Sakai Foundation Board of Directors Conference Call
April 13, 2006
This document contains minutes from the conference call of the Sakai Foundation Board of Directors held on April 13, 2006. Corrections, suggestions should be sent to Joseph Hardin and Mary Miles.
These minute capture both the discussion and formal resolutions of the board. Simply because something was discussed does not mean that it is the agreed-upon position of the board. When the board makes a formal resolution to approve an item, it will be noted as such in the minutes. If there is no such notation, readers should assume that the minutes are simply the notes of the board discussions.
Board members present: Joseph Hardin, Jutta Treviranus, John Norman, Lois Brooks, Mary Miles (staff)
Board members absent: Mara Hancock, Brad Wheeler, Ian Dolphin, Chris Coppola, Vivie Sinou, Chuck Severance
Guest: Wende Morgaine
Topic: Fellows Program Update
Lois reported that nominations for the Fellows Program are coming in steadily, with nominations scheduled to close on Monday, April 17. At that time, the Committee will review. As a matter of procedure, the committee will review the nominations and provide a final list to the board for final approval. It was recommended that the Board have access to the wiki where nominations are held so they could see all of the nominations received.
John Norman reported that he had been approached by someone expressing interest in the fellows program that is not currently active in Sakai but has a good track record in the open source community. John told him that the intent of the Fellows Program is to reward outstanding contributors, but John also suggested that it might be worth considering another category to reward. John suggested that some people could have a resume that had qualifications much like those we were looking for and if they had other open source work under their belt, we should consider. John suggested not changing the process now, but to put a marker down that we might want to consider in the future.
The board agreed that the Fellows announcements should be made at the conference, but nominees should be notified ahead of time. A brief discussion was held on how to make the final decision. John commented that this was presumed to be a closed process and you would just hear the results. Lois noted that there was a committee of community volunteers who would be voting on the nominees. Those selected will be contacted and asked if they are willing to serve. If not, the nomination goes away and another selection is made. When a final list is prepared, it would then be sent to the board for approval. Once that approval is received, the nominees will be notified of their acceptance as a Sakai Fellow.
Topic: Conference Updates
Wende stated that she felt it might be helpful to keep a running report of what has and has not been done to date so the Board can see the status. Joseph asked the board if there was information they would like to see. John replied that he would welcome the information but did not want to create a burden for Wende in order to help the board.
Wende announced that the call for proposals is closed and the call for tech presentations will be open until May. Actual sessions should be up on the website in a week or two. Mitchell Baker has committed to being a keynote speaker and Wende is still trying to get in touch with Stephen Downs.
Attendance is now pointing toward 550. One reception has been fully funded (tech demos) by IBM and rSmart. They would like to be proactive about getting the word out about their sponsorship. They are interested in having the press aware of their sponsorship. Wende will send proposed information to the board. Other commercial affiliates who have been contacted regarding their interest in sponsorship: Unicon, Unisys, Sungard. The goal is to have all three receptions fully funded.
Wende commented that she needed input from the board as to who should receive the MVP cups. Part of this comes out of the fact that OSP will have their release out and a very small number of people have been working a very long time, Chris wanted to make sure it was a community-wide recognition and not just OSP. Wende will ping the board and other DG leads for names of people who should be recognized, Megan will be contacted for QA as well. Lois stated that this might be a nice event to say a few words about the fellows.
Future conference will be discussed at a later date when there are more members present. Joseph noted that Starwood properties have proposed a three-conference package that needs to be responded to. In order to do that, more discussion is needed regarding where conferences should be held, how they tie in with JA-SIG, how many conferences should be held per year. As the conference grows, it's very important to commit to cities in advance in order to get the space we need. Joseph noted that he had spoken with Patty from JA-SIG regarding a combination of issues surrounding the way they currently fund their conferences and what software they are using.
Another question for the board is when we should hold a conference in Europe. Is it a regional conference, is it one of the regular conferences. A separate board call will be needed for that discussion.
TOPIC: Executive Director Interview Process
The applications received to date are not particularly strong and the board was concerned that we need to get a better pool of likely candidates. The deadline is about one week away and the board is generally not happy with what they are seeing. John suggested that the board might want to think about how to manage a situation where the process was repeated rather than going ahead. Lois urged the board members to encourage candidates they would support to apply for the position. She suggested doing one more push asking people to apply if they are interested. Due to the Easter holiday period, Lois will send something out after the holiday. Lois will also send a note to Susan asking her to put this under Sakai Community News instead of its current position.
Topic: Sakai Updates
Peter Knoop sent out a note asking for new homes for JIRA and Confluence. Cambridge has expressed some interest in hosting, and JA-SIG is also interested. Joseph asked if having 24/7 pager activated support, is a concern for people. John indicated that this has been a disadvantage up until now and it has been working. One of the things the board would like Peter to explore is the option of having people in the different time zones that might be able to provide support. Between all of those, a very high level of responsibility could be obtained, while also saving funds. Lois suggested that it might be helpful to have two sites in different time zones (mirror site). In the case of JA-SIG, Sun donated the equipment and Patty is running it at Princeton. JA-SIG accomplishment last year was pulling together some of these things. John reported that he had just come from the open source software watch organized by JISC. They are having thoughts along a very similar line. It is not out of the question that we could show a way that led to JISC and DESC joining in with some sort of round the world infrastructure. John will send a note to Peter saying "think about this" and "think about that."
John raised the possibility of Ithaca attending the joint Sakai/JA-SIG board meeting in Vancouver. Joseph responded that we may not want them to attend the entire board meeting, but there might be a place for them at the meeting. John felt that this might be an opportunity to bring everyone under the same umbrella rather than having all things flare at once. Joseph agreed that it was a great idea to come up with an agenda for the joint board meeting and if Ithaca is on it, great. The issue needs to be raised with JA-SIG. One option would be to invite Ithaca to come and talk about the report which should be out by then. Lois asked if there were other big project that might also need to be included in that board meeting such as DSpace and Fedora. John Norman agreed to be the organizer for the agenda, taking the lead in making something real happen.
With no further business before the board, the call ended at 2:29 p.m.