Even so, i had some of my own concerns. One of the patches Jan, the Bluetile developer, ships helps improve Gnome compatibility. Without it, XMonad is very hard to configure with Gnome. I repeated these concerns to him, but Jan's reaction is that he was intially unsure that all his patches would be accepted by upstream. I've noticed over the past couple of days on the XMonad mailing list, Jan has been pushing his patches one by one to upstream. So far, they are being accepted one by one, sometimes as is, sometimes with comments. Although i don't know exactly how far Jan has to go, it looks he's building a pretty good relationship with upstream, and i feel pretty confident the bluetile bits will all eventually find their way upstream.
Consider it another open source success story.
I won't write too much else about FAD EMEA, personally. According to ZodBot i already wrote a grand total of 645 lines in #fedora-fad, not counting the meeting we had with Pamela at Red Hat about a number of trademark issues. At the end of the day, i felt just a touch burnt out, trying to paraphrase everyone's thoughts into slightly more condense pieces and also trying to participate in the conversations. Please keep in mind, the transcript has the same value as an impression. In some cases i echoed the words people used, but in some cases i summarized paragraphs into sentences. THIS IS NOT AN EXACT TRANSCRIPT. If you're interested in reading up about the FAD, the minutes are here, and the full log was here.
The goal i had in mind was to act as a conduit for anyone who would be awake so early and would have liked to participate. I'm curious how we can do this in the future for FudCon, where we have volunteers monitoring IRC to take comments and questions from non present attendees, while they are listening or watching any streams we make available. If no stream is available, the volunteer could even transcribe and summarize like i did. It might also get interesting if present attendees use these IRC channels to be in more than one session at a time :P.
When we came back, Gerold announced that he had to walk the dog, so we decided to join him so we can start discussing our plans for the following day. This was a great opportunity, because the entire area is gorgeous. Of course Gerold decided to show us his sadistic streak and sent us on a hike climbing up and down said beautiful mountainous landscape. In then this was a good thing, because we really had an appetite for dinner afterwards. For dinner, Gerold's very lovely wife put together a very traditional autumn dish for us. We had Zwiebelkuchen with Federweißer, which is a very potent way of getting you drunk if you don't watch out. The food was excellent, and for that i was grateful, because i was in a much better mood to handle the unfortunate conference we had to have with Red Hat legal. But i'll let other people discuss that.
The setup was pretty simple. We sat around the table with wifi, power, and lots of greasy junk food in the middle. You might note the halo over the fries. This may be a sign from the $deities that the food is sacrosanct, but i tell you it's probably just the light reflecting off the grease. The Dutch don't skimp when it comes to greasy foods, despite century old stereotypes about puritan behaviour.
I spent most of the time talking with Edwin who runs his own company Syn-3. He's been working on tools similar to devshell (which he calls dev's hell) to do the custom Red Hat and Debian builds they do for their customers. We went over how both our workflows go and comparing notes. It was definitely enlightening to see how devshell could be simplified to be more reliable.
Recently, as part of a research project Jan Vornberger has put together a new tiling window manager on top of xmonad, called bluetile. Bluetile aims to close the gap between highly technical oriented tiling WMs and the everyday user who can benefit from such a design but is reliant on the mouse. His project looks to integrate a tiling WM into Gnome, provide both mouse and keyboard access for every feature, communicate clearly to the user what is going on, and provide a gentle introduction to the concept of tiling. As a new generation of users become more sophisticated, i'm sure either bluetile will grow with them, or they will eventually migrate to xmonad proper. Bluetile also ships with a bunch of patches, many of which will hopefully find their way upstream, so there will definitely be some good synergy between the two communities. I'm really looking forward to it.
I had a chance to play with bluetile in my free time, and i was really impressed at the quality and the ease of use already. It's the sort of program i would not hesitate to put on my family's computer to see what happens. I've put together some packages for bluetile, which are now sitting in the review queue. If you're morbidly curious, or just looking for some relatively easy packages to review, have a look here:
The first session will be Thursday, September the 17th, (2009 if you can't figure that out) at Hoogstraat 9, Wageningen. There's be internet, electricity and beer, the three most essential things necessary. If anyone is interested in doing some kind of set project, we can always discuss it then.
In the future, this should be a weekly event, so if you can't make it next week, there'll definitely be another chance to come.
Currently the plans stand at doing a weekly meetup at the Draak thursdays and nerding. I'm aiming to find about ten people who are interested so that we have about 5 people there each week. Since four of the possible people already use Fedora, there'll definitely be alot of that. There will of course be electricity and internet, although because smoking is allowed there, don't bring your super sensitive electronics projects. I'll know more by the end of the week.