Andrea Colangelo (warp10)
Location: Bugnara, Italy
IRC Nick: warp10
How long have you used Linux and what was your first distro?
I first tried Linux in 1995, when I found a Red Hat 4.2 CD within a computer magazine I buyed monthly. I didn’t know anything about Linux and Free Software, but I tried it and was impressed from the philosphy behind it.
How long have you been using Ubuntu?
The first release I tried was Breezy Badger. Shipit still keeps my request for CDs, submitted in october 2005: it was great for me, since I had no broadband access at that time. I tried it from time to time,
mostly as a live CD, since I was pretty happy with Debian. A day I decided to give a try to Fedora, but didn’t liked it too much. Instead of reinstalling Debian, I downloaded Edgy Eft and love arose. Since then I use Ubuntu as my only, unique OS (apart from many other distros in my VMs).
When did you get involved with the MOTU team and how?
My first run with MOTU was in May 2007, but a series of troubles brought me away from the world of Ubuntu development. I tried again in October, on the edge of Gutsy release, when I sent an email to Cesare Tirabassi asking for a mentor. He drove my first steps in #ubuntu-motu and helped me uploading my first debdiffs. I still remember the first email in the hardy-changes Mailing List bringing my name! Then, the MOTU mentoring reception assigned Martin Pitt as my mentor, and the journey begun!
What helped you learn packaging and how Ubuntu teams work?
Well, learning packaging is an hard process. There isn’t a single “thing” that will teach you everything. My mentor has been an important parte of my apprenticeship, I encourage prospective developers to ask for one. #ubuntu-motu is an incredible resource. I asked a lot of things there to other MOTUs and contributors, and probably I have never been unanswered. Really, the best way to learn packaging is… packaging! Documentation and guides are a great starting point, but dirting your hands with stuff is always the best way.
What’s your favorite part of working with the MOTU?
Well, the feeling that you help shaping a distribution used by millions of people, and that your work can make happier even a single person in the world, it is a wonderful feeling. Further, the MOTU family is awesome. When you join #ubuntu-motu you feel at home. That’s a beautiful sensation!
Any advice for people wanting to help out MOTU?
Don’t be afraid to ask. Sometimes, even skilled programmers don’t know nothing about packaging. We have a lot of processes, procedures and even non-written rules that we should follow, and nobody knows all of them. Second advice: keep trying. Sometimes bugs are really nasty and fixing them is difficult. Or maybe the debdiff you provided has been rejected by a sponsor, altough you thought it was perfect. Well, don’t surrender, choose another bug (or address your sponsor’s remarks) and keep up the good work.
What are you going to focus on in Intrepid?
Currently I am mostly involved in sponsoring the work from our contributors. We have a lot of good guys who are helping a lot, and I enjoy uploading their works on the archives. After the Feature Freeze I will concentrate my efforts on QA activities. That’s probably the best period of the release cycle to tackle that. We always need for more and more people to do some good QA, so everyone is warmly welcomed to join.
I don’t have a favourite one among the many that I love. Anyway, thinking to the Ubuntu world, this one always come to my mind: “Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations”. People that are not Star Trek Fans can better understand its meaning here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IDIC#Philosophy :)
What do you do in your other spare time?
Ubuntu and my girlfriend occupy most of it. Other than that: friends, cinema, Jazz music and good books.