. What we need is: 1) a way to track issues (which Mark and Shane are working on), and for both Brand Management and PMCs be jointly responsible for identifying and opening issues. Brand Management's searches will need to be prioritized, and Shane has taken a first pass at doing exactly that. I'd like to see Mark's work to create a private JIRA instance to be in a position where it is ready to be used by the start of the next (January) board meeting, and am willing to task infrastructure with helping make this happen if that is needed. 2) for the expectation to be set that PMCs to be the first line of defense, in terms of contacting outside parties using the documented process; and for there to be some consequences spelled out for PMCs that don't meet these expectations. 3) for Brand Management (and/or the President) being the last line of defence after PMCs have taken every reasonable step to resolve the issue. This does not need to be resolved this month. It may be prudent to wait until the effort to better track issues provides more data. Fundraising =========== Not quite yet fully on my radar, and continues to be well on track to support our increased FY17 expenditures, but preliminary discussions have occurred with a focus on making sure that we plan for a future that may rely more heavily on paid support. The primary idea is to expand beyond the tech focused companies that dominate our platinum sponsors. An example of a company that we want to attract is Capital One. Longer lead times and lower individual company contributions than Platinum sponsors, but the thought is that once we get a toehold in an industry we can get others to follow. This will require more careful tracking and physically being at places where we don't normally show up, so some expenditures for support from Virtual and a travel budget to places like conferences is included in the draft budget. EA/TAC ====== As this month's report again shows, much of the EA's time is still going to TAC related activities. A fundamental rethinking of the role of the EA is overdue. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7.
Overall ======= We don't have an approved budget; we haven't been routinely reviewing budget vs actuals, expenses (and possibly income) is running ahead of plan, and we have at least two areas where an increase in budget may be warranted. I've been working with the Treasurer and Virtual to improve reporting on actuals. I seek guidance from the board on the overall shape of what the FY 2017 budget should look like; I will then work with owners of individual line items to produce an updated draft budget for the board to approve. I've met (via phone, Skype, and Google Talk) with each of the people who own monthly reports (though not individually with Rich who understandably is busy at this moment); based on these discussions my initial priorities are: budget, brand, fundraising, then EA/TAC. I have a request for the board: my preference is that the primary vehicle for board feedback on operations be via the monthly teleconferences and review of progress on action items. When things come up at other times, I'd prefer that such items be added to the agenda for the next board meeting unless there is a specific reason why it needs to be resolved urgently before that time. For personal reasons, I am not able to travel to Seville this month. I thank Ross for preparing draft slides and Jim for giving the presentation in my absence. I'm maintaining a file for tracking purposes: https://svn.apache.org/repos/private/foundation/President/STATUS Executive Assistant =================== This role was originally envisioned to be responsible for a number of different foundation tasks; at the present time TAC is taking up a large portion of time. I'm not interceding at the current time, but I do plan to revisit what the ideal allocation of time to each task should be with Melissa in the quiet time between conferences. Brand Management ================ This area is considerably running over both the draft budget and last years actuals. I urgently seek guidance from the board as to whether the budget should be revised or brand management should change how it is currently operating. Please see the brand management report for additional information on where money has been sent and on the outlook. Less urgently, but something I would like feedback on in the upcoming months: what is the role the board would like to see brand management perform for the foundation? We clearly have comprehensive brand management procedures. While we have some PMCs that are following these procedures, we have other PMCs that are behaving as if they are unaware of those procedures. We even have PMCs that are clearly aware of the procedures, have provided no actionable feedback on those procedures, but aren't closely following them. A concrete example: this month you proposed that PMCs SHALL restrict their discussions of trademark enforcement actions to private mailing lists. Is this destined to be another requirement that many PMCs will continue to be unaware of and others will chose not to follow? If so, does it make sense to continue to produce such requirements? A second concrete example: Brand Management and PMCs are grappling with what would be a reasonable division of labor with respect to trademark enforcement. This thread with Hadoop is illustrative: https://s.apache.org/yEY6 Accordingly, Shane an Mark have begun exploring how to better track resolutions of potential infringements; being better organized should enable us to move from anecdotal discussions which may ultimately reduced down to internal miscommunication issues to actual data on what steps were or were not taken and how long it takes to resolve an issue. Perhaps the big picture that will emerge is that the Brand Management team will periodically do a scan for egregious violations and hand them off (via JIRA) to the PMCs to resolve by making use of the software wizard/assistants that we produce for this purpose, augmented by Brand Management as a resource to provide advice and as an interface to resources like DLAPiper. Fundraising =========== While income isn't received on any sort of predictable schedule, we seem to be running well above last years income received by this time, and I believe that we have enough months data for that to be representative. As we expect expenditures to continue to grow over the upcoming years, it is prudent to plan for changes that could be made that wouldn't compromise who we are as a foundation. As an example, increased recognition may be possible, but anything that involves control or setting of direction is off the table. This likely will result in Fundraising having a line item in the budget, whether it be for ASF travel to current or potential sponsors (or alternatively to conferences where such are present) or for staff. A concrete example of the latter has been posted to operations@: https://s.apache.org/7Sgf There also is an expectation that charitable foundations that receive donations acknowledge receipt for tax purposes. Marketing and Publicity ======================= Sally and her team handle an amazing amount of absurdity on a continuing basis. This team is also vital to both Brand Management and Fundraising. Despite this, flow of information regarding sponsor changes, incubator activities, branding challenges, and executive officer changes is haphazard. An example of something that should be automatic and routine: https://s.apache.org/OH3o. This needs to be fixed. One item of expense that has come up that is not covered by the current budget: Snoot development costs from Quenda in producing graphics included in our annual report. I intend to include that expense in upcoming draft budget and the board can decide whether or not that is something that the ASF should cover. Meanwhile, Sally has approved one month as a part of the M&P budget. It is coming up on the time to start preparation for the next annual report. Infrastructure ============== David indicated that he would like to continue, and in response I indicated that I have no plans to replace him. As I am aware that he is not fully in control of his availability, and in particular may be unavailable for days without prior notice, I've asked Greg to draft a resolution converting his position to an officer's position so that we have continuous coverage. I trust that Greg and David can work together and adjust dynamically to changes in availability without my involvement. This is also not intended as a net increase in demand on Greg's time. The good news is that the hiring to backfill contractors that were hired away is complete. The bad news is that Infrastructure is another area that is likely to go over budget for FY 2017. It is my recommendation that it be allowed to do so. I've asked the infrastructure team to include two items in their monthly reports: progress on "GitHub as master" until that item reaches conclusion one way or another, and items that will lead to a reduction in the average cost per project over time. The latter is intended to be an ongoing effort, and likely will start with a focus on measurement, proceed to the development of plans, and ultimately a report on progress. This replaces and subsumes a prior direction to focus on "self service", which may turn out to be one of several approaches used to reduce costs. Travel Assistance Committee =========================== At this time, I am changing Melissa's role from acting TAC chair to being the TAC chair. Melissa is transitioning to her new role. At the moment, she is mostly following in the footsteps of her predecessor; the hope is that for Miami she adjusts things to suit what works best for her. As an example, it might be better to move from a UK based travel agent to either a US based travel agent or directly booking flights. The application TAC uses for applications is undocumented and unmaintained; this needs to be corrected. Conference Committee ==================== I've only touched bases briefly with Rich on this item; he is understandably focused on Seville at the moment. I plan to delve more deeply into this in the time between conferences. Rich is developing a playbook for ApacheCon: https://svn.apache.org/repos/private/foundation/ApacheCon/playbook.md Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 7. DLA Piper is no longer supplying legal resources pro bono, which came as a surprise to some directors. We use them for occasional legal advice and managing our trademark registrations and docket. They charge a discounted hourly rate capped at $5K per month exclusive of trademark registration fees. Other firms would probably charge more. The board is comfortable with continuing to pay DLA Piper for their services at the current rate.
On 28 September 2016 I notified the board of my resignation, full resignation email posted at the end of this report. The summary is that it's time for a change, we need new energy and new ideas on the operations side of the house and I need to go back to the community side of the house. While I gave the board 3 months to find my replacement this may well be my last report and therefore I want to take this opportunity to thank the current and previous boards for the opportunity to serve as the foundations President. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the foundation, its members and its projects. The ASF stands proud among open source foundations and, I am sure, will continue to do so for many years to come. While I'm stepping down as President I have no intention of moving too far from the foundation. And so, to my report... Executive Assistant =============== Mostly "business as usual". One item of note: TAC process is progressing well. 14 applications were approved from the 27 received. Brand Management =============== No report at the time of writing. I'm not aware of any major issues. There has been a steady flow of requests, but for the most part they are being handled in the normal process. There are a couple of more complex potential breaches being explored, in at least one case the PMC is seeking guidance from VP Brand Management. Fundraising ========= There was a discussion on a Google SEO forum that highlighted the ability to "buy" a link from apache.org for the price of a Bronze Sponsorship. This thread has since been deleted but there is discussion on at least one other SEO focused site. This prompted further discussion around the current no-follow policy for Bronze sponsors. As a result VP Fundraising has indicated that he will reverse the decision to provide follow links to Bronze level sponsors. Marketing and Publicity ================== With some significant effort to obtain content from all parties Sally has published our Q1 FY2017 report. Thanks to everyone involved. Sally continues to work with VP Fundraising to help with communication/engagement. Snoot analytics is now available to all PMCs. Sally is proactively engaging with new podlings to help with early community building efforts through. Media trainings will be available at ApacheCon EU. Infrastructure ========== A second round of interviews was carried out with the assistance of EA and Infra Admin. Consequently a hire decision was made and an offer has been extended. A second hire is being explored. Travel Assistance Committee ====================== No report submitted. See EA report for details (EA remains acting VP given the ongoing absence of the current VP TAC) My resignation email ================ (posted to firstname.lastname@example.org on Sept 28 2016) I have decided that it is time for me to step down as President of the foundation. I notified the board of my intention a few days ago and with this email I make it official. I will remain in service for up to three months while a replacement is found and we work to ensure a smooth transition. That said, I encourage the board to appoint my replacement as soon as possible. There are many reasons behind this very difficult decision. I will enumerate the key points here for the record. I am happy to expand on these points, but encourage discussion of my opinions and reasoning to be restricted to separate threads covering individual topics. This thread should stay focused on my resignation and the process of replacing me. At a high level my reasons for resigning are: 1) Personal: my day job role has changed in recent times. I am more directly engaged with engineers than I have been for years. Since I started my IT career as an engineer I am truly enjoying this change, even more so since many of the projects I work with are here at Apache. I want to return to my roots and become active in the Apache projects that are important to the engineering side of my life. Resigning as President gives me more time to do that. This is not to say that I will be moving away from the operational aspects of the foundation completely, more on this below. 2) Workload: the role of the president is to ensure the smooth running of the Foundation from an operations perspective. The role is ably supported by a number of VPs and other volunteers. Most of those individuals do as much as they can, but most are volunteers and as such cannot be available at all times. Unlike our code projects the majority of things on the operations side are time dependent. Furthermore, the timing is largely dictated by our code projects, not by the operations teams themselves. For example, a project needs an infra change before it can proceed with its work. A reporter needs a response before they can publish. A company needs a trademark approval before they can launch. A sponsor needs a PO before they can raise an invoice and pay. Contracts with event producers need to be signed before the venue booking expires. Travel for TAC needs to be booked before flights become prohibitively expensive. Project materials need to be shipped before an event starts Etc. Etc. Wherever possible we delegate this work to the PMCs, however, not all aspects can be delegated and not all PMCs are equipped to make progress. Generally our operations teams run quite well, but when they don’t the buck stops with the President, who is also a volunteer. Once things escalate to the President there is usually significant history to wade through before one can make progress. Even then there is likely to be conflict which needs to be resolved. I find I no longer have that time and/or energy to address these items as they escalate (see above). This is not good for the foundation. As the foundation continues to grow we will see this problem becoming more acute while we rely on volunteers at every level, which brings me to the next point. 3) Frustration: I have long felt that the foundation needs to plan for growth. I’ve stood for and been elected to the board on this point. When I was invited to become President I did not stand for board the following year. I felt it was important to separate community focused activities of the board from Presidential duties overseeing the management and growth of oyr operations. This was a natural next step in moving operations activities under the President as originally actioned by Jim as the President prior to myself. For the most part this been successful. However, I now feel it is time for the next step on this evolutionary path. We need to have a paid individual responsible for ensuring routine activities are adequately covered. This would free our volunteers to focus on escalations and growth planning. This discussion and the effort to find a solution that both alleviates the operational burden on our volunteers and preserves the Apache Way has proven to be unexpectedly frustrating (which has undoubtedly contributed to point 1). I feel that the current (and previous) board are paralyzed by the complexities of this issue. This is a symptom of being driven by consensus and having 9 board members, it is not a symptom of ineffective directors. This is a deliberate design of the foundation – a design that prevents undue influence from a single source. I do not propose changing this design, which has served us very well for many years. However, we can't continue without managed and controlled change in the way we handle operations within the foundation. I reject the assertion that paid operational support will lead to an undermining of the Apache Way, but have so far been unable to deliver a proposal that satisfies even a majority of the board, let alone reached consensus. This is the root of my frustration. In a private mail to the directors on this topic (most of which appears in my August board report) I said something to the effect of “don’t insult me by asking me, again, to throw more volunteers at this problem” (where the problem is identified is excessive workload, point 2 above). Unfortunately, this is exactly what the board have been forced to ask me to do since we do not have consensus on an alternative that adequately addresses the cross-foundation workload. 4) Need for change: It is clear to me that my style within the Presidents role has reached its limit. I can choose to change my style, or I can choose to step aside. I have considered both approaches and have concluded that a change in President is better for me personally and likely better for the foundation as a whole. I am very proud of what we, as a Foundation, have done to build out our operations capacity as we have grown. Just a few examples of this include: We have audited our finances for the first time (long overdue). We have moved our staff and contractors to a formal engagement through a Professional Employment Organization. We have successfully outsourced our conferences, resulting in multiple successful conferences across our many projects. We have modernized our infrastructure thus improving service uptime. Many of our trademarks are now protectable. We’ve made significant strides in improving our sponsor relations. And much more. Each of these sound trivial when written as a single sentence, but I can assure everyone that many, many hours from multiple volunteers have gone into, and continue to go into, each of these items. The foundation is in very good shape. We have finances to last many years, even at the deficit we are currently running. Our communities continue to grow. Our projects continue to drive IT innovation. For the most part our operations continue to function well. I am very happy to be handing the foundation over to a new President with new ideas, new energy and a new approach to building capacity for many years to come. I want to close by thanking all operations volunteers within the ASF. Their work is usually only in focus when someone is not happy. Few of our Members, most of our committers and probably none of our contributors and users are aware of the hard work our operations teams do. Operations work does not produce code, yet without it the foundation would not exist. I am proud of my part in this work, but as I write this email I find myself looking forward to more time to spend on code projects. I only hope that this does not mean that I start to be underappreciate the operations teams when something is blocking me. I encourage people to quote this paragraph back to me when I am guilty of such misconduct. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Travel Assistance Committee ====================== Our VP TAC has been fully absent throughout the whole application period and for most of the period prior to this. I've appointed Melissa Warnkin as interim VP while we establish the reason for the current VPs absence (he has been seen in other areas, but is unresponsive on all TAC related issues). Gavin, our previous VP has assisted where he can in his capacity as an infra team member, but we should not be taxing the infra team with maintenance of the TAC webapp (unless we agree to make it a core service, which is not something I am proposing). Melissa has driven the process forward, with a largely new team, and although it is very tight, expects to complete preparations on time. In order to do this she has moved to a manual process. The number of applications is reasonably high in comparison to previous years. Given the circumstances the team, and Melissa in particular, have done an excellent job. Infrastructure ========== No report is available ahead of the meeting, so these are the items I am aware of. The team have interviewed a significant number of people for the infra team. I believe that we will have made offers to at least one, though do not have confirmation of that at this time. I've confirmed with David that he would like to complete his resignation once infra staff are appointed. A replacement for VP Infra has not yet been confirmed but candidates have made themselves known, with concerns about the workload. Now we have moved on the Infra Administrator position (below) I will work on making a VP Infra appointment. We have had long and varied discussions about the need to increase paid support for operational aspects of the foundation. We have not yet reached a consensus position on the spectrum between “throw more volunteers at it” to “move it all under paid staff”. However, there is growing consensus that the growth of the foundation must be correctly managed. While the community aspects of our projects remain healthy and volunteers are perfectly capable of ensuring our projects continue to operate under The Apache Way, the story is different for operations aspects of the organization. To this end I will appoint Greg Stein as a part-time, paid, Infrastructure Administrator. This will move many of the operational responsibilities of the VP Infra role to paid staff. The high level responsibilities of for this role are: - high-level direction/priorities (including being the point of contact for the broader ASF community with respect to self-serve) - budgeting and contract management - a single point of contact for our hired professional staff - assist Foundation exec officers with defining strategy/policy - executing against such policies - other responsibilities as required You will note a conspicuous absence of hands on infra work in this list of responsibilities. This role is designed to empower our existing staff through career development opportunities. This role is explicitly designed to remove the overhead of staff management from a volunteer VP. We will still have a VP of Infra, who will be a volunteer and will be responsible to the President and thus the board for the health of our infrastructure, Our VP will cover both core and non-core services. Our paid staff/contractors will focus entirely on core services and thus it is expected that day to day management of the core services will be fully delegated to the infra administrator and the existing infra contractors. This enables the VP to focus on the self-help aspects of the role. The Infra Administrator will act as the communications channel between community and staff. Brand Management ================ VP Brand reports an ever growing and complex workload. Attempts to recruit volunteer help have been minimally successful and our legal support is limited on existing budgets. I request that the board consider reporting mechanisms that will assist in raising awareness of the branding policies and the self-help approach we are trying to take with brand management. I am not suggesting requiring a formal report with respect to branding issues, but unfortunately I have not been able to come up with a suitable proposal approach. Suggestions welcome. Fundraising ========= The team still have the option of reverting to the original "no follow" rules for Bronze sponsors and have begun vetting sponsors more closely. This months report presents some interesting reading on why our current VP feels it is important to provide equality in our treatment of bronze sponsors when compared to higher level sponsors. I think the reasoning is solid and fully support this position. The short version is that we are here for the public good and should seek to have equality in all aspects of the foundation regardless of size and budget available. VP Brand and VP Marketing have been collaborating on a number of initiatives to assist with fundraising efforts. See the full report for details of these early stage activities. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Clarification: The old "no follow" rules (denying a clickable link to Bronze sponsors) have not been put into place. The Fundraising team are looking at how to avoid the appearance of "SEO for Sale" for sponsors.
For personal reasons I have mostly been absent from my role for a few months now. As a result I have asked the board to consider whether it is the best thing for the ASF to have me continue as President. I have reassured the board that I am ramping back up, and indeed during the last couple of weeks I feel I have almost fully returned, however, my absence has led me to consider the role in some detail. Below is the edited text of a couple of emails I sent privately to the board a week before this meeting. It prompted some discussion and has resulted in a discussion item on this months agenda. I have had to take personal time recently. I’ve found it impossible to get motivated to come back until now. During my personal time I’ve done a great deal of thinking and I’ve come to the conclusion that things here need to change. Either me or the foundation. The foundation is growing faster than our operations abilities to manage the foundation. I’ve proposed many different models to address this and taken many positive steps towards fixing individual pieces (as have many VPs that have come and gone over the years). My focus, as a fully committed ASF Member, has always been to preserve the independence of the foundation. Unfortunately, I have been knocked back at every step. Sometimes because the proposal is seen as too broad (i.e. hire someone), sometimes because volunteers are burned out by the overhead of change management. The argument against radical change is usually that we will not crash and burn if things just tick along with the occasional blip. This is true, but it is a very short sighted view. What will happen is that we will slowly rot if we don’t address these things. Volunteers will continue to burn out. The foundation will continue to grow. We will become increasingly unbalanced and our ability to manage the operations of the foundation will eventually be crushed. I’ve failed to come up with an acceptable solution for the board, therefore the board, with me, needs to come up with an alternative. I realize that the best alternative may be a new Prez. Perhaps my lack of motivation is now part of the problem (this is certainly true for the last few months). I want to be clear that I am happy to tender my resignation at an agreed time, I'm also happy to stay on, but with the understanding that radical change, in some form, is needed. I’m not laying down an ultimatum, nor am I threatening. I want to work with the board to ensure the ASF remains healthy in the long term. My recommendation remains that we must hire someone, or some org, to take responsibility for the operations of the foundation, under the leadership of volunteer VPs and a Prez. That being said, I know there is no consensus around this. I know there is significant objection. But when we try to discuss this it focuses more about "the title" than "the role and responsibilities", or more about "what might happen if we do" than "what might happen if we don't". That is discussion often feels more about restating history than looking at the future. I'm not saying I'm right. I'm saying I don't feel the open discussion has been had. This report is intended to provoke that discussion. I stand by those words and now make them public. I undertake to work with the current directors to find the best solution. This is not an easy thing to do. If there were a quick fix we would have implemented it already. Fortunately, the foundation is in good shape and my concern is about ensuring the foundation can maintain this good shape for many years to come. At this time our financial situation is extremely solid. Our communities grow yearly. Our operations are, though creaking, mostly effective. However, whilst well managed our budget deficit is growing year on year and, unless we see significant increases in income, that deficit will continue to grow - especially as we look to further invest in infrastructure. There is no need for alarm. We have many years of reserve, but we cannot operate long term on a plan that depends on a reserve. As the current President I feel we need to take the long view and we are now at a point where my long term recommendations may not be sufficiently aligned with that of the board. EA == EA has recently, at my request, taken over full responsibility for the coordination of the TAC process for ApacheCon. This is because our VP TAC appears to be otherwise engaged. The good news is that since taking on this responsibility TAC has mostly come back on track with plenty of ne volunteers. One area of difficulty is in updating the website and questions app. Melissa has reached out to Infra for help on this. Though with the arrival of new volunteer it is hoped that someone will take on this responsibility. Melissa is working with Sharan to organize our ApacheCon EU booth activities. Sharan covered for Melissa in NA last time around and has since stepped up to help more broadly. As a resident of the EU this reduces travel time and expense. Brand Management =============== A busy time recently. VP Brand Management is struggling to stay on top, though the decentralization of brand management to PMCs continues to pay dividends. I will observe, however, that this decentralization, can only be harmed when community concerns are brought to the trademark list (an element of operations) and used to influence a trademark registration request, coupled with voluntary donations to cover costs. These two things should be kept separate. Having trademarks assigned to the ASF gives the foundation more influence over community players who are not yet managing trademarks as effectively as we would like. VP Brands report contains similar comments. Fundraising ========= Thanks to Jim who has resigned as one of our two VPs. At this time I do not intend to replace Jim, but again invite all directors to help with both finding new sponsors and engaging with existing sponsors The usual activity around fundraising with the difficulty in contacting one sponsor due for renewal clearly illustrating the need for an ongoing engagement with our sponsors. VP Fundraising again raises concerns about the potential for sponsors at the Bronze level seeing sponsorship as "buying a link" rather than sponsoring the foundation. On this occasion a new sponsor raised some concerns. I continue to defer to VP Fundraising to set policy, but I have enquired as to what needs to happen before this is considered a problem. My concern is that one sponsor expressing a concern may be many more not taking the time to make the observation. Marketing and Publicity ================== Business as usual with the normal press and analyst engagements. Sally has also been working with Melissa and Sharan to explore community partnerships at ApacheCon. Infrastructure ========== We are finally moving on our search for infrastructure team members. Our continued "in the loop" search continued to only attract applicants that were outside of our price range. However, with a new and very broad outreach we are now being "flooded" with applications. My thanks go to David who is working with the Infra team to work through these proposals. The team have hit a major milestone with the puppetization of the Jenkins and BuildBot services. The next major project is to migrate Jira from aging hardware. The Git experiment has little to report, which is a "good thing" as it means it is working reasonably well. The team continue to expand the work. This is an item I want to push forward once our team is fully resourced. As previously asserted I believe allowing projects to use the GitHub as a canonical repository (with appropriate safeguards as discussed) is an important part of the reduction of operations overhead. TAC === Around 10 months ago we discussed reviewing the TAC questions to ensure they met the goals of the foundation with respect to community development. While there have been some tweaks to the questions this work has not yet been carried out. Mostly due to a lack of volunteer energy to drive this difficult task. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. There will be a discussion on many of these points in the Discussion section of the board meeting.
Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. The infrastructure report raises concerns. What is being done to address the staff shortage? David: We seem to be unable to attract staff that we can afford. Tom Pappas: Virtual will undertake a job search for the position(s).
Once again I must apologize for the very late posting of this report. I will provide a full verbal report as it is unlikely all Directors will have had the time to absorb the contents here. The good news is that the personal issues keeping me from work like this are very definitely subsiding. Expect me back up to speed in the coming weeks. Executive Assistance Business as usual. No unexpected activities. Brand Management VP Brand reports an increase in the number of PMC members actively monitoring trademark usage. This has resulted in an increase in the number of concerns raised, in most cases only when they are significant issues rather than early diversions from policy. This highlights what is needed next in terms of the education of our PMCs in managing brand: "Since branding issues are not as clear cut as compiler errors, this often results in an imprecise call to action that is sometimes taken in the wrong spirit by the receiving PMC, resulting in a lot of unfortunate noise and anger." This months report from VP Brand contains a number of specific recommendations for our communities. I encourage everyone to read them and communicate them within their projects. Fundraising Hadrian has raised some concerns about a small increase in the number of Bronze sponsors that he is uncomfortable with, he is of the opinion that they are seeking advertising rather than supporting the foundation. He attributes this to a relaxing of the "no-follow" policy. This was relaxed some time ago but only recently documented on the fundraising website website. The timing makes it unclear if the removal of no-follow is related to these two new sponsors and since both sponsors likely depend on ASF technologies and are (it appears) legitimate businesses I am taking no position on this other than to remind VPs Fundraising that they are free to define policy as they see fit. Another area that needs clarification is "in-kind" donations, in particular for infra. This conversation is on-going. Marketing and Publicity Our annual report was published on time. A big thank you to Sally for coordinating and to all contributors. I am pleased to say I only wrote one report this time around (my own) and thus the whole process was much more enjoyable for myself. I have reminded VPs Fundraising to ensure that this needs to be sent out to sponsors, but I can report my own employer was pleased to see the details laid out clearly. I am confident that this will make renewal conversations easier over the coming year. Sally's report contains the usual "business as usual" facts and figures about our ongoing M&P work. Infrastructure The search continues to find new staff. Unfortunately the only candidates found so far are cost prohibitive (that I know of wither David or I have spoken to 7 potential candidates). Infra continue to raise concerns, with justification. We are broadening the search through broader job advertising sites and would welcome any referrals from the broader community. I can provide a job description on request. There is also a concern about the growth of the foundation and what it means to infra resourcing. For example: "Given our current rate of growth, addressing tickets alone will require 5.5 full time staff members by years end, and if we continue at our current pace we'll need to add 1 to 1.5 staff members every 2 years just to deal with continued growth." This does not include "big ticket items" such as Git support. The infra report includes more details and data. This issue will have my full attention over the coming year. We are not at risk today, but financial this model breaks in 4-5 years if we do not either increase fundraising or decrease demands on infra. The solution is to do both increase fundraising and reduce demand (both through removal of unnecessary work and enabling more self-service). There have been some outages around Nexus. There is a medium term plan to move this to a more reliable and maintainable infrastructure. In the meantime the team continue to use sticky plasters where necessary. David has started renegotiating contracts with existing employees/contractors as per my 1:1 with each at ApacheCon. As a result of understaffing we did not meet this months SLA for repository.a.o (see above). Overall we met SLA on the three categories of critical, core and standard services. Given the staffing circumstances this is understandable and I support the teams prioritization efforts. Travel Assistance Committee No report submitted at the time of writing. However, EA has reported that the TAC recipient surveys are complete with responses being prepared for publication. We are close to closing out the budget for TAC this time around. With the recent announcement of the opening of EU CFP TAC are now planning their timetable to support that event. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. @Ross: Post the infra job description for members to review
Apologies for the late report, some personal issues getting in the way this month. Since we have a new board and you have had time to settle in, it's time for some big discussion items. I raise them here and will discuss on the board@ list following the meeting. 1) Budget: While we have plenty of money in the bank we need to think hard about the direction the budget is heading. We are potentially looking at a large deficit if we hire into an infra lead role as planned. We have plenty of money in the bank and this is not a short-term concern, however, we need a strategy for bringing us back into line within 3 years (we have longer than that in the bank, but I like to be cautious). I have indicated some possibilities for addressing this below. 2) Infra lead: due to budgeting concerns I have not yet moved on the infra lead hiring. I have discussed with the infra team and they are in agreement with buying more time to ensure our path is a sound one. 3) Hiring a "general manager" - we've discussed this a number of times over the years. Recently I stated I did not think now was the time and that in fact an infra lead was more important. Upon deeper examination I have changed my opinion. I believe we may be better hiring a general manager rather than an infra lead. This individual would take on the coordination responsibilities of the President and VP Infra as well as being responsible for managing a fundraising campaign along with VP Fundraising, VP TAC and VP Infra. I have not fully defined this role and will work with the board@ list to do so as it clearly has the potential to change the culture of the foundation and therefore must not be rushed into. 4) GitHub integration is a waste of resources. I asked each of the Infra team how much of our staff time is spent on Git integration. The estimates varied from 10-25%, with the average being around 17%. The team did not feel this will go down with the completion of the MATT/GitHub project, each of them gave examples of further work that would be needed before projects were satisfied. My strong recommendation is that we remove the blocks preventing our projects from self managing GitHub projects as the canonical source control. We will mirror on our own servers. The infra team would build an exit plan and we would ensure budget was available for that plan. At ApacheCon I gave VP Legal a heads up that this would be my recommendation to the board and I request that he, along with the Directors, give approval for infra to make this happen. In the meantime the MATT/GitHub experiment continues, in fact infra a ready to expand it if the board would prefer this route. Executive Assistant Unfortunately Melissa was unable to attend ApacheCon for personal reasons. However, she did a great job of coordinating cover for herself - big thanks to Sharan Foga for stepping up to do the majority of the onsite coordination and booth work. Thanks also to the many members and committers who helped at ApacheCon. Trademarks We saw a large bill come in from our legal firm which went significantly over the agreed monthly cap. VP Trademarks has resolved the issue. VP Trademarks has been working to highlight specific issues within a couple of prominent PMCs. One of which is seeing a competing registration attempt, which we are objecting to. The outcome of our objection here will be an interesting test of our policies and enforcements. With respect to Budget VP Fundraising is indicating, once again, that next years spend will be considerably higher than last years. This is supported by the large invoice presented in the last month. As with other years only budget for US registrations is being requested, but VP Fundraising believes a further request will be needed later in this year. I note that this is the same situation as last year, yet we were still significantly under budget last year. VP Trademarks expresses concern that PMCs are not policing their marks sufficiently. In the past there has never been consensus among the board with respect to how much we should expect project communities to pro-actively (vs. re-actively) enforce trademark policies. Now we have a new board this is worth re-visiting. My position remains constant, we cannot scale trademark protection through VP Trademarks and so this remains the responsibility of the PMC. Unfortunately, in a few cases this model is not working. Fundraising I met with both VPs Fundraising at ApacheCon (Jim only briefly). With Hadrian there were two main points of discussion: A) Scaling fundraising efforts. I suggested three possible routes 1) Empowering Infrastructure to seek its own sponsorship 2) Empowering TAC to seek its own sponsorship 3) Bringing in a "General Manager" to assist with both Infra and Fundraising. For 1) and 2) we agreed that given the right people in those committees there is no reason why they could not put together sponsorship opportunities that were independent of individual projects. B) Hadrian's role as VP Fundraising and how to ensure others are able to step up and help in the fundraising activities. Marketing Annual report is coming up in May. Those responsible for sections please liaise with Sally. Infrastructure I have still not moved on hiring an infra lead (more on this below). However, David and I, with the help of the infra team, have interviewed to back-fill the infra team. An informal offer has been made. At ApacheCon I met with all infra staff and VP Infra to discuss staffing. All agreed that holding off on hiring an infra lead was acceptable as long as we back-filled the team (this is already in progress). I also indicated my intention to create a bonus scheme for infra team members and to address the fact that many of the team have not had a raise for some time. I will revisit this once we have discussed the general manager role on board@. Code signing will not be discontinued as a result of a renegotiation of fees. An attack on JIRA resulted in some service limitations for non-committers. lists.apache.org was launched. The old mail search and archives will be retired as a result (existing links will continue to work). Performance against our SLAs is down this month due to being understaffed, though we are mostly meeting requirements. My thanks go to the infra team for working through this. TAC Nick and I met at ApacheCon to discuss the goal of TAC and how we might improve the selection process to meet that goal. TAC will review our discussion and act upon it in the coming months. The short version is that I believe there is an opportunity for TAC to seek its own funding and that it should come up with a model for doing so. Nick agreed to work with this and see where we can go. Our initial thinking is that we focus on the "public good" aspect of mentoring people into the Apache Way through conference activities. However, concrete ideas are only just starting to emerge. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Chris expressed support for the GitHub recommendation. Ross to provide updated budget numbers after the meeting.
Executive Assistant continues to keep critical activities moving in support of our volunteers. Primary focus in the last month has been TAC and ApacheCon. Trademarks has seen a few complex issues in the last month. Shane is working on documentation to assist PMCs seeking to "self-serve". See http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/templates/ and http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/guide. Shane is explicitly calling for member feedback, in addition to assistance on clarifying key point sin the existing policy docs (specifically domain name and event branding policies). Fundraising, for the last few months we've been reporting that fundraising was lagging behind budget, but that this was a result of last years budget being averaged across the year, rather than showing actual renewal dates. This month we are ahead of budget since a number of renewals have now been completed. Moving into next year the budget reflects renewal dates rather than an averaged income. The fundraising team will be meeting at ApacheCon to discuss additional improvements to the overall fundraising activities. Marketing and Publicity: Contract renewed with Halo (no increase in fees). Infrastructure: We remain understaffed and it seems that the search committee has made insufficient progress on advertising for a new lead role. I submitted an outline proposal for discussion on 4/1. This involves a significant spend on a lead role for infrastructure. One member of the committee supported the idea in principle (the current VP Infra), one opposed it for lack of detail. Others did not comment, awaiting more detail. This was provided on 4/3, resulting in one more member of the committee explicitly supporting the proposal. We do not yet have consensus and therefore further discussion is required. There are two candidates for backfilling the existing team. I've reached out to David to ask if we ought to seek to back-fill while we look to a longer term plan as a search committee. The board approved the inclusion of 2 new projects in the GitHub enablement experiment. This work is ongoing with Sam Ruby stepping up to help ensure self-service is addressed within the project. Traffic Server has been onboarded and, at the time of writing, no incidents have been raised. Budget: Budget is behind schedule. First lets roll up the previous budget, the forecasted net loss for 2016 was $-160K, with March numbers in the estimated deficit is now $-1.1K. For the forthcoming year I provided proposed budget to all VPs on 4/1 and have received feedback from Marketing, Brand Management, Infrastructure and TAC. There are some outstanding items I need to address, but we are in good shape except that I've been holding off on the final budget while the Infra Lead search committee discuss the proposed budget for this role. However, as noted above this is not moving as quickly as I would like. Therefore, I have submitted a proposed budget without the infrastructure staffing changes included. I ask that the board consider this and approve it (with necessary modifications), by email, ahead of the next board meeting. I will answer questions both in the meeting and by email. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Marvin: Are we up against a deadline for replacing VP Infra? Ross: No concerns presently.
Infrastructure ========== Infrastructure has consumed most of my time over the last month. Tony Stevenson has left our infrastructure ranks as a paid contractor but remains as a volunteer. We wish him well in his new role. This departure was not unexpected and David had previously over-staffed in preparation. However, the team is now understaffed. I've commenced an informal search and have a candidate to consider (though this candidate did not come from my own search). I'll sync with David on how to coordinate filling this role once we have decided on the longer term strategy (see below). Two projects (that I know of) have requested to join the Git experiment. The infrastructure team are not yet confident enough to extend this experiment, though good progress is being made. It would be useful to have feedback from the board as to whether they see this as a priority given the potential community impact. The team have defined a JIRA SLA, the (tentative goal) is to have 90% of new tickets resolved within the time specified in https://status.apache.org/sla/jira/primer.html, current performance metrics can be found at https://status.apache.org/sla/jira Work has progressed well with respect to restructuring the VP Infra role. As discussed last month the current plan is to create a new Infrastructure Lead role who will be responsible for the day to day operations of the infrastructure team, as discussed on the board@ list this month I have added the responsibility to ensure infrastructure is, wherever reasonable, responsive to and inclusive of community self-serve activities. As a reminder, responsibilities are split as follows (delegation is encouraged, this is just where the buck stops)... President with vendor or staff support * Manage infra staff with respect to performance and work environment * Negotiate contract renewals with infra contractors/staff * Recruit infra staff as needed VP Infra with vendor and staff support * Approve infra purchasing decisions, including contract negotiation and renewal with suppliers * Ratify medium- to long-term strategy, along with SLA metrics, for ASF Infra services in response to community demands (Critical, Core and Standard services) * Identify and prioritize community engagement with infrastructure services through a clearly defined and document self-service program * Set or advise on appropriate ASF policy as requested * Enforce ASF Policies * Be the voice of the infra team for the ASF President and thus the Board and our Members (e.g. board reports) Infra Lead (paid, also assists with all items under staff below) * Set and manage annual infra budgets * Identify suppliers, contract negotiation and renewal * Coordinate staff and community input to medium- to long-term strategy, along with SLA metrics, for ASF Infra services in response to community demands (Critical, Core and Standard services) * Identify and prioritize community engagement with infrastructure services through a clearly defined and document self-service program * Encourage collaboration between projects who are self-managing the same/similar services Staff/Contractors (including Lead) * Implement the defined strategy for ASF Infra (Critical, Core and Standard services * Track against SLA targets and report at https://status.apache.org/sla * Allocate resources (people's time) to ensure tickets are dealt with in a timely way in addition to completing assigned project word * Balance job assignments and project schedules to ensure the necessary work is completed while fun new stuff is progressed * Ensure projects are either provided with everything they need as a service, or (wherever possible) are provided compute resources to self-host * Support community self-service efforts wherever Infra Lead or VP Infra agree there is sufficient benefit in doing so * Monitor project adherence to appropriate ASF policies (e.g. release management, version control, service use), addressing issues of concern and escalating to the appropriate officer wherever necessary Given the increasing formality and emphasis on performance I recommend we create an annual merit reward system and bonus scheme for all infra staff and contractors. At present there is little motivation for individual contractors to perform "above and beyond" and while I don't mean to imply any of our contractors are not performing well I would like to reflect our increasing emphasis on SLAs and customer satisfaction with a means to reward those who choose to go beyond what they are required to do. I've spoken with a number of organizations that can assist with the items assigned to President. My recommendation is to either 1) extend our relationship with Virtual, or 2) hire a lead who is also capable of taking on this role. Finding a person suitably qualified for 2) is a difficult ask, but it will be a cheaper option. Using virtual will increase our costs by a maximum of $15k per year (including recruitment fees, assuming new/replacement one hire per year). This would mean that President (potentially delegated to VP Infra) will remain responsible for final decisions relating to staff/contractors, but the day to day activities informing these decisions will be carried out by Virtual under contract. We can also use Virtual to assist with contract negotiation (assigned to lead) since such skills are not common in people with an operations expertise. This would cost around $1,500 per contract negotiation should we choose to use these services. I have not added a discussion item for this topic, I intend to ask the board for approval to take the actions described below. If there is a need to discuss these actions I will request that we add a discussion item to the agenda during the meeting. Recommended actions: 1) Form a search committee for the Infra lead role 2) Spend one month conducting a search and interviewing candidates 3) If a candidate capable of taking on the HR role as well as operations role is found hire them and delegate all items listed as President to that individual, If no such candidate is found but an operations lead is found then hire them and extend our agreement with Virtual 4) Hire appropriate contractors or staff to fill remaining gaps in the infra team Note this will increase infra staffing budgets, possibly by a full employee plus management fees, since the lead role may become a full time role while demands on the existing infra contractors remain at the same levels. Executive Assistant =============== EA continues to aid VPs wherever she can. Primary focus this month has been TAC with some trademarks and fundraising issues along with the regular monthly activities. Brand Management =============== The continued push to have PMCs take ownership of their trademark management is going well, though this month an over zealous PMC took action without consulting with Trademarks. No harm done, just a little wasted time for all involved. Fundraising ========= A quiet month for fundraising this month. We've identified a number of gaps in our records relating to sponsorship renewals. Melissa is working with Virtual to help close these gaps. Marketing ======== Thank you to everyone providing content for the quarterly report in the last month. This was the first month a potential sponsor asked me for the latest report ahead of it being published. They informed me that they've been monitoring this for three quarters and find the information useful. All other marketing and publicity activities are "business as usual" Travel Assistance ============== We have a record number of applications this time - 48. This is a result of a number of initiatives to raise awareness of our TAC work. One such initiative is TAC stories from past recipients: http://www.apache.org/travel/stories/ As a consequence the team would like to request additional budget to cover additional attendees. Since ApacheCon is in 2016 we will have an underspend of circa $15k in 2015, therefore this request is actually for the 2016 budget. I've worked with Nick as VP TAC to ensure that any additional TAC recipients are selected on a slightly modified criteria. We are still using the existing criteria, but selecting others based on how much impact the individuals and open source in general are likely to benefit from their attendance at ApacheCon. The additional request, in addition to the $15k available in 2015, is for a maximum of $15k (though the final budget is expected to be closer to $10k). This will increase the number of attendees from the currently accepted 9 (using available budget) to 15. It is worth noting that if we were to use the historic cut-off point in the evaluation we would be accepting 24 people, in other words, we believe the final selection of recipients will see a greater impact on their own engagement in open source and thus the open source ecosystem will benefit even more. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Made good progress on planning for the loss of VP Infra. See discussion item for details. Executive Assistant =============== Most "non-routine" activity this month has been around TAC and ApacheCon, with a special focus on raising awareness of the CFP close. There was a reasonable amount of trademark follow ups this month. Brand Management =============== Quite a busy month. A number of event requests and a few trademark infringements to deal with. Nothing too significant and good progress being made in all cases. Fundraising ========= Some process improvements now in place. All invoices are up-to-date, although it turns out that Virtual were still under the impression that one of our previous sponsors who have indicated they are unable to renew was still invoiced. I'm not sure how this happened or at what point in the process the sponsor was invoiced. Hopefully the process improvements will minimize such errors in the future. We are currently $64k behind sponsorship income projections for 2016 (though our overall budget remains in good shape since we have spent less than projected as well as received less than projected - current "worst case" puts us at -$138k by financial year end against a budgeted $161k). Marketing and Publicity ================== It's time for the November 2015-January 2016 quarterly report. All those officers who have not yet submitted their report for Sally should do so in the next couple of days (it's quick and simple, just review your board reports for this period, select the key pieces and send to Sally who can add any necessary colour). New visual identity is live - I am still shocked at how "easy" this was from my perspective, and that of our members. A testament to the sensitive handling of a potentially sensitive topic. I believe our Membership felt fully involved and as a result is almost unanimous in their approval of the new design. Well done Sally (and thanks to LucidWorks and HotWax Systems for donating creative services). Sally has confirmed a return of her media/analyst trainings at ApacheCon. I've already signed up for my much needed update and I recommend everyone who is at all interest in such things to sign up when Sally announces them within the community (two beginner sessions, one for podlings one for TLPs and an advanced session will be offered). Infrastructure ========== During the last month I've met 1:1 with all but one of the infra team as well as spending time with most of the team as a group. My goal was to listen to their recommendations on how to address the replacement of David as VP Infra. I've also spoken with a number of potential outsource organizations to understand what they can offer. Finally, I've reviewed a reasonably complete proposal secured by David. The output of all these activities is covered in a discussion item, with a more complete proposal to be presented to the board and discussed between now and the next board meeting on board@. In the interim, David has agreed to stay on for at least another month as VP Infra. I have offered to help out where I can (see discussion item) and the Infra contractors have all shown willing to continue in a (mostly) self-managing way. There has been good progress on a number of infra items. Most notably projects may now publish apps in the iTunes store. Huge thanks to Mark Thomas who has been working on this for multiple years and seen it to conclusion. In addition Appveyor CI is now available for projects using the GitHub mirror: https://blogs.apache.org/infra/entry/appveyor_ci_now_available_for There are a few issues with uptime for core services (critical services remain close to 100%). Issues vary from technical debt to abuse. Remediation is being planned in all relevant cases. Travel Assistance Committee ====================== Not report submitted at the time of writing. Melissa has been updating me on status. We are at low levels of applications at present, though it is still early in the process. Melissa is working with the TAC team to ensure we conduct more outreach. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
It's been a quiet month with the holiday period. Though the new year has certainly been a busy one. There is no significant news from EA, Brand Management, Fundraising, Marketing or TAC, all of which are "business as usual" - given the quiet period of the last month that means very little to report. While most of us can take it easy during the holiday period this is not the case for our infra team. Service uptime for monitored services was over the "three nines" for the first time and work progresses on core infrastructure improvements, including GitHub integration. The Whimsy experiment is progressing nicely with infra reporting solid progress. Further details are provided in the Whimsy report. It is worth drawing attention to VP Marketing's proposal to reinstate media/analyst training at ApacheCon this year. This would be a very welcome return of a program run a number of years ago. We now have many new projects and as such it is not uncommon to have PMCs with nobody able to respond appropriately to media enquiries. I welcome the proposal to offer the sessions again and will support the initiative in any way I can. I've started the process for the 2016/17 budget. Virtual have raised a few questions regarding budgeted vs actual expenditure, in particular with respect to brand management ($4.8K of the $39K budget) and legal ($562 out of the $22K budget). With just four months left in this financial year we feel this indicates a need to reduce these budget items next year. I will work with the appropriate VPs and, if appropriate, will take the appropriate action. Unfortunately the time has come for us to look for a new VP Infra as David is looking to step down. I would like to thank David for his exceptional work in this role. I think we can all agree our infra support has improved considerably under his guidance and the hard work of our contractors. We all knew that one day David would wish to step down. I have been dreading the day as he is a very hard man to replace. On behalf of the Board, our Membership and most importantly our Communities I would like to thank David for his work. I've known about this or a couple of weeks and have been considering our options. As David himself has warned, the role of VP Infra is pretty much a full time role now. During the last couple of years we have considered many options to bring stability and scalability to our infra team and the VP infra role. We've never been entirely happy with the options available to us and have yet to come to find a solution that is full satisfactory. I am reviewing the options available and have added a discussion item to this months agenda with the view to reminding all directors of those options and to make a preliminary recommendation to the board for consideration over the following month. David continues to assist with these investigations but expects to step down within the next month. If necessary I will step in to bridge the gap. However, I must emphasize that we need to take action quickly in order to minimize disruption for our contractors and our communities. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Lots of housekeeping work this month, but nothing warranting board attention. I am meeting with an existing sponsor later this week to discuss the directed sponsorship model. The sponsor in question is not dissatisfied with the existing model but is keen to understand what options are available to them as they have an interest in helping the PMC fund and organize community events. I will work with VP Fundraising if there is interest in moving forwards with an experiment. Executive Assistant -------------------------- A fairly normal month for our EA. Lots of "eyes and ears" activities. Plenty of hands on work with TAC. Melissa is trying to use the experimental application built by Ross and Rich (within the ComDev project) to pull Apache related meetups from meetups.com and publish them to the website. There are some technical difficulties to be resolved in the process but with some manual intervention from Rich we now have a regularly updated meetups calendar at http://www.apache.org/events/meetups.html (actually this has been live for some time, and Sally has beein including the info in her weekly roundups since June, e.g. https://blogs.apache.org/foundation/date/20150619, but I don't think it has been reported before). Brand Management --------------------------- Further evidence of success in the ongoing decentralization efforts are seen within the Hadoop PMC who are called out as having successfully managed some recent trademark issues. The IPMC is also complimented on efficient handling of trademark searches. Interestingly another foundation is drawing on our VP Brand Managements experience as they further refine their own trademark policies. A testament to the work done here in the ASF by both the VP Brand Management and the foundation as a whole. Fundraising ---------------- Two sponsors have decided not to renew in the last month. Neither cited any dissatisfaction with the foundation. A third sponsor has been identified as "at risk". VP Fundraising reports that this should not have a significant impact on the budget and the financial models provided by Virtual seem to confirm this. However, I have requested an analysis of the impact and will add it here, or report verbally, if it comes in time for this months meeting. Otherwise I will address this next month. Marketing and Publicity ------------------------------- Mostly business as usual, although there is an issue with "non-media-related phone calls with customer (usually end-user) issues with certain Apache projects/products, the majority related to of the presence of Apache-powered products on mobile devices/apps, with a high number of calls received at non-business hours." I am trying to understand the scale of this problem and discussing solutions with Sally. Sally has submitted two alternative logo designs resulting from feedback collated from the initial designs shared earlier. Generally speaking both designs have been received well. The next stage will be to incorporate them into the recently completed site redesign. This work includes rolling out a visual system, which will translate our new logo across all ASF assets, from the Website to "powered by" graphics to the annual report, as well as provide the feather glyph for projects wishing to update their own logos. As always Sally will be progressing at a manageable pace and seeking input from the Membership at appropriate points. Infrastructure ------------------ The "Merge all the Things" experiment with the Whimsy project is causing some churn in the GitHub integration tooling. However, it is progressing well (see Whimsy report for more information). The board previously undertook an action to provide more clarity on expected git usage patterns, this action has been completed. After a "disappointing" report last month in that critical services fell below the SLA for the first time we see it rebound this month to a fantastic 99.98%. Other services remain above SLA and continue to improve with the "all services" uptime being an excellent 99.93% (SLA is 98%). Work on the new mail infrastructure is progressing well, with a changeover planned in the next few months. Travel Assistance Committee --------------------------------------- No report submitted at the time of writing. Christofer Dutz has joined TAC. Chris is a recent TAC recipient and brings new ideas and energy to the committee. TAC applications for Apache NA is now open. The committee is focusing on expanding beyond the existing ASF community in an attempt to attract people genuinely new to the ASF. However no revisisions to the application process have been made at this time, the intent is not to change to many things at once. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
First I would like to observe there have been a few significant activities relating to China. This is, in part, a result of my trip there last year in which I was invited to speak at a number of conferences and to meet with a number of business leaders in the country. We have seen out first two major contributions from Chinese companies (not counting the ill-fated academic initiative of a number of years ago). We have a new Silver sponsor with Chinese headquarters, and we had our first Apache Roadshow for a great many years (1,400 attendees with a further 3,370 watching the live stream, full report at https://blogs.apache.org/foundation/entry/summary_of_the_apache_roadshow There are a great many people involved with these successes, my own part was only to raise our feather. Thank you to everyone involved, it is fantastic to see the Apache Way benefiting from these new contributions. I'm aware of a number of other activities on the horizon too. Financials are looking good. Last month we reported a significant variance in budget vs actual. We also reported that this was likely due to our lack of accurate timing information for sponsorship income. This appears to be the case as this month actuals are coming more into line with budgets. I remain satisfied that we are in good shape. Full reports are provided monthly to the treasurer and presidents office and can be viewed in SVN. Executive Assistant =============== Two main activities in addition to the usual work: 1) Working with a proof of concept events app built by Rich and myself. This app pulls event details from meetups.com. Melissa is working with VP Marketing to work out how best to use this data and enter it into our events calendar (currently the meetups events appear at http://www.apache.org/events/meetups.html) 2) Working with Linux Foundation and TAC to remove applicant confusion of sources of travel assistance Brand Management =============== VP Brand indicates the "complexity of issues being brought up continues to grow" while the number of enquiries is decreasing. This was the intended result of pushing brand management to PMCs. Issues reaching brand management are being dealt with in reasonable timeframes. Fundraising ========= A busy month: 3 new sponsors (1 platinum, 2 silver) and others in the pipeline. Last month I sought input on some feedback we've had from existing and potential sponsors. Much of the discussion focused on one specific aspect (GitHub and infrastructure) of the feedback rather than the broader desire to better message what we do with sponsors money. There were, however, some very useful observations made, that will no doubt strengthen our messaging to sponsors. Some issues with the CRM system have been identified and VP Fundraising has indicated the need for support from the operations team to resolve. We will work on this and report back next month. Marketing and Publicity ================== Work progresses without incident or special highlight this month. We remain in good stead with prompt and appropriate response to all media relations work. Infrastructure ========== people.apache.org is going to be retired. There will be a new web only service on home.apache.org. Committers will have three months to move content to the new service. Shell access will not be provided. PMC chairs will be provided with a VM for managing records etc. I feel I should stop reporting on the "yay, look at the results of the config management work", but then who would say thank you ;-) This month the team needed to replace the unified logging system as it was not coping with volume. The replacement was a 5 node cluster which took less than 24 hours to configure and bring online as a result of a high level of reuse in the config scripts. Great work! Unfortunately the long run of improvements in meeting SLAs is over. This month an LDAP outage resulted in critical service SLA not being met (99.39% against a target of 99.5%). The team seek to ensure this particular failure is better addressed in the future. Uptime data: http://status.apache.org/sla/ Travel Assistance ============== TAC is reviewing the questions for ApacheCon NA. It is not expected that there will be significant revamp this time around due to changes in the team the desire to think carefully before taking action. However, a number of improvements are being considered. The team are focusing on casting the net further afield and thus increasing the quality of candidates (though quality of selected candidates has always been high). There is some thought of expanding the TAC budget, but this will not be requested until a clear plan and justification has been drawn up. Early comments are welcome. The team worked with the Linux Foundation to better align the foundations assistance for attendees. It was decided that LF would not invite applicants during the registration and CFP processes. Instead they will direct applicants to the ASF who will evaluate and share details of any candidates we feel are strong but cannot fund do to resource limitations. LF will then evaluate independently and potentially offer assistance. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Thank you to Brett Porter and David Nalley who will be covering for me in Korea (David) and China (Brett and David) this month as I still struggle with resolving the issues that prevent me from travelling at present. Most of our EA time was taken up with TAC and ApacheCon this month. No significant actions to report. Fundraising ---------------- Fundraising continues to improve processes in response to issues identified. New sponsors are in the pipeline. One platinum sponsor has chosen not to renew. Separately from VP Fundraising activities I have had the opportunity to speak directly to three separate current and potential sponsors in the last couple of weeks. All three have the same feedback, it can essentially be boiled down to two things: 1) why should we sponsor, there is no measurable benefit to us beyond code and we get that anyway and 2) why are you spending so much money on infrastructure when perfectly good options, such as GitHub. Item 1) is a difficult one to answer since we don't give anything in return for sponsorship (and we are in agreement this should not change). Item 2 seems easy, but in 2 of the three cases when I responded with our usual "we need to self host for X, Y, Z reasons" they responded to the effect of "but we use GitHub for our canonical repositories, we don't have those same concerns". I will explore these issues in the coming months with the appropriate VPs and, if appropriate, bring proposals back the Membership and/or board as appropriate. Marketing ======= The usual tick-tock from marketing plus the rather surprising (almost) universal acceptance of the proposed logo redesign. My thanks go to Sally for working on this redesign. I look forward to the minor refinements that are likely to emerge based on the Members feedback. Brand Management =============== Thank you to the Directors who have reviewed the proposal to register Tomcat in additional geographies. I see there are enough approvals at the time of writing. Assuming no concerns are raised during the prior to or during the meeting VP Brand Management will proceed with the requested registrations. Thank you to the Tomcat PMC, VP Brand Management and, in particular, Mark Thomas for drawing up a clear justification for their request in response to my "devils advocate" attempts to channel any potential Directors concerns. Mark was very professional and patient in his responses and I believe the experience has helped clarify the criteria under which non-US registrations should be considered. Documentation and guidance for brand management. Resources are indexed from http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/resources Infrastructure ========== Welcome to Daniel Takamori, a new part-time infra team member (filling an open position). For more see https://blogs.apache.org/infra/entry/dear_apache. Infra budget needs some adjustment, some lines are over budget (specifically replacing hardware, cloud infrastructure, and build farm costs). Overall the predicted spend is within approved budget. David is working with Virtual to ensure there is no impact on our overall impact on our annual budget. In addition there is the possibility of in-0kind donations covering the increased spend in these lines. With this focus on retiring/replacing old machines a significant amount of technical debt has been paid back. All services met the SLA despite some failures that needed to be managed this month - http://status.apache.org/sla/ Travel Assistance Committee ====================== At the time of writing there is no TAC report. Thank you to Gavin McDonald who has stepped down from the chair role in TAC after seven years. Gavin did a fantastic job of getting TAC off the ground, something I myself attempted (but failed) prior to his engagement. Gavin felt that some new blood would be beneficial to TAC, in this context I'm pleased to report that Nick Burch has returned to the committee after a few years break. Nick brings lots of historical knowledge but also a renewed energy. Nick and the team will be exploring ideas for increasing the impact of TAC. The first task is to understand how our own assistance and that of the Linux Foundation can be better aligned. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
First of all, my apologies for the late submission of my report this month. It's been a busy time. My Travel ======== Due to changes in my Visa arrangements I am currently unable to travel freely. This is a short term issue but as I regularly travel and always seek to represent the ASF wherever I go it is causing some issues that I need to address. Firstly, I may not be able to attend ApacheCon EU. Shane will be present for Big Data and will present State of the Feather if I am not present. Bertrand will be at Core and will be able to present it there. I am due to provide a keynote address as ASF Prez in Korea in October. I need a replacement. I am also due to meet a potential sponsor on this trip, this could be delayed but if someone can replace me that would be great. Expenses for this are covered. I am due to provide a keynote at an Apache Roadshow event in China, also in October, though I am still awaiting final confirmation of this event. At the time of writing I have not arranged any sponsor meetings but there are two potential sponsors that we should line up if someone is able to replace me. Expenses for this are covered. Note, the Korea and China events are back to back if someone fancies a little Asian tour. But two separate speakers is also fine. Finally I have been invited to keynote at a high level China event in November. I have not yet accepted this invitation. Anyone interested should contact me to discuss. Executive Assistant =============== Melissa has been focusing on TAC this month. Everything is ready to go despite the very tight timeframes. Other activities have included the usual support of various VPs though there has been minimal time for proactive help this month. A laptop, keyboard, mouse and monitor was purchased from the Prez discretionary budget. The total package came in well under the budget cap I set last month. Brand Management =============== Three projects (Mesos, Tomcat and Spark) have all requested registrations that are not covered in the boards approved budget (i.e. they include non-US registrations). I've asked Shane to provide concrete argument to support these specific requests, and Shane is working with the appropriate PMCs. Once I have received that argument I will submit each to the board alongside my recommendation and any adjustment to budget that this might require, Shane is also addressing a new policy question that has emerged relating to downstream redistribution of our project code. He is also handling the usual requests as per policy. Fundraising ========= Prompted by last months report from Virtual that fundraising was significantly behind budget predictions I asked Virtual to provide an accurate record of when sponsorships were paid and when they are due for renewal. This will allow next years budget to be based on actual numbers rather than an averaged income across 12 months as has been the case in previous years. This will make it much easier to evaluate actual vs budgeted income. Melissa and Hadrian are now working from this data and ensuring that their CMS records align with the financial data. Furthermore Hadrian has been working with Virtual to ensure that they assist in identifying any late renewals. It seems that each month Fundraising announces a new sponsor and this month is no exception - welcome to PrivateInternetAccess as a new Silver sponsor. A renewing sponsor asked if their sponsorship could be directed to a specific project. Hadrian interpreted the email in the same way that I did, it was a question not a request. Hadrian indicated that we do not currently accept directed sponsorships but has offered to discuss this further if the sponsor requires. Hadrian and I reviewed the directed sponsorship terms at LinuxCon recently and I believe he and I are roughly on the same page with respect to what is/is not possible. Finally, Hadrian has indicated that in he plans to indicate which sponsors have renewed and are due to renew in future board reports. I agree this is useful but I have requested that the information be marked private so that sponsor names will not appear in the published minutes in case any sponsors choose not to renew. Marketing and Publicity ================== Sally continues to work on proposals for a logo redesign and was scheduled to review proposals on Sept 14th (too late for this report despite being before the meeting itself). An item arose in the last couple of days and is thus not included Sally's report but I want to raise it for visibility. An analyst firm has published a report that claims a well known company had discussion with the ASF about IP management. At the time of writing I have not read the article and it may be harmless. However, based on comments sent to press@ it appears that they may have some inaccurate information that may or may not be problematic. Greg has offered to work with the author and Jim, as VP Legal, is aware of the discussion. I have been given a trial subscription so that I can retrieve and share a copy. Infrastructure ========== HEADLINE: Infrastructure Investments in architecture and configuration management pay off A loss of an LDAP server this month resulted in a number of services being useless. Monitoring and alerting worked as expected. Thanks to robust configuration management for LDAP a new host was provisioned and configured within 12 minutes. Astounding! To quote David as VP Infrastructure "A 12 minute Mean-Time-to-Recovery is a stunning statistic." Round of applause for the Infra team please.... We had what the team believe to be a DDoS attack against our download CGI scripts this month. It took around 12 hours to fully address. Thank you to the team for their hard work on this. New work this month has focused on monitoring. The centralized logging facility is now in production, bringing lots of visibility into what is really going on. An immediate result of this is the identification of abuse of our systems and a resulting "blocky" service which automatically blocks abusive IP numbers identified in the centralized logs. Results have been immediate and significant, for example a 30% reduction in one servers bandwidth. The Mail (Phase 2) project hit a snag. In short the PoC looked promising but it became clear it would not scale to our mail load. The infra team have a plan, but it does present some risk. This is likely to delay progress but it is better to see and address such problems during the PoC stage. Finally all SLAs were met this month and the graphs continue to show improvements: http://status.apache.org/sla/ Travel Assistance Committee ====================== Once again there is no report from TAC. I have spoken with Gavin as VP TAC and we have a plan to resolve this situation after ApacheCon. As usual I do have good insight into what is happening on TAC thanks to Melissa's oversight. An applicant raised a concern about being expected to perform certain actions (such as introducing speakers) at the event. This requirement was indicated in the original materials sent to potential applicants, however it seems that this was not clear enough. In this case the concern expressed related to a justifiable worry about not being able to perform the actions in a satisfactory way due to circumstances beyond the individuals control. The applicant offered to withdraw their application. However, I reassured the individual that we will make appropriate arrangements should problems arise and that they should still accept TAC assistance. Daniel Gruno will be present in Budapest to help Gavin organize TAC recipients at the event, as will the ever present Melissa. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Nothing particular important to report this month. Mostly the operations side of the foundation is flowing smoothly. Headlines: * On behalf of the ASF Membership and the broader open source community I would like to extend our sympathies to the family and friends of Nóirín Plunkett who passed away on July 29th 2015. http://www.apache.org/memorials/noirin.html * Proposal to purchase a laptop for our EA (from Presidents discretionary) * OSCON booth was successfully executed but of questionable value * D&O Insurance has been renewed with no break in coverage * A large (potential) infrastructure sponsor is causing the fundraising team to evaluate our current policies for sponsor recognition * Uptime statistics for core services are now available at http://status.apache.org/sla/ - I recommend taking a look standard, core and critical services have all met their SLA in the last 5 reporting periods * TAC has been brought in on time despite the late start to the process OSCON ====== Our booth at OSCON was well staffed by volunteers ably coordinated by Geoff Corey who stepped in to replace Melissa who was unable to travel. In recent years we have debated whether having a formal presence at the OSCON provided significant benefit to the foundation. I've been somewhat split on this. I am no longer split (though have not consulted everyone involved at this point). The "not-for-profit" pavilion this year was an afterthought for the event as a whole. It was physically separated from the main expo floor and not signposted. I found many people who simply didn't know it was there. This had the result that the majority of foot traffic were people who actively sought out the pavilion. Consequently, in my stints on the booth I did not have a single conversation with people not already connected with one or more of our projects. Executive Assistant =============== Melissa has been very busy this month with TAC arrangements (see below) in addition to her usual duties. I would like to thank Melissa for going above and beyond for the foundation despite having to attend to some personal issues as well. For some time Melissa has been struggling with an old and failing laptop. EVP and I are in agreement that we need to purchase a laptop for the foundation, to be used by Melissa for foundation activities. We currently do not have a budget for this and thus I propose to pay for it from the Presidents discretionary budget ($500-$1000 price). We will then budget for this to be replaced every two years with the outgoing laptop becoming part of the "event in a box". Brand Management =============== As previously reported we no longer receive pro-bono support for trademark registrations. VP Brand Management has entered into an agreement which involves a capped spend to ensure we remain in budget. Fundraising ========= In the monthly budget report Virtual indicated that Fundraising was significantly behind schedule. However, the budget is calculated based on averages over the year, rather than actual expected income dates. VP Fundraising reports that this has indeed been a slow quarter but that it does not reflect an expected drop in annualized revenue. Starting in the next budget cycle we should seek to provide a finer grained budget (which, with our improved record keeping, should be a relatively simple affair). As we become more pro-active in our outreach to sponsors we are increasingly seeing feedback that they want "more" in return for their sponsorship. I remain firm in my opinion that we will not provide anything that risks upsetting the neutrality of the foundation and its projects. Hadrian as one VP Fundraising is exploring options that we might be able to entertain. Hadrian and I met at LinuxCon to discuss the issue. It is my opinion that the requests are coming in because first contact with new sponsors is often with marketing rather than engineering contacts within companies. This is something that Hadrian and I will explore further in order to validate or invalidate as appropriate. That being said, we continue to report new sponsors on an almost monthly basis, including this month. All in all Fundraising is in good shape. Marketing ======= "Business as usual." Infrastructure ========== Some problems with mail archives have been uncovered. There is no lost data, but archives are not correctly being built. Investigations are ongoing. Monitoring of services is now provided by an external service, resulting in an increased level of visibility into our services. Uptime statistics, previously manually created and reported most months, have now been fully automated. Results can be viewed at http://status.apache.org/sla/ Travel Assistance Committee ====================== No report has been submitted. However, the EA report includes details and since I volunteered to help for ApacheCon EU I have higher visibility than in previous cycles. I want to explicitly thank our EA for her tireless work ensuring that the very late start in the process did not result in us failing to deliver assistance where needed. As a result we have TACers attending our event from Korea, France, Russia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Australia, Netherlands, India, Denmark, China, Toronto and France. The amount of work in processing the paperwork for TAC recipients should not be underestimated. We tend to assume the work is in the evaluation of proposals, but this is a tiny fraction of the work involved (though, naturally we are grateful to the team for their work here too). It should also be noted that our Virtual have also been very flexible in ensuring payments were made out of cycle for flights and hotel bookings. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. No objections from any board member to use President's discretionary funds to purchase new laptop for EA.
It's summer and it seems there are a number of missing reports this month. In addition I'm somewhat distracted by a changing day job role at present. So a shorter report this month… Budget: Virtual have uncovered an error in the budget spreadsheet that resulted in one of the Infrastructure expenses not being included in the total. They are verifying the remaining formula and will provide an updated document as soon as possible. The expected discrepancy is $10,000. I will submit a revised budget to the board next month if necessary, Executive Assistant: OSCON is progressing almost as planned. Unfortunately for health reason Melissa will not be able to attend. She is seeking to ensure the booth has adequate coverage. I want to thank Melissa for looking after the ASF at this time but have reassured her that we expect her to put her health first. Brand Management: No report at time of writing. Shane had previously indicated that this would be a slow month for personal reasons. I am unaware of any immediate issue requiring attention. Fundraising: No report at time of writing. I am aware of one new sponsor approaching the team as a result of my recent trip to China. To my knowledge the annual report has not, at this time, been sent out to sponsors. This is something I hope to work with VPs fundraising to resolve in the coming weeks (OSCON being the ideal opportunity to discuss issues arising from the report with sponsors). I've offered to send it out myself if necessary. Marketing and Publicity: Having completed the site refresh Sally has begun work on updating the ASF logo and identity system. She expects to deliver 2-3 distinct visual systems for review by the end of the summer. Naturally I expect this to cause quite some discussion, those wishing to have input prior to this first milestone should contact press@ though I feel that letting Sally work on a proposal and then incorporating broad feedback after review was productive with the site redesign. Infrastructure: Buildbot showed some suspicious network traffic and as a result the infra team took the service offline as a precaution. A full post-mortem is still to be conducted but there is no expectation of damage. A new buildbot is now active on new hardware. Continued progress towards improve configuration management for services. Our GeoDNS service is currently down prompting a plan to replace with an externally managed service in the future. Travel Assistance: No report has been submitted. Earlier this month it was brought to my attention that the Linux Foundation were concerned that TAC applications for ApacheConEU had not been opened. With the help of TAC volunteers and Melissa's guiding hand we have opened applications with a very tight schedule. I have stepped up to assist with the process under Melissa's guidance. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
We have confirmed a booth at OSCON and a number of folks have stepped forward to help staff the booth (Thanks Dennis Hamilton, Shane Curcuru and Roman Shaposhnik). There is (at the time of writing) no report from Brand Management. However, Shane has informed me verbally of an organization that has indicated a concern about our trademark registration policy as it directly affects their business. In short this company has been asked to stop using its usual marketing materials in a geographic region as the associated Apache mark is not currently registered in that region. Given time during the discussion items I would like to discuss this in order to get guidance from the board. Marketing have published our first Annual report, something we have talked about producing for a number of years. In recent years a number of sponsors have asked for this information. It is fantastic to see this actually completed and I look forward to our VPs Fundraising providing feedback on its effectiveness. This was an effort that involved coordinating across many offices. My thanks go to Sally for this work, as well as to all who contributed (Ross Gardler, Chris Mattmann, Rich Bowen, Jim Jagielski, Hadrian Zbarcea, David Nalley, and Shane Curcuru, as well as Daniel Gruno and Tony Stevenson of the ASF Infrastructure team, and Tom Pappas of Virtual). At the time of writing no report from Fundraising has been received. In this months financial package from Virtual a question was raised about invoices from May 2014 (totaling $200k) that remain unpaid despite (in two cases) the sponsors name still being present on our thanks page. I've asked VP's Fundraising to look into this. Infrastructure hit some problems with an SVN migration which resulted in some down time. The service was rolled back to allow for a proper diagnostic. Our two US based contractors have been moved to Virtual as a PEO. At the time of writing no report has been submitted by the Travel Assistance committee. With ApacheCon EU ramping up I expect to have reports in the coming months. Melissa reports the process has not yet started. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
As of May 1st Melissa is an employee of Virtual Inc. David is in the process of moving appropriate infrastructure contractors over to Virtual Inc. (target date June 1st) My thanks go to Melissa for coordinating many of the moving parts in the foundation for ApacheCon (as well as looking after out booth) and to Rich for his shepherding of the content and the volunteers who assisted with it. 6 TACers attended, all of whom were very helpful at the event. Of note is that one of these attendees came to us through the Linux Foundation website rather than the usual ASF channels. Branding has seen some more movement with Melissa taking ownership of the Branding "runbook". We are actively working towards streamlining the "simple" cases by empowering Melissa to coordinate between the requestor and the appropriate PMC. This should help ensure that we stay on top of the ever-increasing number of requests we receive. Melissa, Sally and I have started looking at how we might have a greater foundation presence at open source events. We are not proposing having a booth at multiple events, rather tracking events at which Apache projects and representatives are present so that we can provide swag and other supporting materials. Please share any recommended event details with Melissa. Fundraising continues to run smoothly. The excellent work process improvement work led by Upayavira, the accounting of Virtual, the transition to our two new VPs (Jim and Hadrian) alongside the increased engagement of our EA (Melissa) can now be considered complete, it's looks like a well oiled machine at this point. In fact items that have been at the bottom of the todo list for a number of years are now complete. As a result, fundraising is ahead of the projected FY15 budget by $82.2k. The infrastructure team have rolled out git based websites (a commonly requested feature) and there has been significant progress towards improvements in our mail systems (special thanks to Kevin McGrail and the SpamAssassin community). Our mail infrastructure is now able to scale horizontally in order to support significant additional loads. However, David reports this is just a completion of phase 1 - more improvements to come. Discussions about code of conduct on the members@ list have led to an observation that using president@ for reporting of Code of Conduct breaches may be inadequate. As a result I am seeking advice from DLA Piper on how to craft an appropriate policy for such escalations. Unfortunately, in the last month there has been a serious issue on one of our mailing lists which resulting in a police report being filed. This issue is not yet resolved and I am working with DLA Piper in order to ensure our actions, if any, are appropriate. I will use this as guidance for a policy for handling such reports in the future. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Welcome to the new board! This month has been a mixed month. On the one hand it has been relatively quiet since the members meeting and ApacheCon have sucked up most of our time and energy. On the other hand it has been very busy because the members meeting ad ApacheCon has sucked up most of our time. The most important item is the Budget. The proposed budget has been available for the previous board and the new board to consider for some weeks I trust that all Directors are familiar with it. However, I have made some significant last minute change requests to cover increased expenses for moving three contractors to Virtual as a PEO. I managed to speak with most directors in person about this (at ApacheCon) and have notified the others by email. In order to ensure a budget is passed I have called out the additional expenses so that the budget can be approved without these expenses if the board feel this is necessary. I request the board approve the budget as provided in Special Order G. From a financial position the foundation remains in good standing with a significantly higher cash surplus than the industry benchmark (as reported by Virtual). We have a surplus of 20.8 months at the FY15 spend rate, the benchmark is 6 months. This means the increased deficit is not problematic from a financial planning perspective. Though we should recognize that this increased cost is a recurring cost. I have started working on a 5 year budget estimate to ensure we monitor this situation. Brand management --------------------------- The currently brand budget covers US registrations only. VP Brand Management has received a request from a PMC to register in EU/CTM, India, and China in addition and, as a result has requested an increased budget of $2,425. I have denied this request indicating that it request should be repeated if the budgeted amount for the year falls short. Shane continues to work on a risk assessment indicates he will be ready to report next month. Fundraising ---------------- Migration to using ZoHo is well underway. Renewals are being processed. All is good. Marketing and Publicity ------------------------------- In addition to the "business as usual" items Sally reports the end of year report is in preparation. The refresh/redesign of the apache.org homepage has been completed with thanks to extensive work donated by HotWax Systems. Sally was also successful in securing a Proclamation from the City of Austin for the foundations 15 year anniversary. Infrastructure ------------------ A request for feedback on a proposal to deprecate the CMS caused some "interesting" reactions. Amongst the unnecessary noise there was a great deal of valuable feedback. The infra team are now formulating a plan for the CMS and will report to the community soon. Travel Assistance ------------------------ 6 successful applicants attended ApacheCon NA. Thanks to the team for their diligence and hard work that make this possible. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Exec assistant contract and financial package with Virtual as a PEO has hit a snag, we will likely not hit April 1st. I have added a proposed budget a discussion item and ask the board to evaluate this and provide feedback for the incoming board to consider next month. Melissa has been very busy with ApacheCon preparations this month. She has also received detailed information from VP Brand Management that allows her to assist with processing requests. Fundraising has progressed with selecting a CRM solution. They have opted to use the free services of Zoho. This will be used for managing sponsor relations and will replace the spreadsheet previously maintained by Melissa. In addition sponsorship years will be aligned to our financial year in the future. This will simplify the account management process. An update of the "thanks" page is also underway. Marketing proceeds as usual with no specific items of note. Infrastructure hit a few issues this month resulting in two services falling below the SLA (people.apache.org with 98.83% and the moin moin wiki, with 93.31%). There has been some concern over the handling of outages of the download service. The root cause was undocumented manual steps in the configuration of these services, this has now been rectified. The current hot topic is the proposal to retire the CMS service, our projects have been asked to provide feedback, after which infra will decide how to proceed. VP Brand Management has enlisted the support of our EA to help clear a backlog of trademark requests from our projects. This has resulted in an increase in activity relating to US registrations. A risk analysis is underway, as is the creation of a list of marks the foundation has. This list will eventually be used to provide a prioritized list based on the risk analysis document. VP Brand reached out to one PMC indicating this would cause a problem as their requirements would require significant budget. I have communicated to the PMC in question that this is not necessarily the case since this is a proposed budget requiring feedback from VP Brand. Furthermore, I asserted that the President and the Board will welcome requests for additional funding if it is necessary. VP Brand has reached out to all PMCs outlining the importance of brand management. he has also asked Melissa to follow up with all PMCs who have previously expressed an interest in registering their brand. As a result a few PMCs have begun the process of registering their marks. No TAC report was submitted this month. This is a regular occurrence. Melissa reports everything is on track thanks to the work of the committee in particular Jan Iverson who is working hard to coordinate the committee volunteers. Once again Nick Birch has stepped in to address a financial mis-step in paying for reserved flights. Melissa is monitoring the situation and ensuring Nick is reimbursed ASAP. This year the TAC committee spotted an applicant who provided incorrect information in their application. The committee, with full support of the VP, decided to withdraw their application as a result. My thanks go to the TAC team for their vigilance. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Branding: Shane has requested that Mark Radcliffe join the board meeting during the discussion items to help us understand the role of trademarks within the ASF. He will join at 11AM PT. I hope that we can make time for this. EA: Usual support work. Shane has requested that our EA help more with branding items. This is something we have been offering for a long time. We are working on identifying concrete ways in which we can empower Melissa to take action. I intend to move Melissa too a PEO organization (Virtual) assuming no surprises in the cost of doing so or objections from Melissa (we do not expect it to increase ASF costs significantly, if at al). This may be a temporary measure but as previously reported we need to take action and this point a PEO is the only viable option. See the vice Chairman report for more detail. Branding: VP Brand Management expresses concern about management of our brands in projects where the brand is highly valuable. Our policies appear to be working to date. Delegating to the PMCs has spread the workload sufficiently that increased vigilance on complex cases is not posing a significant problem. However, Shane warns that the recent interest in external related foundations will only serve to increase the brand management workload. Shane has invited Mark Radcliffe of DLAPiper to speak to the board today, though this is not related to the concerns raised. The discussion item is the importance of brand management tot he ASF in preparation for budget planning. Fundraising: We continue to iron out wrinkles in the Fundraising process. Each month it seems to be running more smoothly. Processes are sufficiently well defined for Hadrian to participate in the exploration of a CRM for managing sponsor relations (something Melissa had previously been driving in her own time), No decision has been made at this point. Marketing and Publicity: Sally produced our first quarterly report. This is a good start though not quite what I had envisioned. We will continue to work on and improve this in the coming quarters. Sally helped with the CRM discussions and provided feedback to Hadrian. It is not felt that VP Marketing requires a CRM, however, if possible I would like to see us doing a better job of capturing knowledge from this office. That being said, fundraising support remains the priority. Sally has revisited the home page (not site) redesign discussions based on extensive feedback from the membership. Infrastructure: An excellent, productive month for Infra - well done team! Hardware budget is expected to be reduced thanks to a combination of credit with multiple cloud providers. My thanks go to VP Infra for making this happen. Whimsy was identified as a critical service that infra need to manage. This resulted in some discussion about how best to manage the service. Sam Ruby has been working with the infra team on this topic. There has been excellent progress on automating machine builds and retiring old machines. In the case of LDAP this introduced a few problems which are being addressed in order of priority. We had some initial discussion about the CMS used by many Apache projects. This system is very much hacked together and is largely unmaintainable without significant expense. No decisions has been made on how to proceed, future reports will update. Some project specific services (Maven and Cassandra) are progressing nicely. No report from Travel Assistance. Plans for ApacheCon NA are in progress. Budget: Budget planning is a little behind schedule but I do have complete numbers from Virtual now. We are progressing with one office having submitted their budget numbers already. Expect an early draft within the week. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
It's budget planning season. All officers should send their request to me ASAP. The current timeline is: - Jan: Deliver a draft budget based on 2014 budget actuals (Virtual) - Feb: Deliver a draft budget adjusted based on Officer input (President) - March: Deliver a draft budget for comment by the outgoing board (President) - April: Deliver final budget for approval by the incoming board (President) In the March and April deliverables I plan to also provide a 5 year budget proposal. This will be used for planning purposes only and will not be voted on by the board (though comments will be incorporated wherever appropriate). EA contract has been renewed. This again brought the issue of contractor vs employee to the fore. From a management perspective we are in good shape (though I'm working with Virtual to change the contract to reflect this). However, since Melissa is working 40 hours per week and has no other job it is hard to argue that, under IRS rules, she would be considered a contractor. My previous recommendation was to use Virtual services to resolve this issue. This was not supported by the board, however the problem still exists today. Furthermore, VP Infrastructure has a couple of similar contracts due for renewal. Greg is looking at a proposal to address this and will hopefully be able to provide an update today. In the interim I again recommend that we use virtual to resolve this problem, even is this is a short term solution while a long term one is identified and implemented. Brand manage report is missing at the time of writing. I am not aware of any significant issues. The move to allowing PMCs to manage requests clearly within the policies identified by VP Brand Management seems to be taking effect, with less trivial requests reaching the brand mailing list and thus a seemingly more rapid response to more complex issues. The fundraising report is missing at the time of writing. The new VPs are getting up to speed and communications with sponsors are being managed well. With Hadrian's engagement our EA is pushing forward to formalize a proposal for an OfBiz based CRM solution for the fundraising team. At the same time a member of the OfBiz community has expressed interest on the ComDev list in helping the foundation. I've made everyone aware of the interest and encouraged discussion on the fundraising lists. in the meantime we are continuing to spec and cost a service. Sally (VP Marketing) has provided some mock-ups for an alternative to the "fork me on GitHub" banners in response to discussions on the board@ list. These are intended to progress the discussion and will be shared with the Wicket PMC for feedback first. Sally is also finalizing the first draft of the quarterly report. This is due for publication before the next board meeting. Other Marketing items are "business as usual". Infrastructure report is missing at the time of writing. There are two items I'm aware of, the first is the contract status for renewals (discussed above), the second is the budgeting process. David (VP Infrastructure) and I are working on classifying services and budgeting according to their importance and the expected growth of the foundation. Travel Assistance Committee report is missing at the time of writing. EA reports that TAC applications are underway for ApacheCon NA (close Feb 6th) Directed Sponsorship ----------------------------- As discussed on the board@ list I would like to proceed with a limited experiment allowing directed sponsorship, that is sponsorship that is only used to support a specific project. My motivation is that a PMC has claimed they were unaware of the willingness of the board to entertain the concept of directed sponsorships. This has, arguably, resulted in a lost opportunity to empower a PMC through directed sponsorships. My goal here is to remove all doubt about the willingness of the ASF Board to conduct a controlled experiment in order to inform a future policy for all PMCs. I do not intend for this experiment to set a precedent, only to provide valuable data. Note, there is currently no PMC in a position to take advantage of this. If this remains the case that will be valuable data in itself. I have consulted with Virtual and have been informed that there are no concerns relating to our 501c(3) status (although we would still need to ensure a projects use of directed sponsorship is appropriate). Virtual have also confirmed that they can support this proposed experiment with no additional cost. One important item to note is that this proposal does not enable a PMC to have a "donate" button for small contributions. The overhead in dealing with small donations is too high. Proposal: - The ASF will continue to provide essential services for core funding using the existing sponsorship model, this proposal does not change that arrangement - During this experiment a maximum of two PMCs will be given permission to solicit directed sponsorships with a minimum donation level of $50,000. - Projects are free to use directed funds to deliver additional services not provided from core ASF funds if, and only if, VPs Fundraising have approved this use - Any directed sponsorships will have a total of 15% contributed to ASF central funds to pay for essential maintenance of core services - Where the sponsor is already a foundation sponsor the 15% core contribution will be reduced by the total of the existing sponsorship amount - Existing sponsorship of the foundation cannot be reclassified as a directed sponsorship - Directed sponsorships will (optionally) receive credit on the “thanks” page at the level of their 15% core donation with a note that they are also a project sponsor - Receiving projects may choose to manage their own thanks page under guidelines drawn up by VP Fundraising and VP Brand Management - Sponsorships will be assumed to be for 12 months, any unspent funds at the end of 12 months will become ASF foundation funds if the ASF chooses. Sponsors will agree to this in writing. - Sponsorships are not refundable if the project leaves the ASF, retires to the Attic or fails to use the funds. All unspent funds will be transferred to core ASF funds. - Sponsors can dictate which PMC the money is directed towards but not what the money is to be used for, it is the PMC that decide what it is used for. - Any requested use by the PMC must be in conformance with the policies and practices of the ASF, where policy is not clearly defined VPs Fundraising approval will be required (for example, directed sponsorships cannot be used to develop code). - The President, VPs Fundraising and PMC Chair will work directly with potential sponsors to ensure they are fully aware of what is and is not possible with their donated funds (for example, code development is explicitly prohibited ) - Any service that adds to the workload of the ASF contractors or VPs will require an appropriate contribution to ASF funds to cover these costs - No use of the funds that would put the ASF 501c(3) status at risk will be permitted Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
A very busy month, on many fronts. Apologies for the late filing. I'm trying to catch up. Here's the High and Low lights. EA has been chugging along ensuring we keep things moving. In her report Melissa indicates getting the Credit Cards has proven problematic. This morning I have had notification from her that Tom (Virtual) has indicated we should expect the cards in 7-10 days. TAC is wrapping up the EU activities and ramping up on the US activities. All is well. Trademarks has been busy evaluating the need to protect the ApacheCon conference from conflicting events organized by third parties. After some long (and often repetitive) debates an agreeable solution was found. Shane has now encoded the details in our event policy. However, I note the whole exercise will be have been pointless if we don't actually enforce it Relating to this the lack of any clarity around what a "blackout date" period is could cause problems should we ever wish to enforce those blackouts. While there is a little more clarity the current policy and MOU is still unclear. The trademark report also indicates there is a new trademark request relating to a training certification program. I am unaware of the details but note that Shane invites input on the trademarks list (and draw attention to the phrase "charging fees" in this context). Upayavira has finally hung up his hat over at Fundraising (though he's still helping with the transition). Jim and Hadrian have been in office for a month and the renewed (and doubled) energy is bearing fruit. See below for a little more on fundraising. Marketing has completed the usual activities (see report). In addition Sally is putting together the initial quarterly report. The first version of which will be retroactive in nature, but see below for further discussion. Sally is also working with Hadrian to send out "thank you" messages during the holiday season. Finally, I have asked Sally to work with me in crafting media campaign focusing on the ASF as a place for "Innovation and Collaboration" this will run prior to ApacheCon US and will be crafted to focus on a track I am chairing at the event. Note, this will not be an ApacheCon marketing campaign, it is an Apache Software Foundation campaign but will be designed to both ride-on and add-to the ApacheCon wave. It is early days (with only a handful of email exchanges at this point) so early feedback is on the high level messaging is welcome. Infrastructure, oh Infrastructure. Last month I took great pleasure in reporting that the team had had lots of opportunity to pay off significant technical debt. Not so this month (although progress is still being made). I want to recognize that the infrastructure team responded extremely well to three significant outages. Whilst it would be good to have no outages (see technical debt) it is pleasing to see the team increasingly working as a team in the face of these outages. Full details of the outages are in the infra report all that we need here is for me to thank the team for "going the extra mile" to minimize impact on our projects. Greg has made some progress on the "contractors vs employees" solution, though as I understand it he has nothing significant to report at this point. I'll leave any fuller report to Greg. Lastly, as previously reported, VP Infra is keen to have a longer term view of where the ASF is heading so that he can make appropriate planning decisions. EVP arranged a two hour meeting involving VP Infra, VPs Fundraising, EVP, myself and the Chair in order to have an initial discussion about this. This was largely a brainstorming meeting. We focused mostly on how to properly plan for the consistent growth the ASF has been seen for a number of years (1.5 new projects per month with increasingly varied infra requirements) and how to ensure fundraising can provide income to support those plans. There were also some discussions about how to manage community growth and health across ASF projects, however given that those in the meeting were wearing their Presidents Committee hats these topics were not discussed in detail. Extensive notes were taken and will be shared in the raw form upon request. However, I would suggest that what is really important at this point is the immediate action items. The most important at this time (from a board perspective) is a suggestion to implement the budget planning adjustment suggested by some directors last year. That is to move out the budget planning so that our budget cycle falls six months after the board elections. If the board are agreeable this will mean that the next budget for approval (May 1st) will be for eighteen months with the incoming board reviewing and potentially revising after the first six months. Subsequent budget cycles will be 12 months and will be set in the middle of the board term. I invite early feedback on this suggestion. If implemented this means the budget planning cycle will be: - Jan 2015 - Categorization of Infra services according to level of importance to our projects - Feb 2015 - Call to all committees for budget requests - March 2015 - Draft budget for board feedback - April 2015 - Approval of budget by the board - September 2015 - Revision of budget if necessary In parallel to this I propose to deliver, in partnership with VP Infra and VPs Fundraising a longer term (5 years), though less detailed, plan. The goal here will be to provide VP Infra with enough clarity to prioritize effectively whilst also giving the board an opportunity to review regularly. I propose that this longer term plan be approved alongside the budget as outlined above. I invite the board to provide initial feedback during the meeting but intend to raise this on the board@ mailing list shortly after the meeting. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Shane: We need the concept of "blackout dates" in the contracts even without being explicit. Still in process.
Fundraising is our biggest concern this month. Nobody over there is picking up the dropped balls. Melissa is doing her best to keep things moving (and is doing a fantastic job). However, we need people to take ownership of relationships with individual sponsors. Especially our top level sponsors. Because of this lack of ownership in the last month it was unfortunate that a small number of invoices were sent out for renewals without anyone having contact the sponsor in advance. As can be expected this was not received well. I have reached out to the sponsors in question and apologized. I do not believe there is any harm done. However, as with (almost) every month I need to request that Directors volunteer to manage our relationship with one or more key sponsor if they are able to do so. In order to make this relationship management easier VP Marketing will be producing an annual report with quarterly updates. Over the last year we have been changing our processes to ensure that data for such a report is easily accessible. At this point we believe that a report containing timely and detailed information from all presidents committees, plus the treasurers office will be relatively easy to create. There is no report from Fundraising this month. Other than the above I believe the renewal of $75k of sponsorship (3 sponsors) is the key item to report (thanks to Melissa for ensuring this keeps moving). I intend to appoint, immediately after this board meeting (assuming no objections), both Jim Jagielski and Hadrian Zbarcea as VP of Fundraising. The goal here is to enable Jim and Hadrian to act in tandem. Upayavira reports that titles to the sponsors are important, which is why I'm taking the unusual step of creating two positions rather than just expanding the committee. I feel that we really need the experience of Jim in budget planning and strategizing, but we also need the additional time and energy of Hadrian. Whilst I could, and until now have, taken on this role I want to move my focus away from Fundraising and towards other aspects that require attention (specifically focusing on the medium to long term plans rather than the short term implementation – as per my report last month). This setup is designed to allow me to do that. Brand Management is moving in the direction desired by the board (with my support). That is it is decentralizing in order to ensure a faster decision making process and also to enable VP Brand Management to focus more on broader policy issues (such as improving event branding policy which is underway) and edge cases. In this month’s report VP Brand management says: "Counsel confirms that we can legally delegate ability to provide project brand use permissions to PMCs and their VPs directly; however they also note that this may have risks - depending on how well PMCs manage this - with our long-term ability to defend our brands." I look to VP Brand Management to try to ensure that our policies are clear enough to ensure that we are able to defend our brands appropriately and offer my support in doing so. Marketing and Publicity continues to proceed. The Powered By Apache logo's have been well received, a couple of projects that were missing in the initial round have been added. A series of three posts describing how the foundation works have been published (from the Chairman, President and EVP). Three designs proposals for a new home page (not a new site) were submitted for comment. Predictably there were many conflicting opinions, but all valid and helpful. Sally has collated this feedback and is working to include it in an updated design. I want to thank Sally for managing a very inclusive process in what could so easily have become a fruitless bike-shedding exercise. However, given the extent and range of feedback it is possible this work will not be completed until January. Infrastructure has had a less eventful month and thus VP Infra reports "This month saw us paying back large portions of technical debt." Last month both I and the Chair reported that VP Infra was asking for a longer term view on where the foundation is heading with respect to budget management and infrastructure expenditure specifically. As can be seen above in my discussion re fundraising my hope is to be able to turn my attention to this planning in the coming months as I start to ramp up on budget planning for the next FY. No report from the Travel Assistance Committee was submitted. However the EA report indicates everything is in order for ApacheCon EU. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. @Jim: discuss reporting responsibilities for VP Fundraising @Hadrian: discuss reporting responsibilities for VP Fundraising
Melissa, as EA, continues to ensure the foundation continues to tick over from day to day. Notable items this month are the completion of all TAC arrangements for ApacheConEU. Melissa explicitly calls out Jan Iversen and thanks him for his contributions to the process. EVP, myself and Melissa have explored a number of CRM options to replace the many calendars and spreadsheets spread across the foundation that Melissa works with. It is felt that a full blown CRM is overkill for our needs, however Melissa is exploring a custom option with the Apache OfBiz project. Melissa is driving this exploration at her own pace in response to her own level of frustration in each area. Her first area of focus is therefore Fundraising which works to a specific timeline and requires good records of past communications. Brand Management reports a quieter month which has allowed public policy documents to be updated to ensure PMCs are given the ability to approve non-controversial trademark use. I've not had the time to review these updates yet, but will do so in the coming month. Feedback from interested Directors is welcome. I have, however, observed at least three cases in the last month in which a faster resolution of a request was possible by referring the enquiry to the appropriate PMC. At the time of writing there is no Fundraising report. Our EA continues to ensure fundraising actions are completed, some details are in the EA report. Upayavira has asked for volunteers to take on the role of VP Fundraising, to date we have two strong candidates. I would like to thank Upayavira for staying on for nearly a year when I requested that he document the processes and ensure Melissa is up to speed before stepping down. Fundraising is now in a good shape as a result. Marketing and Publicity has conducted more of the "usual" activities, but there are a few items of note. Firstly the Powered By Apache logo's are now available (http://apache.org/foundation/press/kit/). All PMCs are encouraged to use these logo's. Enquiries should be sent to email@example.com. Secondly, Sally is working with a number of people across the foundation to bring together a series of blog posts to showcase ASF operations/achievements as part of its 15th anniversary. Finally, a new homepage for the foundation site is in progress - no firm date for a draft is available at this time. Infrastructure has launched a code signing service in trial mode. Two projects having successfully shipped signed artifacts. Two more projects are in the process of entering the trial. The long term work on improving monitoring of our services continues as does the process of automating our infrastructure. There have been many reactive demands on the infra team this month with significant problems with a services and many security alerts. As always - thanks to David and the team for keeping the foundation servers alive. The Travel Assistance report is missing at this time. However, see above comments from EA report. VP Infrastructure, our chairman and I met over coffee recently. The main topic of conversation was the need for us to get a handle on how to manage and scale our infrastructure as the foundation continues to grow. There are many aspects to this, some of which have been discussed before. However, the core discussion point was having the board set expectations for Infrastructure from a strategic planning perspective. David feels that he is making decisions today that will affect the foundation for three years plus and he does not, at this time, feel he has sufficient information to make such decisions. We also met with the ToDo group. No immediate action is expected on the part of the ASF. All three of us are on their announcement list and connected to key folks should anything come up for us. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
I'm still struggling under the fallout from my recent personal trials but things are slowly coming back together. Essential items are being addressed but some key activities are falling behind. I thank the board for their patience. TAC: All arrangements have been made for ApacheCon with logistics being handled by Melissa. Trademarks: Lots of discussions about how best to scale the trademark activities. VP Trademarks has agreed to focus on updating policies to ensure that it is clear that PMCs can manage their project marks. Sally has done a fantastic job on the Powered By logos, these (along with usage guidelines) are now staged on the foundation's website and will go live very soon. Press: Sally has completed a period of work with CloudStack but I am behind on following up on this and ensuring the project is able to move forward. This is a very high priority item for me moving forward. Plans are underway for our 15 year anniversary at ApacheCon Europe. Sally is keen to update the website for the 15th anniversary. However, given the current status of the budget it is felt that hiring a web design company is out of the question while recent interest from a group of volunteers has died down. Sally is looking at revamping the home page with a view to requesting budget in the next fiscal year for a full site redesign. Fundraising: Upayavira has restated his intention to step down as VP Fundraising. This was first discussed almost a year ago. I wish to express my thanks to Upayavira who agreed to stay on in the role while we focused on documenting the process and ensuring our EA was able to assist. Upayavira now feels this work is complete and has asked that we find a replacement. No date has been set for the changeover. Expressions of interest into the role are welcome. In the meantime I again ask for Directors and other interested parties to volunteer to assist Melissa in contacting existing sponsors periodically. Volunteers to the fundraising@ list please. We have two new sponsors (Bluehost and Samsung) coming onboard this month - both at Bronze level. We thank them for their support. Infrastructure: We have further discussed the status of contractors and are exploring options. At present we have not identified an acceptable approach beyond the previous recommendation to use Virtual Inc. services as the employer. However, we have not yet exhausted all possibilities. At present our two new contractors (US based) are under contract and being managed accordingly. Good progress is being made in infrastructure services but a high rate of failures again this month has detracted from this progress to a certain extent. Nevertheless, all targets for uptime have been met. Work is underway to move apache-extras services that have been lost to SourceForge. TODO Group: Some organizations have created an organization for "companies committed to open source". I had an early morning call with a representative of that group this morning and possible the engagement of the ASF was discussed. At this time the group is discussing what the groups mission and scope will be. I hope to attend an event in SF next week to find out more. See http://todogroup.org/ and http://tech.blog.box.com/2014/09/announcing-the-box-open-source-open-house/ Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
I'd like to thank the board for their understanding during the last month as I dealt with personal issues at the expense of Foundation issues. I'm still somewhat behind but catching up. OSCON has been and gone. Unfortunately I was not able to attend as previously planned, however, there seems to have been no shortage of folks to step in and do the work necessary. A big thank you to all those who helped with the Booth (Shane Curcuru, Upayavira, Roman Shaposhnik, Justin Erenkrantz, J. Aaron Farr, Louis Suarez-Potts, David Nalley). Melissa makes a special mention of Dennis Hamilton who went above and beyond to help with the booth. Our D&O insurance has been renewed, with some difficulty completing the appropriate financial information (thanks to Sam who helped out here). EA contract has been renewed for another six months. No change to the terms. There was a significant effort from the Fundraising team, coordinated by Upayavira at OSCON. A full report has been submitted and while we need more time to see if we can deliver significant results from these efforts it is with great pleasure that I can report that we believe that a new sponsor will be reported next month as a result of their meeting with the team at OSCON. I believe fundraising is in a far better position today than it has been for some time. My thanks go to Upayavira for driving this. Please see the full report for details of the interactions at OSCON (a special thank you to Rich Bowen and David Nalley who supported many of these meetings). One of the areas that I have fallen behind on during my recent personal issues is the directed sponsorship policy requested by the CloudStack PMC. This is something I intend to address ASAP. However, VP Trademarks has agreed that the PMC should be allowed to manage its own marks in accordance with the trademark policies and VP Marketing has provided a marketing/promotional strategy to the PMC. Furthermore, I have agreed with Virtual that they will be able to track such directed sponsorships. It is my belief that the barriers CloudStack felt were present have been removed. All that remains is for the PMC to take advantage of this (admittedly, without a policy the PMC may be wary of making a proposal). Trademarks still continues to be a problematic area where our existing policies are limiting the effectiveness of our brand volunteers and PMCs. It is my belief that since Fundraising is now on track and will soon be delivering results from its restructuring and effective delegation model, I now hope to work closely with VP Brand Management in the coming months so that we can improve projects ability to manage their own brands in the same way that multiple people are helping on fundraising. Marketing, in conjunction with Brand Management and Fundraising has created a "Powered by Apache" mark. This will be a part of a broader attempt to raise awareness of the inclusion of our software in other software out there. Infrastructure continues to benefit from the energy of a new VP. David is building on the foundations laid by Sam and is delivering results. However, the greater level of direction provided to our infrastructure team has brought into question our ability to use contractors based in the US, it is believed that the IRS might classify them as employees. David continues to explore this since whilst we do not currently have any US based infra contractors we may be bringing some on-board soon. We are working with Virtual Inc. to evaluate the problem and identify a solution. There is no report from TAC at the time of writing. Melissa, however, reports that she has been assisting with preparations for ApacheCon EU. There have been some complications but she believes all blocks will be removed soon. Virtual have indicated that the Audit is currently at a standstill because of the limited amount of data available to the auditors. Setting up a call between myself, Chris and Sam to try and unblock this in September then a quarterly call after that. Finally please see Special Order B for the FY14-15 budget. I request that the board approve this budget which incorporates the three month interim budget approved in May. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Ross is absent due to family matters, and Rich is reporting in his absence. Upayavira, Melissa, and others have been preparing for meetings at OSCON next week, with existing and potential sponsors. Details of this are on the Fundraising@ mailing list. Officers who will be at the conference are encouraged to make themselves available for those meetings if they haven't already done so. VP Fundraising has prepared a 'pitch deck' for potential sponsors at ApacheCon, which you may wish to review if you want to participate in that process. The conversation with the CloudStack PMC continues, and the PMC has now made a formal, detailed request to Infrastructure for additional hardware. As this just happened yesterday, there hasn't been time for a decision on this proposal yet. The Travel Assistance Committee has received some requests for assistance for ApacheCon Europe, but that process is still open for a few more days. The process between TAC and LF is improved over ApacheCon North America, and so should go more smoothly. Two new members of the committee have joined to assist in these activities. The Executive Assistant has been primarily focused on preparations around OSCON, both Fundraising related and logistical arrangements regarding our booth presence. Other work is detailed in her report. VP Brand Management reports a busy month with a heavy load of project requests and conversations. VP Infrastructure reports progress on a signed binaries solution, and a build server. The Infrastructure team is holding a F2F meeting this week for team building and working through issues that are made difficult by remote communication. The Infrastructure report discusses the activities of the team in great detail, as requested in last month's meeting. In Ross's absence, the proposed budget has not been completed, and we request the Board's indulgence to let this slip another month, while Ross takes care of personal matters. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Melissa has been doing a great job grabbing loose ends around the foundation, especially in fundraising and ApacheCon EU. I encourage other VPs to request her help wherever appropriate. There is plenty of activity for fundraising. Plans are being made to meet with existing sponsors at OSCON in order to provide them with feedback about what the ASF has been doing with their money and also to understand what level of engagement from the ASF they would like to see moving forwards. Chip Childers is driving forwards an effort to build out a pitch deck for potential new sponsors (with input from a number of other participants). Upayavira has set objectives for fundraising over the coming year and I have identified lines in the full budget that can be cut should this become necessary. It's "business as usual" for brand management, including the continued increase in the number and complexity of requests, Including trademark registration requests. CloudStack PMC has requested a trademark license be granted to an undefined third party to assist in the marketing of the CloudStack project. This proposal is insufficiently detailed to be seriously considered at this point (it does not define who the third party is or what the terms of the license would be). This is a follow on from conversations at ApacheConNA and subsequent engagement with VP Marketing. Whilst neither I nor VP Brand Management are against this idea in principle we need to work more on the details. This is something that VP Marketing is looking into. VP Marketing notes in her report that she intends to focus exclusively on marketing in this fiscal year and is working with VP Fundraising to ensure her role supporting top-tier sponsors is filled. This is a part of the work we have been doing on Fundraising for the last year. We will be looking to Directors to help fill this role with specific directors who are willing to do so taking on relationship management with key sponsors (and potential sponsors). The travel assistance committee have not reported at the time of writing, but have provided a brief status update to me. Applications for Europe TAC funding are open and will close on 20th of July (shortly after speaker selection). Two new TAC members (Jan and Daniel) are helping significantly by providing fresh eyes on TAC materials and processes. We have some good news on the Infrastructure front, but also bad news. The infra team are somewhat stretched with hardware failures and security work. Nevertheless work is progressing on immediate areas of improvement (e.g. monitoring). A big thank you to some of our volunteers who have stepped in to relieve the pressure (especially Jake Farrell who single handedly closed more than 1/3rd of this months closed tickets). This kind of support work is vital to the effectiveness of our infra team. Now for the good news. During an audit of available hardware five relatively new but undocumented machines were discovered. Three have spare capacity. It is expected that this will reduce the infra budget request for this year. In addition to this I have asked VP Infrastructure to provide a more detailed report with respect to where contractors time is being spent in order to assist with future budget planning with respect to how we provide contractor support for our volunteers as well as to explore the potential for short term investments in automation so as to free contractor and volunteer time for other activities. On the subject of budget I have identified potential cuts should the board be uncomfortable with the deficit proposed. However, given that infrastructure will be reducing their budget request and fundraising is gearing up to attract new sponsors I will be recommending the board approve the full budget (with infra reductions). Once I have a revised budget from VP Infra I will circulate the budget, fundraising targets and potential areas for cuts for discussion prior to next month's board meeting. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
It's a big report this month, so here's a bullet summary of the key items (not exhaustive, see below for completeness): - Proposed interim 3-month budget (Special Order G) which shows a surplus. Full year budget (available in SVN) shows a deficit. - Working with VP Fundraising to address the budget deficit moving forwards - Infrastructure requires immediate action (and budget) to minimize the likelihood of further outages (included in budget) - VP Marketing working with CloudStack PMC to develop a long-term outreach strategy that can be used by all TLPs - Working with VP Marketing and VP Fundraising to develop better materials on "what we do" And here's the details... Budget ------ The most important item this month is the approval of a 2014/15 budget. I am, however, requesting that the board approve a 3-month interim budget (May - July) rather than a full 12 month budget. There are a number of reasons for this: 1) proximity to the election of the next board 2) significant exceptional infrastructure costs 3) a need to examine directed funding and additional marketing activities Given point 2) and the uncertainty of point 3) I think it is prudent for the current board, which is meeting this month for the last time, to only pass an interim budget. Please see Special Order G. This interim budget shows a surplus based on a majority of sponsors being due for renewal in this period, but the FY budget shows a significant deficit. I've worked with all officers to create an appropriate budget and believe both the three month interim and proposed 12 month budget reflect a balance between immediate needs and prudent budget controls. Deficit ------- It should be noted that the proposed FY budget shows a significant deficit. This is well within the foundations cash reserves and provides an immediate cash injection to address some of the issues reported by VP Infrastructure (see Attachment 5). We have also seen a significant increase in administration costs relating to the scaling of the foundation. These include an increase in the treasury budget (appointment of Virtual) and our Administration budget (as approved in Jan 2014). In order to address this deficit myself, VP Infrastructure and VP Fundraising have been discussing options. One such option (in kind donations of equipment for infrastructure) is outlined in VP Fundraising's report (Attachment 3). Another option that has been discussed previously is targeted donations (although these would not address immediate and pressing infrastructure needs). Beyond discussion we are actively working to ensure that there is an increased visibility into where sponsorship money goes and what our projects produce as a result of the foundations existence. This will enable us to build a strong outreach for existing sponsors as well as providing valuable materials when seeking new sponsors. Infrastructure -------------- Our new VP Infrastructure has had a difficult month. There are extensive details in the Infrastructure report (Attachment 5). I will observe that it seems we have been running our infrastructure on much too tight a budget. This has resulted in a number of outages. I fully support the proposed remedial action which includes a) replacement of existing hardware b) appropriate maintenance and monitoring and c) increased automation and related skills development. I urge both the current and future board to support the significant budget increase requested by VP Infrastructure. Targeted donations ------------------ In recent months there have been many discussions about targeted donations for project specific infrastructure requirements and project marketing efforts. It seems that project specific infrastructure is likely to be on hold until current remediation activities are complete. With respect to project specific marketing VP Marketing has been working with, and continues to work with, the CloudStack PMC with a view to developing a long-term outreach strategy that can be used by all TLPs in choosing a tactical plan that best suits their specific marketing/visibility needs. It is expected that this strategy will highlight any necessity for project specific marketing funds and I propose to revisit this topic once the strategy is delivered. Foundation Marketing -------------------- The community have also discussed the need for ASF wide marketing activities. This has been further discussed between VP Marketing, VP Fundraising and myself. It is my belief that the initial focus needs to be on a) providing valuable information to our existing sponsors about what we do, how we operate and spend their money and b) enabling our PMCs to drive appropriate marketing campaigns. Whilst there is value in marketing the ASF itself I feel that a focus on ensuring that we support our projects first is the appropriate action. Once infrastructure is stable and provides the services our existing projects require, PMCs are equipped to develop and recognize marketing potential within our existing structure and fundraising is firing on all cylinders such that we are not showing a budget deficit then I would like to revisit this topic, but for now my personal focus remains on infrastructure, PMC marketing capabilities and fundraising. EA -- This month has been a relatively quiet month for our EA in the absence of a conference to organize. Melissa has used this time to further improve the fundraising processes and to follow up with a number of sponsors due for renewal (supported by VP Marketing). Brand Management ---------------- Brand Management has been a "normal" month. Again our VP is indicating that a number of routine questions are incoming and that these can be addressed with clearer documentation and policy. I have encouraged the VP to work with our EA to take some of this load. TAC --- TAC provides a useful summary of their work for ACNA and some increased effort to raise awareness of the TAC process. This awareness raising is a useful part of the discussion around marketing the ASF and making sponsors aware of the value they bring to the foundation. With respect to budget TAC had requested an increase to allow them to cover two smaller events in addition to the two ApacheCon events. However, I declined to include the budget for the smaller events, just as I declined to include my own Event-in-a-Box proposal to ComDev. My intention is to secure at least one additional sponsor highlighting these items as additions that their sponsorship will help fund (not necessarily as directed sponsorship, although that is a possibility as we progress with discussions around that topic). And Finally... -------------- Finally, I would like to thank the outgoing board for their service to the foundation. I'm sure many will be back again next month, and even those who don't have a seat are likely to still be watching over the shoulders of those who do. Thank you for last year, lets look forward to many more. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
An eventful month... ApacheCon was a big success. I spoke to a number of conference sponsors all were satisfied many were very happy. I spoke to many attendees, some new, some old. The new faces were content, the old were pleased to see an ApacheCon with no burned out volunteers tearing their hair out. Please see the EVP report for full details and join me in thanking Rich Bowen and his supporting team for a job well done. Upayavira and I met with the only ASF sponsor present at ApacheCon and discussed how we might better engage them. There were a number of suggestions but they mostly hinged around visibility into the foundations activities so that there is concrete information to communicate internally to those signing off on the sponsorship budget, Upayavira has undertaken to hold quarterly conference calls with gold and platinum sponsors during which he will present some basic metrics on how the foundation is doing, raise any highlights, and invite questions. I will work with Upayavira, Melissa and appropriate VPs to gather this data (e.g. incubating projects, accounts, committers). It is intended that the data will be compiled into an annual report for broader circulation in one years time (to coincide with the 2015 members meeting). It is my belief that at least one director should be present at each of these calls along with either myself or the EVP. A second sponsor request was to have more visibility at open source events for the ASF. Both in the form of booth presence (Melissa is willing and able to assist with this) and in the form of speakers representing the ASF. At this time I have no plan to deliver on this request. In the past the board (and I) have questioned the value of this work. This is an item that will be discussed with other sponsors in the coming months. There has been an important step in the audit process with agreement to request a contract from Virtual to manage the process. This is good to see. Thanks to the audit team for unblocking this. The EVP and two directors (Shane and Jim) met with representatives of the CloudStack PMC to discuss specific infrastructure, marketing and sponsorship needs that the PMC feels are not currently addressed by the ASF. At this time the requests are quite general in nature and thus we spent some time explaining why it is important for the PMC need to raise specific concerns with the appropriate Committees and Officers. To date the PMC has reached out formally to infrastructure and marketing and informally (at ApacheCon) to fundraising. It is my belief that the PMC is approaching these issues in an extremely constructive way and I commend them for their efforts. I also wish to note that, at least in the general sense, these concerns are not unique to CloudStack. It is my belief that the CloudStack PMC genuinely wants to find a solution that preserves the Apache Way and I encourage the board to work with the PMC to find appropriate solutions as specific issues are identified. Melissa spent much of this month coordinating the last aspects of ApacheCon and TAC, including staffing the booth at the event itself. There has been the usual work on the fundraising support activities. Now that ApacheCon is over and there is a lull before the real work for ApacheCon EU begins I am hoping that Melissa will be able to turn her attention to assisting the treasurer with the contract negotiations with Virtual and with documenting the existing practices. I plan to discuss new priorities with her and Rich (as EVP) in our regular meeting on Thur 17th April. We do not have a TAC report this month. However, I can report that I met a number of the TAC recipients at ApacheCon. They were all very grateful for the opportunity presented by the programme and extended their thanks to the foundation and TAC members specifically. Infrastructure was represented at ApacheCon by Joe and Daniel, with Sam being present for the first day. This, coupled with the fact that our two other contractors were otherwise engaged for the same period, resulted in a potentially incomplete coverage of our infrastructure needs. This was an unusual set of circumstances that all collided on a specific time period. This situation is unlikely to occur again. However, we should perhaps consider simple measures to flag such situations in the future. Shane was very active in ApacheCon discussions relating to directed sponsorships and their potential impact on our brand management. Shane continues to be engaged in those discussions on various mailing lists. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
ApacheCon is progressing well, see EVP report for details. Given the extremely short timeline on this event I think we can consider this a success. It looks to me like we will have an event that is at least as good as, if not better, than most previous events. When we add to this the lack of drama created by the producer I would like to think this is the start of a healthy relationship that will, over time, develop a valuable conference model that brings value to all parties. Our EA has been (mostly) consumed by ApacheCon items this month. We did discuss a difficulty Melissa has with respect to visibility into sponsor payments. It is difficult for Melissa to establish whether a payment has been made or not and thus to establish whether she ought to send a nag mail. On occasion this has been held up when our volunteers with access to this information are otherwise engaged. With the excellent work VP Fundraising and Melissa have put into creating a process for managing sponsorships this is now the most common bottleneck. I believe our treasurer is looking into options with respect to providing Melissa with timely access without adding additional overhead to the role of Treasurer. I look forward to a solution in the future. The Audit has not progressed significantly. As this was (once again) a priority for this year I'm disappointed with the progress since I personally undertook to see this through. I intend to explore the blocker over the next month since I have finally landed in my own home now, so no more moves for many years (I hope). Trademarks continues to increase its demands on Shane whist Shane continues to look for ways to streamline the process. Our EA has indicated that she is keen to help out with the process but still feels a little unclear as to where the boundaries lie around what she can safely do to help. I hope to discuss this with Shane at ApacheCon in April. From my perspective if we can free up even an hour a month of Shane's time this will be productive as Shane is doing such a superb job of refining out policies and practices in the little time available. There is no report from VP Fundraising at the time of writing. However Upayavira and I did touch base earlier this month and discussed the state of Fundraising. Whilst Upayavira himself is mostly engaged elsewhere it seems all sponsorship renewals are under control thanks to the support of (mostly) Melissa and Sally. Upayavira's role seems to be one of oversight at present. Infra report no significant surprises this month but note that the new Git features have been well received. 28 projects have adopted them in the first month, which has resulted in a tenfold increase in git related traffic on various apache.org email lists. As we enter budget planning season I have specifically asked infra to consider whether they ought to make a one-off investment in some specialist support that will allow them to better scale resources as the foundation continues to grow. This suggestion was well received as some members of the infra team feel there is an element of fire-fighting that can sometimes slow longer term projects. TAC reports 26 applications, of which 15 were funded at an estimated cost of $32k. This is both more applications and approvals in the past. The process was quicker than in the past though not without it's hiccups. Especially with respect to paying for flights. Thanks to Nick Burch who stepped in to solve the problem by offering his personal card (which was the reported fall-back position last month). I can confirm that Nick was promptly reimbursed for this expense. Melissa reports that she will seek to make recommendations for streamlining the process for future events now that she has been a core part of the TAC team. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
An extremely busy month for me personally which has kept me away from many of my ASF duties. The EA contract was renewed as previously agreed. A new renewal date has been entered into the calendar. With Melissa's help we are in the processes of updating our Director records with CSC. Please note that Melissa is now providing an approximate breakdown of her time. As is appropriate Melissa is in full control of her time allocation, this new reporting is intended only to inform the board for budget monitoring as requested. ApacheCon proceeds thanks to continuing significant effort from Rich. Due to my personal issues this month I have not been as helpful as I had hoped but it seems Rich has, as always, taken it in his stride. See the EVP report for more detail. I am yet to make significant progress on reporting budget vs actuals. The treasurer has provided some initial data exports but I have been unable to find the time to process it. Since I need to create a new budget for the following year I propose to build this reporting into a new spreadsheet that I develop during the preparation of this budget. Trademarks remains very busy and Shane has indicated that he is falling behind a little. I have encouraged Shane to continue to work with Melissa to identify areas in which she can help. I also note that an Member has also offered to help. Fundraising is also progressing well though it is notable that this is taking up a reasonable chunk of both Sally's and Melissa's time. Like trademarks we need to acknowledge this role is not one that a volunteer can be expected to fill. Unlike Trademarks though VP Fundraising appears to have been able to find sufficient tasks that can be handled by contractors. I believe this is mainly due to the less legally sensitive domain. However, I grow increasingly concerned that more support from Officers in managing key sponsor relations is necessary. Marketing progresses with its usual rhythm. No exceptional items to reports. Infra also reports nothing exceptional this month. I do note the ongoing improvement of GitHub integration at the specific request of committers. I engaged with the Cordova PMC with respect to their release process. Initially this engagement was only as a member attempting to help them understand the lay of the land. However at the request of a number of Directors and Infra I subsequently made a formal request (cc board@ and infra-private@) to ensure releases after 2.8.1 are formally voted upon. Joe has been working with the PMC to define a suitable process which does not introduce unnecessary work. I will conduct any necessary sanity checks with the board to ensure the final solution is acceptable. For now the PMC has acknowledged the need to address this issue (see Cordova report) and Joe reports that he is satisfied with progress to date. TAC has, once again, failed to submit a report (and due to my own lateness they have not had a prompt from me). However, Melissa reports progress has been made towards planning for ApacheCon. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Happy new year to all. It's been a predictably quiet month with the holidays. At least until early January. A recent situation with respect to how documents sent to CSC are are passed on to us. In short it appears there is only a single contact point for us. Worse, this is an individuals email address. This does not scale. In the light of a recent missed communication the contact address has been updated to my own @apache.org address. This can only be a temporary measure. I welcome input from the board on which address to use, perhaps board-private? EVP signed the contract for ApacheCon and planning is underway. Rich will provide an update. The Event in a Box has been costed. Originally I had planned to ask ComDev to own this and submit a budget request this month. However, given the need for two budget updates already this month I have chosen to delay this while we evaluate our current budget status. At the time of writing no fundraising report has been submitted. Our EA informs me that that there are no significant issues. At the time of writing no Brand Management report has been submitted. As per discussion on the board@ mailing list I submit a budget request from VP Brand Management as Special Order A. Infrastructure and Marketing are both progressing as usual. It is worth noting a significant number of hardware and software upgrades during the last month. As far as I am aware these upgrades were mostly uneventful from the perspective of our committers. My thanks go to the infrastructure team. At the time of writing no report has been submitted by the Travel Assistance Committee. As previously reported the committee is concerned that there is minimal time for coordinating TAC support for ApacheCon. I have asked our EA to provide whatever support she can. As previously discussed on board-private and in the last board meeting I submit a request for an increased Executive Assistant budget as Special Order B. It is worth noting that the two increased budget requests will take our FY13 budget over the expected sponsorship income for this year. We have plenty of cash available to absorb this deficit. However, as the foundation continues to grow so do our expenses. I have asked the treasurer if he can provide a quarterly report of budget vs. actuals. I will use these reports to inform the board of our status. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. The board requested that the CSC contact should be operations@.
A much quieter month for me. Things are progressing nicely on the ApacheCon front, huge thanks to Rich for ensuring this moves forwards. VP Brand Management is now engaged working on the correct trademarks agreements. Next stage will be for VP Legal Affairs to review the final contract (note, a first draft was shared on the board@ list on 12/16/13, we encourage Directors to provide feedback but Rich and I will coordinate with VP Legal Affairs, VP Brand Management and VP Marketing as appropriate. With respect to smaller event support Melissa is closing in on providing budget estimates for the "event in a box" concept. Next stage will be to work with the ComDev PMC to see if we feel the investment will be worthwhile and, if so, to start work on the supporting documentation while some old hands at ASF related events make use of the new supporting materials. I'm hoping to kick this off with a small community event here in Seattle in late Q1 (easily reachable from Portland and Vancouver). The Brazilian payment for trademark registration continues to elude us. I'm attempting to resolve this matter. The Audit list has been set up but there has been little progress to report at this point. Melissa stands ready to assist and I've asked her to attempt to pro-actively insert herself in the process once she spots things that she can help with. As discussed in the last months board meeting I would like to submit a revised budget request to cover an increase in Melissa's responsibilities. Please see Attachment BE for details, here is a summary of changes: Increase Executive Assistant budget for FY ending Apr 30 2014 by $15,500. This increases the deficit for this Financial Year to $34,841. This deficit is clearly a concern and needs to be addressed but in the short term I believe we have the resources to address this deficit for many years to come. I intend to work with Fundraising to address this, especially in light of VP Branding Management desire for an increased budget (see below for both items). Special Order 7C calls for formal approval of the budget. VP Trademarks has begun to revisit our trademark processes and as a result is expected to make a revised budget request. In parallel I have been contacted privately by two individual ASF Members expressing concern about flaws in our existing policy. In both cases I referred these members to the discussion Shane had already begun on the appropriate mailing list. I have heard nothing more and assume Shane's work has satisfied the concerns expressed. I am in full support of the recommendations from VP Brand Management and have requested that our EA support the effort in any way possible. We received a late report from fundraising with no issues requiring board attention at this time. Now that the fundraising playbook has been completed and our EA is providing support to VP Fundraising with respect to day-to-day activities I intend to look at whether there is a need for more assistance in managing relationships with our higher level sponsors. Our Infrastructure report is much more detailed than in recent months. This is largely the result of a more collaborative approach to it's creation. Furthermore it has been provided in a much more timely manner. I'm pleased to see some metrics in the report which help us understand the backlog that currently exists. My thanks to the infra team for this effort. No report from TAC at the time of writing. As per last months report TAC are expecting to have to ramp up quickly for ApacheCon if it goes ahead in April. I will be asking Melissa to use her increased hours to ensure the volunteers on that committee are able to cope. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
A whirlwind month for me personally, but good progress is being made across the foundation. EVP has made some good progress on ApacheCon negotiations, although LF are now asking for a long running contract. This is understandable since we are not taking any financial responsibility for the event. However, we need to discuss the implications of this. Rich intends to raise this during the board meeting. Martin van den Bemt has uploaded the videos from the previous two Apache Cons to YouTube. He was assisted by many people but the vast majority of the work was done by Martin. This was no easy task for a number of technical reasons along with a significant time investment. Thank you Martin. EA and VP Fundraising have successfully cleared the fundraising backlog (with help from others). Thank you to Upayavira for firstly reaching out for help when it was needed and secondly helping Melissa be productive in this role. Focus is now turning to making it easier for additional volunteers to take on specific fundraising activities. This is centering around adding further detail to the process documents drawn up by Upayavira and Melissa. VP Fundraising is considering some new fundraising activities (see Attachment 3). I have asked Upayavira to provide an outline of his proposal and will provide some initial feedback before bringing it to the board for consideration. As ever early feedback is welcome. Thanks also go out to Chris and Upayavira for finally resolving the PayPal issues. We also have (thanks to Phil Steitz) an alternative payment method through Amazon. EA has also made good progress merging her observations with respect to trademark handling with the documentation VP Brand Management has been creating. The next step is to ensure there are clear boundaries between "first level support", i.e. activities that anyone can undertake and more sensitive issues that require careful handling. This will reduce some workload but as Shane observes the bigger problem is "the growth and popularity of our 130+ projects". I intend to work with Shane and Melissa to address this growing problem in the coming months. Jim has stepped up to lead the Audit process with EA and Treasurer available to assist. As far as I am aware work has not yet commenced but I will be asking Melissa for a weekly update so that I can assist in any way appropriate. I have sent a proposal to the board (privately) to change Melissa's contract to increase her hours to accommodate the increasing workload she is taking on. I encourage the board to consider this in light of Melissa's critical role in reducing the fundraising backlog and ongoing efforts to identify additional supporting roles for our volunteers. I welcome suggestions from the board about how best to use this time and will continue to report plans as appropriate. The initial use of this time will be to accelerate the Event in a Box work and to ensure sufficient time is available to assist with the Audit. I signed an NDA with Symantec with respect to infra's code signing work. I'm aware that my reports have been at the last minute (including this one). I've agreed with our Chair that my reports will be submitted the weekend before the board meeting in future. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
It's been a busy month. Thanks to Melissa for moving forwards on providing hands on support for our VPs, most significantly VP Fundraising. As a result of her excellent work Upayavira reports that his backlog is reducing. Melissa has been working with VP Branding and the treasurer to identify first level support activities there. Furthermore Melissa has been working on an "Event in a Box" via the ComDev PMC to help support small event production within our projects. Finally, Melissa has been working with EVP on ApacheCon. Melissa, EVP and myself meet weekly to discuss progress on these items. Starting this week I will circulate notes from these meetings to board@ for increased visibility. There is no need for the board to review these notes, but we will be happy to address any concerns that are raised as a result. The EVP report contains more information about the ApacheCon status. I want to raise one concern I have with progress to date. In the initial discussions I was told that the proposed producer would underwrite the event. However, as we have progressed it has become apparent that this is not the case. To my mind this changes the relationship significantly. I've asked Rich to expand on this in his verbal report in order to get early feedback from the Directors. A director asked for an update on the status of our Audit. In response I reached out to Hadrian and am working with both Hadrian and Treasurer to come up with a plan for delivering on the report. The problem seems to be one of "ownership" since Hadrian's recommendations include recommendations for process change which affect both fundraising and treasurer. I've asked Hadrian to own this and drive it forward with my full support. At the time of writing I'm awaiting a response. We are still working on getting our bank to own the problem with missing payments to a Brazilian company. I'm speaking twice with an ASF hat, once today in London at Subversion & Git live (standing in or Greg) and one next week at All Things Open (this is mostly ASF and partly day job). Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
EVP, EA and myself have started having short weekly meetings to coordinate our activities. Melissa has reminded me that I have failed to renew her contract. This is unacceptable and will be addressed within the week. Melissa, as EA, has started to work with VP Fundraising to identify activities the EA can undertake to support the VP. Melissa will document these activities as they are defined. ApacheCon --------- After various discussions between myself EA and EVP together with consultations with a number of event producers we propose to invite the Linux Foundation to make a formal proposal to run (and underwrite) the next ApacheCon (an informal proposal has already been provided). The estimated timescale is as follows: - End of Week 1 Oct - feedback on intiial proposal - End of Oct - revised proposal from Linux Foundation - End of Nov - contracts signed Event in a Box -------------- This is an old ConCom idea that we are revisiting. The intention is to provide a lightweight process to support community members who wish to organise comunity focussed Apache related events. There are few details and no timescale as yet. Trademarks ---------- Shane has added Christian Grobmeier and David Nalley to the Trademarks Committee in recognition of their helpful and thoughtful trademarks@ work. Fundraising ----------- There continues to be a problem with submitting an Invoice to Microsoft for their sponsorship. I am looking into this in my day job role, although the problem appears to be one of lost credentials on the part of VP Fundraising. Infrastructure -------------- A contentious issue relating to a data removal request has resulted in the Infrastructure team considering a change to existing policy. Current thinking is that the policy should not be changed significantly, but a clarification of when exceptions will be granted. A full report is available in Attachement 5. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Summary ======= - OSCON booth well staffed, benefits not clear - EA being encouraged to provide more proactive support to VPs - starting with those reporting to President - ApacheCon not awarded to previous producer. A new RFP will be issued. - Revisiting the Event in a Box concept to provide support for project specific and small community events - D&O insurance renewed - Presenting at All Things Open in Raleigh, NC on Oct 23-24 Details ======= OSCON booth was a success. Thanks to Melissa for her hard work. Thanks also to Justin Erenkrantz, Martin van den Bemt, and Florian Mueller for their help staffing the Booth. I'm not overly convinced of the value of this booth (see EA report, Attachment 1). Raising awareness of the ASF is important, but ensuring good representation at the conference is probably more effective. We tend to get that representation through our volunteers speaking in various capacities. Personally, I feel the budget would be better spent in other ways (e.g. Event in a Box, see below) I met with Melissa to discuss her responsibilities (see http://jceventphoto.com/v/oscon_2013/content/DSC_7507_large.html). Jim as previous president had agreed an increase in both salary and hours with the intention of expanding the EA role. Melissa and I agreed a number of areas that she can help. In summary, all ASF positions that report directly to the President will be encouraged to use time from the EA. Top priorities at this time are Fundraising and Trademarks. Both of these require timely responses and therefore EA support would seem to be top priority. Over the next month we will work with the relevant VPs to identify concrete actions that can be undertaken by the EA. EA, EVP and myself met at OSCON to discuss the future of ApacheCon. We were in unanimous agreement that we needed to take some time to figure out the correct way forward. Specifically, we felt it necessary to refine the models Nick defined for our events. I have therefore informed The Open Bastion that we will issue a new RFP sometime in the future. Melissa is discussing with various event producers to understand the different models they recommend. I will submit a project timeline in the next board report. It is worth noting that since ConCom was disbanded project specific events have been progressing at roughly the same pace. Together with EVP and EA, I intend to pursue the Event in a Box idea I originally raised as part of ConCom some years ago. We do not imagine that small events will require significant support beyond that provided in the Event in a Box structure. D&O insurance has been renewed. We ran right up to the wire as the basic profit and loss report financial submitted was not accepted as it has been in previous years. A full balance sheet is what is requested and this year was insisted upon. EA has updated the calendar entry for next year to ensure we have more lead time to prepare the various reports. However, it may be wise to consider giving access to the reporting tools. D&O Broker suggested we consider the following insurances in addition to D&O. I assume previous boards evaluated the need for these. I see no reason to alter previous policies but include the list here for clarity. * physical assets * public liability * non-owned Automobile Liability * workers compensation * Media Liability (i.e. copyright infringement) * Privacy and Network Security Liability I'll be presenting at the All Things Open conference in Raleigh, NC on Oct 23-24. The session will focus on the ASF and how it facilitates collaboration between otherwise competing organisations. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
As expected I've been mostly offline this month, dealing with essential items only as I relocated to the US. That task is now complete. Normal service can be expected next month. The EA contract is due for renewal - this matter is now urgent and will be dealt with ASAP. Our Directors and Officers Liability insurance is due for renewal. Melissa is still working to clarify the accounts for ACNA13. The lack of clarity around this issue, coupled with a number of other issues that have arisen have prompted us to reconsider the plans for ApacheCon. Melissa, Rich and myself will be meeting to discuss plans at OSCON in July. Once a date and time is set we will extend an invite to board members interested in attending. I have reached out to VP of Fundraising in order to offer the assistance of both the EA and the President during busy times (see Attachment 3). At the suggestion of VP Infra and with input from myself and EVP the Infrastructure contractors have drawn up a brief mission statement which is designed to provide a "code of conduct" under which we expect all contractors and volunteers to operate. No TAC report has been submitted at the time of writing, Gavin sends his apologies. There are currently no events planned that TAC are assisting with. VP Marketing and Publicity is unable to attend OSCON this year. Sally is liaising with Melissa to ensure she has everything she needs. I will be at OSCON and will assist with the ASF booth whenever possible. I'll be meeting with Rich as EVP in order to outline the best way for us to work together in our new roles. More importantly I look forward to meeting many ASF Members at the event. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
This has been an extremely busy month, but kudos to all VPs for handling the load with skill. I have not, at this time, rec'd a report from VP Infra, but I know the actual Infra team has been extremely busy with the upgrades and so their availability for providing feedback and comments may have been limited. In addition to the extensive upgrades, of particular note re: infra is that Daniel Gruno has joined as a part-time SA. As we kick off the new fiscal year, I have 2 contracts to renew. The 1st is for HALO and we will renew at the same rate and level of service. It is an annual contract but we will review at the 6 month mark to see if any changes are required. The second renewal is for our EA. This contract will be revised to reflect the increase in hours and duties. I'll work with Chris to make sure the increased payments are setup. As a reminder, this contract is based on a 6-month term. I will be speaking next week at the Open Source Summit (http://ossummit.org) regarding Communities. Operationally, the foundation is running well and the transition started a few months ago from Board Cmmts to President Cmmts, and a more "managing" President, is gaining traction and benefits. My report from the annual meeting follows. --- The ASF is fast approaching our 15 year anniversary, not even including the several years when we were "just" The Apache Group. During all this time, we have seen the impact of the foundation, but most importantly, the projects increase significantly. Each year has been an upwards flight from the previous one, and this year was no exception. Over the last 12 months we have added just about 30 new top level projects. It is unfair to single out just a handful of projects, but to get a feel for the range of TLPs added the last year, we go from Cloud (CloudStack) to Desktop (OpenOffice) to Mobile (Cordova). New incubating projects are also coming into the ASF, allured by the Apache brand and the proven mechanisms in the "Apache Way" (I doubt if we will ever be able to really drop that phrase); the ASF is known as *the* place for open, collaborative development, if the goal is to create a neutral yet healthy and sustainable community around a project. We should be proud of this reputation, and continue to foster and promote it. Also over the last year, a number of Board Committees were re- structured as President's Committees. These include: o Infrastructure (VP: Sam Ruby) o Trademarks and Branding (VP: Shane Curcuru) o Marketing and PR (VP: Sally Khudairi) o Fundraising (VP: Upayavira) o Concom/Events (VP: Nick Burch) o Travel Assistance. (VP: Gavin McDonald) These cmmt's and their VPs make my job easier, by being proactive, professional and on-top of all issues. My thanks go to all VPs, our SysAdmins and all volunteers. Just some highlights for each cmmt: o Infrastructure: Substantial upgrades and updates; more hired resources. o Trademarks: Handling of various TM registrations o Marketing: Incredible outreach and promotion o Fundraising: A suite of new sponsors, including Citrix as Platinum. o Concom: 2 very successful ApacheCons: ApacheCon EU 2012 in Sinsheim and ApacheCon NA 2013 in Portland, OR. o TAC: Coordinating of several attendees for the above 'Cons. Due to all these cmmt's now being under the President's "responsibilities", we have increased the duties assigned to our EA. She has been a significant help to many committees and her contract has been renewed and updated, so if there are issues or tasks that she can help with, don't hesitate to ping me or Ross (our EVP). The board approved our FY2013-2014 budget; We are still below the $1 million (US) mark, as far as yearly expenses are concerned, and have a bit of growth before we push through it. Also regarding our financials, in cooperation with our Treasurer, we are starting the process of a "preview audit" on our books. As before, if your PMC desires specific computing resources (ie build farm, test machines, etc.), please get in touch with the infrastructure group. Well-reasoned and detailed proposals are always welcomed. However, we are often limited by human resources, so volunteers to help execute these plans are strongly encouraged. I am happy to report, as alluded to above, that the ASF continues to be an extremely noteworthy and respected entity in the FOSS space, and I (and others) are frequently asked to speak at conferences, user-groups, etc regarding the foundation, the so-called "Apache Way" and Open Source in general. In addition, the foundation itself is running extremely well, on "greased grooves" one might even say. Kudos to all. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
A relatively normal month since the last meeting. No problems or problematic issues require board attention. The first item of note is the (re)proposed 2013-2014 budget. The revised budget contains the following changes from the previous proposal: a. President's discretionary fund returned to $5k. b. Updated Infra budget for increased staffing Special Order 7C calls for formal approval of the budget. As requested, our EA is now submitting monthly reports for inclusion in the board agenda/minutes. Feedback and comments are welcomed. As will be noted below, I expect that the workflow associated with the EA to increase to do ApacheCon conf procedural changes and an increased workload, as reflected in the budget. Trademarks, Fundraising and M&P are all progressing well. Infra reported extremely late but, except for the lateness of the report, there are no issues to concern the board. As of the date of this writing, I did not receive anything from TAC or Concom; Concom is an item of discussion however, so having no report isn't that much of a concern at this point. TAC seems simply in idle-mode. As noted in the EVP report, Concom is restructuring, based on a better and more realistic review of available resources and capa- bilities. Both the EVP and I feel that this will be the "secret sauce" and solution looked for by the board. Sam, Chris, Hadrian and I had discussions regarding the status and movement of the audit effort. The general consensus was that Chris would be working with Hadrian to get our books into "acceptable" shape enough to allow us to, in the very near term, get an accountant to review our books and methods and give us a good, solid "gut-check" on where we are, regarding our finances. On a personal matter, I will be unable to attend the 1st half of next week's member's meeting. I can still setup and "run" the elections if required/desired; I'll need to know ASAP however, to ensure that I do the prep-work to allow anyone to "kick-off" the polls, if I am late in returning from the hospital. Finally, I wish to thank all Directors and members for the opportunity to have served as Director again; it's been an honor and privilege. Additionally, please see Attachments 0 through 6.
I presented a Keynote at POSSCON 2013 regarding "Licensing, Governance, Community and more". Copies of the slides can be found at: http://www.slideshare.net/jimjag/three-shallbe At present there are no issues with the running of the foundation. All presidents' committees are working well, with the normal expected delays due to volunteer cycles. To alleviate this I plan on ramping up the involvement of our EA to better track and assist these cmmts. I will work with Upayavira and Chris to ensure that Upayavira has the view into payment's rec'd to support his fundraising activities (as requested by Upayavira). The proposed ASF 2013-2014 budget is ready for discussion and approval. The board will note that our overall expenses are slightly down from last year. Branding is quite busy but handling the load well. Fundraising has an issue which I'll be tracking, and it's referred to above. Concom is taking the number of suggestions and comments provided by the board and the President/EVP into consideration, and are making the required changes to implement those, including a "refocus" of the cmmt and a clean-up of the mailing lists. I anticipate some discussion of all this at the board meeting. There are no issues with TAC. I received no report from Infra. This follows a somewhat disappointing reaction to the budget call. As per the agreed upon work-flow, I ask the VP of Infra to see where the problems are and to address the problems. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
The call for the 2013-2014 budget went out a few weeks ago. I will send a reminder this week. The due date for the budget requests is the end of the month. This should provide sufficient time for scrubbing the numbers, getting clarification and verification, etc... before the budget is set for approval at next month's board meeting. I've asked Chris and Melissa to work with CSC regarding our corporate status renewals and ensure that our status remains active and in good standing. Brand Management is working a name-conflict issue and has pulled in Legal for assistance, otherwise things are going well, if busy. Both Fundraising and M&P are doing fine. No issues with TAC although I am awaiting the final accounting of money used. No issues with Infra. Concom is working some smaller events but the big news was, as expected, ApacheCon NA 2013. The con was "generally held to be a success", a statement with which I agree, and it was clear that the volunteers in Concom were not as stressed or over-worked at this event as compared to others. A post-conf meeting was held and I am awaiting the notes and recommendations from Concom regarding future ApacheCons. Last month I presented the ASF State of the Feather at ACNA2013, a copy of which is on Slideshare. I'll be presenting at POSSCON next week about FOSS licensing and governance issues. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
All President's cmmts reported and in general all is well. There are no issues with branding or marketing; fundraising has been active with renewals and this has created a delay in sending out the 'Thank You' letters. I am working with Fundraising to address their questions. ApacheCon NA 2013 is next week; I will be doing the standard 'State of the Feather' talk. Concom will be doing a post-con assessment. There will likely be an event in Bangalore in late March in which Concom is involved with. Both Infra and TAC are also progressing well. There were delays in getting reports this month; I will look into extending Marvin to better remind my cmmts to report earlier. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
Trademarks, Concom and Marketing/PR are all fine. TAC requests verification regarding payment of expenditures. My initial desire was to see all TAC expenditures and approve them, even though TAC has a pre-approved budget. The sole reason was to be able to follow the money stream in TAC, and not to create a bottleneck. For TAC, this may not be feasible, due to the way expenses are done (lots of little bills). Assuming the board is OK with this, I will inform TAC that they can self-approve bills received. Sally is helping w/ Fundraising. If anyone on the board can help as well, please let Upayavira or myself know; things always go easier when "titles" are used. We are still working out delegation "kinks" within Infra. Even so, Infra is doing well. I would encourage the board to review the thread and web-page referring to the "relaxed" SVN ACLs (aka "UCB") and provide some guidance. I will representing the ASF at a panel discussion at the NSF SI2 meeting in Arlington, VA tomorrow (Jan 17th). This event came through via Ross, who was unable to attend. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6. Comment: Regarding TAC, expenses for TAC members (not TAC beneficiaries) should be approved by Jim.
I was invited to keynote at the CloudStack Collaboration Conference in Las Vegas at the turn of the month. The topic was "Code, Community and Open Source" (The Apache Way), and the slides are available via slideshare (http://s.apache.org/sa). The conf itself was noteworthy for a few reasons: 1. The energy and enthusiasm of the CloudStack community was self- evident. 2. It was also obvious that Citrix had and has a great desire to be a good FOSS and ASF citizen. 3. The conf was organized by The Open Bastion, and I was impressed with how well it was run (as were Citrix, et.al.). Melissa's EA contract was renewed for another 6 months. And speaking of renewals, Sam and I discussed salary considerations for our sys-admin contractors and have an agreed-upon plan. Sam is in the process of updating the sys-admin renewals to comply. There was some discussion regarding the status of git; better documentation and a more public plan is being worked. We may have an issue with a podling's CLI name; VP of Branding is working the (potential) issue. He is also working a trademark transfer issue for the same podling. No other board level brand issues at this time. We have a large number of sponsor renewals coming up. I intend to help, and offer the EA's assistance, as needed. If Greg can also help, that would be great. Marketing and PR are pushing on; on immediate tap is ACNA13 and OSCON. And speaking of ACNA13, speaker notifications and announcements have gone out. TAC is working with Concom. TAC expects to spend around $25k for ACNA13, compared to $20k they spent on ACEU12. At present, I see no real concerns with either TAC or Concom. All in all, 2012 has been a very good year for the ASF. Additionally, please see Attachments 1 through 6.
At last month's meeting, as discussed and agreed upon at the face-to-face, the VPs of Brand Management, Fundraising, Marketing and Publicity, Conference Planning and Travel Assistance were "re-appointed" as serving under the direction of the president. As such, I will start the transition to the board reporting structure also discussed at the f2f: all reports from those entities will be sent to the President and the President's report will consist of summaries of those reports. The actual reports will be included as addenda to the agenda but the board will not be required to read and approve as has been the case up to now. In support of this, Greg had agreed to update the agenda template. I will confirm with Greg. I will also update Marvin as well. I expect the new system to be finalize and in place at next month's meeting. I am pleased with the good reports regarding ACEU 2012. Having a successful event certainly helps making all the efforts and pre-con concerns somewhat easier to take. It also sounds as though the new direction for ApacheCon, starting with the US show, will be a major help. I was invited to speak at the CloudStack Collaboration Conference later this month, which I accepted. The topic of my talk will be The ASF and Open Source, a la "The Apache Way", a term I think that despite our efforts, simply won't go away. I've re-informed OSI that we wish them great success with their Affiliate Program (as well as their membership and corporate affiliate programs) but that the board has decided, upon receipt of the Affiliate Agreement, not to sign and nor join the program. The foundation is running well.
No report was submitted.
Thanks again to the board with entrusting me with the duties of President. We are starting to make the transitions from many of the committees reporting directly to the board to instead reporting to the President. The 'operations@' mailing list discussed at the f2f has been setup but not yet formally announced. Our EA is working almost exclusively on ACEU duties and has been invaluable in the ongoing progress associated with Concom.
The Concom status, especially ACEU 2012, as noted by Doug, continues to be an issue. I have asked Concom to present weekly reports and have shared these (and will continue to do so) with the board. My own personal fear is that ACEU 2012 will burn out whatever support and volunteer energy we have, putting ACNA 2013 in significant risk; If I had to choose, I'd say sacrifice ACEU in favor of ACNA, where we have more runway to "do things right." I also have given Hadrian express permission to work the audit situation. Again, IMO, this needs to be a priority for the foundation. We received 3 notices from the IRS regarding our non-submission of Form 941 for 3 quarters. We are not required to submit these forms, so these notices are somewhat of a mystery. I follow-through on replying to the notices. Our D&O Insurance was renewed with no significant change in rate. I will add the invoice and notice to SVN. I am becoming concerned at the "lateness" of some reports, esp from non-PMC entities.
Welcome to the following new members, elected in at May's annual meeting: Andrew Hart Andy Seaborne Arvind Prabhakar Ashutosh Chauhan Bert Huijben Billie Rinaldi Brian Foster Cameron Goodale Chris Bowditch Daniel (Jianyong) Dai David Fisher Devaraj Das Eric Charles Francesco Chicchiriccò Jakob Homan Jan Lehnardt Jochen Wiedmann Johan Corveleyn Karl Wright Kristian Rosenvold Kristian Waagan Lewis John McGibbney Lukasz Lenart Mahadev Konar Malcolm Edgar Marshall Schor Martin Tzvetanov Grigorov Massimo Manghi Matt Franklin Maurice (Mike) L. Kienenberger Michael Dürig Noah Slater Ron Grabowski Sandro Martini Scott Carey Sean R. Owen Sebastian Schelter Stefan Fritsch Stefan Fuhrmann Stephen Connolly Suresh Marru Thomas Müller Todd Lipcon Tom Hobbs Tomaž Muraus Torsten Förtsch From what I was able to see, the ASF booth at OSCON had a great deal of traffic and activity. Special thanks goes to Sally and Melissa for doing a great job in coordinating the booth and in manning it. Also thanks to all ASF members and committers who helped man the booth, especially Justin who was there *a lot*. Although I still have some concerns about Concom, and especially about ApacheCon EU 2012, I am happy to see renewed efforts and energy in the cmmt. Even though I have asked to be voted in as a Concom developer, I will likely also request weekly reports from Concom, as we get closer and closer to the event. I am working on the D&O renewal. I've been informed that this year's rate will likely be more expensive than the previous years (by potentially as much as 50%). Our agent is looking into other policies but in any case, we will be easily under budget on this line item.
Logistically the annual ASF members meeting went off w/o a hitch. Thanks again for all people who helped make it happen, including the Infra team for keeping the web-based voter tool running. I am renewing the contract for our EA for another 6 months. I will be presenting at the NASA Open Source Summit this month (June 19-20) regarding "Community" and the ASF will, of course, be especially noted in my talk. I will also be presenting at OSCON and will perform "booth duty" as my time and schedule allows. I am also cutting/pasting my report from the member meeting: -- The previous year has been an active one for the foundation. There has been a large number of significant codebases entering the Incubator, the latest being CloudStack. In my mind this once again reinforces the fact that the ASF is known as *the* place for open, collaborative development, if the goal is to create a neutral yet healthy and sustainable community around a project. We should be proud of this reputation, and continue to foster and promote it. We've also over the previous year have seen a large number of TLP graduations, which is a change from last year where it seemed some- what sluggish. Overall, all the projects, including the "new" ones are operating well, each as their own. I continue to be well-pleased by the work done by our EA. She has been a significant help to many committees. Her contract has been renewed, so if there are issues or tasks that she can help with, don't hesitate to ping me. Our infrastructure team continues to actively and pro-actively keep on top of our resources and services. My thanks go to our SysAdmins, all infra volunteers and our VP of Infra. One item in particular to note is that increased efforts by Infra regarding in-house use and support of git, a request frequently made by members and projects. Finally, as before, if your PMC desires specific computing resources (ie build farm, test machines, etc.), please get in touch with the infrastructure group. Well-reasoned and detailed proposals are always welcomed. However, we are often limited by human resources, so volunteers to help execute these plans are strongly encouraged. The board approved our FY2012-2013 budget; We operated as expected and on target under our 2011-2012 budget. We continue to be cash-flow positive, with funds in the bank for unforeseen expenses. We are *finally* pushing thru an action to have an official audit of our books. The next board (and President) should ensure this happens. It's long overdue. Relatedly, with the appointment of a new treasurer, we are back on track regarding our books and handling of invoices and payments. I am also happy to report that Fundraising has renewed energy and we have seen a nice increase in sponsors and their sponsorship levels. I wish to thank the board and the membership for their trust and support. I also wish to thank all Sponsors of the ASF. Finally, I am happy to report that the ASF continues to be an extremely noteworthy and respected entity in the FOSS space, and I (and others) are frequently asked to speak at conferences, user-groups, etc regarding the foundation, the so-called "Apache Way" and Open Source in general. In addition, the foundation itself is running extremely well, on "greased grooves" one might even say. Kudos to all.
Happy to report that the budget is ready for approval; all issues and questions have been addressed in this latest revision. I have been asked to attend a full-day meeting in Rockville, MD at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) regarding their Cancer Biomedical Informatics GridR (caBIGR) Open Development Initiative (ODI). This opportunity was the result of my talks at POSSCON. I've also accepted a request to speak at the NASA Open Source Summit. I have been re-appointed to a 2year term as director of OuterCurve. This coincides with my re-appointment at OSI. I anticipate, as before, no conflicts. I have provided a number of quotes for ASF PRs, most regarding Apache OpenOffice. I've also been in contact with SourceForge, thanking them for their help with the AOOo distribution as well as other potential areas of cooperation. My thanks go to this current board. The foundation is running well.
I spoke regarding open source licenses and communities at POSSCON last month, down in SC. The slides are available under my people.apache.org/~jim account. The proposed 2012-2013 budget has been rec'd, scrubbed and now proposed for approval. Thanks goes to all those who made this task. As mentioned last month, I was re-appointed for another 2 year term as director of OSI; I still foresee no conflicts. I also accepted a role as Advisor to the MARSEC-XL Foundation council, arising from my keynote at IOOS 2011 last year. The foundation continues to run smoothly, and I am pleased by the number and quality of the projects eager to join our happy home, as well as the number and quality of projects which make it, and become TLPs. Our annual members meeting is scheduled for Tuesday May 22, 2012, and I will be helping Doug with the backend voter-tool work.
There are has been quite a bit of active and tense communication on many of the public ASF mailing lists. Kudos to those who have tried to defuse these threads before they become too damaging. I am very pleased to see that we appear to be on an even keel again regarding our books and treasury duties. I am also happy to report that our EA continues to be utilized and valued. I will send a "final" reminder to PMCs and cmmt's today regarding the budget calls. All budget updates are due by the end of this month in expectation of a submittal to, and approval of, the board next month. I have somewhat of a concern over the response of the fundraising team. Some emails and queries sent to fundraising (both internal as well as external) have been ignored or un-seen, and the fact that, as of this writing, we still have not rec'd a report does not give me a warm and fuzzy feeling. On a similar note, I am quite interested in seeing Concom's report since I know there has been quite a bit of activity within the last few weeks. In general, foundation-wise, we are operating well.
Quite an "verbose" month on Incubator mailing list, as evidenced in Incubator report. There was some "leakage" of the discussion to the members list, but the main discussion was held within the Incubator, where it belonged. It was refreshing to see that. The Annual report was filed; Thanks to Craig for submitting it and Melissa for the follow-up. Speaking of Melissa, the calendar system seems to be working quite well and I believe all who require access to it, have it. The budget call went out. Will continue to follow and push. I have asked Noirin to help with this. I grow increasingly concerned about our lack of an active and available treasurer and suggested switching the current treasurer and ass't treasurer parties. I've been unable to get ahold of Geir to discuss this, but have chatted with Sam. Other than the treasurer issue, the foundation is running well.
Thanks to our EA, the foundation calendar is a reality. If you need access, just contact myself or Melissa. Thanks also to Joe and Sam for cleaning up the main ASF page; when pulling in content from the blog and/or mailing lists, some invalid characters would leak out causing the site to look really, really bad. Filtering was added to the CMS system to address this. I will be starting the formal budgeting process this month. The mailing lists have been relatively quiet; the foundation is running on greased grooves.
Apologies for not being able to attend this meeting. The last month has seen its share of sometimes-useful and sometimes not-so-much discussions on the 2 main ASF mailing lists. I want to ensure the membership that the ASF is running quite well; sure there are some issues that could be addressed in a more timely manner, but all-in-all, we have a lot to be proud of. The unfortunately named external blog post entitled "Apache Considered Harmful" succeeded in its goal of, as with most posts so named, grandstanding with a small smattering of useful data. Myself and others tried to clear the air and address some of the most blatant "inaccuracies" within that post and were quite happy to see the large and almost universal support of Apache and Foundations from the people who really know and understand such things. I'm quite happy with the continued work being done by #infra re. the evaluation and "testing" of git within the ASF, and want to also thank those projects offering to help as "test cases." I renewed our EA's contract for another 6 months. At present, her prime task is the finalization of the ASF wide calendar and she has contacted stakeholders in that effort. I am also aware of other tasks that other officers and Directors have in place and in vision for her. Sally is working on the Annual Report. There has also been some prelim budget discussions regarding infra and PR, and budgeting will start in earnest the start of the year. I also plan to start making more use of the EVP position to further optimize operations. 2011 ends with the ASF in, imo, capable hands and doing quite well, thank you.
During the f2f board meeting, we decided to appoint Sam Ruby as VP of Infra and maintain, for the time being, that position as an independent task. Thanks goes to Microsoft and Gianugo Rabellino for providing the meeting space for the meeting. I presented the State Of The Feather at ApacheCon NA 2011, a copy of which can be found at: http://people.apache.org/~jim/presos/ACNA11 I believe many of the directors, and indeed members, who attended ACNA11 met Melissa, our EA, who performed "booth duty" (as well as other tasks, of course) at the Con. Next on her agenda is finalization of the ASF Calendar and working on the Annual Report with Sally. Thank you to the board for "re-appointing" me as Prez. Fine-tuning of the running of the organization is still required and I plan on focusing on that in the upcoming month.
Apologies again for missing last month's meeting and thank you all again for your thoughts and support the last several weeks. The big news has been the increasing issues related to infra, and the amount of oversight requested and required. I've asked Noirin, as EVP, to take over the tasks associated with the VP of Infra position with the intent of phasing out that role. Although this is not intended to be the last change to take place, it will serve as a reasonable stop-gap until the f2f meeting at ApacheCon, where this topic will be more fully addressed. Also related to infra was the discussion regarding CouchDB's offer and request to be a testbed regarding the ASF's use of git as a VCS. This is no way changes policy, nor does it imply any such change. At Sally's request, I'll be meeting with some existing and potential sponsors at ApacheCon. There has also been quite a bit of rigamarole regarding Open Office, and I helped out a bit in speaking w/ reporters and other interested parties in an attempt to clear up the FUD. I spoke at the IOOS2011 Conference in Malta related to FOSS and how the ASF tries to create community (the so-called "Apache Way" talk). It was very well received will likely result in similar talks with the EU and the Maltese government.
A report was expected, but not received
Actually quite a busy month since the last board meeting. First of all, there was some concern regarding the speed and "failover" of some infra tasks (mostly related to account creation). Thanks goes to Sam, Craig and infra for the effort around the account creation tool, which has substantially improved the situation. I don't think that this alleviates all the concerns, but this will give us some "breathing room" until the planned infra meeting during the Surge conference in Baltimore. 2 renewals were done since the last meeting: we renewed our D&O Insurance and I renewed our subcontract with our EA. Our EA continues to be a valuable resource for those who use her; I again encourage officers and directors to leverage her availability; TAC and Concom have, most notably, been advantageous users, as have myself. We should be receiving the invoice for the D&O Insurance renewal within a week or so. We now have a UPS account in conjuction with our FedEx account. Thx again to our EA for handling that. I am on task to send to Sam 2 copies of acceptable ID in order to get my Wells Fargo credit card. I did receive my WF RSA keyfob to access to the web portal. I will be speaking at the Transfer Summit 2011 in Oxford next month.
Less than a week ago we finished our annual ASF members meeting. The meeting ran well, but this was the 1st year in which I was honestly worried that we may not hit quorum. We did manage to hit it, with about 20-30 or so members to spare, but I wonder if it's time to once again ping the "inactive" members and ask if they wish to go emeritus. On behalf of the foundation, welcome to the new board! In particular, welcome back to Brett, after a brief (but I'm sure refreshing) hiatus, and to Larry, our noob. And a vote of thanks and gratitude goes out to Geir and Noirin as outgoing directors (but still active exec. officers). I received a few more invitations for later on this year to speak regarding the ASF; I am checking my schedule for availability. I did accept the offer to speak at the Transfer Summit, in GB. For the record, I am adding in my report from the members meeting: The foundation is running smoothly but has seen quite a bit of activity, both internally and well as externally related. Externally, the item most of note is likely the donation of the OpenOffice.org code and trademark from Oracle to us, and the subsequent creation of the Apache OpenOffice Incubator podling. Admittedly, not all of the "press" related to this was positive, with some people and reporters even going so far as to imply that the ASF was in kahoots with Oracle and IBM to "destroy" LibreOffice (which of course, is FUD of the nth degree). Another semi-major issue that occurred over the last 6 months has been that Oracle subpoenaed us regarding information related to Harmony, its licensing and attempts to get a TCK, in support of Oracle's suit against Google. Kudos to all involved for helping out with this, but special attention to Sam for leading the effort. Internally, I would say that the efforts regarding our trademarks and the *protection* of our trademarks, and the discussion that arose on the members@ and incubator@ lists regarding OOo have been 2 of the most substantial ones. Speaking of the Incubator, as the below stats show, there are quite a number of Incubator podlings in existence, and a non-insignificant number of those have been in the Incubator for a number of years. Something for the new board and the Incubator to consider is actively prodding these podlings to either graduation or retire. Our Executive Assistant has been extremely helpful in a number of areas, especially with Concom and TAC. I expect to renew her contract this month. Our infrastructure team continues to actively and pro-actively keep on top of our resources and services; in particular, we just hired a part-time sys-admin (pctony) and servers are being replaced *before* they die. Finally, as before, if your PMC desires specific computing resources (ie build farm, test machines, etc.), please get in touch with the infrastructure group. Well-reasoned and detailed proposals are always welcomed. However, we are often limited by human resources, so volunteers to help execute these plans are strongly encouraged. The board approved our FY2011-2012 budget, and, although admittedly early in our fiscal year, we are operating on projections. Finally, I am happy to report that the ASF continues to be an extremely noteworthy and respected entity in the FOSS space, and I (and others) are frequently asked to speak at conferences, user-groups, etc regarding the foundation, the so-called "Apache Way" and Open Source in general. Stats (please feel free to share!): Committers: 2663 Members (active): 370 iCLAs on file: 4158 Projects: 94 Incubating: 57(!!) Labs: 32 Attic: 16 SVN Revisions: r1144357+ Web stats: See: http://people.apache.org/~henkp/analog/ Mailing lists and SVN commits graph: http://www.apache.org/dev/stats/ General agreement on reviewing/pinging inactive membership for status and moving to emeritus. Greg suggests that we also should stress proxies. Larry asks if we could change our quorum requirements; Greg indicates that this would require a change to bylaws (Section 3.9), and should be something that is done as a last resort (and probably only after we fail hold a members meeting due to quorum requirements). Jim notes that the quorum requirements is required to start the meeting, votes afterwards are counted as attending but too late to be helpful; again we need to stress proxies.
The big news the last month has been the OpenOffice.org code and trademark donation from Oracle in anticipation of the OpenOffice.org podling. This created quite a bit of discussion and debate, both within and without the foundation, with quite a bit of FUD being slung externally. I keynoted at the Open Repositories 2011 conference in Austin, TX. The topic was "Open Source: It's not just for IT anymore" and the focus was regarding the "Apache Way" and how we build communities. Doug announced the ASF member's meeting for 12 July, 2010, at 17:00 UTC (http://s.apache.org/KUR). I will be helping Doug setup and coordinate the meeting. Doug has already sent out the Call For Nominations for both new members as well as the board. There are no issues from a foundation perspective.
The big news this month is that the ASF was served, and I signed for, a subpoena from Oracle related to their suit against Google. This was copied to the VP Legal who has further information on this in his report. The foundation now has an additional (part-time) SysAdmin, to help our 2 full-timers as well as the roster of volunteers. Our EA has been busy helping coordinating both the Retreat/BarCamp and the ApacheCon events. I attended OSBC earlier this week (again, thanks to the board for pushing this board meeting out a day so I could attend). One of my panel discussions was regarding the ASF and our IP governance process (also on the panel were representatives from Eclipse, OuterCurve and the Linux Foundation). Despite being the last session on the last day, it was extremely well attended. I am tentatively scheduled to attend a series of focus groups in DC regarding how to leverage some of the methods used within the ASF (the so-called "Apache Way") to build communities around some government open-sourcing efforts. I will also be presenting at the Open Repositories conference in Austin next month on a similar topic. From a top-level, foundation-wide view, the ASF is running smoothly.
The budgeting process this year, though started a little bit later than I would have liked (my fault, however), went very smoothly. Thanks to all committees for their quick and efficient handling of the whole budgeting process. The board will note that the proposed budget is a balanced one, with the deltas from last year's budget noted. The additional Platinum sponsor (my thanks go out to Fundraising and Marketing/PR, and, of course, all of our sponsors), allows for some timely and most needed additional expenditures. Since there has been no feedback from the board concerning the proposed budget, I expect that we will be able to approve it at today's meeting (see 7C). Last month I spoke at POSSCON 2011; in addition to a technical talk (a preview of Apache httpd 2.4), I also was on a panel discussion with Bob Sutor (VP, Open Source & Linux, IBM), Iain Sanderson (CMIO, Center for Health Quality) and Bryant Patten (Executive Director, National Center for Open Source in Education) regarding the "Future of Open Source", as well as doing a keynote entitled "Open Source: Not Just for IT Anymore" where I discussed the ASF methodology. Next month I will be at the Red Hat Summit and OSBC. The biggest "issue" the last month has been regarding infra- structure; we are having growing pains (no surprise) and trying to again juggle the availability of volunteer efforts within the demands of a full-time, 24x7 environment. As such, at my urging, infra has taken on the task of redefining the role of the VP Infra position, with the goal of reducing the load on that position and allowing the sub-contracted sys admins more autonomy. We have 2 excellent full-time sysadmins and requiring the VP Infra to, for example, coordinate with vendors for pricing, etc, no longer is viable or even needed. The VP Infra will still be the "final" say, and will be the one to "do" the actual purchasing, but having them be the middle-man makes no sense. This type of streamlining will result in a more efficient (and cost-effective) process, as well and better managing the load on the whole infra team. I was appointed to the Board of the Open Source Initiative (OSI), effective April 1, 2011. I do not foresee any conflict of interest nor any problems with my accepting this position; rather, I see it as an advantage for both the ASF and OSI. I am still willing to chat (and lunch) with Wayne from Sonatype but as of this writing, I have yet to hear any requests to do so from Wayne.
The formal budget call was sent out a few weeks ago, after having pinged each associated committee "one-on-one." The deadline for people to submit their budgets for 2011-2012 is March 21. My plan is to scrub the numbers with the cmmts, give the board a "head's up" assessment via email and have a proposal for board approval by next meeting. I will be presenting at POSSCON 2011 next week; in addition to a technical talk, I will be on a panel discussion with Bob Sutor, Iain Sanderson and Walter Bender regarding the "future" of Open Source as well as a keynote regarding "lessons learned" in Open Source. I am very happy that the CFP for ApacheCon NA 2011 went out almost on time. Thx to all, especially to Sally for pushing this along. Our EA has been helping with TAC, Concom and PR. We are planning a f2f meeting for later on this month with Sally; expected date is the 29th. I also have Melissa working on a foundation-wide calendar (hardcopy at present) and hope to work with Geir in getting her access to our accounts. Welcome to our newly elected members from January's members meeting: Greg Brown Michael Busch Jack Cai Adriano Crestani Paul Joseph Davis Jean-Sebastien Delfino Ted Dunning Mohammad Nour El-Din Julian Foad Igor Galic Alan Gates Oliver Heger Colm O Heigeartaigh Arnaud Heritier Jeremy Hughes Patrick Hunt Nandika Jayawardana Willem Ning Jiang Supun Kamburugamuva Yegor Kozlov Ken Krugler Damitha Kumarage Olivier Lamy Paul Lindner Ruwan Linton Jimmy Lv Rick McGuire Mark Miller Julien Nioche Johan Oskarsson Gerhard Petracek Jörg Schaible Theo Schlossnagle Zoe Slattery Stefan Sperling Ulrich Stärk Amila Suriarachchi Tommaso Teofili Tammo van Lessen Gert Vanthienen Igor Vaynberg Kanchana Welagedara A relatively quiet and smoothly running month.
Foundation-wise a relatively quiet month. For some reason, it seems that our annual CSC bill got lost and we rec'd a bill from a collection agency which was quickly paid. I'll take the initiative to have our EA create a foundation calendar. Speaking of our EA, I've been working hard to get Melissa in touch and working with various ASF "consumers". Currently, the main focus has been in working with Sally regarding such issues as the ASF Annual Report, coordinating Concom marketing/PR with Charel, etc... My intent is to push more work in helping Geir and TAC. Despite good work being done regarding trademarks, I do have some personal concerns regarding how this will play out. In particular, I tend to gauge how closely PMCs feel "connected" to the ASF by how much they worry about protecting Apache marks. In other words, if the PMCs feel that it is important to make sure that external agencies know that those projects are *ASF* projects, I feel that they value their association with the ASF. Maybe that is an unfair characterization, but there it is. The scheduled lunch with Wayne from Sonatype was postponed due to an appointment conflict. We will reschedule asap. Hopefully, the Maven trademark issue is making some headway; from what I can see, Brett is doing an excellent job distilling main ideas and concepts down to poll-able and vote-able topics. I talked w/ Sally regarding renewal of the HALO contract. We agreed that an extension to the existing contract to bring us to the end of the fiscal year was the way to go. A new contract will be negotiated at that point. I am gearing up for our budgeting process.
For general information, please see the President's Report for the Member's Meeting. Supplmental info as follows: Melissa Warnkin is fully on-board as our EA. She has all required accounts, access to JIRA and subversion, an EA-specific JIRA task list and an archived Email alias. Next step will be in coordinating tasks with the various PMCs and VPs. Formal announcement to them will be made this week. Other than that, a slow month, business-wise but there was some spirited discussion on members@ regarding membership and trademark issues.
The last month has been quite a busy one for the foundation. The biggest news, of course, has been our resignation from the JCP EC and the effort required both pre and post announcement. Kudos to all involved; as noted in an email to board@, I am also quite pleased that the board is getting less and less "hesitant" about making direct and quick decisive action. Sally and I attended SC10 in New Orleans and represented the ASF at a table which was shared with the Linux Fund. Sally will be, as noted in her report, submitting a full report to Concom, but in the meantime I'll state that the show was extremely well attended and the ASF table received quite a bit of walk-by traffic, mostly "We love Apache" and "So glad you guys are here." I've been asked to keynote at POSSCON 2011 and Open Repositories 2011; I have accepted both invitations. I'd like to welcome Melissa Warnkin onboard as our new ASF Executive Assistant. In the coming week I will be working with Melissa to introduce her to the various committees and VPs who will be using her time and talents and coordinating the work process. Larry, Shane and I had a concall with Sonatype on December 9th. There was some delay and issue regarding obtaining the VSphere license from VMware but this was quickly resolved. I received via Email the Order, Licensing and Subscription information and forwarded it to infra. Thanks again to Bruce Snyder and VMware. I've pinged the various committees with budget line-items and will be working with them for a mid-year budget review.
The 2 main events from the last month have been ApacheCon NA 2010 and the growing interest, publicity and notice regarding our thoughts regarding the JCP, the EC and our continued involvement therein. Regarding the former: From what I heard and experienced, most of the attendees were quite happy with ACNA2010. Trainings seemed somewhat less well attended than previous years, but the sessions themselves seemed quite crowded. Also, the general agreement was that the content was some of our best. While at ACNA2010, I talked with many reporters and analysts regarding event #2 (the JCP). As expected, some of the details got lost or misrepresented, especially regarding some of the finer points of the issue, but these were quickly corrected. It will, of course, be interesting to see how all this pans out. I have contacted Karen Sandler regarding drafting a consultant agreement for our EA. The first draft was delivered on the 12th and I am working some final details on that draft to return to Karen. Basically, it's in clearly specifying that the EA will be a contractor and not a part-time employee. While at ACNA2010, I was asked to speak at Georgia Tech regarding Open Source and "The Apache Way". The presentation was during a computer engineering class and was quite well received. It was also good since it reinforced the fact that the whole concept of "open source" still needs external advocacy. Most of the students simply knew about the GPL and associated the ASF with the web server only; that is, only a very surface understanding of FLOSS! This week I will be attending the SC10 Conference in NOLA. The ASF is sharing a booth with The Linux Fund. Sally will also be at the ASF booth with me. I attended the #infra working lunch-and-meeting at ACNA2010. Topics included the support for git (as mentioned in the infra report) as well as preliminary budgeting for next year.
Runtime-wise, the foundation is operating smoothly. We received quite a number of applications for the EA task, and we are now at a point to budget for the position. My expectation is that after today's meeting I will be able to offer the position to the current front-runner and hopes that he/she would be able to attend ApacheCon. There has been major discussions within the foundation (and external, of course) regarding the "fallout" after IBM announced that there were dropping support for Harmony and instead focusing on OpenJDK. I did speak with Gavin Clarke of The Register about this but basically said that ASF is built around the concepts that developers come-and-go and so we hope that the Harmony community "recovers" swiftly. I also noted that the decision does not bode well for Oracle ever abiding to the JSPA agreement with the ASF and allowing for TCK access minus the FOU, but time will tell for sure. More detail can be found in the VP of JCP and the Harmony report. I provided a blog post for GigaOM entitled "The Cloud is Open Source" available at: http://s.apache.org/iL
Since the appointment, Justin and I have been coordinating the transition. At this stage, it is mostly moving stuff (contacts, emails, queries) from Justin's plate onto mine; since Justin knew he would be stepping down, he wisely chose to hold off on some issues until his replacement was on board. Signatory and credit card transitions are being handled by Craig, Sam and Geir. The issue of ASF support for git (actually more than just "support" for git, which we do now in some fashion anyway) was brought up again. One result of the thread however is that Nick Burch, Tony Stevenson, Philip Gollucci are planning a small get-together at Atlanta to more fully discuss git, focusing on what it would take, infra-wise, to more fully support git (if possible). I've been in contact with Ebon Worland, our Account Manager at Corporation Service Company (CSC) regarding the officer transition. Sam and I had a concall meeting with Karen Sandler from SFLC, mostly to start the transition process from Justin. Both Sam and I agreed that SFLC had done more work for us than we had been previously aware of, and that we will work to ensure that better "transparency" of SFLC's efforts will be recorded and reported. While at the f2f, I renewed HALO's 6-month extension. The invoice/ bill has been recorded and approved. The RFP for the ASF's Exec. Assistant was released on Sept. 8th. So far we have received some very good candidates. I have followed up with each submitter and hope to have a final candidate by the next board meeting.
Things are largely running in cruise-control right now as we await the naming of my replacement, but that doesn't mean I've been idle! I attended OSCON and gave my talk on open-source infrastructure on a shoestring along with representatives from kernel.org and OSUOSL. We had lots of great questions from the audience about what lessons we've learned over the years - I hope it was a good experience for those who attended! After our talk, we had a get-together lunch with infrastructure people from other OSS orgs (Perl, KDE, kernel.org, OSUOSL among others from the oss-infra mailing list). We traded a lot of stories and advice. Thanks to Google's Shawn Pearce for picking up our lunch tab at Red Robin! Along with Sally and others, I also manned our OSCON booth and got to talk to a lot of people about the ASF. I find it's always fun to talk to people and learn how they are using our software and help broaden their understanding of what we're doing. Our booth also serves as a great meeting point for our contributors - so there were always people milling around in front of booth. Other obligations forced me to cancel my trip to Shanghai to keynote the Roadshow, but Aaron Farr was able to step in and deliver an "Apache Way"-style keynote at the event. Aaron has posted some pictures from the event on Flickr: http://s.apache.org/farra-shanghai-photos As mentioned in a previous report, we provided support for Bill Stoddard to attend the 2010 Open Source China Open Source World Summit. His writeup is now available at: http://s.apache.org/stoddard-china-report Sander and I are coordinating with the infrastructure team to order replacement hardware for our EU facility at SARA. I plan to join the Board face-to-face meeting next month in Boston. See ya'll then! Approved by general consent.
Verbal report: nothing to report since the members meeting last week; Justin is at OSCON this week coordinating with Sandy. Greg is meeting with the Register tomorrow (backfilling for Justin).
I exchanged some emails with Gavin Clarke from The Register concerning Apache Harmony and potential fragmentation within the Java ecosystem. A writeup from that is available at: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/06/09/harmony_android_oracle_apache/ I will be speaking at the TransferSummit in Oxford next week: http://www.transfersummit.com/programme/66 Next month, I will be presenting at OSCON: http://www.oscon.com/oscon2010/public/schedule/detail/13789 And, I plan to give a keynote at the Apache Asia Roadshow in Shanghai in August. I was also invited to an NSF workshop in Washington D.C. at the end of August, but I have put the organizers in touch with Jim as he's more "local" than I am. As mentioned previously, Bill Stoddard will be representing us at China Open Source World in Beijing at the end of this month thanks to our support. Also, I am providing financial support for one of the speakers at TransferSummit (David Woollard) out of my discretionary funds as his employer does not currently have the budget to support him to attend and I believe the topic and his perspective is especially appropriate for this event: http://www.transfersummit.com/programme/62 In this last month, I have handled a number of items from our sponsors ranging from requests for quotes to feedback about their open-source programs to finding open-source developers interested in working on specific projects. Where appropriate, I have looped in specific projects and VPs. Lastly, I'd like to thank everyone in the ASF for the opportunity to serve as a Director and Executive Officer for the last five years. However, as all good things must, my time now draws to a close. I will not run in the upcoming Board elections and I will ask the new Board to seek and appoint a new President. I, of course, will do my best to assist in the transition to my appointed successor.
I spent the majority of the last month on vacation traipsing around the globe. Kudos to Sander for keeping an eye on things while I was gone. Thanks to Brett and Ari for showing me around Sydney! Along with Hyrum K. Wright (a committer to Subversion), I co-chaired a workshop on Emerging Trends in FLOSS Research and Development at an ACM SIGSOFT conference in Cape Town, South Africa. For more, see: http://orac.ece.utexas.edu/pub/icse-floss/ Also in Cape Town, a case study on Apache HTTP Server co-written by Roy back in 2000 received a prestigious "most influential paper" award from the main ACM SIGSOFT event. The original paper is: http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/337180.337209 In Cape Town, I lost my wallet which had my ASF credit card. Wells Fargo was called immediately afterwards and a replacement card should have arrived at our Secretary's address, but I have not yet received an acknowledgement that it has arrived. I received an invitation to keynote a conference in China - Bill Stoddard will be giving a keynote as I will not be able to attend. We will provide financial support for Bill to attend out of my discretionary funds. I will be talking at the TransferSummit in Oxford next month. Geir requested that when people lose credit cards they notify the treasurer. Sam indicated that has received the credit card, and will forward it shortly.
Since we have not received any feedback to the budget by this point, I am optimistic that the Board is satisfied with it and we can approve it during this meeting. Kudos to Joe, Gav, Philip and the rest of the infra team for their swift reaction on the recent security incident. In the spirit of full disclosure and lessons learned, there is a good blog post from the infra team: https://blogs.apache.org/infra/entry/apache_org_04_09_2010 My belief is that these things happen - the more telling thing is how you respond and learn from it. I believe the infra team handled it exceptionally well. Thanks! In March, I talked at OSBC and EclipseCon. Both were interesting: OSBC for the audience mix, and EclipseCon for how they structure their show. OSBC is a small-ish event with about 200-300 people: as Henri Yandell commented, more "How to use open source in your business" rather than "How to build an open source business." I gave my ASF intro talk and was well received even though it was the last talk on the last day. In comparison, the EclipseCon panel on the future of open source was essentially standing-room only - but that was more due to my esteemed panel mates (and not for me!): Mårten Mickos, Stephen O'Grady, and Jason van Zyl with Mike Milinkovich as moderator. We had some different viewpoints represented, so I felt it was a good experience. Apropos to our continuing internal discussions about ConCom, Eclipse continues to house their conference themselves. I had a chance to meet with their conference team, but their producer operates on a flat-rate basis with the Eclipse Foundation bearing the risk (and getting the profits). We discussed the razor's edge that is being walked when taking the risk for a large event: a proposed European carrier strike if it had happened would have caused significant losses to the event if a sizable number of attendees could not make it to Santa Clara. Fortunately, the strike was postponed and the attendees on that carrier made it, but this is just how these things go! While I was at EclipseCon, I went to an "Ask the Oracle Execs" sessions - Gavin Clarke from The Register had a story about that session at: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/03/24/oracle_jcp_changes/ I also attended the Apache Retreat in Ireland - Sander has aptly covered the experience in his report. Many thanks to Noirin for organizing the event; and thanks to everyone who attended! It was a lot of fun. Of note, I'll be on vacation with no email access from April 24th until May 4th. During my absence, Sander will be assuming my duties.
Many thanks to all of the committees for submitting their budget requests and justifications for FY'10-11 in a timely manner! I have asked the Fundraising committee to submit revised donor and sponsorship projections for the new year. At this time, I do not expect any serious fluctuations in the projections (that is, most of our platinum, gold, and silver sponsors should renew and we may be able to add some additional sponsors). The draft budget is available for review at: foundation:Finances/2010-budget.txt I would like to ask all of the directors to review the budget prior to the April meeting. Ideally, any concerns over specific items should be raised prior the meeting to ensure a smooth April meeting. I welcome any suggestions as to how we can have a smooth review process as possible. I gave a keynote at JASIG in San Diego on March 9th. They are a higher-ed focused OSS group (celebrating their 10th anniv. this year) and have reached a point where they are trying to determine what's next and how JASIG can remain relevant over the next decade. In addition to my keynote, I also talked at length with members from the JASIG board and tried to convey some of our experiences and lessons learned from Apache. They have encountered many of the same dilemmas we have faced over the years - in addition to some that we may face ourselves in the future. I hope that our experiences are helpful and that they continue to find success along their path! I have a talk at OSBC in SF on March 17th and a panel session at EclipseCon in Santa Clara on March 24th. Justin notes that the 2010-budget.txt does not include any ApacheCon income, as that income can't be relied on, we treat any income that we do get as found money.
Things chug along. I'm spending a lot of time at events - last week, I was at FOSS 2010 in Irvine - a three-day academic/industry workshop attended by about 40 people - Stormy Peters from GNOME and I tried to place our foundations in the appropriate context between academia and industry. There was a fair bit of Twitter conversations (see #foss2010) during the event. This weekend, I'll be talking at SCaLE 8x in LA. Next month, I'll be talking at Jasig (San Diego) and OSBC (SF). And, I've also been invited to a panel at EclipseCon towards the end of March. Happily, all of these events are on the US West Coast, so it's not too onerous. I have asked all of the committees to submit their budget requests by March 1st. Most committees have started their internal discussions before turning in their submissions. I still expect we are on track to have a first draft for the Board prior to the March 17th meeting. I have also been approached by a number of our sponsors asking for informal advice about a variety of things related to their ASF involvement (but not related to $$). At this time, there is nothing requiring Board-level attention; if there is, I will bring the Board (and, if necessary, Fundraising VP or other officers) in the loop.
This last month has been quiet as expected. By the end of this month, I will begin asking all of our committees to start formulating their 2010-2011FY budgets. I do ask that the Treasurer/Asst. Treasurer help in this process by providing the historical YTD expenses to our committees. I continue to expect that we should have a draft budget before the Board in time for the March 17th meeting. Unless there are any objections, I will take the point on the contract negotiations with HALO for their services. (The current contract expires on March 1.) As mentioned previously, I have a number of speaking engagements in February and March representing the ASF - all within California. Jim volunteered to help with HALO's negotiation, Jim and Justin will work out offline the division of labor. Shane requested that Jim/Justin give the board a heads up should there be any significant changes in scope or budget. Justin indicated that he did not expect any significant changes.
This month has been relatively quiet for everyone else as most people were either recovering from ApacheCon US or settling into their new officer roles as Infra and the PRC breakup has created a lot of turnover. While most was quiet in the US and Europe, Greg and I recently returned from Apache Asia Roadshow 2009 in Beijing and Colombo. It was fantastic and we got to meet a number of developers and spread the Apache love. We had about 40 attendees in Beijing and over 250 people in Colombo attended our free events. (Per Great Circle Mapper, I flew just under 20,000 miles and Greg flew over 23,000 miles! I was very happy to get home.) Some pictures I took on our trip are at: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=42901&id=1069138396&l=ab65d85d55 These events would not have happened without the terrific local support we received. In Beijing, kudos to Xiao-Feng, Peter, Robert and to Intel for providing us with the space. For Colombo, many thanks to so many folks including Chamindra, Kanchana, Karthiga, Sagara, Sanjiva, and Suchetha with help from the Lanka Software Foundation, Virtusa, and WSO2. I look forward to trying to support more events in Asia in 2010! My recent keynote given at SAP in November is now online: http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/scn/weblogs?blog=/pub/wlg/17151 I have accepted invitations to speak about the ASF at Jasig Spring 2010 (San Diego) and OSBC 2010 (San Francisco). I've submitted an Apache talk at SCALE 8x (Los Angeles). I am hopeful that all of these talks will further encourage participation in our existing projects or perhaps bring new projects to Apache! Organizationally, as the page turns to January soon, I will ask all of our committees to start considering their budget proposals for FY2010-2011 with submissions due in March. (Our fiscal year begins May 1.)
We recently had our ApacheCon US 2009 in Oakland and we had about 500 attendees to celebrate our 10th anniversary for those who couldn't make Amsterdam earlier this year. Much kudos to the US planning team and the rest of ConCom for pulling off the show! As Jim mentioned in his report, we also had the opportunity to touch base face-to-face with a number of our sponsors to get their feedback. I also had numerous discussions with members of the press about Apache and our activities - most of those are detailed further in the PRC report. Many many thanks to Sally for shepherding us all through this event! After ApacheCon, I traveled to Europe to talk at an internal SAP open-source event. SAP is still determining how to get more involved with open-source. They are already a member of the Eclipse Foundation and a member of the JCP, and are starting to contribute to some Apache projects (mostly still in the Incubator). I also talked to some SAP developers who are interested in submitting some more projects to the Incubator. Matt Asay, from Alfresco and CNet, was also in attendance and blogged about my talk: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13505_3-10396229-16.html I will be giving a variation of this talk in Beijing and Colombo in the next few weeks at Apache Asia Roadshow 2009.
Most of the focus over the last month has been on supporting the upcoming ApacheCon in Oakland and drumming up awareness of the event through a number of interviews and story submissions. I expect that the next few weeks will be extremely busy as we provide support for the upcoming event. Kudos to Jim for picking up the issue with the Delaware corporate status. I'll also note that the TAC had a number of issues and confusion in trying to procure payments for flights for recipients. I believe that continuing to focus on improving our back-end services is necessary. The contracts for our full-time system administrator and our PR company have or will expire soon. I will be assisting in the negotiations of the new contracts as needed. We have received a proposal from Michael Wechner to continue in Oakland the Filmworks filming that he did in Amsterdam. The current proposal to finish the project is approximately $17,000 and we would receive all rights to redistribution. Michael has discussed this project with OSCOM (a separate non-profit). OSCOM is currently looking to dissolve and needs to disburse their current funds (about $18,000) to another non-profit. Their Board is supportive of dissolving the entity and disbursing the funds to the ASF. While it is not a formal request, they would like us to strongly consider funding the completion of the Filmworks project. Justin indicated that this would be funded initially out of outreach/publicity, but eventually should be a wash. Justin will see to it that an invoice is produced, and Geir will process it via a wire.
I am now getting back up to speed after completing my PhD. In the absence of a PRC VP, I've tried to help keep the PRC going by organizing a weekly phone call and suggesting a reorganization. I believe the weekly phone call has helped a little bit; minutes are posted to the PRC list after the call for those who can not attend. The discussions for reorganization of the PRC continue, but a clear consensus may not emerge in a timely manner. As requested in the PRC report, if the Board has any thoughts about how they would like to see the PRC structured, this information would be a useful addition to the discussions the PRC is having now. I have continued talking to reporters about our 10th anniversary and a number of articles (generally positive) have now been published. The PRC continues to line up press contacts for me (and others) to help spread the word. I also expect that there should be a press presence at ApacheCon in early November, so I expect a repeat of the chaos that was OSCON for Sander and myself. If some Directors are willing to share the press load (and be subject to scheduling by PRC and PageOne teams), please let the PRC know. I have accepted an invitation to talk at an internal SAP event in November. SAP is starting to contribute to some Apache projects and would like to have me come out and brief them on our ecosystem of projects. As part of my ConCom activities, I'm helping to coordinate an event in Asia for Nov/Dec - more info is in the ConCom report. Besides helping our Asian committers meet and interact with other locals, I hope that this event will continue to set an example as to how we can run smaller events in the future. I look forward to Jim rebooting the EA discussions. My position remains unchanged - I believe we do need some more resources to help run the 'back-end' of the organization more effectively.
I am currently preparing for my final defense of my dissertation on September 3rd. So...yah. Please refer to the EVP report. Numerous directors wished Justin good luck!
Sander and I along with some other volunteers will be manning an ASF booth at OSCON next week in San Jose. We should have postcards to hand out to people who stop by our booth. The annual catching up and exchange of war stories between foundation folks will be happening on Sunday and Monday. If possible, we will try to also touch base with any sponsors (including potentials!) who are at OSCON. SCP has approached Noirin and I about how we wish to proceed with AC contract discussions. It would be nice to get some feedback from the new Board about what they wish to see as the outcome. If no feedback is forthcoming, then Noirin and I will proceed as we see fit. I largely expect that this summer should be relatively quiet as the new Board gets its bearings and decide what it wants to see accomplished (and, perhaps, more importantly, what it doesn't want to accomplish). Discussion: Jim: should Concom prepare something for the board to consider, or should the board take the initiative? Justin: it would be useful for the board to take a position given that a number of directors took a position. Jim: how hard would it be for concom to come up with a position. Justin: it would be helpful if the board decided major things like whether we want ApacheCon at all, cut it, continue it, etc. Jim: lets take this to the board mailing list. Aaron: suggests concom@ Jim: If the intent is to collect the board's input, lets start it on board@.
This last month has been largely spent recuperating from the budget process. I feel that there are some clear lessons to be learned from the budget process and hope that we can improve the experience going forward. Two suggestions that I think should be noted for posterity: - Require each committee to have a formal vote on their request - Require each committee to submit a justification It is my hope that such actions greatly smooth the budget process in future years. I have talked with Noirin (via concom@ list) about the contract situation with SCP and ApacheCon. We feel that it is best to pause the contract negotiations until the September timeframe. This will give Noirin time to get acclimated to her new role as ConCom VP and allow for some more discussion (within concom and a new Board) about what we hope to achieve with a new event contract. I look forward to the upcoming Board elections as I think the discussions around nominations are bringing up some good ideas and perhaps some fresh perspectives. BUDGET COMMITTEE UPDATE: See above for lessons learned. I now consider the Budget Committee as having concluded its appointed task and have disbanded it. Thanks to Jim and Bill for serving on the committee! ADMINISTRATIVE SEARCH COMMITTEE UPDATE: With the budget being passed it should have been a lot easier to move forward with the tasks for the committee. With the current different views and opinions on the future direction of the ASF, I think the foundation is best served with putting its task on hold until after the elections. As such, there is currently no update.
Justin is currently in a conference in Vancouver. Budget and lack of closure is a big issue. ApacheCon talks have basically come to a halt as a direct result of the board's lack of closure. ConCom has expressed what they wish. Bill questions whether ConCom come to a conclusion. Justin disagrees. Bill notes that no formal resolution has been presented to the board. Justin believes that ConCom has asked for the ASF to step up and take on responsibility for the conference. Separate sponsorship programs continues to be a big issue. Aaron notes that the issue is not Page One, but of taking on ownership of the operating of the conference. Bill notes that two phases of fundraising is required given the amounts in question. Geir notes that bringing it in house can't be done in two or more years given existing contracts. Aaron indicated that we have some room to maneuver in that we can negotiate a new contract. Justin believes that it is pointless for him and Lars to continue discussions with Cheryl about a new contract until this is resolved. Aaron requested that ConCom present concrete proposals and plans for the board to vote on. Sam echoed statements by Bill and Aaron that concrete proposals would be helpful at this time. Justin believes that this was covered by his president's proposal, and believes that if he produces such concrete proposal, all he will get back is a set of vague criticisms. Jim suggests that those who have concerns join ConCom; ConCom is then to produce a concrete set of recommendations. This met with general agreement. Jim suggests that ConCom come up with such a plan by the next board meeting. This also met with general agreement.
Obviously, last month was ApacheCon Europe 2009 in Amsterdam. A lot of activity happened there. Jim, Sander, and I met with a number of reporters and external folks. Kudos to HALO for smoothly coordinating our individual schedules during this hectic event! To add to Jim's comments, I was definitely encouraged by the success of the MeetUps. Overall, I think the conference reached its objectives. However, there have been many conversations (both in person in Amsterdam and on-list) about the future of our events. I believe that ConCom has taken the feedback and is trying some new ideas content-wise for Oakland. The situation regarding contract with the current event producer has not substantively changed over the last month. I would like to arrange a face-to-face meeting with the event producer before the next Board meeting to go over the finances in detail as well as to brainstorm some structural and organizational proposals to bring back to ConCom and to the Board. I have reached out to Lars to see if he would be available, but if he's not available, I'd like to request someone else join me in these face-to-face discussions. Finally, I'm discouraged by the comments of a Director that I am not "properly functioning". As always, I hope that I am open to constructive feedback, so I would like to open the conversation to see if this perception represents the consensus of the Board and receive feedback as to how I can fulfill my duties better. BUDGET COMMITTEE UPDATE: A face-to-face meeting in Amsterdam was held by the budget committee and several others also attended. Revisions were made to the budget (all checked into Subversion so others not present could review), so I believe this is an acceptable budget and should be approved. We may need to come back and do some amendments on the budget if we miss things, but I recommend that we proceed with calling this latest draft our FY'09-'10 budget. I think we have reached the point of diminishing returns on our time investment into the budget. However, there are no items regarding events in this budget. Of note, the PRC has received a proposal for doing AC US '09 publicity, but it's not incorporated into the latest budget because there isn't a lot of clarity as to how events should be handled. Guidance as to how to proceed in the interim regarding events would be appreciated. A few highlights in the budget: - Full-time executive assistant position added - Part-time sysadmin position added - Sponsorship director position added (commission-basis) If the budget is approved, then I will dissolve this committee as it has concluded its principal task. ADMINISTRATIVE SEARCH COMMITTEE UPDATE: An ad-hoc face-to-face meeting in Amsterdam was held by the committee. The thoughts on the position were aligned between the committee members, and seem in general alignment with Directors giving input. A start was made on a draft RFT, based on all input so far. Justin took the action item to submit the current budget as the official draft budget. For the purpose of trying to get directors to vote on it on list before May 1st.
This month has largely been focused on preparations for the upcoming ApacheCon in Amsterdam next week. Like Jim, I will be at ACEU09 in Amsterdam next week and I will also be relying upon Sally to help coordinate my schedule for the duration of the event. Conversations regarding ApacheCon continue with VP, ConCom and the producer. Late last month, we had a conversation with Karen Sandler from the SFLC and the producers. This was a very beneficial call as Karen helped to clarify the rules regarding sponsorships. There were also several calls related to the budget - largely focused on the upcoming event. As of now, AC EU is projecting to be at or near the break even point financially. Discussions about how to appropriately scope AC US to minimize financial risks in this economic climate will be had as part of the AC US planning meeting immediately after the conclusion of AC EU. I expect substantial progress to be made over the next month. I also helped Geir get set up with the associated Wells Fargo MyCEO access - he now has a 'dongle' and online access. Sam should be coordinating signer access for Geir. BUDGET COMMITTEE UPDATE: A preliminary budget is in Subversion. Both PRC and Infrastructure have discussed and submitted their requested allocations. Due to scheduling conflicts, the Budget Committee has not yet had a chance to review the total numbers yet, but since all members of the committee will be in Amsterdam next week, I am hopeful that we should be able to carve out some time to go over the numbers and come to a consensus within the committee. I still believe we are on track to have a budget to approve for April's meeting (next month). If any one has any comments on the budget, I would encourage that they share them sooner rather than later! ADMINISTRATIVE SEARCH COMMITTEE UPDATE: Sander (via email): "I've been working on a draft rfp, but disappointingly didn't come up with something presentable yet. I should have flagged that I had an issue with the round tuit supply chain the last weeks. That said, I think that next week f2f we can hash something out relatively quickly." Jim volunteered to help
The biggest news in the last month is the progress of the two President's committees formed last month. Mini-reports from both committees are included at the end of this report. Conversations regarding ApacheCon continue with VP, ConCom and the producer. As ApacheCon EU is approaching, all parties' immediate focus is shifting toward execution of the conference next month. Therefore, progress may be a bit slow until after the conference is wrapped up. That said, we currently have two calls to schedule - one to review the legal parameters of any proposed arrangement and another call to review the budgets in greater detail. As both calls require coordination with some external parties, specific times have not yet been confirmed. It is expected that both calls will occur before the March Board meeting. As before, there is still no actionable proposal to be discussed at this time. Earlier this month, I visited the SFLC offices and met primarily with Karen Sandler as well as other counsel at SFLC. I gave her a review of our current status as well as brought her up to speed on the ApacheCon arrangements. Per above, Karen has agreed to sit in on a call with the ApacheCon producers and help us walk through what is permissible for us to do as a 501(c)3 public charity and what limitations we may encounter. Also, as noted elsewhere, Karen informed us that we can file for another extension with the IRS. I also had a good conversation with Eben Moglen about how Apache could position itself in the future. To be honest, it did raise a number of very good thoughts, but I believe it'll take a while for me to fully digest the takeaways from it - but there's nothing concrete or actionable now. If we have a 'town hall' during ApacheCon EU next month, it might be useful to throw some of the ideas out and see what folks think. BUDGET COMMITTEE UPDATE: A preliminary budget is in Subversion, but several committees are still discussing the scope of their requested allocations. The Budget Committee will continue to take their input until the end of February. Then, the committee will meet and go over the projected numbers to derive a complete draft budget. Due to the ongoing conversations about ApacheCon, the budget will specifically exclude any numbers for ApacheCon. When there are specific funding requests for ApacheCon, the Board can consider them separately. However, at this time, there is no concrete proposal ready for review in respect to ApacheCon. I expect that the committee will have a 'final draft' budget for the Board's review in time for the next Board meeting in March. Due to our fiscal year, the budget needs to be approved prior to May 1 - I do not expect this to be a difficulty at this time. ADMINISTRATIVE SEARCH COMMITTEE UPDATE: An inventory of task descriptions sits in Subversion; this can be a starting point for creating an actual function description. By next Board meeting, in March, we expect to have a full function description. After that point the committee will move from the definition phase to the actual searching for candidates phase.
The biggest item over the last month has been coordinating with VP, ConCom (Lars) on discussions with our conference producer about the optimum structure of the ApacheCon series of events. While we are still only in the preliminary stages of the conversation, both sides are so far working together to come to a solution that benefits everyone involved. More detail is available in the ConCom report. The producer has submitted a rough overview of past income and expenses - time permitting, I ask that we spent a few minutes towards the end of this meeting to help bootstrap a discussion of what the submitted numbers mean. To help kickstart the overall budget process, I have asked infrastructure to start drafting a budget request for FY'09-10 and sketched out a draft budget on the PRC list. It is my expectation that both committees will discuss this topic over the next month. Per Special Order 7.D, I support the creation of an explicit committee to oversee the overall Budget process. In light of the increased demands on volunteers, I support Special Order 7.E to create a search committee to seriously explore how additional staff could be used. In contrast to the prior Executive Assistant role, I believe that the formation of a specific committee to help with the job definition will go a long way to ensuring the success of any new positions. We (read I) did not put appropriate foresight into the addition of staff. I'm hopeful that an objective committee can attempt to rectify this situation. As mentioned in the PRC report, I signed a non-binding (i.e. no fiscal impact) letter of support for a UK government grant proposal from OSS Watch. If the proposal is funded, we will need to look for a delegate to serve on the grant's advisory council. An interview I conducted with OSS Watch last year should be published soon. I also have served as a member of the Program Committee for the OSS2009 conference; schedule and funding permitting, I plan to attend the conference in June. (Sander attended a workshop at last year's iteration in Milan.)
Repeating what was submitted at the Members Meeting on December 16th. As discussed at the last members meeting, some restructuring and delegation of the responsibilities of the President have occurred. Most signficiantly, we welcomed Paul Querna as Vice President of Infrastructure - in this newly created position, Paul is now responsible for leading the volunteers and paid resources within the infrastructure team. Additionally, we welcomed Sander Striker as the new Executive Vice President - among other things, Sander is helping out with our presence within the European area. With their additional help, we have decided that the separate Executive Assistant role is no longer required at this time. We wish to extend our thanks to our departing Executive Assistant, Jonathan Jagielski, and wish him well in his continuing studies. An issue of note is that ConCom is currently discussing how we can better organize and structure our official events (including ApacheCon). Among other concerns, one goal is to be able to provide more targetted and smaller officially sanctioned events. If your PMC wishes to organize an event, please let us know! To have your voice heard in how we plan and organize future events, please feel free to join ConCom and subscribe to concom@ for more information. Finally, as before, if your PMC desires specific computing resources (ie build farm, test machines, etc.), please get in touch with the infrastructure group. Well-reasoned and detailed proposals are welcomed. However, we are often limited by human resources, so volunteers to help execute these plans are strongly encouraged. Stats: Committers: 1915 Projects: 70 SVN Revisions: r727041 Web stats: Nov '08 average requests/day: www.us: 1,242,159 ; www.eu: 62,221 svn.us: 1,756,371 ; svn.eu: 81,965 issues: 510,487 Nov '08 average data transfer/day: www.us: 3.50 TB ; www.eu: 620.03 GB svn.us: 17.62 GB ; svn.eu: 473.38 MB issues: 10.17 GB See: http://people.apache.org/~henkp/analog/ Mail stats: Connections (Dec 15, 2008): nike: (maintenance: N/A); athena: 263,360 (81% rej.) Most useful plugins: dnsbl (61%), check_goodrcptto (14%) Mailing lists and SVN commits graph: http://www.apache.org/dev/stats/
ApacheCon US was in New Orleans earlier this month and, while keeping me extremely busy, I felt it was a success. Given the current economic climate, a stable attendance from years past should be considered extremely positive. There was a lot of energy around OFBiz and Hadoop - which both had special 'co-located events' as part of ApacheCon. I hope to see more of these smaller 'co-located events' in the future! As noted above by the Chairman, we met with most of our sponsors face-to-face in New Orleans and the feedback was generally positive. As also noted, we did receive some consistent feedback along a few areas about how we can improve from discussions with our sponsors. Most importantly, I look forward to keeping the lines of communication open with our sponsors as we move forward. One of my attention areas during the conference was organizing our voluntourism event after the conference. We had over 20 people come out and help build a fence around a restored home devastated by Katrina in coordination with a local charity, Beacon of Hope. Many thanks to all of those who came out! Some folks have posted pictures of the restored fence on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/search/?s=int&q=apachecon+voluntourism&m=tags The debacle with credit cards and Wells Fargo continue. Since Sam was not able to attend ApacheCon, my new card was FedEx'd to me and was finally received. Many kudos to Sam for getting off his sick bed and sending me the card. Also, we got two Directors (Bertrand and Bill - thanks!) to sign the credit authorization form for Paul and Sander's credit cards. At last I have heard from Wells Fargo, the new credit cards should be en route to Sam. If they have not arrived by the end of this week, we should follow up again with Wells Fargo.
First off, good news - Microsoft has now given the green light to some of their employees to contribute to an Apache project. This is an excellent continuation of the good vibes from Microsoft regarding open source. The employees were part of their recent Powerset acquisition and work on the Hadoop HBase project. Microsoft has requested some additional PR from us in support of this announcement - I will continue coordinating with HALO and the PRC regarding this. Also, we have secured Sam Ramji as a keynote speaker at ApacheCon in New Orleans next month. Along with HALO and the PRC, we are coordinating continued discussions and dialogue with all of our sponsors. HALO has introduced themselves to the sponsors. There will likely be some informal face-to-face meetings with our sponsors at the upcoming ApacheCon US in New Orleans next month. I look forward to receiving feedback from our sponsors regarding our future plans for the foundation. Discussions with SCP and ConCom continue regarding a small free informal event in Asia in December. Due to an overlapping holiday in the region, I plan on attending. More details surrounding this event should be available by the next Board meeting. Logisitcally, there are still a number of purchases that I'm being asked to coordinate. I booked travel for HALO, as approved by the PRC, and for one of the Travel Assistance recipients. Also, infrastructure expenses still often require my involvement. One of our vendors, CDW, has 'suspended' our account and our 'lead' account representative has not responded to calls or emails. (Other CDW account reps have been contacted, but to resolve the issue, only the 'lead' contact can clear the 'suspension'.) Our previous purchase of this equipment through the Sun Store was botched (likely due to an error in Sun's site; let alone the fact that Sun refuses to assign us a sales representative), and CDW is one of the few Sun resellers who has the equipment at a reasonable price. I'll also note that Sander does not yet have a credit card, so his expenses incurred on behalf of the ASF are requiring him to bear the costs, and reimbursement/approval procedures are still not clear. Please remember that reimbursing expenses requires additional paperwork for IRS purposes. 1. http://port25.technet.com/archive/2008/10/14/ microsoft-s-powerset-team-resumes-hbase-contributions.aspx Aaron to email requests for credit cards for Paul and Sander to Justin.
Most of my time over the last month has been dealing with a variety of sponsor-facing issues. I believe that this is an inevitable outcome of the growth of our sponsorship program. In coordination with the PRC (see their report this month), to help out with these tasks, sponsor relations should become a more active priority for HALO. However, due to the nature of the responsibilities of the office, I believe it is crucial that those of us with "titles" remain actively engaged with the sponsors so that they continue to feel that we, as a Foundation, are engaged with our sponsors at the utmost level. I will reiterate that Paul and Sander have been valuable additions to easing the burdens of this office. Paul has continued his very good job leading the infrastructure team. Sander, as detailed in his report, has continued to be of assistance in attending some events in Europe where my appearence was initially requested. I continue to thank them for their service! As discussed in earlier reports, the OSU OSL advisory group has begun in earnest and the members have begun providing their feedback and direction in regards to the direction of OSU OSL. A press release should be issued in the next month that will announce the formation of the group and will likely include a quote from me. I apologize, but I have not yet had the cycles to send out the contracts for renewal. I hope to do soon, but delegating this to someone else may be better. I do admit that such activities are highly prone to getting dropped by me and that's largely unacceptable. Finding a way to automatically delegate some of these "back-office" tasks would be appreciated. I will also note that I received many calls over the Labor Day weekend regarding our 'past due' invoice from Dell. These calls were not appreciated, and I would like to discuss how we are going to prevent similar recurrences in the future. I do continue to receive a few scattered pieces of mail from WF. Any correspondance has either been forwarded to the Secretary or a synopsis sent to the board mailing list. Our Sunstarsys and HALO contracts are up for renewal at the end of this month as well. It is my recommendation that both contracts be renewed. [bdelacretaz says: do we have a budget for reimbursing expenses for people (Justin and Sander for example) who represent the ASF at various events?] Action items: Jim to renew contract with Sec Assistant Sam to renew contract with Sunstarsys Justin to renegotiate contract with the Exec Assistant
The big event over the last month was OSCON. A number of member and committers were present, so it was good to see so many ASF folks! Obviously, Sam Ramji's keynote announcement (of which I got up on stage for) of Microsoft becoming our third (and final for now) Platinum sponsor was the biggest visible news from the event. I am delighted to welcome Microsoft as sponsors and see the continued filling-out of our sponsorship program. Over a number of fronts, we continue to talk with Microsoft about how they can further increase their participation with the ASF. Paul Querna and I had conversations with Amazon regarding extending EC2 credit to ASF projects. Amazon indicated that they only have an interest in supporting novel uses of EC2 and are not interested in supporting mundane tasks on EC2 (such as build farms). We will be collecting 'pilot' projects which meet this 'novel' criteria and passing them along to Amazon for approval. As mentioned last month, I have been invited to the OSL Advisory Board. Roy Fielding and I drove down to Corvallis after OSCON and did a meet-and-greet with their director and Roy's wife took some pictures for the infrastructure team to use. Initial tasks for the advisory board include advising OSL on their fundraising strategies. Since OSL is not directly supported by OSU and the majority of our infrastructure is hosted there, I believe it is in our best interest to provide some logistical assistance to OSL. During OSCON, a number of folks expressed an interest in seeing the ASF step up our involvement and visibility with OSCON. In coordination with Sally and the PRC, I will discuss with Allison Randal how we could be more visible in future iterations of OSCON. As also noted in the Secretary's report, our address with Wells Fargo has largely been transitioned over to the Secretary. After our last meeting, I sent all of my Treasurer materials to the Secretarial Assistant for processing and safekeeping. This month, I have just received one stray "Client Analysis Statement" from Wells Fargo, which will be sent off shortly. Finally, I will note that we seem to have continued problems paying our invoices and such on-time. Besides missing payments for our new Florida ISP, I believe we are currently past due on the invoice from Dell for the Geronimo machines. This may have an impact on our future dealings with Dell as they may require full payment upfront due to our delinquent payment history - this will needlessly increase the complications in the ordering process. Bill suggests that Justin mention OSCON visibility on the travel-assistance mailing list. Bertrand and Ross are on the PRC with focus on out-reach. At least two members of the ASF are on the OSCON Conference Committee. Sam confirmed that Allison was the one that Justin should be working with. Jim requests that the PRC be copied on such discussions.
Pursuant to the last Board meeting, Paul Querna has now taken over primary responsibility for Infrastructure. This transition has gone well so far, however the largest obstacle is that Paul can not purchase items or initiate payments for services or parts himself. Therefore, I recommend that we ask WF to issue a corporate credit card to Paul to streamline the purchasing process. Along with several other Apache members, I attended a workshop earlier this month at OSS Watch in Oxford concerning how to mentor open source projects within the academic community. While I was there, I was also interviewed by a local reporter and the interview should be published later this year. I have been approached by OSUOSL to be on their advisory council to help them focus their efforts to support the open source community. Since we have a sizable presence at their facility, I have accepted the invitation. The first meeting will be at OSCON next week, so I expect more details to emerge then. Roy Fielding and I also plan to head to Corvallis next week to visit the OSUOSL facility and discuss our long-term expansion plans concerning OSUOSL. Our contact with Yahoo! for the sponsorship program has changed, and I have reached out to the new contacts. I hope to meet up with them during OSCON next week for drinks or dinner similar to last year. If anyone at OSCON is interested in tagging along, please let me know and I will include you in any planning communication. As usual, I also expect to do some external outreach with other OSS organizations and potential sponsors at next week's OSCON. In particular, Eclipse is apparently restructuring their membership program, so I'd like to track down some Eclipse folks and learn what they are up to. Danese Cooper and Henri Yandell will both be at the FLOSS foundations meetup this weekend before OSCON, so I plan to follow up with them to see if there's anything of interest to the ASF that is discussed. Pursuant to the request from the last Board meeting, I have reached out to Amazon concerning EC2 availability for our projects. As mentioned in the Hadoop project report, the Hadoop PMC has reached an agreement with Amazon for interested committers to receive chunks of ~$100 credit towards EC2. I will note that to service Geronimo's request, it'd be about $800 to $1200/mo at the published rates. The feedback from folks that have been using EC2 is that the cost quickly escalates to where using EC2 as a continuous test platform does not make economic sense - and that other OSS projects only use their EC2 platform very infrequently to save money. As far as I can gather, Hadoop only plans on using EC2 infrequently rather than as a continuous test platform. I will continue to explore our options with Amazon. Other folks have volunteered to task the Exec. Asst. with items, so I have, for the moment, relinquished that oversight responsibility. The contracts for Exec. Asst. and Secy. Asst expire in September, so, by next month's meeting, we need to agree upon a plan for using our resources. Since I believe a number of ASF folks will be at OSCON, it may be useful to have an informal face-to-face get-together or BOF to kick-start a discussion about our options. Finally, I have begun discussing with Sander on how to further off-load some items from my plate. Going forward, if there are any European events that we feel are worthy of having an ASF presence, Sander will try to attend. Additionally, we have discussed transitioning some of my 'backup' roles in other areas to Sander.
One of my key objectives for the upcoming year is to try to actively delegate key items off of my immediate sphere of responsibilities. In informal discussions, it seems that the Board is receptive to such delegation. In light of that, I asked for a volunteer to be primarily responsible for our infrastructure. Paul Querna has stepped up, hence I am transitioning the oversight of infrastructure to Paul going forward with all deliberate speed. I also welcome the nomination of Sander Striker as Executive Vice President. If we are both confirmed, he and I will discuss how to further off-load some of my responsibilities. It may end up being formalized (with certain areas assigned to one individual) or it may be a more 'just-in-time' fluid delegation based on available time. The Geronimo PMC has approached the infrastructure team requesting some machines for testing. After discussions with the Geronimo PMC, the approximate cost of the requested machines is around $10,000 ($9,970.69 or $9,648.73 depending upon memory configuration). This would be a special allocation above and beyond the previously discussed machine plan. Given the power constraints at OSU OSL (not forseen to be eased until next year), we would likely have to build out a new data center to support this. One possible option is a data center in Florida (near our contract sysadmin) that will run about $500/month. There will also be some setup costs to build out a new data center (switches, cables, etc, etc.). 1. http://mail-archives.apache.org/mod_mbox/geronimo-dev/200805.mbox/ %3C4836EA3D.firstname.lastname@example.org%3E Some expressed a concern about precedent that supporting project specific machines without a clear set of pre-defined criteria, and how this will impact our ability to create a budget. A suggestion was made to explore EC2. Paul to go back to Geronimo PMC to ask them to explore this. Henri will explore if there is any possibility of Amazon providing special rates. Additionally, the board pre-authorizes $10K for one time hardware costs and $500 per month for hosting or EC2.
As denoted in the infra report, it's been a hectic month keeping critical services afloat. Things are slowly returning to normal, but this outage blew up the short-term schedules so some PMCs are complaining about lack of responsiveness to lower-priority tasks. The role of Executive Assistant hasn't, so far, worked out yet - this is due to a number of communication snafus and conflicting schedules. I take the responsibility for this failure as I simply haven't had enough cycles to power this through and bring the position up to speed as I had anticipated. In light of this, I have been contemplating new organizational structures that could be implemented in the new year to alleviate some of the disfunction that seems to always surround us. Since this is the last Board meeting for this Board and I do not have anything concrete yet, I'll continue to ponder in the hopes of having something to present to the new Board before its inaugural meeting for their consideration.
In good news, since our last meeting, we have finally purchased a support contract from Sun for our OSU OSL-located Sun hardware. On the European front, we are still attempting to cut through bureaucratic red tape for purchasing a Sun support contract for our Netherlands-located Sun equipment. We held a virtual infrastructure meeting last week during ApacheCon in Amsterdam. Generally, we are continuing our planned machine upgrade - our backup server is now coming online, our new SVN EU mirror is currently entering the first testing phases, the next set of new machines in the shopping list will be ordered soon, and we are finalizing the requirements for the next set of machines. Due to some donations and a change of suppliers, we expect to come under the expected machine budget. Many thanks to Gavin McDonald, Norman Maurer, and Tony Stevenson for joining the infrastructure team! Finally, we have not yet been able to task the Exec. Ass't with any tasks since the books are not up-to-date. It is hoped that this should be resolved soon. As soon as the books are up to date, drafting a foundation-wide budget will become a priority. In the discussion, Aaron indicated that he plans to have the books ready by Monday.
Last month, at Microsoft's invitation, I and several other representatives from various ASF projects visited Microsoft's Compatibility Labs. It was a generally positive experience for our projects to learn about new features in Windows that they can take advantage of in future releases. Additionally, it also presented an opportunity to discuss directly with Microsoft representatives about their licensing strategies with respect to open source. Our issues surrounding acquiring a Sun support contract still remain - though, within the last few days, I've been sufficiently swamped that I haven't been able to as proactive as I would like. The last sales contact we had has left the reseller, the new person has given me their wrong phone number, and we don't yet have a contact for the Netherlands. I hope to break through the deadlock next week. I've discussed the system administration position with Joe and we've decided to shift more of the day-to-day management duties to Joe going forward. We also agreed upon a new set of responsibilities and contract rate going forward. As part of these new duties, Joe will be responsible for drafting the report and, as such, I've requested that the infrastructure report now be separated from my President's report. One of the initial tasks for Jon was to help draft a budget for the next fiscal year, but we are awaiting the books to be brought up to date to start this process. Also, I need to have a conversation with Jon and Joe regarding how we will handle procurement issues going forward. After some delays, the ball is now in my court as to setting the date for this conversation. During the discussion, it was noted that there is a new section added to the agenda for infrastructure. Justin will retain responsibility for this section. A request was made to add list of official attendees to the MSFT meeting to the minutes; but as it was noted that this information is already available at committers/hackathons/port25-08 in svn.
First off, thanks to the Board for approving the purchase of the backup equipment off-cycle of a meeting. All of the equipment should be delivered soon and we hope to bring the system online before ApacheCon EU in early April. The first new machine in our ASF-wide machine update plan is now nearing roll-out. JIRA and Confluence have already been migrated to the new machine, and our Bugzilla instance is scheduled to complete its migration by the end of this week. Many kudos to those involved in helping with the migration! Once this is complete, we'll start on the next machine in the plan. As you may know, over the past few years, the infrastructure team has been relying upon Sun equipment obtained through our own funds or donated from Sun. However, problems internal to Sun have arisen that make it impossible for us to obtain service or support for any of these machines. Progress has been repeatedly promised by Sun and their resellers, but as of this date, no substantive resolution has been accomplished. We currently have machines that have their 'trouble' light on and for which we can't obtain service. The infrastructure team has come to the conclusion that we should switch to another vendor, but the issue remains how to secure support for the equipment we currently have. Earlier this month, I attended an NSF Workshop on Free/Open Source Software Repositories and Research Infrastructures. As the title suggests, out of this came good discussions with researchers on how to best make Apache's data available to researchers. After discussing with a number of corporations and research institutions, we decided to provide our data to a team of researchers led by Kevin Crowston from Syracuse University. We will make our raw data available to them, and future requests for our data will be handled through them rather than going through us. We're currently setting up the process on how to efficiently transfer our data to them. On a positive note, we have seen some new volunteers step up and contribute to our infrastructure. We've tried to utilize this new blood in an effective manner that keeps them engaged and interested. So far, a few folks have seemed to 'stick' and we're hopeful they continue to contribute in the months ahead. On a slightly more sour note, we have seen some people who have concerns about our infrastructure and choose not to bring these issues directly to the team. Instead, these concerns have been brought up on a number of other lists besides the ones used by infrastructure. Replies that these concerns should be brought up on the appropriate list have so far been rebuffed. I'd greatly appreciate feedback on how to handle this situation. Finally, as an outcome of discussions from our last meeting, there is a resolution in this meeting for the creation of an Executive Assistant position. A job description was posted for review. This initial contract will run for six months after which we can examine the effectiveness of the position.
It's now been about six months since I took over the position of President. In this time, I've tried to familiarize myself with all of our operational aspects across the foundation. One observation is that I feel we're not doing as good a job as we should in following through with all the balls that are in the air. This observation is not necessarily restricted to any one area, but seems to be a cross-cutting concern across the entire foundation. It is not necessarily for a lack of direction (or knowing what to do), but a lack of resources to help execute the ideas. I'd like to begin discussions on how to resolve this and be able to help provide execution resources where needed. Therefore, I'd like to start from the top down and start with seeking an Executive Assistant to directly help me execute my tasks. Such a resource would be tasked as I deem appropriate to help execute our mission across all areas of the foundation. Our infrastructure continues to grow. We are currently dealing with a rash of hardware failures. Issues with vendors has created difficulties in acquiring replacement parts and service. A number of folks (including Directors) have complained about the poor turnaround time for infrastructure requests - this has prompted a number of internal discussions within infrastructure as how to proceed. But, we do not have a lot of resources to spare for hands-on infrastructure, so we'll need to be prepared to augment our infrastructure resources if the Board considers that a priority. During the discussion, it was agreed that this was a good compromise, it was requested that Justin produce a written job description, as as the person that Justin had in mind was the current secretary assistant, first a three way call with the current secretary, the secretary assistant and the president was in order, and a search for a new secretary assistant needs to be initiated.
As mentioned in the last report, the infrastructure team has met and discussed a variety of items over the past month. For the time being, we continue to stay afloat through the work of our contracted sysadmin augmented by many volunteers. In the past few weeks, a number of folks (some who have helped out in the past) have expressed a desire to help with some tasks and access has been granted accordingly. I'm hopeful that we continue to see volunteers bridge the gap between our available resources and our needs. Longer-term, the infrastructure team has devised an acquisition strategy for the next eighteen months that will oversee the replacement of critical servers (including Subversion, mailing lists, and issue trackers) and expanding the range of services we can provide to our projects (build farms, staging servers, etc.). The plan, submitted as Attachment 8, calls for staggered hardware expenditure totalling almost $60,000 for the next eighteen months. Please note that these costs may get offset as or when vendors offer to donate equivalent hardware. We have had discussions with some sponsors about donations - we expect some but not all of these plans to come to fruition. Therefore, we expect to cover the balance of the plan through our own funds. So, consider the $60,000 as the high-end if no donations come through. Also note that other expenditures may come up for maintenance of existing machines - this plan only covers upgrading existing machines but not maintenance. Stats: Committers: 1625 Projects: 57 SVN Revisions: r603264 Web stats: Nov '07 Avg. requests/day: www: 3,747,600 ; svn: 918,588 ; issues: 457,004 Nov '07 Avg. data transfer/day: www: 1.02 TB ; svn: 10.41 GB ; issues: 7.72 GB See: http://people.apache.org/~henkp/analog/ Mail stats: Connections (Dec. 7, 2007): nike: 1,441,060 (99.29% rej.) ; athena: 1,358,704 (99.34% rej.) Most useful plugins: check_goodrcptto (57%), dnsbl (29%) Discussion: * a question was asked about the hardware and our colo requirements. Justin responded that this was all covered by the plan. * a second question was asked about whether the existing sysadmin support was sufficient, or would additional hiring be required? Justin indicated that he thought we were OK for now, but this would likely need revisiting in 18 months. None of the directors were opposed to the proposal.
Earlier this week, we had a "virtual" infrastructure meeting with some participants being here in Atlanta for ApacheCon US. Due to time constraints, we had to table some agenda items and will reconvene later this week. A complete report will be included in next month's report. The agenda items were: - Review of current status - Atlassian support - JIRA: consolidating and migrating - Yahoo! machines - Build farms - Large-scale project artifact storage - Java services (blogs, etc.) - maven.org - Subversion setup - Short/medium-term tasks [TABLED] - Acquisition strategy for next 18 months [TABLED] Other than these items, we are dealing with the 'normal' outages, replacements, and upgrades. We are also looking into retrofitting some of our machines; but we are first examining whether we can secure the necessary vendor parts.
There have been a lot of requests for project-specific support infrastructure in the last month. At this time, we can't service all of them with our available resources; but we're going to take these requests under consideration as we draft up the "next generation" machine plan. As we add more computational resources, we'll try to service these requests as best as we can. At the face-to-face infra meeting scheduled for Atlanta, the focus will be on devising this new plan which should guide the eighteen month's hardware acquisition strategies. Joe completed the transition to a replacement people.a.o machine with minimal downtime and knowledge to external parties. The TCL PMC has been operating on a custom website (at their request), so there has been downtime for their site as they install and configure the required software on the new machine. It is infrastructure's position to strongly discourage such custom sites as we can not provide support for these sites and will occassionally be unreachable. For certain higher-traffic TLPs, we would probably forbid such custom sites outright due to computational constraints and the need to keep the majority of sites operational at all times. We currently have two incoming machines from Sun which required us to purchase extra equipment to outfit the machines (hard drives and rails - about $2000 of extra equipment). These machines will be initially purposed to provide a better Solaris development platform for some of our projects that have outgrown our current zone support. We also have preliminarily discussed other donations with Sun that may be realized towards the end of the year if a budget can be acquired within Sun. Besides the Platinum sponsorship, Yahoo! has also agreed to host at their data centers a small number of machines that can be purposed for project testing. We're waiting on final instructions from them to obtain access to the machines. It is hoped that we can secure volunteers from projects to help maintain these machines rather than relying on staff. We purchased a license for VMWare Workstation 6 and that has improved the stability of the VMs that are provided to some of our PMCs. Per Karen from SFLC, we are not legally required to perform an audit. Also, at Brian's introduction, I had discussions with Mollie Marshall from Hood & Strong, the auditors for Mozilla. She concurred with Karen's opinion that an audit was not required. ($2 million/year is the trigger point for California non-profits.) After discussing our situation for a while, Mollie and I agreed that an audit would likely be overkill at this time with little tangible benefit to the ASF. Keeping up on an informal audit process was recommended. (Some factors in the decision include: what we already publicly disclose, our relatively low income flow, accessibility of Karen for advice, no sponsors have yet requested an audit as a condition of donation, and the absence of restricted donations.) I had discussions with Larry Rosen and Lars about resolving the ApacheCon and OS Summit Asia contracts. For more information, please refer to Lars's report. Sam Ruby is now added as an authorized signer to our Wells Fargo accounts. Now that the signers are up-to-date, over the next few months (low priority), I'll investigate switching the address that Wells Fargo sends notices and statements to be our permanent address as long as it doesn't necessarily complicate matters. Stats: Committers: 1595 Sep '07 Avg. requests/day: www: 5,385,654 ; svn: 1,262,232 ; issues: 546,327 Sep '07 Avg. data transfer/day (in GB): www: 993.37 ; svn: 10.41 ; issues: 5.72 See: http://people.apache.org/~henkp/analog/ A question was asked as to the 'trigger point' for an audit in Delaware. Apparently, there is none.
Due to the short interval from the last meeting, there is not much to report. Work continues in infrastructure - dealing with failed hard drives, wiki spam attacks, improving virtualization settings, keeping machines up-to-date, and bringing replacement machines online. With the current resources available, we're able to keep the major services online, but we don't have the resources to be proactive as I'd like. We have had some downtime of JIRA - our Atlassian contact is on vacation and no one on our side is capable of maintaining it, so we're reduced to blindly restarting JIRA when it fails without any insight as to what is wrong or how to fix it. Any discussion of moving away from JIRA would very likely cause immense negative feedback (as many folks like its user interface), so we continue to be stuck in a bad position with respect to JIRA. I have been in discussions with Charel Morris from SCP regarding the OS Summit Asia contract. It is hoped to transfer this task to the new ConCom VP as soon as feasible.
The four new machines referred to in the last report are all now operational. We now have a new VMWare server, a new mail server at OSU OSL, and redundant mail servers and web servers functional in our Netherlands co-lo. With an operational backup data center now provisioned, we hope to be able to handle lengthy outages or disaster recovery with minimal user-facing downtime. However, we do not yet have developer-facing redundancy - that is, we do not have hot standbys for Subversion, issue tracking, or core mailing lists in separate co-los. However, we are planning to prepare one machine as a 'cold' standby for these services at OSU OSL. In my opinion, this would be the next set of machines to procure - but we can queue incoming email and serve the public websites from our backup co-lo. We are currently in process of preparing the replacement for people.apache.org. This machine was donated by Covalent, as part of their sponsorship, which caused some interesting procurement difficulties as there was a lot of confusion about what to order. Some essential parts were not ordered with the machine, so it has taken longer than expected to be able to bring this machine up. Earlier this month, our account at our registrar (Dotster) was hacked into. For a brief period, apache.org was pointing to the wrong name servers. This caused a few day outage for folks. We had several discussions, including several email exchanges and phone calls, with Dotster who refused to provide us with any substantive details about the breakin. We immediately changed the password and are investigating alternative registrars with better security policies. We have received an substantial offer for equipping an off-site build farm from a relatively large company friendly to the ASF. The infrastructure team is currently discussing whether we should pursue this and how we'd manage it. Finally, I spent a decent chunk of this month coordinating with Aaron on the Treasurer transition. As planned, I was responsible for preparing our 990s. These should undergo final review today and will be submitted to the IRS as soon as possible.
Tabled until next regular meeting
Most of the last month has been focused on bringing our recent hardware acquisitions up. Currently, we are integrating four new machines into our service cluster. At this time, only one is operational (odin - running VMWare Server); but the machine it is intended to replace has not yet been decomissioned. The machines in the Netherlands are still not operational due to a cascade of software faults - but the machines are racked and powered. We are currently dealing with substantial downtimes of our people.apache.org server and are implementing plans to acquire a replacement as quickly as possible. This machine was already scheduled for replacement, but it decided to escalate matters on its own. I have had some informal discussions with external organizations about open-sourcing their code and possibly bringing it to the ASF via the Incubator.
Tabled until next regular meeting
The reseller we ordered our Sun hardware with went out of business. As a result we have been dealing directly with Sun. Sun did come through; at the day of the members meeting, the hardware showed up unannounced. Tomorrow Colm and I will visit the colo, and will try to get as far as possible with the setup. If tomorrow is not sufficient to finish up, next Tuesday will be another oportunity for myself. Furthermore discussion around build systems has picked up a bit again on infrastructure@. It would be advisable to have someone with cycles to investigate what we can do there. We've talked about facilitating projects more by providing build infrastructure, but we never really got beyond that point.
ApacheCon EU Amsterdam was a good event, a bit exhausting with 'Koninginnedag' right before. The first day of the conference I was amazed at how many turned up for the opening planery at 9:00AM. Attendance was reasonable, with a good number of people walking in, and signing up for the final day of the conference. The Fast Feather track was interesting to get to know about incubating projects. Delivery of the Sun hardware was committed to today, but nothing arrived. Tomorrow is a national holiday in .nl, will follow up with the supplier on Friday. As we missed the window in which Justin was in .nl to do the set up we are looking into alternatives (other volunteers) to help out with the setup, as to ensure we will get the hardware in production as soon as possible after arrival.
Sander reported that the Dell box has been acquired and the order for the Sun box has been closed. Costs will be inline with what was originally projected: around $40k (US).
The Infrastructure hardware list has been the same for quite a while. Actually the list has grown a bit, but has not been updated yet. For instance, good old minotaur is more than ready for retirement. It has become clear that seeking out sponsors for the hardware proofs harder than expected. More of a problem is that as soon as the needed hardware is on the list, we actually have a use for it straight away. The wait of X months only causes initial planning, and motivation to execute on the planning to disappear. The way forward is to procure the hardware on the list for which the donation timeframe is clearly past. There was a plan to shuffle machines around, given that all machines hosted in the Netherlands are in need of retirement. It seems to be more efficient to procure locally than to ship machines. The cost for the new hardware is likely to be a significant amount; $40k ballpark. No progress has been made on the Contegix proposal. Sander will be presenting the "State of the Feather" at ApacheCon EU in Amsterdam early May. He will sent a copy for review before the program goes to print, to ensure no significant events were left out.  http://www.apache.org/dev/hardware-wish-list.html General consensus was that spending $40k US for hardware was no problem at all and that Sander and the Infra team should continue with detailed costing.
Sander reported that our sysadmin's contract is up for renewal (end of March) and that he will negotiate a 6 month extension.
Reiterating what was in a Happy New Year email sent to the committership. And one correction that was pointed out on the number of promotions to TLP this year. We have had a year full of interesting events and amazing accomplishments. Over 2006, nine projects became Top Level Projects (TLP): Apache Cayenne, Apache Harmony, Apache Hivemind, Apache MINA, Apache Open For Business, Apache Tapestry, Apache Velocity, Apache Shale and Apache Tiles. This brings the grand total to forty-five. http://projects.apache.org/. Eighteen projects entered the Incubator, four projects graduated from the Incubator, and two projects were retired. People definitely view the ASF as an attractive place to mature open source software projects. Apache DS was certified as LDAP Certified v2 by The Open Group. Only three other implementations have received this certification; by CA, IBM and Novell. We had three ApacheCon conferences this year; in Dublin, Ireland, in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and in Austin, Texas, USA. The sponsorship program was announced at ApacheCon US, with two sponsors already signed up: Google and Covalent. http://www.apache.org/foundation/sponsorship.html David Reid and Rich Bowen launched the Feathercast, "an unoffical podcast from the world of the Apache Software Foundation". It gives another insight in what your fellow ASFers are doing. http://www.feathercast.org/. I'm positive that 2007 will be great year as well. For Infrastructure a list of task for 2007 was proposed. The thread needs to be followed up upon. It was definitely useful for an inventory of things needing attention. Ajax has been prepared for retirement. A switch has a broken port. Investigation in progress. Several harddrives broke down. Replacements and spares have been ordered and taken into production. Currently under discussion at Infrastructure is the proposal that Jason presented, regarding consideration of Contegix being officially part of ASF infrastructure. Henri proposed weekly JIRA triaging meetings, with positive feedback.
Infrastructure is back to business 'as usual'. Services were restored. Final accounting was done on the colo move. Justin has the expenses incurred.
At ApacheCon presented 'State of the feather'; I was personally impressed with the sheer number of things that have been going on since last December from a birds eye point of view alone. At ApacheCon the Infrastructure Team sat down and discussed status quo, past mistakes, and future planning. A non-trivial portion of the ASF infrastructure has been moved from the UnitedLayer colo in San Francisco, CA to the OSU OSL colo in Corvallis, OR, over the weekend of the 20th and Monday. Minotaur was a known to be in risk of failure and it has indeed not survived the move. It is in the process of being (temporarily) replaced by another machine. Due to this Justin and Joe have been staying longer in Corvallis than originally planned. Two machines are down, fireswamp, which hosts www.apachecon.com, and loki, which runs gump on vmware. Final cost involved with the move (flights, car rental, hotel) will be in next report. The board expressed its appreciation to the Infrastructure team, especially Justin and Joe, for their efforts during this move. Greg indicated that he would be at OSU OSL on Friday (on non-ASF business) but could help with some remaining move items.
A report was expected, but not received
Closure on OSU OSL in sight. Expect to be concluded by next board meeting latest. Work on Infrastructure progressing slowly. There has been more focus on day to day maintenance than anything else. A start has been made at seperating 'websites' and 'people'. Planning on repurposing machines and moving services has stalled a bit. In part by the lack of clarity on moving or not.
Sander provided an update regarding our current infrastructure as well as our infrastructure providers. Contractual updates will be provided over the next few meetings.
Work on Infrastructure is progressing. We've had yet another month of troubleshooting failing hardware, next to the regular activities of blocking abusers, handling account requests, etc. A get together is planned for the people on site at ApacheCon EU to discuss the direction over the remainder of the year. Moving mail to Ecelarity is on the agenda for this month. As well as inspecting the OSU OSL facilities, and possibilities. The contract negotiations with OSU OSL are still in progress. An offer has come back from a secretary service, for transcribing board meetings, sending out thank you notes for donations, and handling incoming fax traffic.
Contracts. The SFLC has been helpful with reviewing and commenting on the contract with OSU OSL. A few requests for change have been done, and currently the contract is under review of the lawyer at OSU OSL. Furthermore a consulting contract with Joe Schaeffer has been written. It has been mailed to Joe, but has not arrived as of yet. Infrastructure. The infrastructure is running smoother now we have full time staff available to take care of our systems. Do note that it has been very busy due to several (hardware) failures. Donations. Sun donated a T2000, which has been shipped to OSU OSL. A support contract is close to being finalized, which would finally give us access to the patches needed for our v40z. Ask.com has kindly donated 2 Dell PowerVaults with 14x146GB of storage. This donation has also been shipped to OSU OSL. Furthermore, additional hardware has been bought to refit the IBM x345 servers. In total $3600 was spent.
Status on OSU OSL and contracting Joe Schaeffer. Contract details with OSU OSL are being finalized today. Contract for Joe will be available tomorrow. Joe has already started. Secretarial service is still pending.
Overall there is being made progress on the Infrastructural front. Ajax has finally been upgraded. It's been doing better since the upgrade, load and I/O wise. Several harddrives have failed and have been replaced, courtesy of Intel. We've also experienced harddrive failure on helios, and have an offer pending on a hardware service contract from Sun. If this doesn't come through by next Tuesday, a service contract will be obtained by the ASF directly. OmniTI has set up Ecelerity on our Xserves. The mail setup can be finalized once the current mail administrators are available to coordinate with OmniTI. Contract still needs to be finalized. I haven't had feedback on the contract from OSU/OSL. I'm aiming for them to start no later than April 1st 2006. All pending paperwork should be resolved by next friday. There was discussion regarding the issue of a Exec Director for the ASF, and whether that has dropped in priority. The general consensus of the board was that a SysAdmin should be the first priority for the foundation followed by some sort of secretarial support for the Secretary and Treasurer.
Progress is being made on the OSUOSL front. I have received a concept contract, and have sent an NDA for them to sign. The final Xserve was brought into the SURFnet colo facility. Due to a miscommunication it doesn't have any connectivity yet. This will be resolved next week. There was hardware purchased (a network switch, network cables, and an external storage unit), totalling at roughly $1,000.00. Another drive has failed in minotaurs RAID array. We are looking into purchasing a couple of replacement drives, to guarantee the safety of our data, and the continueity of operation of our Subversion installation. Our JIRA installation (one of our issue trackers), is continueing to give grief to the maintainers. Atlassian is looking into sponsoring either new parts or a new machine, to move it to a dedicated issue tracker machine. Ajax, our Itanium machine in Amsterdam, is going to be upgraded to a different OS. A test was performed whether the hardware would be recognized correctly. As soon as the external storage unit is in place, the upgrade can be performed. This will be done remotely. It is expected that all I/O problems that we have been experiencing will be solved afterwards. Helios, hosting our so-called zones, is being used quite a lot. Most projects have requested their own zone and are putting it to use. At some point limits will have to put on the amount of resources a zone can use. This is currently not a concern. The fact that the zones are being used as a production service is of some concern, given that it is still an experimental service. No backups are currently being performed, nor is uptime guaranteed. The Security Team has sent in a report noting that it is close to impossible for volunteers to pick up reported security issues, file them, and dispatch them to the correct party, and also checking if the issue is actually being resolved. In the Public Relations committee I hear a similar message, but regarding PR issues.
Infrastructure is in the same shape as it was a while back. It is isn't in any worse or better shape in my opinion. The same complaint here and there. A couple of people have stepped back, while others are doing more. The concerning bit is that there are cases where Justin and others have to jump back in. The Infrastructure Search Committee has recommended we hire OSU OSL per notes of their final meeting: "We will recommend to the board to investigate entering into a relationship with OSUOSL for infrastructure outsourcing. The starting point for such further investigation will be the RFP that we sent out and the proposal that OSUOSL sent us in response. We recommend the board considers contracting OSUOSL for a three-month period with the possibility of a one-month extension. The eyeball figure of $5000 per month that OSUOSL mentioned sounds to us like it could potentially be a very reasonable rate, depending on how much work they are planning to do." Sander was questioned why the committee chose OSUOSL. He mentioned that the main reasons where that they use pro- fessional sysadmins, and since we have non-standard infra- structure setups, they would be able to more easily align with our methods than others, who would likely require us to align with methods they are comfortable with. With that the Committees task is done, with exception to some administrivia. The Committee will be dissolved as soon as these are taken care of. We are going to receive help in the email department from OmniTI. This has been blocking on me. An appointment with SURFnet has been scheduled to set up the remaining Apple X-Serve including out of band access. Jim mentioned that OmniTI is physically close to where he is (about 45 minutes away) so if things pop up that require one of the board to be present at OmniTI, he could be there.
An observation this month is that the ASF is not using the potential it has for exposure optimally. At several conferences multiple ASF members are present and it would be not too hard to have flyers present at conferences. An option could be to pre-distribute flyers to known frequent conference go-ers. Infrastructure is still operational. It is clear that the knowledge of the infrastructure of a whole is not centrally available. It is hard to create a job description that includes all the ins and outs of managing our infrastructure. Due to this fact, the Infrastructure Search Committee is now focussing on first making a decent inventory of what we do and how we do it. This by defining an RFP to have an external party do the inventory, documentation and possible automation over a period of 3 months time. The RFP is still a work in progress. David Reid has excused himself from the Infrastructure Search Committee. Theo Schlossnagle has reiterated that OmniTI is offering their software to run the mailservers of the ASF. Apple has donated two machines for the purpose of running our mail. Once both machines are hooked up, we can pursue this offer.
Infrastructure is taking longer times to handle requests, because the people that are mainly taking care of the infrastructure are unable to dedicate the same time as before. The need for hired help becomes more pressing, yet there has been little progress made in the Search Committee. Leo Simons has made himself available to also sit on the committee, with the intent to get the ball moving.
A report was expected, but not received
Notable news is that the original directive on software patents was rejected by the EU Parliament on July 6th. Given the turmoil around software patents, and the many questions that trickle in, I'd like to get a FAQ on the ASF's position on the website. ApacheCon EU has come and gone; the V.P. Conference Planning will have more on that in the committee report. I'll be prioritizing internal affairs and external affairs in that order, during my term, trying to find a good balance between raising awareness of the ASF and internal issues like Infrastructure. i. Infrastructure [Sander] During ApacheCon Martin Kraemer and David Reid have made significant progress on the ASF Certificate Authority. There are high hopes to have the full system (including authentication for version control, mailing list archives, etc), before next ApacheCon. A call for volunteers for the Search Committee for an external sys admin was issued. The search committee is to be responsible for: - finding/soliciting candidates, by whatever means; - selecting candidates; - reporting progress of the search to the Boad; - and finally, recommending candidates to the Board The search will go on until the search committee is satisfied it has seen enough viable candidates. Responses to the call for volunteers have been sparse, but there are four volunteers to serve on the committee: Erik Abele David Reid Scott Sanders Sander Temme Justin Erenkrantz has stepped back from Infrastructure, due to time constraints. Given the amount of energy he has put into Infrastructure over time, I at least owe him a thank you here. Before ApacheCon EU, during a mini-Infrathon, and during ApacheCon EU the Infrastructure team has addressed the situation which caused the version control tool to wedge. It is therefor believed the final argument against migrating to Subversion has been overcome. For the rest of the news from Infrastructure I am going to refer to a mail sent out by Leo Simons to all committers. Message-ID: <BF01611C.4F8C0email@example.com>
Annual members meeting, sharp increase in press requests, BXA/CCN number assignment still not solved. Need to ask Ken about procedure Hardship cases. Request for exec session. i. Infrastructure [Sander] See Attachment L
Mainly been tracing CCN/ECN etc numbers - turns out to be a much thornier issue than expected and one which we may need to address in earnest. Also preparing for the budget discussions - finding out about admin rates. There was discussion regarding determination of which s/w products may require some level of export control. Dirk noted that in most cases, it is sufficient that the interested gov't entities be informed of the location of the source code repositories in order to be compliant.
Dirk reported that he is following AxKit and how it is playing out (has never yet had a release under the ASF "banner," and currently extensively uses non-ASF infrastructure). Dirk indicated that he would also like to discuss some CLA-like mechanism for ASF officers who are not members.
Dirk had nothing to report, but did request that Oasis be added to the 'New Business' agenda item.
No significant activity beyond items not already found on the agenda below.
Dirk reported that he was keeping track on the efforts and discussions underway within the European Union (EU) regarding software patents. According to Dirk, of particular interest was the fact that German political parties united in their support against patents, which is in conflict with the German EU Council vote. Poland has also withdrawn support.
Dirk reported that the ASF also appears to be moving along quite well. Infrastructure support still can be a bottleneck, but issues are being resolved.
Without echoing Greg his words above - I'd like to add that we also need to think to what extend executive committee's which IMHO have considerable more leway on operational issues that normal PMC's can and should be expected to set rather than only follow policy.
Dirk reported nothing specific as new. From last meeting, there were issues with the CLA and AL, and which document governs contributions. Dirk believes that all concerns have been cleared up, although there may be a few more formal letters asking for clarification. Jim offered to assist Dirk in a formal position letter pertaining to this subject.
Dirk reported that he's seeing a slight increase in questions, both public and private, pertaining to interpretation of contention between the CLA and the Apache License 2.0 when there is a corporate entity employing the contributor. The issue is that clarification is needed around the interpretation that the concept of 'entity' in AL2 includes a employing corporation of a contributor. The proposed solution is a clarifying statement from the ASF that indicates that the CLA is the governing agreement wrt the concerns about the AL2.0 'entity' language. Geir asked if the statement resolved the issue if there really is one, and Dirk confirmed that it wouldn't, but rather establish our intent. Sam inquired about the need for further action, and Dirk suggested that he didn't believe it necessary at this time, but wanted to report the increasing frequency of concern to make the board aware. We may wish to have a resolution for next board meeting on the subject of a declaration or patch. There were no further questions for Dirk.
Dirk had no real news to report other than an update on the infrastructure, which was reported by Sander Striker: Infrastructure [Sander] Infrastructure is confronted with lack of people able to help out. Last month most regular roots were unable to contribute anything with respect to day-to-day work as account creation, etc. Noel has been very good in filling the gap, but that is far from ideal. The root rotation file, where people with root access commit themselves for a week of duty, has gone stale. Furthermore Infrastructure has been battling email issues related to spam. Also the entire mail system has been migrated off of daedalus onto a new machine, hermes. This is where other root resources went. An email was sent out to members@ asking for help in various areas, among which software development to automate/ease the tasks of the operators, and to smoothen the process of account/karma request handling. To date there has been little response. Sander's report generated discussion on the best way to delegate power and responsibility to reduce the workload on the actual infrastructure team for such actions as creating accounts, PMC specifics (eg: mailing lists) and the like. Sam noted that the Email Sander referred to had a "generic" subject line and was therefore not likely read by most members since it didn't indicate the severity of the request.
Postponed as Dirk was not present.
Infrastructure Two new root people have signed up to help out: Noel Bergman and Erik Abele. This lightens the load on the current roots and the rotation. More efforts are ongoing to automate root tasks. Part of the new hardware as arrived at Sam's. The new HP server has seen final approval and should be arriving in the Netherlands somewhere in the upcoming weeks. A three CPU Xeon machine is sitting at Brians waiting to be moved to the colo. There is still no news from APC with respect to the UPS. Given the power incidents over past period, action on this issue is suggested for consideration. Subversion was upgraded to 1.0.1. Forrest has moved to SVN, its CVS history converted. More projects are expected to move over. Projects already using SVN are happy with it. Steadily more projects are using the new wiki installation. The UseMod wiki is still not frozen and the migration from there is not definitive yet due to time constraints of contributors (Leo Simons, who is handling most of the wiki related things, in particular). The Cocoon wiki and the SpamAssassin wiki are in the process of migration. A few instances of 'Wiki spamming' have occurred, and were dealt with in under 24h. Furthermore the configuration was updated to be more restrictive in what is published (like usage statistics). The obtainment of insurance for the European colo was discussed. The general consent was that the insurance provided no protection to the ASF and therefore should not be purchased.
NAI: All but trademark sorted. Sander Striker, now on the board has effectively taken this over. Infrastructure: Sander and I had a chat with Surfnet; gigabit bandwidth there to be had for free at the major exchange location. Size and power not an issue. Within 30 minutes from 3+ people willing to do admin work. HP hardware in the process of being donated. CLA and account adding protocol better/functional; but both word and workflow need to be more in front of PMCs. UL colo power issues continue. Mail worms keep coming, JIRA adoption is going well; 5 more codebases were migrated.
Dirk reported on the oversight issues faced by the PMCs of projects that had large committer bodies. Projects should look to Jakarta as an example of how to scale rather than moving to more top level projects. Dirk mentioned that the inclusion of Spam Assassin was slightly behind schedule. Dirk talked about the ongoing work on the Infrastructure, especially with new machines being donated. He pointed to the URL http://www.apache.org/dev/proposed-machines.html for more information. There is talk of having a Certificate Authority box, perhaps hosted with Ben Laurie, for the purposes of managing SSL client certificates. Dirk mentioned that there has been some feedback about the security of the current installation of Subversion which was being adressed. Dirk reported that the "root" rotation still seems to work well. Account creation requests, pending CLA receipt, are still a pain to keep track of, but there is an effort to resolve this through a web-app. Some dicussion was had at ApacheCon to partially solve some of this through the means of sourcecast. Leo Simons has been putting a lot of energy in a wiki management tool, which is being used to created per-PMC wikis.
Defaulted to presentation given at the Members' meeting earlier that night.
Dirk reported that he would respond to the request from Tetsuya Kitahata (Terra-International, Inc.) regarding an ASF Authorized Certification Program with the response that this is not something the ASF does. Although they are welcome and encourage to provide training, etc... the ASF cannot "certify" or "authorize" those programs. Dirk also mentioned some concern over whether the infrastructure team was setting or dictating aspects of ASF policy that it should not. He mentioned that he would encourage that "user interface" issues and discussions be moved to the community at large, rather than solely within infrastucture. Dirk mentioned that the inclusion of Spam Assassin was progressing.
No news on the spam assassin contribution; most remaining issues where clarified in a telecon with NAI - and the 'corperate' CLA - as created for BEA is likely to help here. This month saw an unusually high number of PR questions related to (mostly) the SCO issue - though most journalists seemed almost disappointed by the presense of our committer/cla process and the absense of any worries/interest in linux/sco and the gpl. Infrastructure (report per Sander Striker): We have 3 new root users on minotaur and daedalus: Justin, Cliff and Thom. We are rotating root duty per week now, as of last week. Account requests are not being honoured without signed CLAs anymore. We've been offline for almost a full day when UL lost power. There is an effort for a unified wiki underway. A percentage of users has cleaned out their home directory on daedalus, but we need to push for more people to do this. The only people who require an account there are the ones helping out with mail. All PMC chairs were given CVSROOT access. The rationale is that PMC chairs should be trusted and that it lowers the burden on root.
Dirk had nothing to report. During the President's report, however, the status of the new machine, Minotaur, was discussed. It was noted that it should be online is very short order; final details regarding physical access and the like were being completed.
Dirk had nothing new to report, but noted that the ASF is nearly in a position where it owns all its own infrastructure.
Dirk has been working an issue with a number of books using Apache text without copyrights. This appears to have been an oversight, and is rapidly being addressed. Dirk has been working with the CEBIT show. Regarding the question of whether Maven.org outside scope of Apache: discussion deferred to 6.2 on the agenda. There has been an upsurge in interest in Wikis lately. The plan is to associate every Apache resource with a responsible PMC.
No report since Dirk was not present.
Dirk reported that his efforts have been mostly based on the License issues. Dirk noted that, in general, there is a true lack of case law regarding the issues we are trying to address. He also noted that the License is mostly American in nature, and not European and that, as such, interpretations can vary state by state. In particular, our license is unique such that we are trying to make things public and not private, which is the normal mode.
Dirk had nothing of detail to report. There was discussion regarding APR and the issues regarding El-Kabong (the HTML parser) that was donated to the ASF. There was also discussion regarding how much of the President's duties were infrastructure in nature.
Brian reported that he is investigating options to reduce the bandwidth requirements of the ASF web sites. At present, we are reaching around 4 million hits per day. Brian is also concerned about and working the disk storage issues mentioned at the last board meeting. Brian noted that mirroring would be a help to alleviate some of the problems, but not all of them.
Brian reported on the move of the ASF servers between AboveNet Data Centers. The move was quite smooth, with minimal downtime and impact (other than IP address changes). Brian reported that disk storage capacity was starting to be an initial concern, and that he was investigating storage options.
Brian reported that the ASF infrastructure was operating in a "steady" fashion. Spam is a never-end problem and that a lot of work is being done to reduce its level.
Brian reported (via e-mail) that the infrastructure is holding steady at just under 4 million raw hits per day on most days. 40 new developer accounts have been created so far in 2002, with approximately 460 total committers overall.
Brian had no news to report.
Brian reported that the infrastructure is performing well, and that the move of the Jakarta project's email to their own server has resulted in better performance overall.
Brian reported that the infrastructure transitions have been going smoothly, although email is a bit slower than other services. Brian also reported on the move of the servers from Exodus to AboveNet in San Francisco. Additional connectivity is being implemented via InterNap, although it is not yet completed. Some routing problems have been encountered while the InterNap link is being added. Brian also reported on the ASF Membership in Project Liberty, but that there was no additional status over and above the membership announcement. Brian also reported that there was no further status on the "no pay" W3C membership item.
Brian reported that, operationally, things seem to be much smoother now that CVS has been moved to a dedicated box. He plans to move mail to a dedicated box in the future, though will probably wait until after moving both apache.org boxes to a new colo facility, abovenet in SF, where we will be (not immediately, but before Oct 1st) multihomed with Internap. Brian still has on his "to do list" the item of restarting communication with Richard Stallman w/r/t GPL/ASL compatibility. He has also received a couple queries now about whether the ASF wants to be involved in a .Net and Hailstorm-competitive effort.
Brian reported on the changeover of CVS to the new server and the performance increases due to the change. Some discussion was held on other possible infrastructure improvements, such as possibly putting email on it's own dedicated server.
Brian was not available and so the President report was tabled.
Brian reported on his continued efforts in supporting the ASF infrastructure. This includes the '.org' web site, members email and user/contributor accounts. On a personal note, Brian informed the board of his continued discussions with Richard Stallman regarding the Apache License and the GPL.
Brian reported that he was working on various Licensing issues, including a "write-up" of sorts describing the Apache License and how it compares with other Licenses. This is in response to discussions on various mailing lists.
Brian reported that not much has changed in the ASF operations since the last meeting, aside from the hardware problems on locus seeming to be fixed by the latest replacement. He has been looking for ways to increase his own free time to spend on Apache, mostly by delegating more of his other work at Collab.Net. He continues to speak on behalf of Apache at various conferences, but is mostly focused on improving our server and network infrastructure.
Brian reported on the move of ASF projects and resources to the new 'locus.apache.org' server. He also reported that he was working his keynote speech for ApacheCon.