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TWiki Community Summit, 2008-02-14/15

Previous and next event


Following on our great TWiki Community Rome Summit in August, 2007, we all agreed we wanted to get together every six months! So the second TWiki Community Summit will be held at Yahoo! Inc., Sunnyvale, California, the heart of the Silicon Valley. We are looking for volunteers so please sign up! This will be a user-pay community event.


Date: Thu & Fri, 2008-02-14 & 15
Time: 08:30am - 09:00am: Coffee
09:00am - 12:30pm: Morning sessions
12:30pm - 01:30pm: Lunch
01:30pm - 05:30pm: Afternoon sessions
08:00pm - 10:00pm: Dinner (on Thursday)
05:30pm - 08:00pm: TWiki user Meetup (on Friday)
Location: Headquarters of Yahoo! Inc.
Building C (Thursday/Friday - Classroom 3)
701 First Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA, USA (Map map)
Phone Conference: Provided for remote participants for morning sessions (evening in Europe). Dial in info: Denmark 80886352, UK 08000 920347, France 0805101651, Germany 0800 0007215, Australia 1-800-469-247 Universal Access Code for all countries #: join #twiki_release to find out
Yahoo Security Info: For the Summit (Thursday and Friday during the day), our receptionists and security team should be aware that you'll be coming. You can register and pick up name tags/badges in the Building D lobby. If you pull into the main parking lot, the security people at the front gate will direct you to parking and Building D.The room is reserved in Building C (right next to D, where the gym and the cafeteria is). In theory if you wish to roam in and out of the buildings over the course of the day you'll need to be escorted by a Yahoo! employee


The agenda will be defined at the beginning of the summit. Times are pacific time. Add 8 hours for GMT and 9 hours for CET.

  • Thu 09:00 - 10:00: Introduction
  • Thu 10:00 - 12:00, 13:00 - 14:00: TWikiGovernance / CommunityDecisions
  • Thu 14:00 - 17:00: Recruiting - How to refine our dev process to make the TWiki project more attractive to new contributors
  • Fri 09:00 - 12:00: Roadmap and release focus of GeorgetownRelease
  • Fri 12:00 - 13:00: Lunch
  • Fri 13:00 - 14:30: Roadmap and release focus of GeorgetownRelease (cont.)
  • Fri 14:30 - 15:00: TWikiFoundation: Needed/useful/no way?
  • Fri 15:00 - 16:00: Marketing: How can we get more exposure in the press and blogosphere?

(Actual agenda is reflected in Log of Summit)

Notes of Summit

Day 1 - Thursday

Notes taken by Peter Thoeny.


Lynnwood Brown:

  • Part of WikiRing
  • Likes face to face time
  • Now on East Coast
  • Not technical background, but community organizing
  • TWiki is best KM app in the world
  • Bread and butter of small companies
  • Old Hypercard user
  • TWiki as database, public sites -> scalability
  • Create a good business model
  • Need a structure in community

Sopan Shewale:

  • Persistent employee, now contracting at Yahoo
  • Contributing on extension, now would like help on core code

Julian Cash:

  • Likes TWiki
  • Working for TWIKI.NET

Larry Wall:

  • No expectations, here to be decorative
  • Minimal experience with wikis, none with TWiki

Jud Dagnall:

  • Yahoo, platform engineering
  • Resposnible for TWiki
  • Performance and scalability

Rod Beckstrom:

  • Chairman and Chief Networking Catalyst of TWIKI.NET
  • Love wikis
  • Met Peter and TWiki, revolutionary
  • Fan of TWiki technology, the most powerful technology, needs usability
  • Concern on community
  • Lot of communities do not have a successful business model
  • Challenge to get a successful commerical model, needed for TWiki to succeed
  • Like to see TWiki as the #1 wiki in commercial space in open source (.com, .edu., .gov)

Vicki Brown:

  • TWiki is first wiki used
  • Yahoo employee, wiki champion at Yahoo
  • Likes Perl
  • Good that summit is here at Yahoo
  • Likes programmability of TWiki

Kenneth Lavrsen:

  • Motorola mgr
  • Hardware engineer
  • Introduced TWiki to Motorola in 2004 as ISO quality management system
  • Not easy to get TWiki started
  • Helps on release management of TWiki
  • Helps on getting agreements

Koen Martens:

  • Runs small company Sonologic
  • Does a lot with TWiki
  • Goal of TWiki: Performance
  • Governance of TWiki, community decisions

Crawford Currie:

  • Bulk of coding last few years
  • Concern: Need more people
  • Well organized people
  • Need good decision making process needed

Colas Nahaboo:

  • User of TWiki at ILOG
  • TWiki as Intranet and application framework

Peter Thoeny:

  • Have seen TWiki grow from infancy to today over the last 10 years
  • Goal to grow ecosystem with win/win/win for community, users and commercial entities
  • TWiki as application market place

Michael Corbett:

  • Codev web is jungle
  • Usability improvements
  • Doc improvements
  • TWiki apps

TWiki Business Model / Governance / Decision Making Process


  • Key question: What is the successful open source / business model for TWiki?
  • Not enough marketing dollars:
    • Mediawiki has Wikipedia to promote the engine
  • PostgreSQL is a failure, no leading company associated with it
    (Clarification: Rod said that open source business models that have one primary company supporting the community (such as MySQL) are more successful than those with several equally big companies (PostgreSQL). He also said that this was PostgreSQL's own publicly stated assessment. He stated at the beginning that PostgreSQL has arguably the best open source RDBMS technology.)
  • Successful models- open source communities with one driving company alongside them: MySQL, RedHat/Fedora, Zimbra, JBoss, etc.
  • TWiki needs same model to be successful
  • This model allows a company to develop the brand, image and marketing for the technology while the GPL code all remains open source


  • Perl has well less structure than twiki.org
  • A lot of flame wars
  • Perl 6 start: Governance question
  • John Orwand threw mugs across the room until they broke
  • If we do not something we will spiral down
  • Think what new things need to happen
  • Committed to rewrite Perl from scratch, need to be seen if good decision, but was agreed on
  • One mailing list not enough, split up
  • I as founder learned to delegate more
  • From that time only language designer, happy with decision
  • Over 200 proposals, impossible to manage
  • Needed BenevolentDictator, was possible because:
    • Perl 5 was very stable
    • Nobody's business model was based on Perl, O'Reilley is diversified with other books
    • Active State: Mandate to maintain Windows port, diversified with other stuff
  • Good job on managing interested parties:
    • If too close they fight, if too far no communication
  • Forgiveness model on SVN checkin
    • Role of benevolent dictator is to make sure there is no turf protection
  • Can be benevolent dictator for life?
    • If you yell people pay attention
    • Don't abuse power


  • Got agreement on road map in Rome
  • Every single code contribution has been welcomed and honored since then
  • We are still moving towards the agreed upon road map


  • Two types in community: Talkers and doers
  • Doers: Code, Refactor topics, doc
  • Talkers become doers only when decision support is there for them
  • Benevolent dictatorship can work, but need timely decisions
  • Decisions are left untaken; let's make timely decisions


  • Find Crawford's comment on doers and talkers arrogant to community members
  • Some developer in the community have been hostile and scared away other new coders from coming in
  • This is a problem and the hostility must be reduced


  • All open source communities have issues with talkers
  • Timely decisions help drive community
  • You need to know who makes decisions
  • IETF: "Rough consensus and the rest in code"


  • We try to make a problem we do not have
  • TWiki is basically a software program consisting of code, docs, support/community
  • Real important decision: Roadmap, features
  • Decision process introduced two years ago works well
    • Raise proposal in Codev topic
    • If committed developers, we have 14 days to raise concerns
    • If no agreement, it will be discussed and decided on in release meeting
    • Most proposals accepted by 14-day rule or consensus. Rejecting rare.


  • No problem with code decisions, question on other decisions
  • Lacking marketing


  • Marketing decisions need to be done autonomous and quickly
  • Press release was rejected by two people, resulting in a washed out press release that induced no press coverage


  • Arthur is in charge of twiki.org redesign, decided in Rome meeting
  • Peter was happy to let go
  • Progress on twiki.org slow due to lack of time. Noone blocks the change.


  • I have heard there are rumors of forking
    • Anyone speaking up if decision process on features not working? (no answer)
  • Question - is anyone on this call talking about or discussing forking. Answer- no.
  • Good, because why would anyone fork from a community that welcomes everyone's contribution?


  • Necessity of compromise
  • Talks about forking in not about code, it is about strategy
  • Democracy works well on tactical things, such as features
  • Democracy is lousy on strategy:
    • Long time thing, vision thing
    • Decide who is going to make strategy decisions
  • Hierarchy is needed for strategy
  • As benevolent dictator for life of Perl, I drive that strategy
  • This way it works


  • TWiki has gone from complete grassroots open source to having some participants with business interests
  • WikiRing is brand of consultants who do business
  • TWIKI.NET builds up business around TWiki
  • Strategy of community and commercial entities might not be the same
  • For commercial entities to be successful the open source TWiki needs to be well functioning and successful as a project. Ie. common interest for all of us.


  • TWiki code is an open source product
  • No individual owns it
  • Source code process that works
  • Not enough people contributing- we need to recruit more talent
  • Some people feel insulted by some developers (code rejected, all contributed code rewritten)
  • Unhealthy thing to put logos in "thousands" of places without discussing in community (later clarified to be 53 places)
  • WikiRing pre-emptively put up their logo on the website wherever they felt they contributed code, without ever asking permission
  • Hundreds of other people have contributed code and never put up their logos
  • What open source community allows individuals to pre-emptively put up logos wherever they want? (answer: only Joomla but the community is now divided)
  • Where would such a cycle lead?
  • Why was this done without even discussing with community?


  • Has not heard any rumours of a fork
  • WikiRing logos placed in extensions only for extensions created exclusively by WikiRing members
  • We did not ask for permission in advance
  • If you are concerned about us having put the logos up without ever discussing with community, what do you propose we do?
    (Added later: Firefox is the obvious example of a community that welcomes branded extensions)


  • I propose you remove the logos from the website until the community discusses the matter and makes a decision about whether it is appropriate or not
  • TWIKI.NET openly brought up logo issues every time to the community
  • Other commercial interests at a minimum should do the same, but this was not done


  • Stated that he would take action to respond to any censure the community felt was required with respect to logos


  • How far should unapproved logo posting go?
  • What other open source communities allow this?
  • Won't this simply lead to attribution wars on code contributions?
  • When someone adds a new line of code, do they get to add their logo?
  • Kenneth help test almost all of the code check-ins. Should he add his company logo to every page?
  • I think this is a very bad precedent and again it happened without any community discussion


  • WikiRing rejected TWIKI.NET when it came in
  • Let us welcome TWIKI.NET and work together


  • Peter owns the TWiki trademark and also the twiki.org domain
  • He protects it well


  • Peter has owned the TWiki trademark since day one, it has always been registered like that


  • Goal is win/win/win for community, commercial entities, users
  • Many people do tremendous work to support the community, such as Kenneth and Arthur
  • I am the most active contributor on twiki.org (TWikiOrgStatistics) on support, facilitating, doc etc, with goal to grow the whole ecosystem


  • Roadmap defined in Rome meeting
  • Progress on roadmap: WYSIWYG editor earlier than expected (good).
  • All other roadmap items are either progressing or right on the spot with the raised feature proposals.


  • Disagreement on attribution
  • Important to give attribution to corporate sponsors


  • I spend a lot of time on testing plugins, also of WikiRing, do I get a Motorola logo on the plugin? (ironic remark - saying that few contributions are solely the contribution of a single person or company)
  • If someone pays a company it is important to give attribution to sponsoring company.


  • Just checked: 53 WikiRing logos on TWiki.org, 41 of them on extensions contributed by WikiRing members
  • Would be delighted to see logos of Motorola and others posted, but aware of corporate constraints


  • Logo question on plugins is indicated as TBD, why nobody posted a proposal


  • Core team role question
  • Transparency of core team
  • Membership process, how to
  • What types of decisions are not addressed:
    • Attribution for code contribution
    • Attribution for commercial contributions
    • TWiki site, high level
  • Peter's unilateral use of TWiki trademark


  • Core team has now "only" veto right
  • If we increase core team, I should get recognized as benevolent dictator, with veto right
  • Primary purpose is conflict resolution


  • I was throwing mugs to start candid discussion
  • The truth needed to get out
  • Need to leave to airport
  • Incredible appreciation to everyone here (Larry for Perl, Vicki for using TWiki at Yahoo, everybody to contribute to project)
  • Larry put real issue on table
  • Some processes should be democratic
  • Others require hierarchy and ultimately need to go to the Benevolent Dictator
  • Peter has been extremely supportive benevolent dictator, too benevolent
  • Mark S. and the company and foundation he created own the Ubuntu and Canonical brands; most successful open source communities do have a benevolent dictator
  • Successful open source communities have a founder that is both strong in the open source community and the leading related company
  • TWiki is more like Ubuntu/Canonical than people realize- Peter leads the OS community and he also is a co-founder of TWIKI.NET and owns the TWiki brand
  • I have done my best to stir things up and put issues on the table
  • Good luck on your subsequent meeting


  • Current Core team role:
    • Root access to twiki.org and develop.twiki.org (secretary role)
    • Veto right, never used, never threatened to use
    • Communication by e-mail, all open, twiki-dev mostly CCed
    • Core team never met the past two years.
    • Security team is small and need to be secret
  • Current Release process designed with veto right introduced so that:
    • no entity gets 10 bodies to show up in meeting to push decision
    • protection against proposals that would be breaking compatibility
  • Proposal for new core team: Elected core team, term per release
    • With roles: Release management, marketing
    • Peter always member as founder and TWiki brand holder.
    • Still two to veto things to prevent personal interest based vetos


  • Democratic: Elect leaders for release mgmt, marketing etc
    • Leaders in a field have decision power
  • Benevolent Dictator needed for overall conflict resolution


  • Good to have outside person to advise on community questions


  • Every community has poisonous people
  • Expect cultural hit if you deal with poisonous people
    • Tough call when to address, not too soon, not too late
  • Perl 6 core team (not that name) has weekly phone conv, minutes posted
    • Knocking people happens off record


  • What is the problem you are trying to solve? Not understood as outsider of project


  • Know who to ask, who makes decision


  • We can make most decisions when it comes to conflict with same process as used today for releases


  • We make an elephant of something that is not there
  • Decisions on tactical things work well with current release process, also for non feature stuff
  • Overall strategy of twiki.org project is well understood, see TWikiMission

TWiki Strategy Question

Question raised by Kenneth to probe if the project has a potential conflict on strategy. "in 30 seconds - where do you want TWiki to move the next two years?"


  • Strategy: Clean up twiki.org to make easy to find content
  • Killer app for TWiki: User interface of TWiki & TWiki apps
  • Scalability


  • Mail integration
  • TWiki apps


  • Scaling
  • Better search


  • 10K users, millions of pages, sub-second search



  • Performance
  • Usability for AJAX-like web apps


  • Win/win/win
  • TWiki accepted outside engineering: Usability


  • RAD


  • Conclusion on strategy. We are on same page on strategy. We all want scalability/performance, better way to exchange applications, usability improvements. We do not need a dictator to make us go the same direction because we already agree on the high level goals of the project.


  • I am not sure I would like to be the Queen of England, e.g. not an option


  • Three branches of governance:
  • Larry is in role of Supreme Court, not Queen of England
  • Body to execute: Core team
  • Body to define law
  • Coin name of three bodies


  • Dictator cannot make decision on things like for example best AJAX technology to use
  • Dictator can block a silly proposal to change from TML to HTML storage format (example of bad proposal that would destroy all twiki applications)


  • We can't make decision today on governance
  • Proposal, to discuss in Codev and release meetings, decide at 3rd summit in Berlin:
    • Benevolent Dictator with veto right, not to be abused (never abused in past 10 years)
    • New core team body, elected, veto rights, decision power on area of expertise


  • That process is too slow


  • Process is too slow, need decisions before then
  • Do not use "Core Team" name for executive duty because it is an overloaded term



  • New query search allows us to run a database in future for better performance


  • DBCachePlugin very useful

Recruiting and Retention


  • Hard to get started as new contributor:
    • Many things to learn (svn, unit testing, code conventions, ...)
    • Larger codebase
    • Turf (do I dare touching this part of the code?)
    • Small core code dev team
  • Coders leaving the community:
    • Around 20 people with core svn access rights, but only a handful active, 2 most active
    • Code rejected
    • Code rewritten
    • Flame wars
    • New features not matching needs


  • Not noticed code rejection as problem

Will T:

  • How to engage young people?
  • Many companies use TWiki only as publishing wiki, many do not comprehend the power of apps


  • Need sexy projects to attract contributors
  • Use TWiki Applications as a route to pull people in


  • Pull in people by interest and by needs


  • Distinguish between:
    • Recruiting Perl programmers
    • Build up TWiki apps community and recruit TML coders


  • Apps community: Create Apps web already decided.
  • Perl code contributor:
  • Very hard to get in (learning curve and knowing where to start)
  • TWikiDeveloperSchool idea: Can use training budget of company to get technical training


  • Establish mentoring program


  • Document high level structure of TWiki code
  • Document how to refactor


  • Need to break up TWikiRoadMap into manageable pieces, e.g. into feature proposals
  • Create a place where a new developer can see open and accepted item
  • Split up large feature proposals into smaller chunks
  • Encourage fixing bugs, how?
  • Bugs waiting for feedback should send reminder e-mails


  • Need to address turf question, or not an issue?


  • Works pretty good for existing contributors
  • Need good holding hands for new folks -> mentors
  • Many European contributors, not many in USA; but most users in USA -> Try to recruit more in USA

Will N:

  • How to get big companies involved?


  • E.g. how to enable more employees of companies using TWiki to contribute?

Will T:

  • Create marketplace for implementing chunks of code, consultants can implement


  • We tried to create marketplace, but nobody will bid on the chunks


  • Any areas we can improve our feature proposal process to make it easier for new people to get started?
  • Historically two types of contributors:
    • Employees of companies using TWiki
    • Consultants earning (part of) living with TWiki
    • (also students and geeks contributing out of love to the project)
  • What concretely can we do to recruit people from these two categories


  • Employees contributing:
  • Not paid to work on code, code for fun


  • There are many employees who would like to "pay back" as an individual, realizing that company does not pay back


  • IRC is a good way to recruit


  • Have a positive & encouraging response in initial conversation
  • Give acknowledgment to new contributor who contributed just a bit


  • Create passion
  • Recommended reading: How to Build a User Community, Part 1
    • Do not assume person asking question is at the expert level you are
  • Be tolerant and helpful to new user's questions



  • Encourage new contributors to define spec, e.g. from large companies using TWiki
  • Believer in indirect processes: Get people involved by other things


  • I like to answer newbie questions
  • Get experts aware of cast system

Day 2 - Friday

Lynnwood Brown volunteered to take notes, which was not posted on Friday. Peter Thoeny adds notes from recollection on Saturday.

Roadmap and Release focus of Georgetown Release

  • Participants reviewed and updated the TWikiRoadMap
  • Surprising alignment, and no shift since the Rome meeting 6 month ago smile
  • Kenneth and Peter stated the importance of the Apps web to start the wiki champion community
    • We have seen an explosion of contributions after the plugins API was introduced, creating a sub-community of plugin coders
    • We can repeat that by building up a wiki champion community that can exchange ideas around TWiki applications and share apps
    • Create packaging standard with installer that tailors non-programmers, e.g. all web-based, avoiding geek terms such as "manifest" (use "package list")
  • The governance question came up again.
    • Koen stated he felt he could not speak openly about issues surrounding governance and CommerceAndCommunity due to a hostile reception of his contributions.
    • Peter's reply: Not hostile to contributions at all, but rejecting actions such as asking to hand over the TWiki trademark to a proposed foundation lead by a WikiRing member
    • As part of the discussion Kenneth stated that WikiRing competed with TWIKI.NET. Michael Daum tried to explain that just from the point of differences of the two entities, there can't be a competition: WikiRing is a non-profit network of consultants, while TWIKI.NET is a for-profit company having a support and product strategy. If at all, individual consultants and their companies may be in competition with TWIKI.NET, following that, Michael Daum stated that he would like to compete with TWIKI.NET.
    • Kenneth replied that the WikiRing members are for profit, others agreed
    • Peter stated again that he would like to establish a win/win/win for community/sponsors/customers, e.g. by feeding consulting projects to consultants (Crawford, Sven and Arthur already benefited from this).

Additional notes on Roadmap discussion from LynnwoodBrown

  • Usability
    • Michael feels that we can improve the documentation structure in the distribution.
    • Lynnwood - The most valuable usability improvement for documentation is simply to simplify and hide or remove significant portions of TWiki web.
  • Storage and performance
    • Michael
      • We can’t do more complex applications without having more efficient file indexing.
      • We’ve been moving in direction of:
        • Keeping .txt files as “authorized” location of data
        • Have parallel database structure for more powerful searching.
      • Would like to look at more efficient structure of meta data storage within the txt file.
    • Peter
      • Goal of being able to scale to 100s of thousands of topics.
    • Lynnwood - other aspects of performance improvement:
      • Refining architecture and rendering flow to support delegating different functions to different servers.
      • Caching of rendered pages (or parts of pages)
    • Kenneth and Peter
      • Proposes that the DOM or topic object model is implemented on the level of the db storage but leave the txt files essentially as they are.
  • TWiki applications
    • Peter - sees this as similar opportunity as when we defined plugin api that generated a lot of community activities. Making it easy to package and share twiki applications could generate opportunity for less technical twiki champions to share packages.

TWiki Foundation: Needed/useful/no way?

  • Only useful for infrastructure (hardware and hosting)
  • TM of TWiki remains with Peter who protected it well over the last 10 years, e.g. no need to establish a foundation
  • We have an agreement on overall strategy (see roadmap), e.g. lesser need to establish foundation
  • Foundation not needed for taktical decisions, such as feature proposal process
  • Foundation not needed to coordinate consulting projects, can be done by business entities with sub-contracting)
  • Participants felt that it would be useful to have a marketplace where consultants could bid on chunks of work

Marketing: How can we get more exposure in the press and blogosphere?

  • Brainstorming discussion on ow to create buzz
  • Create narrated webcasts
    • Good software for Windows: Wink (although not best sound quality)
    • Good software for Mac: I Show You
  • Vicki suggested to use Twitter, e.g. community members talk about TWiki in Twitter. Also, create a twiki user and post blog RSS feed of twiki.org
    (later: twiki is already taken but unused. Vicki suggests we ask politely if we can have it.)
  • Promote on Meetup.com, Facebook
  • YouTube video contest, to be announced on 2008-02-18
  • Use Wikipedia:Web_badge exchange with selected websites, such as perl.org
  • Ask bloggers and website owners to add web badge to their website

Action Item


Who Yes/No/
PeterThoeny Yes Let's grow & strengthen our community!
KennethLavrsen Yes Will combine with vacation and bring along Diane
SopanShewale Yes Looking forward to meet people behind TWiki
LynnwoodBrown Yes Looking forward to it!
RodBeckstrom Partial I'm really looking forward to seeing everybody! (Thursday morning only)
Larry Wall Partial on Thursday
Jud Dagnall Partial  
WillNorris Partial  
WillThomas Partial  
DebbieChen No Would like to learn how to start contributing to the twiki project
CrawfordCurrie Remote Can't afford it, even with the depressed dollar
CarloSchulz No Can't afford it
KoenMartens Remote Undisclosed reasons
ColasNahaboo Remote Dont think I can come
MartinCleaver No Undisclosed reasons
SteffenPoulsen No Can't afford it
ArthurClemens Remote Personal obligations, price tag
VickiBrown Yes Thursday and Meetup
JulianCash Partial I'll be there Thurs morn.
MichaelDaum Remote Partial Can't make it
SvenDowideit No I appear not to have a biometric passport, and haven't needed to organise a visa to travel since the 1980's smile

This will be an interesting dev summit. At the end of the day we'll have a user meetup where we expect an additional 50+ people!


MOVED TO... See TWikiCommunitySummit2008Q1Photos

-- Contributors: AmirShobeiri, KoenMartens, PeterThoeny - 22 Jan 2008


actually CarloSchulz just suggested to do a video-conference wink

-- CarloSchulz - 21 Aug 2007

just to ensure that I'll be in Europe at the time - Sydney, Australia

-- SvenDowideit - 22 Aug 2007

So, one month left to decide and still not much discussion on the location. I'd love to visit Australia, the cost might be a problem though but i would seriously consider going. As for SF: I really need a whole lot of persuading to come to the USA. I prefer not to travel to a country where privacy means nothing, you and your personal belongings can be searched without warrant or reasonable suspicion and where you can be arrested and detained without a trial for years on (oh, did i mention the torture?). So if it is in SF, count me out.

-- KoenMartens - 12 Sep 2007

Unfortunately I can't really afford anything out of europe frown

-- CarloSchulz - 12 Sep 2007

Koen - funny stuff - on paper, Switzerlands even worse, but thankfully the reality is much much nicer - but their laws give the lots of power.

-- SvenDowideit - 12 Sep 2007

WikiSym, Wikimania and other conferences are held in Europe and North America. I feel strongly that we should alternate our summit between Europe and America. The biggest TWiki userbase is in the US/Canada, e.g. we have a large pool of potential contributors we can recruit. The Silicon Valley is the mecca of software, we get more publicity if we organize the event in the Silicon Valley.

Koen: While I sympathize with your statements I feel we should keep twiki.org focused on TWiki and keep politics out of the equation.

-- PeterThoeny - 12 Sep 2007

Peter, of course. I just won't be there if it is held in the US, but again that should be of no consequence to a final decision. That's why we alternate, so that everyone has a chance to visit a community summit yearly.

-- KoenMartens - 13 Sep 2007

yep, Wikimania, Taipei ... Europe and North America *grin*

-- SvenDowideit - 13 Sep 2007

Would be excellent if our summits become so stable that we could also begin to experiment with locations - holding on to a North America / Europe alteration scheme is excellent for now, imho.

  • Wikimania - 2005: Frankfurt, 2006: Cambridge, 2007: Taipei
  • WikiSym - 2005: San Diego, 2006: Odense, 2007: Montreal

As you might know, WikiSym co-locates with the ACM conferences - probably making life a bit easier on themselves that way.

Wikimania has a very interesting bid procedure for choosing their locations, latest progress in the decision for their next location can be followed at http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2008/Bids. The page has a lot of stuff (criterias, judging procedures) that we could let ourselves be inspired by.

Koen, I would personally really appreciate it if it was possible you could replace the arguments against the two suggested locations with some thoughts in favor of your preferred location. Just to keep our process as open as possible smile

-- SteffenPoulsen - 14 Sep 2007

Just a crazy thought, since TWiki releases are names of a city/town, we should have summits in those places. wink

-- KwangErnLiew - 15 Sep 2007

Yeah, we need a Hamburg release with a summit in Hamburg wink or a Hong Kong one, well that's a bit far...

-- CarloSchulz - 15 Sep 2007

I agree with SteffenPoulsen , we should have meetings in TWiki release naming places. Since some of us expressed cost concerns I suggest to choose small not crowded towns with an acceptable distance from the airport. In those places usually hotel fare are not so expensive and ... names can be funny and original.

-- DomenicoAdamo - 20 Sep 2007

It was Kwang that suggested that. Fun - but I do not see the point of that proposal.

The main expense is the plane ticket and we should go where there is competition between airlines and low fare tickets - and outside tourist season. And it should also be an interesting place so we can merge it with vacation.

I am much in favor of the original proposal San Francisco. It is a wonderful sunny place with lots of things to do and see and it is possible to combine with a week of vacation. And there is usually a lot of competition from airlines outside the season.

And I would like to meet with some of our US users and try to get more US people involved in TWiki.

And with SF there is a chance that an IT company can sponser meeting room etc so we can save that cost.

And then next time in Europe again. Here I suggested Berlin because there is a crazy airfare competition on Berlin so you can fly almost for free, and the city is very cheap to live in. And as a tourist place it is also a wonderful city. Much more interesting than Hamburg or Frankfurt.

-- KennethLavrsen - 20 Sep 2007

True, Berlin is a very good and cheap choice and as Kenneth said "a tourist place". But Kenneth, Hamburg is way more interesting than Frankfurt and more beautiful for sure! - Says one who lives in Hamburg and has never been to Frankfurt.... wink

-- CarloSchulz - 20 Sep 2007

I am a but concerned that the community summit is suddenly being planned outside TWiki.org only.

Can we please pull back TWiki related stuff to twiki.org and use sites like meetup.com as a supplement please. Meetup reaches much more people but it should be a supplement. And especially for the Summits which are for the TWiki community things should happen here on twiki.org.

So far only 3 people are signed up for the 2008 Sunnyvale summit. If we are to get cheap flight tickets and plan vacation then it is about time. It is in 11 weeks.

I wonder how many twiki.org people that have noticed the activities on meetup.com.

I have copied the info from meetup to this topic.

I am also confused about the date. Is is only one day. Is it 14/15 like this topic said or only the 16th like the meetup item says.

-- KennethLavrsen - 26 Nov 2007

As already said on an other topic where this meet-up thingy was introduced I definitely second Kenneth opinion on keeping twiki things inside twiki.org...

-- CarloSchulz - 27 Nov 2007

The date is the original one as initially planned, e.g. Feb 14 & 15. We need to fix the date on the meetup.com website. Please plan ahead and book your flights early! I hope that many developers can join our second dev summit! The first summit gelled the TWikiCommunity, lets strengthen our community in the second summit!

At the recent TWikiMeetUpInSiliconValley we had more people signing up on meetup.com than on twiki.org. That is, we got more exposure and more participants through the very popular meetup site. Amir consolidated sign-ups from twiki.org, Meetup.com, Facebook and e-mail in the TWikiMeetUpInSiliconValley topic, e.g. the system of record is twiki.org. Using Meetup.com and Facebook is a simple way to get more exposure. May be we should add SecondLife as well?

How about scheduling the next TWiki User Meetup to coincide with the dev summit? We could organize a user meetup in the evening of the first day. This gives us developers a chance to mingle with many users.

-- PeterThoeny - 03 Dec 2007

On the "live" coverage:

  • video coverage is I think too involved to set up easily (I would like to be proven wrong however :-). Simply recording presentations with a small camera works wonders though. I do it with a simple Panasonic Lumix for instance, and put the video on our twiki in streaming format, I could help on this.
  • text chat can be done on the usual IRC on freenode. A good way to do it is that people taking notes just take notes directly on the channel, or a separate channel if you want not to mix meeting notes with unrelated support traffic. I can provide the logger, and/or you can send me your client logs that I can upload afterwards.
  • best could be an audio live stream. I would recommend buying a "room microphone" like http://www.gadgetchick.com/internet-phone-reviews/2006/clearone-chat-50-speakerphone/ and use Teamspeak http://www.goteamspeak.com/ that can host 100 people. I can host a teamspeak server on my hosted machine in the US. If you want to test, I have a server running on a beta test hoster, you can try it at koalaz.net:8767, server password: koala Teamspeak allow you also to record the audio, but of course, as for video, this should be done with the agreement of the recorded people.
Also, having a live coverage may be counter-productive: it could restrain the spontaneity of the meeting and prevent advancing on actual issues. Maybe this should be done only for the meetup and formal presentations?

-- ColasNahaboo - 22 Jan 2008

As a bare minimum we need to setup a standard audio conference bridge. If we are to make ANY consolidation on roadmaps people need to be part of it from their home.

Peter can you borrow a good conference phone? Not just any handsfree phone but a real conference phone, maybe the type with extra microphones. We do not need to buy one. It must be possible to borrow. Or from one of the US participants to bring it.

-- KennethLavrsen - 24 Jan 2008

We have not yet decided on the place, still working on getting space at a big company. If it is done at the Plug and Play Tech Center we have the nice Polycom conference phones.

Crazy idea: May be we should meet in SecondLife?

-- PeterThoeny - 25 Jan 2008

Hehe. Funny idea. But I do not want to force people to register themselves there and install strange software to participate. We should setup a conference bridge. It is simple, reliable, works anywhere.

-- KennethLavrsen - 25 Jan 2008

I'm exploring possibility of making the cross-country trip. Flights are surprisingly cheap currently. Has anyone identified convenient places to stay or even general vicinity?

-- LynnwoodBrown - 28 Jan 2008

Note that items like governance, foundations, and roadmap for Georgetown should only take place in open forum with a conference call.

The summit cannot take decisions in a closed forum. But we can discuss recruiting, and marketing and ideas in general at the Summit.

I am leaving for US in a very few hours and may not have internet access everywhere. I am a little concerned about the summit being a moving target with respect to physical location.

And for the community we need to setup the conference calls.

-- KennethLavrsen - 07 Feb 2008

I completely agree with you Kenneth. Without an open conference with broad participation, I can't imagine making any kind of "decision" on such sensitive issues. Personally, I'm hoping merely that we can use these f2f meetings as opportunity to lay some groundwork for these sensitive topics. I see it more as an opportunity of small group to do focused work - which is then put back out to the larger community for further consideration.

I also share your concern about logistical arrangements. I'm flying in and, now that you mention it, have no idea where I'm suppose to go Thursday morning other than the address mentioned above. I hope someone on-site is working on conferencing capabilities. It would be great also to draft some kind of tentative time schedule to help people who are not present plan on conferencing in. Predictably, the actual agenda will have to have some flexibility, but perhaps we could set some fixed times for sessions with conference-call support and then those present could organize our other discussions to feed into those larger sessions.

-- LynnwoodBrown - 08 Feb 2008

Can we please have some clear instructions now.

I am here with my wife and I need to exactly PLAN those two days since she will have the rented car.

  • WHERE do we meet with exact address. I am dead tired of finding TBD here.

  • WHEN do we meet

  • WHEN does it end?

It cost me 3 dollars per minutes to call and 20 dollars per megabyte to surf the internet so I would like clear and exact information NOW so my wife and I can plan things.

And for the rest of the community we need the agenda with time. We need the conference calls setup so people can plan to participate in the part where we wish to discuss the important stuff. Remember that there is a 8 or 9 hour time difference to most of the European community members. We need these things organized in advance and not the night before.

-- KennethLavrsen - 11 Feb 2008

It's probably too late now, but would it be possible to bridge to something online? Dialing in to the US will cost me greatly probably.

-- KoenMartens - 13 Feb 2008

I asked AmirShobeiri to find a conference bridge with some local access numbers in Europe if possible.

-- PeterThoeny - 13 Feb 2008

Thanks, I see he succeeded! Curious about your surprise smile

-- KoenMartens - 14 Feb 2008

How do we merge the oral discussions on the summit with those on Codev? Are there any connecting points? Are discussions starting off printouts of the relevant Codev pages? Does anybody summarizing Codev discussions before further oral discussions proceed? A lot of people including me are depending on written info about what's going on.

-- MichaelDaum - 15 Feb 2008

Michael, please dial in for the roadmap discussion if you are interested.

-- PeterThoeny - 15 Feb 2008

I have posted a personal weblog entry on the Summit and Meetup.

Also posted to the Blog web at twiki.org: Summit and MeetUp

-- VickiBrown - 17 Feb 2008

Sorry, that I had to leave so early. I would have liked to keep on discussing with you all a lot more, i.e. on the interesting technical things.

Let me give you a few short statements to clarify a couple of things that got lost during the discussion and where I think the current perception of WikiRing is being misleading.

  • WikiRing is non-profit, members are for-profit driving their own company each. No point in arguing.
  • WikiRing has got no leader and does not generate revenue in its own.
  • WikiRing has no joint product strategy
  • Moreover, WikiRing is a brainpool and marketplace for TWiki consultants.
  • Everybody is invited to join the WikiRing. You should have a good understanding of Open Source and a strong believe in it. You should have been active in the TWiki community before.
  • All of the work funded by customers of WikiRing consultants has directly been carried over to the TWikiCommunity. There are only some very few exceptions where work is covered by a non-disclosure agreement, or work is still ongoing and not yet been submitted to the community.
  • WikiRing hasn't thought of a need to state explicitly that it is comitted to a win/win/win stragegy, because that seemed to be obvious.
  • WikiRing does not fix pricings. Not in Europe, not anywhere else.

I hope that this clarifies a couple of things a bit.

-- MichaelDaum - 18 Feb 2008

I have removed from the actual meeting notes the side comments about setting prices since they had no relevance to the topic being discussed ("How can we get more exposure in the press and blogosphere") and, as presented, amounted to nothing more than innuendo verging on slander.

-- LynnwoodBrown - 18 Feb 2008

Thanks for organizing this event smile

-- StephaneLenclud - 20 Feb 2008

Some notes from me.

Taken out of context the "fixing prices" notes can easily be misinterpreted so let me clarify. It was a very friendly exchange of legal knowledge from me to Lynnwood, exchanged during a break, that in the event that someone some day in the future asks several consultants (in or outside Wikiring) for quotes on the same job, the consultants should remember never to make agreements with each other and quote the same price because that would be illegal in most countries. There was no indication or rumor or suspicion or anything else that this has ever happened or is about to happen.

During the profit/non-profit discussion I made a small speech where I think one message needs to be clear. What I said in compressed form was:

  • "When I originally chose TWiki as the product in Motorola, the existence of commercial support from multiple professional consultants was a key parameter. The fact that I knew that I could buy support in the event of trouble and not having to rely on the mercy and moods of pure volunteer people was a vital decision point. The fact that if I get hit by a bus, my colleagues can go to someone and get support was an important point when convincing the bosses. The presence of Wikiring, TWIKI.NET, and many other independent consultant is what makes TWiki a viable choice for businesses. Having commercial presence on the project is essential to making TWiki the Enterprise wiki and not just a toy. So both Wikiring, TWIKI.NET and the many other consultants are a welcome factor for the customers and for the community and there is no need for any of you to hide or tone down the commercial interests. The combination of the free open source project and the commercial support is a strength for the project and makes it stand out compared to the competition."

-- KennethLavrsen - 21 Feb 2008

Thanks, Kenneth, for the positive follow-up on our discussion. I can only subscribe to you saying "We need you all, thanks that you are here". I like the TWikiCommunity to be so colourful, and hope that it stays that way.

-- MichaelDaum - 21 Feb 2008

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