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Earning Your Support Instead of Buying it: A How-to Guide to Open Source Assistance

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Title Earning Your Support Instead of Buying it: A How-to Guide to Open Source Assistance
Title of Series FOSS4G Seoul 2015
Author Turton, Ian
License CC Attribution - NonCommercial - ShareAlike 3.0 Germany:
You are free to use, adapt and copy, distribute and transmit the work or content in adapted or unchanged form for any legal and non-commercial purpose as long as the work is attributed to the author in the manner specified by the author or licensor and the work or content is shared also in adapted form only under the conditions of this license.
DOI 10.5446/32165
Publisher FOSS4G, Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo)
Release Date 2015
Language English
Producer FOSS4G KOREA
Production Year 2015
Production Place Seoul, South Korea

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Subject Area Computer Science
Abstract More organisations are moving to use FOSS4G software to cover shrinking budgets. It is very appealing to an organization’s leaders to ditch their current proprietary software solution with the attendant saving on per user licences and ongoing maintenance costs. Obviously, if you switched to FOSS4G to get better features and scalability you should consider buying a support contract from one of the many vendors that offer them, these companies support many of the core developers directly. This way you get all the advantages of open source, prompt support and often the chance to ask for new features. However, if you (or your boss) are looking to save money then you are moving from a cash economy to a gift economy. In a gift culture you need to build up your “capital” before attempting to take too much out. For example, you’ve downloaded the software and installed it, and all looks good. Then disaster hits, you have a demo for the CIO and nothing's working; Time to hit the user list, the developer list, stack exchange. Why can’t you get an answer? Remember just because your issue is urgent to you the developers might be in the middle of a new release or adding a new feature and have more important (or fun) things to do with their time. They will notice they have never seen your name before on the list, or on Stack Exchange that you have a reputation in the single digits – thus you are a newbie. There’s no harm in that but wouldn’t it be better to have got that out of the way before your emergency. You could have built up your reputation by asking some questions earlier especially questions like “what can I do to help?” or “I found an unclear paragraph in the install instructions, how do I fix it for you?” on a mailing list. On StackExchange you can build reputation by asking good questions and by answering other people’s questions. Once you’ve banked some capital there are still good and bad ways of asking a question. Developers are busy people (the GeoTools users list has 20-30 messages a day for example) no one has time to read all of them closely. If you use a poor subject (e.g. "Help!!!!") or don’t provide a clear description of the problem (e.g. “it crashes”) then the odds of being ignored are huge. It can be tempting once you have found a helpful developer to keep emailing them directly, but this is likely to lead a polite(ish) reminder to keep to the list so that everyone can benefit or silence. This talk will show how to be a better open source citizen and get a better answer than RTFM when your project is stuck and the demo is the next day. The author will share his experience with helping users and developers on the GeoTools and GeoServer mailing lists and as a moderator on gis.stackexchange.com.
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but I'm not to become was known organizational bodies in this just like you know what the user interest and that it should be noted that the product of this with the time and so this was the thickness of the ones we see some of the hostages and that's going and primarily users managers and developers to use open source lovers not waiting for project developers of the size of the thinking about and so I have been developing due the moment when user and what we started by the ability of natural we would use this project it was the sort of thing that people universities were used for but if I'm not the sort of thing with national mapping agencies was supposed to use to produce maps with global players in the that was coming from uh at introducing a huge as a community moderate from during that period which is a number of variables that varies with the notion of I don't know if you used to teach students in the program of work that was so not because of an interesting questions over the past 20 years of research and and and this is really what I'm to help us to get to know the answers to questions and not to teach you trust you because this is not have the genes in the right way and so the things many our jobs about this and this way and then used as evidence of right which is a function of the forces in the east and the maintenance of it would support contracts and so and and also the
only people saying what this is not the most common professional support contract and so just something that I mean the maps the in meaning of the replacing because you know that puts you in the world I'm going to say that during the and uh and because of the use of force that is the source of this statement that is about so really you know it's about the ability to fix the thing is if you know that I so just so you can use what we really pleased if you would have to be the model of ad I will be your happy to pay its real origin of large maintenance and and that and you can continue to because of the development and you get natural but this is the world just think of the next release and so you can what the problem we can fix the results of the interviews to use the next day and so there's a lot of real users provide please users and it determine the direction of development and say you know something something that's just because of the presence of and that's the interesting thing about this and I don't know if we're supposed to be with and as also you get there and this bias in the office and you have to choose and I'm not and if you choose not supposed to that you do with an instructor or includes a gift based the and so you think about it you know you can it's that you use of the substance and the integrated use of and what you have to know and I think that was bones of the free software not free developer to drop everything to work on your problems when you them and then you can't do that this and I know how and you were in the interests of the spatial index and uh and this but basically since this list of the search and not company depends on the face and those of you from the free software so but pages of the year and then it will hit you have to pay for this and he did not pay for it and they just wanted it to this company people making money and if you want to know that but that's the thing that we noted that the time that a and the effects of
time so that you need to know what you are asking for a favor and developers of people and the and Judas developers of the which that this picture was taken and some of so if you talk to people you need not looking to accompany the reading what you have to
think in history and you if you know the integer developers who will take it doesn't have to be that you want to talk about the relationship and there are lots of places that the developers hand out reason a job and send a message to all possible makes you think about this question and and this is the thing that is the simple question 3 times and this has been big problems of users in the report the university is 1 reported the problem with the game you know you and so that was really visible part in some projects are are not so much with others and usually in the project as soon as the things and discusses a user is also a lot of things in the world and in is moment developed in the new using this system in the future it was used to using Jensen's to develop the software you use of opportunities to develop develop a this is what we discussed releasing uh telegraphic problems the user's this you report but it's it was it was used in the and if you think about the address I wasn't during the answer very small business address the concerns of the rest of the world in general and the public list of security and such that the less you know if you use of the product of a new business depends on what you should you should only use it so you know this new release and we'd like to test the forest and the people who understand how the world this and you you should and some you subject to get that will use that because of the indexes these overwhelmed by this time and it looks much easier have to subscribe to the list of the components of a of jobs so usually the problem from sensors and the droplets HTML and this is a terrible and it was just year later In this work a list of your ability to become part of the community and so and then you can see the person that was and so you know in the time and stuff stages so there are many many many steps strange so it's a and it's a joint the questionnaire asking jurors additional of know that the shape of this kind of projection is just curious question in his because of the questions and problems that have to instantiate of using GATE due to the world and that religion should also of that of the program and I'm going to develop pursuant to answer the questions and the authenticity of the very few technical exchanges of neurons that exchange of know about it into a more of this is the most as well so this being a drawing he stressed that no 1 is due to the question and answer site and that is involved in some of the questions that you just have to start with that and the 2nd is how to redefine database the hugest so this is the questions they get us to you and then I think you know if you have a lot of good will not just in the so of the of of the needs in the area of what's in the i think the existing who is a here and you will look at that and go that's going to cost you would have to come back and fix it no way anybody could that's the question that you until we got sick of this is really units of which is the 1st time so there is no correlation is a bit of a restrictive than last year and the 1st time the same if you do for the outside and these are the right hand side of the family of casing himself as nothing worse than working on some of our research discoveries in the past you would mean nothing else I can just some history had time so how do you know what you know of a generation has passed since the satellite away and so on and so this page is licensed of the page is excessive and it discusses and there's a lot of detail with examples of his work and so on
and you don't have to to the developers which you would that which would have been like people be that 1 of the patient so and so that was originally in doing this in the plane of the 1st time that was the nature of the variables u which we think I'm doing a lot of your question up to now because in the sense that they hadn't it wouldn't it be interesting thing was that the the the the the point that the gist of it Australia using it in a way it would you put your question in the history of the support of so that the
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was the patient I'm not in the same waters during the 1st time in a lot of things have Germany to answer the agent and its image I don't know if you've got a lot of energy from that time on that the this is saying I know that this little bit of different in this and is information you can use the number that would be just you know the attention to the time the time that this research it's been a really because of the use of analogies to those that have and if you don't want the kids Institute and the thing about but the ones that is linked to draw page and then it leads to a tutorial on page and so you didn't really try to images and all the plant is due to the properties of universal and the documentation produced and move in and out of the truth and and so any examples of information and this is 1 of the
things a and social and the result of reduced instruction and technology wasn't research results for the time and it that is the 2nd of our answer to question there will be all the knowledge that it was in that time and my time that simulates the kind of difference between the 2 types of Digital's has there's uh because a tutorial overview of the traditional kind of knowledge and so on so you can think of no there's going tell you exactly which parts of the district just using the 3 different classes with good reason for it and in the interest of time so I'm going to I'm going to use and you can read the cells of this is a discussion about who you very much and that different than the columns of and wanted to read and you know in the general scheme and uh recent ICT-mediated euro Institute for strengthening blocks of the history of the things that we were supposed to just looked at the time place and see how we it you a speech to what would later discrimination you and the time that the number of people in the details and there is a continuum of time and I look at at of units in the original article about the fact that you're using genitals and you should know how to read the job of the with reduced and you have is not a lot of research to do that we do know is that we use you to copy this program you I think the reason is that the developers you the this just because I think that the conversation have a lot of work to put such the thing doesn't work and this is the letter that I during the discussion and we'll tell you have a lot of information you need not be of recommendations for the use of the people in the community so this is the this time is a look the information about the status of the fish sticks it doesn't work I don't know if I did with looked at of the world and have
this sort of putting the developers of the project and the users and the information we can come to users and we can only be 1 of the things you need to do that but I think we should change which uses the plot of the development of a theory of how to use and the and the and the setting of the moment in which of the world using a portion of the time I if you don't have to show up and so he's going to give the origin of the world and that is that you wanted to answer and it won't really really good people and I think I think if you talk to him about just drunk is not it's it's it's a bit of that and it just gives you about version of the users and the last vestiges of just to show the efficiency of the question do so you could you don't version using food she told me it was of because of the media comes the use of the drug agency question and intuitively what was it was really but it was a little bit because I will probably doesn't want you to know that most fits in with what was going on and this has built his utilization of the of the of the view of the stock exchange questions are of the view of the functions of and that's how people vote of projects and and so on and the conclusion of numerous you're entitled to an answer and what not and you can also and the use of special interest in the provoking question and love something interesting problems and if you don't interesting standing government the structure I want to spend the tree was something that was due because of the problem and then the program just like those programs were only the of and a draft of the Warren questions that it also doesn't in it is that she was interested in and so implicitly introduced this unity you of passive which forms and that's and please tradition that the solution the like and the and and and how I and so the total question so in his and the the the idea of you know the this is true it it the and I think you know what you hear the word you have and so the time and time really is I'm going to show you involved in learning and the going the rights of now that you have to have that the balance this and the answer is going to be a continuation of of the this work of the people in the back of the use of time and that is the use of the user and the system was used in the use of the of the energy of the time you know I mean this was is a really good thing is that the number users in the the the relation of this I have no choice but to the the dozens of dozens of people and you know what you think of it as a form of you use right and and what is the value of the individual cells and of the time so that's the reason is that the Russians which I erogeneous happens I'm going on in that head of a in the hands of the user the international so this so this is this
Product (category theory)
Mapping
Open source
Software developer
Forcing (mathematics)
Multiplication sign
Moment (mathematics)
Projective plane
1 (number)
Design by contract
Student's t-test
Software maintenance
Variable (mathematics)
Functional (mathematics)
Number
Frequency
Digital rights management
Process (computing)
Computer animation
Computer programming
Universe (mathematics)
Right angle
Quicksort
Web page
Mapping
Open source
Software developer
Forcing (mathematics)
Direction (geometry)
Scientific modelling
Real number
Multiplication sign
Electronic mailing list
Design by contract
Software maintenance
Subject indexing
Arithmetic mean
Computer animation
Software
Statement (computer science)
Office suite
Resultant
Reading (process)
Web page
Satellite
Point (geometry)
Multiplication sign
Connectivity (graph theory)
Drop (liquid)
Shape (magazine)
Mereology
Cross-correlation
Plane (geometry)
Natural number
Forest
Computer programming
Database
Integer
Traffic reporting
Information security
Logic gate
Address space
Units of measurement
Physical system
Area
Authentication
Addition
Product (category theory)
Electric generator
Software developer
Projective plane
Moment (mathematics)
Electronic mailing list
Bit
Variable (mathematics)
Subject indexing
Message passing
Process (computing)
Computer animation
Software
Universe (mathematics)
Website
Right angle
Game theory
Family
Medical imaging
Uniform resource locator
Computer animation
Network topology
Multiplication sign
Resultant
Web page
Numbering scheme
Multiplication sign
Continuum hypothesis
1 (number)
Water vapor
Mereology
Food energy
Number
Medical imaging
Goodness of fit
Analogy
Computer programming
Data conversion
Subtraction
Units of measurement
Social class
Information
Block (periodic table)
Cellular automaton
Software developer
Process (computing)
Computer animation
Universe (mathematics)
Speech synthesis
Data type
Resultant
Axiom of choice
View (database)
Multiplication sign
1 (number)
Disk read-and-write head
Food energy
Theory
Number
Revision control
Hypermedia
Computer programming
Utility software
Data structure
Form (programming)
Physical system
Theory of relativity
Information
Chemical equation
Software developer
Moment (mathematics)
Projective plane
Bit
Set (mathematics)
Plot (narrative)
Word
Voting
Numeral (linguistics)
Computer animation
Network topology
Right angle
Quicksort
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