Jessica Ledbetter

UDS-N: Friday sessions

Just like the other days, I was drawn to the community and developer sessions. Attended: Diversity in our Community, Ubuntu Women UDS-N Goals, and Launchpad/Bazaar introduction. I went to Revamp ubuntu.com/community but it was cancelled.

Diversity in our Community

Blueprint: community-n-diversity

How can we increase diversity in the community? Jono gave a shoutout to the Ubuntu-Women team for all its work increasing gender diversity. But what about others? What exactly is the need for diversity?

Is diversity found in functional areas (like more musicians and artists) or demographics (like race and gender)?

Should it be active or passive?

Everyone talked about how we should use common sense when it comes to language. We can be more inclusive if we just watch what we say. And, if someone makes a mistake — it happens to the best of us — don’t jump on her or him. Instead, educate kindly. And if we make a mistake, apologize. Being kind goes a long way to making people feel welcome. It’s infectious.

Freenode’s catalyst page was recommended as great reading for all. Also, the Leadership Code of Conduct is not just for leaders. We’re all ambassadors and leaders in our own way.

One way to increase diversity is to go hang out where others do. Let them know about how welcoming this environment is and that we’re here to answer any questions. Also, make our gatherings more inclusive. I’ve seen very successful family meetups, for example, that allow all ages to participate.

Ubuntu Women UDS-N Goals

Blueprint: community-n-women-project-goals

Reviewed what’s already in the works from other sessions like increasing the accessibility of the Ubuntu Women site, working on the documentation for mentoring, and closed out some things from last cycle.

Something I learned about was the community event page. I went to SouthEast LinuxFest and a few others but didn’t put it anywhere. When we go to events, grab some stickers and promotional material and list it on the event page. Great idea. It’ll make sure we don’t duplicate effort!

Percentage of women that are Ubuntu members has increased from 4.5% to 5% in the last 12 months, according to AlanBell. But women aren’t just increasing in numbers there but also on councils. As someone said — sorry, the voices blended a few times — it’s about encouraging women to be involved not just in open source but to be more active human beings. So true! Goes back to being inclusive and encouraging.

rrnwexec said that he’s seeing an increase of women in his group as well from not many to about 20%. He said, “The magic (for us) has been taking the “geek” out of our meetings, and making them more social. That means banning computers sometimes, and also means inviting families.”

I’m a geek but if a meetup once a month without computers will help all feel welcome, then I can go without — twitch twitch — one night. An idea was a family day at the LoCo level that is a global event.

Contests were the next topic. In the past, there were two competitions. I think going forward into the Natty cycle, there will be one competition centered around Ada Lovelace day (March 24th) that will be focused on the youth. Also, more outreach through blogging by the adults.

How can we bridge the chasm not just in a technical way but a social way to women, people with disabilities, and more? If women feel safe, then maybe all will feel safe. That’s how I feel. I’m definitely a fan of “Ubuntu for All” and not just focusing on one gender. I’m just a little more experienced in being a woman than some of the other minorities in open source.

Speaking of “Ubuntu For All,” AlanBell is revitalizing the project.

Elky (I recognized her by her accent!) suggested two books for reading which are now on my library list:

Launchpad/Bazaar introduction

Blueprint: launchpad-bazaar-introduction

Unfortunately, I couldn’t see what the session leaders were doing but did learn more of the vocabulary and process. The example project that they used for a lot of the walkthrough was drizzle.

I learned they spell out the command (b z r) and don’t say “bazaar.” Teams own the code not an individual. You join a team not a project. Example of a team is drizzle-developers.

Also, you don’t need permission to grab the branch of the code. It’s not like git/github where you fork the repository. In Launchpad, you just push the branch you updated to wherever and ask for it to be merged to the trunk.

If any of this is confusing, don’t worry, I’ll be posting more about it over time. I have experience with code versioning systems (CVS, SVN, Mercurial) so was able to follow along, at least. Hopefully there will be video of the session posted!

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