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/me is leaving

November 9th, 2010 by


after 7 years with SUSE and Novell I’ve chosen to change something in my life – and decided to accept a new job and will lay down my duties in the openSUSE project. I’ve been with the openSUSE project already prior to its launch in August 2005 and experienced a number of highs and lows. Overall the project  has been shaping up nicely, we reached a lot of our goals and the just passed openSUSE conference reflects this pretty well in my opinion.

Just to stop any rumours – I leave Novell because I found a new job in the trade show management area close to Nuremberg. Trade show management is where my expertise is and where I worked prior to coming to openSUSE. While I enjoyed the work at openSUSE, organizing the openSUSE conference meant doing what I really love and my new job will give me many more conferences and trade shows to plan and organise.  As I will leave Novell before the end of December the project needs a new openSUSE chairman who should serve until the openSUSE foundation is created.

Best wishes to the openSUSE project and the people behind it. I had a lot of fun over the past 7 years, met numerous outstanding people and learned a lot which will help me in my future life.


Let’s beat the drum for openSUSE conference 2010

June 23rd, 2010 by

Robert and myself visited most open source projects attending LinuxTag 2 weeks ago and invited them to come to the openSUSE Conference – be it as visitor, giving a presentation or doing a workshop. Feedback was all over the place positive. But feedback isn’t enough – we’ll do some follow up to make some of them participate and all of us should now promote the openSUSE Conference where possible.

Let’s spread the word about the openSUSE Conference and its motto “Collaboration across borders”, invite developers of other communities and other projects to join as a visitor or to give a presentation on a topic which affects all of us or lets do a workshop, hack session or just having fun. Call for papers is open till July 31 – so now is the time to shape the conference. Send in our proposal or idea to cfp@opensuse.org.

Robert and gnokii created some artwork for the openSUSE conference which is perfect to add it on web pages or to print out the posters to do some promotion in your area.

openSUSE Conference in short:

  • October 20-23 in Nürnberg, Germany
  • Free entrance
  • 4 days conference with 4 tracks plus hack sessions and workshops
  • Topics:
    • Technology and Upstream Development
    • Education and Science
    • Business
    • User and Home
  • Everything is possible – just send an email to cfp@opensuse.org

Some wrap-up from LinuxTag

June 14th, 2010 by

Just traveling back by train from LinuxTag, Berlin to Nürnberg. How was LinuxTag? In general it seems to me that LinuxTag may should change their motto “Were .com meets .org” as the event changed over the years more and more to an community project events with a few companies attending and a few business visitors passing by. I wonder who’s willing to pay the bill for LinuxTag ongoing? But that’s not of my business. Apart of the trade show the LinuxTag team served a pretty broad and high quality 4 days conference. For the community guys and girls I’d say it was a pretty good event with much conversation and meeting of people you normally just meet on mailingslists, forums or IRC and with a bunch of poeple new or intersted in Linux and open source.

We had big fun at the openSUSE booth showing mainly the openSUSE Build Service 2.0 and milestone 7 of openSUSE 11.3. Additional of this usual trade show program we served daily 3-4 small hack sessions on the booth to teach people in things like, Roll your first package in the Build Service, Insights into GNOME 3.0 or learning some Inkscape magic.  They all were well attended and gave room for intensive 1:few conversations. The biggest fun we had with “Henne’s handicraft workshop” which took place daily at 5pm at the booth and covered stuff like creating your openSUSE bag, match LinuxNacht dress cody by wearing an openSUSE pin etc.

In the conference I visited a few presentation to get more knowledge about SUSE Studio, Mono, open sourc in companies etc. I visited as well Microsoft’s keynote and I was not alone in the room 😉
The keynote was given by James Utzschneider who’s heading the open source department at Microsoft since less then a year but is with Microsoft for over 15 years. He’s a good talker and it looks to me that he’s a smart guy as well. He was pretty clear on the open source strategy Microsoft is following:

  • Microsoft changed heavily. Everything can be put on the table for disussion today but should be backed with good arguments.
  • Customer are asking that Microsoft products work seamlessly with open source products where ever they are used at customers location. So, main goal here is to follow common standards and improve the interoperability in literally all areas to make the customers confident and stay with Microsoft products.
  • Microsoft is a business company and is mainly driven through business cases – if the open source path is beneficial in $ for Microsoft – Microsoft will take it further down. Its pretty unlikely that things are done for the open source community just to make them happy.

We might get in touch with James as Microsoft could spice up the openSUSE conference in October. Ahh, with regards to that we informed pretty many other projects and developers at LinuxTag about the openSUSE conference and this years motto “Collaboration accross borders” and it was well received and we should be able to cover a number of interesting topics working together with communities other then the openSUSE one. Now it the time to shape the conference, call for papers is open till July 31.

Pavol put up a collection of photos which give a good summary of openSUSE @ LinuxTag 2010. We had fun at LinuxTag 2010, had many good conversations, got new valuable input in many areas and are keen on how LinuxTag evolves in the future.

openSUSE celebrates X-mas in Nürnberg

December 8th, 2009 by

The openSUSE team in Nürnberg invites everybody interested in Linux and in particular in openSUSE to join our Christmas party on Wednesday December 16 in the basement of our office building in Nürnberg. We’ll give some presentation about openSUSE 11.2 in action, GIMP and how to participate at our project. Beside of the presentations we have some machines where especially openSUSE  Education and the openSUSE Build Service will be shown but openSUSE 11.2  is available too, of course. More information
We hope to reach out to many local people in the Nürnberg area.

openSUSE launch party in Nürnberg, Nov 12

November 6th, 2009 by


We’ll do a launch party in our Nürnberg office on Thursday Nov 12, 7-10pm CET. We’ll try to attract people from the Nürnberg area and show them what’s new in openSUSE 11.2, hand out some media and show openSUSE 11.2 in action. Additional we’ll have a number of outstanding openSUSE folks from SUSE attending and looking forward having interesting discussion. With openSUSE 11.1 we opened up for the first time the “internal” release party to the public. This time we’d like to go one step further and having the launch party just for people interested in openSUSE. We appreciate and invite of course any buddies interested in openSUSE from the Nürnberg office.

What about doing a launch party in your area and share openSUSE 11.2 with others? Just add your party to the list of openSUSE launch parties.

Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften is over

October 27th, 2009 by

Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften is an event to show all kinds of science in a simple way to the public. Many education facilities and companies in the Nuernberg area participated. It took place last Saturday and we had a rather long but very successful night. Our room at Georg-Simon Ohm Hochschule (technical university) was pretty well visited over the whole evening. We could welcome visitors with all kind of technology level – from pure beginners, long time Linux users to developers with deep technical knowledge. We served them 4 different dishes:

  • openSUSE Education
    Lars showed the benefits openSUSE Education has for schools and students and got in contact with a Nuernberg school which now want to move 30 clients to openSUSE Education.

    Will giving a desktop talk
  • Games on Linux
    Andreas and Marco from live.linuX-gamers.net project showed impressively what games they offer from a Live-USB stick and received pretty many “wows” and “ahhs”. To them a special thanks for supporting the openSUSE project.
  • openSUSE 11.2/Desktop
    Here Juergen showed the strength of GIMP by merging two ancient city maps of Nuernberg into one. With that he was a real visitor magnet.
    Will demonstrated the latest KDE and GNOME desktops. People were impressed by Digikam’s photo management capabilities, and interested to learn how the default KDE 4 desktop can be customized to resemble a more traditional KDE 3 or GNOME desktop, and that you can install thousands of different programs with YaST instead of having to download them from some website.
  • Build Service, Participation etc.
    Pretty many visitors asked how they can contribute to openSUSE and were happy that they don’t have to be a developer to contribute. Wiki edits, translation and bug reports is sufficient. The more technical audience were impressed by the opportunities the Build Service offers them for their daily work.
Kid playing games on Linux

Kids playing games on Linux

Our room in the university was well attended till 11pm or so and we gave a talk each hour about different topics like “Introduction to openSUSE 11.2”, “Open Source philosophy”, openSUSE Education, Games on Linux and others. We handed out more then 500 openSUSE DVDs and had way more than 500 people attending our room.

People are interested in Linux and Linux is very well received. After a few focused questions which all started with “Does this … work with Linux?” people left our room, taking a DVD and saying, “If its that good, I’ll give it a try”. Most frequent question that evening was “How do you earn money?”. As many people know at which cost a Windows license or Windows Word come its not easy to understand that our products come for free and we charge for maintenance and support.

With our room at the university where several other events took place we could take advantage of an attractive venue for visitors. Thanks to that and thanks to our people who spent a Saturday night supporting openSUSE this was a successful participation and we should continue participate at “Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften” to fill the saying “From the local to the Global”.

openFATE feature 306967, KDE default

July 31st, 2009 by

There are pretty many pros and cons and even more people with their opinion about the feature. I’d like to summarize what has been said in the discussion in the feature itself and during yesterday’s openSUSE project meeting. Unfortunately the only sure thing is whatever decision is taken – it will be wrong for some. This is why, at this time, we have no default – because openSUSE has strong GNOME and KDE implementations, we offer them side-by-side as equals.  And we made 2 years ago on opensuse-project the decision that we stay with “no default” desktop.

So what do we have so far?

  • a feature request from one of the KDE e.V. board members
  • the feature asks to make KDE default. Reason for that, is to make openSUSE more simple for newbies and to make openSUSE the best KDE distribution around
  • Through the discussion in the feature I’d translate that feature into put the radio button as default to KDE on the desktop selection screen during installation instead of today’s status where everybody needs to make a choice between
  • the highest rated feature in openFATE until today
  • a majority of people supporting this feature (currently approx. 90% pro, 1% neutral, 9% against)