Final thoughts about the Project and community?
|Made friends while waiting at the airport in Houston|
|Wouldn't you want to stop by this table?|
|View from our booth. It was always crowded.|
|Waiting to hear the last talks of the conference|
|Attendees loved taking their photos with Groff|
Today, October 13, is Ada Lovelace Day and we’re joining people around the globe in celebrating the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. There are a number of events taking place today. See here to find an event in your area.
In keeping with today’s celebration, we’d like to share more about the Foundation’s efforts to recruit more women to the Project. If you’ve attended any of the Foundation presentations over the last few months you’ve heard us talk about this, and we’re currently working with other members of the community to further these goals.
As we mentioned in our last newsletter, we sponsored and presented at WomENcourage 2015 in Uppsala, Sweden. The first day of the conference was a job fair, and we were the only open source project to participate. Even though this was a women in tech conference, there were many men who attended the conference too, and we had both women and men stop by our table to talk about opportunities in the FreeBSD Project. Though we weren’t there to offer jobs or internships, we did showcase how the FreeBSD Project offers great opportunities to gain job skills by working on a software project as a developer, coder, writer, administrator, and other areas that someone might want to get involved in. We focused on the fact that working on the Project allows you to work on what interests you; have great mentors to help you; find your own niche; and offers the opportunity for your work to be publicly available for companies to see.
The second day of the conference we were on a panel covering Careers in Open Source, All the panelists and the moderator were members of the FreeBSD community. We had a great turn out, and could have talked about the opportunities on an open source project way past our allotted hour. After our panel, we had a table in the conference hall, so people could stop and talk to us. Professors were interested in the FreeBSD curriculum and a few wanted to host FreeBSD events at their universities.
This week, we’ll be joining thousands of other women in computing at the Grace Hopper Conference in Houston, TX. I’ll be joined by former FreeBSD Google Summer of Code student, Shonali Balakrishna, who will help me introduce attendees to the Project and share with them her experiences and the benefits of being involved with this community.
In addition to attending conferences, we’re also working with Dru Lavigne and others in the community to create a FreeBSD Bootcamp aimed at introducing FreeBSD to young women ranging from middle school to college age. This follows on the heels of our first FreeBSD middle school class, currently being taught by Justin Gibbs and me in CO.
We’re very excited to take these first steps towards reaching our recruitment goals. We will continue to work with others (both women and men) within the Project and outlying communities to discover more areas for outreach, improvement, and growth to help make working on the Project a positive experience for everyone involved. Stay tuned for more updates from the Grace Hopper Conference as the week goes on.
Finally, thank you to everyone who has donated to the Foundation to help us move forward with our goals. Your support allows us to continue our mission to advocate for, improve on, and grow the FreeBSD Project.
|Photo courtesy of iXsystems|
|Photo courtesy of iXsystems|
|Photo courtesy of Ollivier Robert|
I'm a fresh FreeBSD committer who is very interested in security things. I also work for the Wheel Systems company which develops security solutions. So it was natural for me that I should attend Cambridge Developer Summit which, in my opinion, is the most security related event in every committer’s calendar. This was also my third visit to Cambridge. For the first one I also wrote a trip report which you can find here. The conference was held in August 17-20, 2015.
This year I attended with my two colleagues, Konrad Witaszczyk and Miłosz Kaniewski. I arrived very early around 10am on a Sunday (unfortunately we had to take different flights), so I had a lot of time to walk around Cambridge. I must admit that there’s something magical in this town. You can see many old buildings. On every corner you can film an old or fantasy movie. There are also big fields of green and the river in which you can go punting. I really enjoy this town every time I'm there.
This year we also stayed in Sidney Sussex, which is this big, great college. What is also very important is the fact that it sits right in the center of town. We arrived one day earlier and since there weren't any special activities planned, we spent the rest of the evening socializing with other FreeBSD peers.
The first day of DevSummit was on Monday. This year we decided to walk every day to the Computer Laboratory. The first session I attended that day was about storage, networking and armv8. The storage session which was the closest to me, was led by Benno Rice. The main topic was improving GEOM.
The second day of the conference was even more exciting than the first one. First I attended the tracing group, in which George Neville-Neil was talking about dtrace. Next we had discussion about Capsicum. In this discussion we also were talking about Ed Schousten’s work called CloudABI. The last group was led by Ed Maste talking about toolchain and LLVM.
The official dinner was held on this day. This year we had a great pleasure to be guests of the Murray Edwards College. The college has the largest collection of women's art in Europe, and the second largest in the world. Only women can study in this college.
The last day of DevSummit was spent discussing testing. This group was focused on atf and kyua. Next we had session about teaching in which, Robert Watson and George Neville-Neil, told us about the courses they are teaching in which they use FreeBSD and dtrace. The last session was about security and crypto, and I wasn't disappointed. Mark Murry again (as he did 2 years ago) discussed random number generator with others. It turns out that the Fortuna, a new algorithm for random generating, isn't prepared for multi CPU environments, and further research is needed.
There is a lot of knowledge in every working group, but there is also a lot of great information from people that we spoke to after or during the conference. I spent a lot of time talking with many incredibly smart people who told me about their recent findings in their research. For example, we were talking about packaging, security, encrypting the boot partition, MIPS processor (cherri project in particular) and much more. Of course we didn’t only talk about work. After one of the dinners I can tell you everything about rugby in French. :)
Then the unfortunate last day came. We went to see Cambridge for the last time. We spent some time in the botanic gardens and took the flight back to Poland. After this trip I can tell that I learned many things, but I also realize how much I don't know and how much interesting stuff is going on around me. I came back home motivated to work even harder.
I would like to thank FreeBSD Foundation for making this trip possible for me.
The FreeBSD Foundation is pleased to announce that the FreeBSD Journal has over 10,000 subscribers! Thank you to everyone who helped us reach this 2015 goal ahead of schedule. We'd also like to thank the dedicated team of editorial board members and authors for tirelessly volunteering their time to create must-read content for every issue. Finally, thank you to the advertisers and staff, without whom, publication would not be possible. To celebrate our latest milestone, the Foundation will be raffling off cell phone power bricks to 10 lucky subscribers. We hope this helps keep the Journal always at your fingertips.
I have been to two EuroBSDCon conferences and now I can add my first BSDCan to the list. The trip to Ottawa was just as interesting as the conference itself, it was the first time I stepped aboard an airplane. Purely by chance I found out, after I booked my flight, that I shared the same flight with Ed Schouten and Massimiliano Stucchi so they could help me with the confusing ant hill that is your average airport.
We arrived the 9th in Ottawa and after dropping off our stuff at the residence, we went to the Royal Oak for drinks and social activities.
During the dev summit or the actual BSDCan you can meet people you’ve only heard of before and have a conversation. In some cases, you can also find out they have heard of you before too. That happened to me during lunch on Wednesday, when I met Michael W. Lucas at Cora’s.
While I mostly work on FreeBSD ports, it was interesting to see how a company like Isilon uses at least part of the Project you work on in their product and how they’ve changed their policy over the years to keep up with all the shiny new stuff.
The hacking lounge was a mixed bag of what people were doing: talking with other people attending the conference about different subjects, discussing future projects, doing some code hacking or taking a soldering iron to “harmless” wireless routers. During one of the hacking lounges, Johannes Jost Meixner ask me to do a simple test with a few new ports to see if the skype4 port worked on HEAD. I also put the inspiration I got during a presentation into solving a segfault in PulseAudio that was bugging me for a while.
On Friday June 12th, the conference kicked off with the Keynote by Stephen Bourne, about Unix history and the Bourne shell. After, I attended the "Package building via QEMU" session by Sean Bruno and Stacey Son, on how we use QEMU to build arm packages on an amd64 box a “bit” faster than would be possible on a native box. I also attended “a stitch in time: jhbuild” since I was involved with this project. Jhbuild is a build software that GNOME uses, that takes code right out of git and tries to build it. So portability issues get caught in a few days instead of 6 months later when the author of that code moved on to shinier features. And, some features GNOME glib people would like to have in FreeBSD. The LLDB talk was interesting and it made me actually start using lldb when I need to debug something.
In the evening, I accidentally ended up in the Doc sprint. Which turned out to be good thing, since I learned some mandoc things and I got some help with thinking about how to write some documents that still need writing.
Saturday June 13th, had some great talks like CloudAPI where we have a binary from a virtual Operating System and that could in theory be run on any OS. And, the ZFS talk by Kirk McKusick about how ZFS works “magic” in more ways than one. I'm probably not the only one that is looking forward to having the FreeBSD base system in packages.
On Sunday the 14th, we had time to do some tourist type things before our flight back to Europe. I saw Parliament Hill and the National Gallery of Canada.
While a few presentations went over my head technically, (ZFS I'm looking at you). I'm from Europe so jet lag is supposed to be a thing, if you got long plane flights across time zones. Either my sleeping habit is already beyond hope, or I'm one of those people that isn't that affected. Though personally would bet on the former choice.
I'd like to thank the FreeBSD Foundation for giving me the possibility to attend, and Dan Langille and his team for making my first BSDCan a smooth experience.