It’s been a busy last few weeks. I wrapped up the month of April with a great trip to Mainz, Germany for the Eclipse Forum Europe conference followed by a quick hop to Istanbul, Turkey for EclipsIST. Both are great shows that I intend to attend again in the future. I did get to tour around Mainz during my visit, but I didn’t get to see very much of Istanbul (though unwittingly engineering my own marooning at Ralph’s hotel on the Bosphorus was an interesting highlight).
I used the opportunity of the two shows to talk to as many people as possible about my new role. Officially, I’m now “Director, Committer Community” for the Eclipse Foundation, though, I find that “Director of Committer Community” flows better… Now, if only I can start to consistently type “Director” without automatically adding a “y” to the end (we’re all creatures of certain habits). I’ve taken on all of the responsibilities that come with that role except for Eclipse Foundation-run conferences (though I’m not 100% certain if conferences was ever a formal part of the role, anyway).
The new role fits very well with my continuing role of Evangelist. Though, I do intend to continue the process that I’ve started of turning the Evangelism role into one of enabling others to evangelize.
With the new role, I get a staff. I couldn’t be more excited to have Anne Jacko and Gabe O’Brien working with me. Anne, as many of you already know, is the tireless force that keeps the wheels of the Eclipse Development Process running. Gabe, is the programmer extraordinaire (officially: “Darned Good Programmer”) who helps to make things like the conference registration system, the portal, and the Automated IP Log Tool work.
I’ve spent much of the past few weeks settling into the new role and learning the ropes. My main focus for the next six weeks will be Galileo. We’ve set the dates for Galileo projects to provide us with their release review documentation (May 29), and IP Logs (June 3). The review date for Galileo is June 10.
As part of this Galileo focus, we’re putting some energy into the Automated IP Log Tool to make it as useful as possible for the Galileo projects. This is a pretty interesting piece of technology that automatically scans project metadata, CVS/SVN (with a little help from Dash), Bugzilla, IPZilla, and the Eclipse Foundation’s Committer Database to assemble the IP Log that projects normally assemble manually. When the tool works, it’s brilliant; we’re trying hard to make it work in more cases. A lot of that effort is concerned with helping projects get their metadata up-to-date so that they can take advantage of the tool (the tool is only as good as the data that feeds it).
More generally, I see this role as that of helping committers do what they like to do: write code. In that regard, I’ve been carefully reviewing the dialog that has been occurring and do hope that we can—as a community—address the issues that vex us and make Eclipse stronger as a result. I have an internal wiki page that I’ve been using to assemble some of my ideas. In the next day or so, I’m going to move that page to Eclipsepedia where everybody can contribute their ideas.