Thoughts on Paul's "Choose the choosers"?
hobu at IASTATE.EDU
Wed Dec 21 15:40:24 EST 2005
I am also not keen on the idea that the MTSC be put on a "project
management" sort of role. While the technical and non-technical
sides of the project are clearly related, the MTSC and its processes
for technical things work really well right now. Adding a more
diverse responsibility to the MTSC isn't a good strategy in my
opinion because it mixes the MTSC member's role.
Personally, I would like to see an open nomination and open voting
process for an eleven-member project steering committee, with Steve
being put as chair. As a member of the MTSC, I didn't sign up (if I
signed up at all ;) for project representation, negotiating the
founding of a foundation, worrying about conferences, marketing
materials, branding, etc. I signed up for worrying about the
bit-jockeying of MapServer. I think it is clear that there are many
other members of the community who really care about this often very
political stuff, and I think they should be given an opportunity to
put their marker on the table rather than be relegated to an advisory
role to the MTSC. The MTSC may represent the *developers* of
MapServer fairly well, but I'm not so sure that it represents the
entire MapServer project community. Also, I don't feel comfortable
standing up and saying "I represent you" without actually being told
by you that I do. I can only reasonably represent myself.
This also has the nice side effect of separating those who would just
rather complain from those who want to step up and do something. Is
this realistic? I don't know. Is this redundant? Partially. But,
it makes the project be a bit bicameral (with one elected body and
one "installed" body) with the two bodies having very different roles
(even if they might share some common members).
A problem with this approach that I see is that there are really
*three* sets of groups in the mix here. The developers, the
community at large, and what I would call major stakeholders. These
are groups more than they are individuals, and their contributions to
the project are large (direct financial, in-kind, etc). Any sort of
voting process potentially penalizes a major stakeholder. Do they
get one seat (out of 11)? Is that fair in relation to how much
they've contributed? Do they get seats proportional to how much
they've contributed? Who's measuring and how? Who do they represent,
their clients and business, or the community at large? The community
may provide the mojo for the project, but the major stakeholders
provide a lot of the momentum. Without them, the project doesn't
move as far or as fast, IMO.
In conclusion, I don't know what the best approach is. I would not
like to see the MTSC burdened with non-technical and political
issues. I would also not like to see an elected project steering
committee that potentially forgets the major stakeholders that have
made the whole thing possible in the first place. Somewhere in the
middle is a solution that works for us, I think. I also think it is
clear that we have jumped into the deep end of the project politics pool.
PS. My salutary is from Tim Peters of Python
At 09:35 AM 12/21/2005, Frank Warmerdam wrote:
>On 12/21/05, Sean Gillies <sgillies at frii.com> wrote:
> > Steve,
> > It seems to me that the issue of transferring copyright of the
> > MapServer code from the University of Minnesota to another entity is
> > well within the domain of the committee. There should be a vote to do
> > so, and I propose we wait until there is actually a solid Foundation
> > before we vote.
>The copyright is the property of the university, so I don't see
>that the MTSC could make any sort of binding decision on it.
>Of course, we could vote advising the university to take some
>But I think the question is whether we (the MTSC + some
>advisors) should take on a broader decision making role in the
>mapserver project. I am generally not keen on the idea, but
>will try and respond in more detail on the -users thread.
>I set the clouds in motion - turn up | Frank Warmerdam, warmerdam at pobox.com
>light and sound - activate the windows | http://pobox.com/~warmerdam
>and watch the world go round - Rush | Geospatial Programmer for Rent
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