Running for the openSUSE Board
Hello, my name is Marina Latini AKA deneb_alpha and I'm a free software advocate promoting free software and open standards since 2007. I was also an active member of the Fedora Project from 2009 to 2013.
In 2010, I was one of the first Italian members of the LibreOffice community. I co-founded Associazione LibreItalia and from 2016 I'm The Document Foundation chairperson, been involved in several events, migrations and trainings related to LibreOffice. I worked at Studio Storti, an Italian company that provides open source solutions for Public Administrations, leading the LibreOffice Division.
From June 2018 I relocated in Munich, working at CIB mainly in its LibreOffice team as Senior Migrations & Deployments Engineer.
I'm an Italian openSUSE advocate, involved in the project from 2009 and, during the events I attend or organize, I support openSUSE as operating system and as Project. I'm focusing my activity on schools and students, talking about OBS, openQA or Studio Express.
With my relocation in Germany I spent most of my spare time learning German and understanding how the local open source communities are working in my new country.
Why I'm running and future plans
I'm a proud openSUSE user and advocate, and I finally decided to try to give something back to the community and the project that gave me so much until now.
I really think that running for the Board is not a way to collect a new badge for the CV.
The board guides the project and takes care of the needs of its community. It's that body that can make the difference. It's the next step between a group of passionate geeks that are doing funny stuff together, and a professional group of people with a clear vision and mission that can grow a real healthy and international opensource project.
I strongly believe that for having a really healthy community, we need to start to search where are our users. I'm not stating that we should abandon the old communication channels, but from my experience at TDF or Fedora, I think that we can't simply ignore the new social networks used by the local community to interact and organize the daily activities. These social channels are used also by new users that can become new contributors. The advice here is to clearly endorse these new social channels, moderating the discussions like we are already doing for the m-lists. As I like to say with friends from other communities, we can have the best software or operating system in the world, but if the users can't find proper documentation or local communities, the failure is the unique possible end.
One more crucial topic for growing the number of contributors is the gap and the lack of communication between the main project and the local community. We respect each-other, we invest our spare time as volunteers but unfortunately, too often, we are unable to close the gap between what is considered a local group of contributors or users, and the others that are part of the international community. Instead of reinventing the wheel, for example, we should provide updated and official marketing files that the local communities can translate and use locally. At the same time, we should find the time to look and see how the local communities are working. There isn't a unique recipe for promoting openSUSE that works in each country. Only listening to the local communities we can improve and grow.
What I would also love to do is to interact much more with other project that are probably encountering the very same issues. The knowledge sharing is one of the key element of the open source movement and we should start to listen to other voices that could come also from outside the openSUSE project. We can't live in an ivory tower ignoring what is going on outside. The mix and share of needs and ideas can foster openSUSE much more.
Last but not least, we can't stop to invest time in the educational sector. While interacting with the local communities, we could have the opportunity to organize more activities, for example with universities, high or secondary schools for creating a large user base of contributors.
I will be glad and honoured to serve the community as board member, sharing what I learned and I'm learning while supporting other communities like Fedora or LibreOffice. Have a lot of fun!
My openSUSE Events
2017 and 2018
Opensource events with LibreItalia and TDF, always supporting openSUSE as operating system.
- Cerea Fair 2013 (Cerea - VR)
- openSUSE Night 2013 - Milano (MI)
- openSUSE Conference 2013 - Thessaloniki
- Linux Day 2013 - Settimo Torinese (TO)
- Software Freedom Day 2009 (Perugia - PG) My first contact with openSUSE Community thanks to Andrea Florio and Mariano Iumiento