Ubuntu Developer Summits Now Online and Every Three Months

Bhavani Shankar R bhavi at ubuntu.com
Thu Feb 28 13:55:33 UTC 2013

On Thu, Feb 28, 2013 at 5:33 PM, Stefano Rivera <stefanor at ubuntu.com> wrote:
>> and for community members who have been caught off-guard and aren't
>> able to participate this time, they'll still be able to get the videos
>> of the discussions online, and three months from now be in a position
>> to participate on an even footing just like they would have otherwise.
> I don't know about you, but I have a huge backlog of conference talk
> videos on my laptop that keep waiting for me to find time to watch them.
> Most end up being deleted first.

Totally agreed as I have the same experience with some of the
webminars I register and miss them as work and real life priorities
take over and most end up not being watched.

> But I guess things that I *really* want to see, I'll find time for. And
> then be really irritated that I can't join the discussion because it's
> already over...

Yes the sense of being non real time does make one feel sad because if
it was then one could join the discussion ask questions/doubts if any
and get a real time response.

>> This isn't going to be a perfect, drop-in replacement for our previous
>> approach to UDS; there are certainly some trade-offs.  But I'm not convinced
>> that participation from Asia is actually one of them.
>> Setting aside the fact that in this case there's very short notice,
>> why would it be any easier to take off a week, hop on a plane, deal
>> with jet lag and attend UDS in person, than to take off two days, have
>> a couple of late nights, and attend sessions remotely?  The latter
>> option scales a lot better, takes /less/ time out of people's lives,
>> and I'm sure it gets a lot fewer people sick with the UbuFlu.

Agreed here, but some people around might find it difficult to
understand as stefano said below and its very easy to get distracted
when real life priorities take over (vs a single priority of attending
and speaking at sessions whilst travelling for a summit or conference.

> In my past experience of remote participation, it's far too easy to get
> distracted (other people around you don't really understand "I'm at a
> conference" when you aren't physically there). Having any reasonable
> discussion on IRC sucks, and you don't get the out-of-band discussion at
> the bar later that night. Sometimes that bar discussion results in
> another session being scheduled for the next day.

+1 here as I had the experience past UDS when members of the LoCo
Council met during breaks on the 3rd day and the next day a session
was scheduled just before the UDS closing party and planning for this
cycle was carried out.

> We don't get to meet the new community members in person. It's amazing
> how much it changes one's relationship with someone, when you meet them
> in person. I suspect this will have a big affect on the community over
> time (but not so much in the short term).

Agreed again as face to face physical interaction adds value to the
human side of the community and its an amazing feeling interacting
with a diverse crowd of people by which the bonding and closeness

> I'm going to miss UDS. And it'll undoubtedly affect my contributions to
> Ubuntu, although what the affects are will remain to be seen...

Pretty similar here too.

>> I know that Google Hangouts include various "low bandwidth" tweaks.  Do you
>> happen to have any experience with these, to know how well they work / what
>> the real minimum bandwidth requirements are for participating?  I suspect
>> that, in practice, it's not so different from what's required in order to be
>> able to participate effectively in other aspects of Ubuntu development, but
>> possibly it would be worth testing this before next week.
> I have days where YouTube is unusable, but I have a full Debian+Ubuntu
> mirror at home. The mirror can even be a week or two out of date without
> significantly affecting my ability to contribute.
> So no, decent bandwidth has less effect on ability to participate than
> you'd imagine.

Again a similar situation here as I have a full ubuntu local mirror at
my desktop and it gets very helpful while contributing in a sort of
decent bandwidth and will try out streaming with g+ again soon to see
how it works.

I love the idea of virtual UDS's as it has the potential of a wider
outreach  but I would also like to go with Allison's comment of
holding a physical event once in a year similar to debconf or pycon
and hold virtual UDS for those who cannot attend as I think it would
strike a balance between both.

Just a thought.


Bhavani Shankar
Ubuntu Developer       |  www.ubuntu.com

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