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openSUSE:Board election 2013 platform funkypenguin

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Note: This page is used by the candidate of the board election as a platform to show his views and answer some standard questions.

Introduction and Biography

Me being attacked by Geekos

Aloha! I'm Andrew Wafaa, many people know me as FunkyPenguin. I've been an active contributor to openSUSE since before the project started, my first contributions date back to version 9.1 of the distribution (I've been a user since version 6.2). I'm 36 (and a bit) years old living in a small town in the East of England, although I originally come from Aberdeen. I'm a happy husband and father to three crazy kids.

For my $DAYJOB I am the Principal Engineer, Open Source at ARM Ltd. As part of my role I interact with various operating system communities, software projects and hardware vendors; I regularly attend numerous Open Source related conferences around the world.

As far as my openSUSE contributions go, I have done numerous things:

  • Member of the GNOME team
  • Led the MeeGo on openSUSE effort (Smeegol)
  • Member of the ARM team
  • Assisted in translations for the release team
  • Packager of various applications
  • SUSE Studio Alpha tester
  • General openSUSE advocate
  • Elected member of the openSUSE Board (2011-2013)

Should anyone wish to contact me or see my ramblings, I can be found via numerous avenues:

  • Email: awafaa at o.o (
  • IRC: FunkyPenguin or awafaa (on Freenode/Gimp/OFTC/EFnet)
  • Blog
  • Google+
  • Twitter

Major Issues

Currently the biggest issue that the Board is faced is ensuring that the communication between key stake holders (currently only SUSE) is clear concise and inclusive. The openSUSE Team over at SUSE have some good ideas that are being lost in translation when communicated and we need to help get the correct message across, first time. Some of the translation issue is not understanding our community. The one positive from this issue is that the previous issue of no communication is now gone, we are making improvements, just that they take time.

Once the communication has been resolved, the Board needs to ensure thaqt the resources that the openSUSE Team have are being applied in a useful and constructive way that benefits the Community, and this includes SUSE as they are an active member of the openSUSE community. There is no one size fits all, but with a bit of work compromises can be made and the overall end event is a win/win for everyone.

The Board is here to serve you, the Community. Ensuring that the Community gets the full picture of plans and actions, as early on as possible, is key to fostering a healthy and progressive growth.

Minor Issues

One of the issues that I see is ensuring that Board members spend enough time dealing with the functions of the Board. This has increased over the years with a minimum of 5hrs per week, up to a peak of 10-15hrs. I need to ensure I allocate enough time to Board activities, part of that has already been actioned with my employer allowing me more flexibility.

Role of the board

The Board has always been a non-technical governing body, I will push to keep it that way. It may not sound glamorous but we the Board are effectively administrators; we look out for the good of the Project; we mediate on issues; we help light the spark that people have; we foster where needed; we promote where we can; but importantly we have fun!

Why you should vote for me?


I aim to remain honest to you the Community, if I disagree I will make it known. I will be open to compromise, to ensure constant positive movement. I will fight for what you, my constituents, ask for. I. WILL. BE. GEEKO!


Room for your supporters to leave a word about you

Through his involvement in GNOME, ARM and other parts of the openSUSE Project, Andrew has show he has a 'can do' attitude. He has the ability to stay calm, even when that is difficult. Respect! -- jospoortvliet