[OSGeo-Discuss] Keeping up to date...

Tyler Mitchell (OSGeo) tmitchell at osgeo.org
Fri Nov 23 10:53:28 PST 2007

 From my blog: http://www.osgeo.org/tyler/keeping_up_to_date

Subscribe to my feed: http://www.osgeo.org/tyler/feed


The OSGeo board has recently started talking about putting together  
an Annual Report for 2007 - our first full year of operations. I had  
hoped to make some headway on this before FOSS4G but the timing  
didn't work out.

In the meantime, we haven't gone totally without any reports, though  
maybe they are not advertised well enough. I'll mention a few of them  
here in case you are not already familiar with them and would like to  
keep updated.

This year's Annual General Meeting [1] at FOSS4G was a great success.  
It was our first attempt to bring together reports from the board,  
projects, local chapters and committees - all describing what they  
have done over the past year or are planning for the future. The  
kinds of content presented at that meeting would be similar to what  
feeds into an Annual Report, though instead of requesting written  
reports I asked representatives to speak face-to-face with the  
membership. We had over 25 speakers/topics presented at that meeting!

Another deliberate way we foster communication has been through the  
OSGeo Journal [2] - including reports from projects, local chapters  
and more. These first two issues were a bit of an experiment to see  
how regularly we could get reports from parts of our community  
without pestering them too much. When we started the Journal the hope  
was to use it as an outlet for producing reports on a regular basis.  
It has worked out well so far, but has been a lot of work. If you are  
interested in encouraging more dialogue in this semi-formal way, you  
are welcome to join the Journal team as an editor. This is the  
benefit of a volunteer organisation, everyone is welcome to  
participate to make things happen :)

My OSGeo Blog [3] is also used to provide reports to the community,  
sponsors and the public. Though not as regular as they could be, I've  
tried to pull together short reports with critical information on  
important occasions. This included a year in review post [4]  
summarising some highlights from our first year, as well as various  
other stats. I encourage other OSGeo members to blog about their own  
OSGeo work/involvement, all of which would be helpful for feeding  
into an Annual Report.

We also have lots of discussion on the OSGeo discussion mailing list  
[5] and throughout project lists, the board of directors and more.  
Naturally this the key way we communicate within OSGeo and everyone  
is welcome to participate.

One key development over the past few months has been the  
establishment of an OSGeo Finance Committee. [6] This 5 person group  
will help facilitate financial decisions, planning and reporting  
without relying solely on the Treasurer or having to always defer  
final decisions back the Board. This will certainly help on several  
fronts, as we have recently just passed our first full year of having  
funds to manage and report on.

So, as several of us ponder how to pull together the information  
needed for a more formal Annual Report, I hope you will also consider  
how you might help to make it happen. It will take a major amount of  
input and coordination to get it right but it will help build on  
these other communication efforts over the past year.

Consider this your invitation to help!




[1] http://wiki.osgeo.org/index.php/Annual_General_Meeting_2007

[2] http://osgeo.org/journal

[3] http://osgeo.org/tyler

[4] http://www.osgeo.org/tyler/osgeo_1st_anniversary

[5] http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss

[6] http://wiki.osgeo.org/index.php/Finance_Committee

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