Home > Uncategorized > Behind MOTU: Michael Bienia

Behind MOTU: Michael Bienia

Michael Bienia was one of the most prolific MOTUs during Edgy and Feisty. He had 395 Feisty uploads according to http://ubuntu.joejaxx.org/ (thanks joejaxx) making him the only non-core developer in the top 10.

IRC Nick: geser
Location: Dortmund, Germany
Age: 27

How long have you used Linux and what was your first distro?

I started with RedHat 5.1 in 1998 and switched end of 2000 to Debian 2.2 “Potato”. Some time later (I don’t remember when) I started using Debian unstable and stayed there till my switch to Ubuntu.

How long have you been using Ubuntu?

I cross-graded from Debian unstable to Ubuntu Breezy during it’s late development. So I use Ubuntu since September/October 2005.

How long have you been a MOTU and how long did it take to become one?

I’ve reported some bugs after I switched to Ubuntu and nearly lost interest to report more (at least in universe) as I didn’t seen them to get fixed. Summer 2006 I discoverd IRC for me (and the #ubuntu-* channels including #ubuntu-motu). I gave it a last try to get gaim-irchelper fixed. Sarah Hobbs persuaded me :) to generate a debdiff for gaim-irchelper. And it became 2006-08-10 my first sponsored upload and my first contribution.

As it turned out to be really simple to get fixes into Ubuntu I started to produce more debdiffs. At first I worked on unmet dependencies as they were easy to fix for me as a beginner. Soon I also started filing sync request, doing merges and fixing bugs.

I became Ubuntu Member two months (and 75 sponsored uploads and syncs) later. Another two months later (2006-12-05) I become a MOTU.

So it took me four months to move from non-contributor to MOTU.

Favorite part of being a MOTU?

One is able to fix the bugs/problems you encounter using Ubuntu (at
least for universe).

Another great part is the great and friendly community, but it’s not a
MOTU-only thing. Everybody who is interested in improving Ubuntu is

It’s also great that there isn’t much difference between MOTUs and MOTU
Hopefuls. Both can do the same work. The only difference is that MOTU
Hopefuls need sponsoring which works nearly flawless. So there isn’t
much blocking by needing sponsoring.

According to http://ubuntu.joejaxx.org/ you’ve done 395 uploads for Feisty, what have you been up to?

I don’t really know. I didn’t know that I did that many uploads (including syncs) before I got pointed to the number.

Any advice for Universe contributors? (especially when it comes to getting
stuff sponsored)

Join the #ubuntu-motu channel. Don’t forget that all MOTUs (and MOTU Hopefuls) are volunteers. They do their share of MOTU work after work/school/etc. So there are times there is no activity in this channel. That’s the reason if we don’t answer your question immediately. It’s nothing personal so please reask your questions when there is more activity in the channel and it will be answered.

The Ubuntu universe sponsor team tries to process all sponsor request in a timely manner. But it happens occasionally that a debdiff gets overlooked. So don’t hesitate to ask in #ubuntu-motu in such cases. #ubuntu-motu is also good for asking for a sponsor if time is pressing (like short before a freeze or release).

Plans for Gutsy Gibbon?

As I’ll have less time as I’ve had during feisty development, I’ll try my best to do the same amount of work as in feisty :) Besides this I’ve no real plans. I’ll try to help MOTU Hopefuls in
#ubuntu-motu as much as time permits.

Got a typical Desktop screenshot to share with the world?


On behalf of everybody in the MOTU community, thanks Michael!

Categories: Uncategorized
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  1. April 18, 2007 at 7:28 pm

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