[maemo-community] My candidate declaration/proposed mission statement

From: robert bauer nybauer at gmail.com
Date: Mon May 7 15:33:53 EEST 2012
When I first ran for Community Council one year ago, I did so because of
the challenges I saw posed by Nokia's embrace of WP7. While others declared
this community dead and encouraged people to migrate to MeeGo, I was one of
the loudest voices asking people to stay the course with maemo. I am proud
of what the community has accomplished since last summer, and of the many
people who have helped to build the momentum of today despite the people
who have left. The number of "doers" may be drastically less than years
ago, but I believe that most of the people who are still here are dedicated
to having maemo-related OSS available in the future for mobile devices. The
last council period was time intensive for me, but I decided to run again
because the turnaround is unfinished and several of the other candidates
have asked me to continue to work with them.

In my opinion, the most important thing for the community to do is to
decide and clearly state what it wants to do - a mission statement - I
suggest "to promote and progress the future availability of maemo-related
OSS for pocketable devices"; and then plan to accomplish that mission.
There are many hurdles to this and I realize that some may believe that it
cannot be accomplished, but the things worth doing are rarely easy to do.

I believe that the maemo community can and should organize itself better in
order to achieve its goals. The organizational structure that the community
had five years ago when Nokia was pushing out a series of maemo devices is
not the optimal structure for today. Maemo is in survival mode and the idea
that the community should just sit back and let happen what will happen is
dangerous. This is not to say that every maemo project should not be
supported, but that there should be some management - nothing overwhelming
but perhaps something like what is seen in other OSS projects. And
everytime something is proposed, we ask ourselves - "how does the proposal
further the mission statement?"

I realize that there are those who are nostalgic for the old days and want
the Council to have a limited role of interfacing with Nokia. But that
won't work, at least not to accomplish the mission that I propose, not when
Nokia has made no indication that they will be providing any more devices
for maemo-related software. The various comments about communication are a
distraction from the real significant challenges, such as how to deal with
Nokia and its surrogates whose goals are laudable and overlapping, but
slightly different the mission statement I have proposed. When there was
silence or non-cooperation, that was not for lack of communication skills,
but because of underlying, background concerns. The important thing is that
the challenges have been beat back over the last six months, maemo did not
die after all and can move forward again.

As to other related projects and parties, I think they should be viewed in
light of whether they further the mission statement. Obviously, projects
like Mer/Nemo and Qt are complementary. There is the problem that maemo is
partially closed, and the next software step is not maemo in a pure sense
but some mashup of maemo with Mer or other projects. Other projects and
parties, such as Nokia, are not quite so clearly complementary. If there is
a new Nokia "meltemi" or other device that fits well with the community
goals, then that will be something we work together to promote. I do
believe that the lack of maemo-suitable hardware is a big hurdle for the
community. Council should address this challenge proactively wherever the
solutions may lie, and not have a laissez-faire approach.

Rob (SD69)
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