[OpenLayers-Dev] [OpenLayers-PSC] PSC composition?

Dave McIlhagga dmcilhagga at dmsolutions.ca
Fri Nov 21 08:54:18 EST 2008


One of the founding principles of OSGeo was the concept of individual  
meritocracy -- not corporate merit. This was done intentionally,  
following the Apache model to ensure that the best people were  
represented in the organization and their projects, irrespective of  
their corporate affiliation. This is also why Sponsorship is kept very  
much at an arm's length from having any direct influence benefits into  
the organization.

One very real issue with corporate representation -- what if an  
individual developer on the PSC leaves the organization? Is his  
position on the PSC therefore lost? This is the separation between  
individual contribution and influence vs. direct corporate influence  
that I believe is critical for the integrity of these projects.

I think this is a critical principle to uphold in order to preserve  
the "arm's length" objective of OSGeo and it's projects from the  
institutional contributors (be it financial or in-kind)

One goal of a particular PSC may be (and probably should be) to find  
balance in terms of individuals who represent various sources of  
contributions -- but I think this can be handled by recognizing the  
appropriate individuals rather than having a direct seat at the table  
for any one particular organization.

My 2 cents.


Dave McIlhagga

On 20-Nov-08, at 5:15 PM, Cameron Shorter wrote:

> Following on from a PSC discussion, ...
> I think it is right to discuss company/individual composition of the  
> PSC.
> As projects like Openlayers grow, there is are changing dynamics
> regarding how decisions are made, because developer composition moves
> from volunteers (who are answerable to themselves) to paid employees
> (who are answerable to their employers).
> Initially it makes sense that PSC membership is made up of  
> individuals.
> However, as developer mix increases to include more paid employees, I
> think we need to consider company representation on the PSC. I don't
> think others would disagree that the PSC is stronger when it has
> representation from a diverse group of developers and organisations.
> So I think that when we propose someone for PSC membership we should
> consider where they work, and the proportional representation of
> companies on the PSC. In other PSCs, I have noticed developers from  
> the
> same company have a tendency to vote the same way. This is natural and
> understandable. The developers are usually working on the same project
> and have the same driving priorities and needs.
> I'd also like to bring out into open discussion the question of who we
> have on the committee, what are the expectations of them. Whether we
> only want technical people on the committee or whether non-coders  
> should
> be included too. I'd like to question the value of my involvement. I
> haven't written Openlayers code for a year or two now, but do manage
> developers who use Openlayers and occasionally contribute patches. I'm
> comfortable with my role, providing rants like these to the email  
> list,
> but won't be offended if people suggest it would be time for me to  
> retire.
> -- 
> Cameron Shorter
> Geospatial Systems Architect
> Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
> Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
> Think Globally, Fix Locally
> Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source
> http://www.lisasoft.com
> _______________________________________________
> Dev mailing list
> Dev at openlayers.org
> http://openlayers.org/mailman/listinfo/dev

More information about the Dev mailing list