Wednesday, June 25, 2008

June Board Meeting

I've been an elected committer rep for 3 months now. Committers: thanks a lot for all this extra work!

In all seriousness, I want to update the community on last week's Eclipse Board Meeting. As you know, some of the material covered in Board meetings is confidential (especially financial stuff). However, most of it is open and ends up being published in the minutes. Last week, the Board met in lovely Denver to cover the following topics:

  • New fee structure approval and Bylaw change vote discussion
  • Project reports from TPTP and BIRT
  • Positive vote on standardizing eRCP at the OSGi Alliance
  • Project Roadmap Process
  • Japanese Localization of Bugzilla
  • Positive vote on dual Licensing (EPL and EDL) for the embedded runtime components in RTSC and TM.
  • Eclipse Strategy discussion

I want to focus on a couple items that are relevant for the wider committer community. First, the Project Roadmap. Project leads will recall the heated discussion about the XML project plan format. Much of the concern was around the dates when projects needed to have their plans posted. You'll be happy to know that the Board moved the Eclipse roadmap publication dates, so project plans are now due by September 30 instead of August 31. This better aligns with the typical project planning cycles, especially for Eclipse train projects.

Second, we had a discussion about Japanese localization of Bugzilla. In the interest of full disclosure: this is coming at the request of one of my incubating projects - NAB. NAB already has both English and Japanese mailing lists and web pages, but they don't use Bugzilla at all right now because they perceive a language barrier with their user community. (Incidentally, there's also a Japanese Working group in Eclipse.) The Board discussed localization and agreed that native language templates for Bugzilla are a reasonable request, but conversations in Bugzilla needed to be conducted in English. Given our intense focus on IP issues in the community, we feel this is critical. How do the committers feel about this?

Third, did you know that there's an Eclipse Strategy document? Yes, there's a one page document from last year, but I haven't yet found the link. Anyway, it contains some good goals, but it's pretty light on initiatives. In an attempt to advance our strategic thinking, the Board had a facilitated discussion on Eclipse strategy – the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats facing our community. The results aren't fully baked yet, so stayed tuned for more communication on the ideas and initiatives.

There were some other interesting discussions. I'll cover eRCP standardization and the dual-licensed embedded runtime components in a future post.

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