[VisCom] Re: OSGeo Newsletter

Martin Wegmann wegmann at biozentrum.uni-wuerzburg.de
Fri May 26 04:53:23 EDT 2006


sorry for the delayed reply. 

On Monday 15 May 2006 17:03, Tyler Mitchell wrote:
> On Monday 15 May 2006 03:33, Martin Wegmann wrote:
> > On Monday 15 May 2006 10:03, Markus Neteler wrote:
> At this point I offer a few suggestions:
> 1) Keep it in a more casual newsletter format for the first edition.  This
> will help keep it simple and will be a good test of how well volunteers can
> contribute.  I'm sure we'll all learn some lessons from it.
> Then, if/when it is obvious we have lots of great content and contributors,
> make it professional, get advertisers and roll out something in print.  But
> first, a tiny step to test the waters.

it is a good point to test the waters with a "simple" or casual newsletter and 
ask for contributors. The work-load depends on the release cycle of course 
and if we set up sections. This would split the work-load between several 

> > --> Which part of the community should be addressed (devel/user)?
> I like the focus that the GRASS newsletter has had - it has kept the devel
> vs user quite balance (in my opinion).  We should aim for similar things.


> > 2) Should it deal with OSGeo stuff only (announcements etc.)  or does
> > software chapters exist, where certain aspects/problems of one specific
> > package is discussed.
> I think that OSGeo information could be part of it, but not the majority
> part. We really (!) do need a better way to communicate OSGeo happenings
> out to the membership (and also to the public) - perhaps having it as part
> of this common media would be good.  I tend to think that it would.
> > 	2a) the internal structure has to be discussed and must be clearly
> > structured so that the reader can easily find the (for him/her) important
> > parts. If sections are created, how many sections (GIS/RS/webmapping/
> > ...)
> Obviously we'd need a clear mandate/purpose/vision as well.
> > 3) How often should it appear? monthly/quarterly
> For OSGeo "new" we need something monthly, but perhaps there wouldn't be
> enough other material to make this monthly.  Again, a good reason to do a
> simplified test newsletter first.

I have no overview of OSGeo internals but I assume that it can fill at least 
some parts of a monthly newsletter. For the other half of the newsletter, 
single projects can submit articles - hence each project will be presented 
perhaps every 3-6 months (like the GRASS-News cycle).

> > 4) One of the main problem will be a) will enough people volunteer for a
> > certain section b) will enough users/devel. contribute to the magazine?
> >
> > 	4a) Certainly an OSGeo magazine edt in chief, language edt, layout (!)
> > and subeditors for sections have to be assigned.
> I agree.  Can anyone give their experiences with the workload for an editor
> and for contributors?  I have a good idea on the contributor side.

It is hard to tell, but not so much, at least for GRASS-News.  However if the 
layout, sections etc. is organised by several people it shouldn't be a huge 

> > -> 2) only  announcements and articles concerning "user problems" were
> > discussed, rather module orientated no overview articles
> It would probably be good to have at least one overview of a product in
> each edition (as long as it is not just a copy/paste from a web site).

if the release cycle is once a month, I think it is too much for some 

> > I am stronly looking forward to a OSGeo-Magazine, and I think it will
> > increase the visibility of OSGeo and its project enormously.

If you are interested we could change the GRASS-News vol. 4 to a OSGeo-News 
vol. 1 which would already include a few GRASS articles/interviews.  
The Latex/sty base is already ready to use and solely the Name and Logo has to 
be changed. This can be a starting point for a fully grown OSGeo magazine. 

The GRASS-News staff as well as the GRASS devel had no objections and are 
looking forward to an OSGeo newsletter.

regards, Martin

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