twittering on 2008-02-21

  • exporting a "medium sized" movie #
  • took 200+ photos of the eclipse. made a slideshow. uploading to pownce. #
  • xo my D40 #
  • my dad gave me a few nikon lenses a couple years ago. i finally am able to use them with the D40. my main film camera was my mom’s, a fujica #
  • ugh, now i’m hungry for cupcakes AND bacon. #
  • @petdance: no. #
  • funny tweets together: @ahockley- "exchange is down", @slashdot – "gates explains microsoft’s need for yahoo" #
  • social web != women in science/technology. more like blogging is replacing print. #
  • really cool that girls are into blogging, but it’s not translating directly into women in leadership positions in tech, especially in edu #
  • @petdance SHELLAC. yay. #
  • @spinnerin you’re rad! #
  • @spinnerin anytime 🙂 #
  • hungry already. still want bacon and cupcakes. #
  • @notbenh that sounds really good right now. #
  • @metafluence yeah, you should fix that because i thought you were maybe my creepy uncle when i got the msg. #
  • working out a tricky issue among italians. #
  • @geekygirldawn hope you feel better soon. the sun is beautiful today! #
  • @kanejo which trivia night do you go to? #
  • @geekygirldawn i haven’t figured it out yet. #
  • @linuxpoet yay for sponsors! #
  • so, if you are organizing something with someone, do you say that you are an organizer, or a co-organizer? #
  • @notbenh different responsibilities, but still lots of time for both people #
  • @notbenh no hierarchy, essentially. yeah, i think just ‘organizer’ is better. #
  • @linuxpoet: right, but i was referring to myself as co-organizer 🙂 because i thought it was "respectful". now i see that is silly 🙂 #


We had a lunar eclipse this evening. In the last few minutes before the eclipse, I got my camera out, and even managed a lens change (a 135mm my father gave to me a few years ago). I’m just learning how to shoot at night, but it was fun to play around with the lenses and my digital camera.

The tempo of the slide changes goes pretty well with Saeglopur by Sigur Rós. Here’s the original. Still trying to figure out exactly how this embedding thingy works. You’ll note that the movie below crops things oddly.

LAPUG Launch!


Saturday night, February 9, at 8pm, Richard Broersma and a crew of 15 launched LAPUG. Noel Proffitt, from the City of Garden Grove, gave a great talk on time-oriented (or temporal) database design.

He presented an example of a set of columns, rules and triggers for tracking both valid and transaction time. Noel also was kind enough to give a plug to the temporal data type that Jeff Davis and I presented last PGDay before OSCON. There was some suggestion that Jeff should submit the code for version 8.4.

We also showed off the new PUGs website, and talked a little about what had brought people to the BoF.

A few students from Cal Poly were there, along with many experienced administrators from around LA. Richard mentioned that his company was willing to host the group’s first meeting, and Noel offered to bring a projector. The group also asked about potential topics, so I am going to start a talks repository on the PUGs site. Ultimately, I’d love to have the authoritative and searchable repository of PostgreSQL talks for all PUGs to use as starting points and references.

Thanks go to Robert Broersma for taking the initiative and announcing the meeting, and Joshua Drake for scheduling the BoF. Also, it was a pleasure to spend the weekend with Joshua, Robert, David Fetter and Josh Berkus in the SCaLE PostgreSQL booth.

I’m looking forward to great meetings from LAPUG in the future!

Stormy Peters: Money, developers and creativity


Sunday’s keynote at SCaLE was given by Stormy Peters. She talked about open source, business contributions and the social and financial economies driving development.

Three of her research questions were:

  • What is the initial motivation that encourages people to contribute?
  • How do companies pay for open source contributions? (and what’s the effect?)
  • How do companies change projects when they join?


Her conclusion was that the developer community needs to teach businesses how to do things right for the community. We can’t wait for businesses to figure it out on their own. The call to action was a good one, but it seemed to leave some audience members scratching their heads. One audience member asked, “How do we do that?”

A few interesting figures she mentioned:

  • 1/3 of all developers believe that software should be free
  • Average number of open source projects a developer works on: 5
  • 40% of open source developers are paid to contribute
  • 10-20% are paid but their bosses don’t know it – that probably was a joke 😉

One quote that stuck with me was: “Typically people have been divided between left and right brain [professions].” I don’t agree. I think you only have to look briefly at the history of science to see that creativity (“right brain”) and reason (“left brain”) have often gone together.

The developer community just like many others – regular people who want to be useful, and inspired by their work. Creativity may not be asked for in a person’s work. But people invent, dream and create regardless of whether their profession requires it.

At SCALE Feb 8-10

Just a quick note that I’ll be at SCALE February 8-10. I’ll be attending the Women in Open Source track (with maybe a quick side-trip to DOHCS: Mobile decision support in Tanzania), and then helping with the both Saturday and Sunday. You can direct message me on Twitter (selenamarie) if you’re interested in meeting up!

I’m also looking forward to the PostgreSQL BoF on Saturday night (8pm, Laguardia room), and maybe having some sunny weather!

Women in Open Source: a focus group in March

Thanks to one of Audrey’s RSS feeds, I read Women in Computer Science – An Endangered Species of a New Kind? this afternoon. About the same time, I received email from a professor at UMD who is helping organize PostgreSQL Conference East. She would like to hold a Women in Open Source Focus Group session during the conference, and we’re looking for participants.

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