An entire release ago (6 months) Jeff Spaleta made the proposal to this
list for Fedora to produce a (virtual?) coffee table book containing
candid pictures of Fedora contributors all holding a specific trinket
that could represent what the community stands for (perhaps something as
simple as a Fedora logo) -- or with speech bubbles containing a single
word that the contributor thinks encompasses the
purpose/meaning/whatever of Fedora in their native language.
Seeing how we're coming up upon a major NA FUDCon, with an EMEA FUDCon
around the corner (... right?) should we make an attempt to start this
concept back up again?
It'd be nice to be able to sell a physical book and donate the proceeds
to OLPC or something. (Not sure if this is even viable because of the
high number of Fedora contributors.)
The key things that need to be done to get this rolling again are
1) decide on a trinket (or something else to tie the whole production
together, i.e., speech bubbles)
2) start taking photos at FUDConF11
Other brain dumps or thoughts to follow?
: Not that I'm saying this isn't good!
: We can't limit this to attendees of FUDConF11, of course.
Ian Weller <ianweller(a)gmail.com> http://ianweller.org
GnuPG fingerprint: E51E 0517 7A92 70A2 4226 B050 87ED 7C97 EFA8 4A36
"Technology is a word that describes something that doesn't work yet."
~ Douglas Adams
I think Ian, Jack, and Lisa, and all the others, have come up with a great idea. A Fedora coffee table book would be a great visual aide as well as a great keepsake for the Fedora community. Pictures from all over the world would demonstrate the diversity of the Fedora community, like nothing else.
I am a book packager and author. I have put together several books, both my own and for others, and I think I have a fair understanding of what might entail with putting together a coffee table book. So let me chime in as follows.
First the downside:
1. Coffee table books, or any picture book, are the most expensive books to create and publish, going. The "4-color" offset process means four plates for every image or picture.
2. Ordinary snapshots, taken at an event or FUDCON, would be totally unsuitable for such a book. Mainly because of quality, but also because of content. Web graphics, as many of you know, look fine at 72 DPI (dots per inch), which is the standard setting in the GIMP for web graphics. But picture book quality graphics, especially large visual images, start at 600 DPI. Many publishers now want 1200 DPI: and up.
3. Most high quality pictures (above 600 DPI) are staged. Meaning they are models (or ordinary people) being absolutely still. Any movement appears as a blur.
4. The above means the pictures must be shot with a high quality camera. Cameras that will overcome movement are expensive.
5. Such books usually use high quality and thus, more expensive paper suitable for photo images (and water-proof), adding to the end price of the book.
6. Binding for such a book, is usually stitched. Perfect Bound, clumps of folded pages glued together, the most inexpensive binding going, would need a larger amount of pages, usually above 130 before they will hold together.
7. Taking all of this into account, the cost-driven price of such a book would probably be in the $25.00 dollar range and up, even as a paperback. Assuming there was a need to generate a profit from the book.
8. Coffee table books are usually larger, 11 x 16, or something. The size will determine the photographs used and will establish a quality goal for them. A 6 x 8 photo may look good at that size, but scale it up to say 12 x 16 and it may be unsuitable. An old rule of thumb is to scan photos instead of scaling them. Scaling is one-dimensional; scanning allows you options.
The plus side:
Now, having said all that, I still think it would be doable. The main downside would be getting the high quality photographs we would need.
That would mean we would have to be selective in the photo-images we used. We could possibly use images from a FUDCON, but not all images. Maybe some could be cropped and be suitable, others could be dithered with, others still might pass right from the start. But we would probably need hundreds of photographs to get the few necessary.
That means that having hundreds of people sending in stacks of photos, is probably not going to work. A photo has to be chosen according to its print quality and not just "cool" content. As much as we would all like to have a copy of that photo showing Paul Fields shoving Bill Gates off a cliff, if it does not print well it would not make the book.
However, there is a reliable test everyone can do to weed out the unsuitable pictures before they get submitted, meaning that whoever is selecting the photos for a book, would not be as swamped. This is a simple test that many printers use to determine photo quality for printed material. Take the photo, run it through a scanner, one that you can set the resolution and DPI values to at least 600 DPI. And you can play with these values somewhat. High quality scanners often allow you to dither with the photo. Now, don't look at the image on your computer screen, print it out and see what you get. Even a cheap ink jet printer (or better) will give you an idea of what the results will be.
The actual packaging of the book is nothing. I or someone else could do that for nothing. There have been several books packaged using Scribus, an
up-stream open source package that was not part of F10, but easily added.
So, having said all that, please understand that I am not claiming to be the "be all and end all" of publishing or book packaging. In fact, I am probably somewhat behind the times and if anybody has a better idea or way, lets hear it. But I know enough to know that creating a quality book product depends on the quality of the material that makes up the book and not just the publishing or printing aspect.
I have not even mentioned publishers, or printers. Today they are really just middlemen; publishers are quickly becoming book marketers and not book creators. They are still necessary, but are slowly becoming obsolete as the industry reels from innovation.
So, perhaps we could do this as a start. Maybe we could get a couple hundred photos, from all over the planet and the Fedora community, and pass them around a committee. Everyone chooses the ones they like and we toss the rest. Then we could put the selected ones on-line and people could vote or something. For a 110 page book, with print quality photographs on the base pages and text on the back pages, we would need probably 50 or 60 good photographs. Double that with photos on the back pages.
So, what do say you? Anyone want to take a shot at this?
-- w Douglas Berry --
Re: my other e-mail, one of the items I mentioned was that we should
archive press coverage not just on the mailing list but also on the
wiki. Just took a quick look and remembered we already have this in
It's divided into releases, although there is nothing there for F10
yet. (I remember doing F9 after the fact, and it was painful
experience, much better to just keep updated as we go along).
So here is a plea, to anyone who has press pieces to share with this
list, please also take a moment to bookmark the above link and
document it on the wiki too.
An interesting LWN article reports that the FLP is working very
successfully with the Serbian Fedora community. The article will be
available to non-subscribers after Dec 25th. In the meanwhile a brief
summary is that in 2007 the Serbian government initiated the
localization of several pieces of Free Software (Firefox, Thunderbird,
OpenOffice, Fedora and Ubuntu). The Fedora work seems to have gone
extremely well, with 99% of strings translated on time, in comparison to
Ubuntu which was delayed and resulted in a fork. Congratulations to the
FLP and especially their Serbian contributors.
F10 is out the door and there is much to discuss include the multiple
new initiatives which have been brought up over the last week.
I strongly urge EVERYONE to please try and make tomorrows marketing meeting.
The more of us show up, the better case I have to get someone from RH
marketing to do a seminar with us, and the more voices are heard, the
better the new initiatives will be.
I will send out the reminder tomorrow morning as usual, but for now the
info is below:
What: Fedora Marketing Meeting
When: Thursday 18 Dec 2008, 20.00UTC, 3 Eastern, 12 Noon Pacific
Where: irc.freenode.net, #fedora-meeting
Thanks and keep up all the great work,
Not really a news article per se - but nice to see PostgreSQL using
F10 as the base distribution.
Subject: Fwd: [ANNOUNCE] Releasing new version of PostgreSQL Live CD
To: David <david(a)gnsa.us>
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
- ---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Devrim GÜNDÜZ
Date: Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 3:54 AM
Subject: [ANNOUNCE] Releasing new version of PostgreSQL Live CD
I updated my PostgreSQL live CD, and it is now based on Fedora 10 and
PostgreSQL 8.3.5, with all the PostgreSQL packages that I build on
http://yum.pgsqlrpms.org . This new version includes many new packages,
and also many updates to the existing packages.
Details are here:
According to Apache logs, the previous 2 versions were downloaded more
than 3200 times. Also I know that kickstart file was used in some
private projects. Thanks everyone for their interest in this live CD.
Now there is an option to add an encrypted home directory while burning
iso to USB stick, which helps you to keep your personal data in your USB
This live CD has nearly bleeding edge of many software, like Apache,
PHP, GNOME, Pidgin, etc.
Kickstart file is configurable, so you can also create your own
PostgreSQL Live CD's fairly easily, if you have a Fedora-10
Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this live CD.
Devrim GÜNDÜZ, RHCE
devrim~gunduz.org, devrim~PostgreSQL.org, devrim.gunduz~linux.org.tr
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Awesome great, we will work from there. It's gonna be a fun project for
Lisa Brewster wrote:
> Man, now I wish I could go to FUDCon!! There's a slight chance I'll
> be able to get work to send me, but the economy's got budgets really
> tight. And I've got a meeting on Thursday that will take up half the
> day, so I won't be able to make it to the marketing meeting.
> Added original proposal text to the wiki page.
> On Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 5:32 AM, Jack Aboutboul <jaa(a)redhat.com
> <mailto:email@example.com>> wrote:
> Hello Lisa,
> Welcome to the team and thanks for all the awesome input and
> feedback. I propose that we go ahead with the idea, moving
> swiftly. I will be at FUDCon as will Colby (RH A/V Guru) and we
> can begin taking pictures and video/audio there as well.
> Right now, I have set up a blank wiki page so we can start
> aggregating everything around this effort. It can be found here:
> Lisa, can you please post up what you have in this email on that
> page. Also, are you available to attend the marketing meeting
> this Thursday at 3 Eastern, 12 Pacific?
> I think the first step is to get pricing from somewhere, and
> according to that figure out how many pages the book should be.
> Ideally, I would think we should aim for 200 pages. What do
> y'all think?
> Lisa Brewster wrote:
> My apologies for hijacking this thread with multiple posts,
> but I started brainstorming on my way home from work and
> wasn't able to stop until I wrote all my thoughts down.
> Questions / discussion points are in brackets. Provided this
> idea generates some halfway creative submissions, I see it
> turning into a great grassroots marketing campaign.
> Fedora: The Book
> Driven by the Fedora Ambassadors, the goal of this photo
> project is to communicate what Fedora means to us and our
> communities. Images should show a Fedora user holding an
> object that symbolizes how the software empowers him or her in
> the Fedora principles of infinity, freedom, or voice [is
> principles the right word to use here?]. Submissions should
> include a short description (250-500 words) of how the subject
> uses the software and how this photo demonstrates one of the
> Photographers are open to interpret this theme as concretely
> or abstractly as they like. For example, you could choose to
> photograph something as straightforward as a teacher you
> encouraged to use Fedora in the classroom holding an apple
> with a Fedora sticker on it, or you could have someone
> photograph you holding a personal item that symbolizes what
> inspired you to join the project. Feel free to brainstorm for
> whimsical ideas as well, such as a developer covered in
> peanuts (because you have to be "nuts" to work for free,
> right?). Group photos are also acceptable, such as a group of
> ambassadors holding stacks of livecds to be distributed or
> XO's in the wild.
> One photo per week will be posted on $website. Once enough
> submissions are collected [one year's worth = 52?], selected
> photos will be published in a collectable book available for
> purchase. All proceeds will be donated to $cause.
> Images should be of high quality and at least $x-resolution by
> $y-resolution. You don't have to be a professional
> photographer, but composition, focus, and lighting are vital
> to communicating a strong message. If in doubt of your
> photography skills, feel free to ask a friend or post your
> idea to $mailinglist to see if we can find someone in your
> area who's willing to help [maintain a wiki page for volunteer
> Images must contain at least one person holding an object.
> The criteria defining both person and holding is flexible and
> could incorporate using hands, feet, or items resting on the
> body of people, robots, statues, animals, or other creative
> interpretations as long as it applies to Fedora and you can
> explain how it demonstrates infinity, freedom, or voice. The
> subject's face does not have to be visible. [Legal: do we
> need model release forms?]
> Images must be licensed in a manner that allows derivative
> works [and commercial? Not sure what's required for "proceeds
> go to charity" use]. The Fedora logo and editorial text based
> on your description will be superimposed on the image, and it
> may be adjusted for color, brightness, contrast, etc. [Legal:
> what else is needed here?]
> Want to contribute to The Book but aren't sure where to begin?
> Read over the following list of power words to see if any
> experiences of how you've enriched someone's life because of
> Fedora come to mind:
> * success stories
> * empowerment
> * pride
> * culture
> * diversity
> * strength
> * knowledge
> * community
> * extraordinary people
> * solutions
> * freedom
> * sharing
> * adoption
> * innovation
> * contribution
> On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 10:58 PM, Lisa Brewster
> <sophistechate(a)gmail.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
> <mailto:email@example.com>>> wrote:
> D'oh, this is the marketing list. There are so many
> projects and
> ideas and excited people that I'm having trouble keeping up
> everything that's going on! But yeah...new ambassador, noob
> mistake, nice to meet you, etc etc etc. =]
> On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 10:51 PM, Lisa Brewster
> <sophistechate(a)gmail.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
> <mailto:email@example.com>>> wrote:
> I love this idea! But instead of using a specific item
> all photos, I think it would be great to embrace the vast
> number of cultures involved in Fedora and let each
> person pick
> something unique that symbolizes their contribution or what
> Fedora means to their community. This is a great
> project that
> can evolve over time through a photoblog, and once enough
> submissions are gathered we could look at different
> I suggest establishing some kind of guidelines to establish
> visual unity (or at least an unobtrusive watermark for
> used on the web). Anyone else wanna pick up the
> stick here?
> As a photographer willing to travel in the Southern
> area, I'm in!
> PS: This is also my first contribution to the ambassadors'
> mailing list. Hi!
> 2008/12/15 Ian Weller <ianweller(a)gmail.com
> <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org <mailto:email@example.com>>>
> An entire release ago (6 months) Jeff Spaleta made the
> proposal to this
> list for Fedora to produce a (virtual?) coffee table
> book containing
> candid pictures of Fedora contributors all holding a
> specific trinket
> that could represent what the community stands for
> (perhaps something as
> simple as a Fedora logo) -- or with speech bubbles
> containing a single
> word that the contributor thinks encompasses the
> purpose/meaning/whatever of Fedora in their native
> Seeing how we're coming up upon a major NA FUDCon,
> with an
> EMEA FUDCon
> around the corner (... right?) should we make an
> to start this
> concept back up again?
> It'd be nice to be able to sell a physical book and
> the proceeds
> to OLPC or something. (Not sure if this is even viable
> because of the
> high number of Fedora contributors.)
> The key things that need to be done to get this rolling
> again are
> 1) decide on a trinket (or something else to tie
> the whole
> together, i.e., speech bubbles)
> 2) start taking photos at FUDConF11
> Other brain dumps or thoughts to follow?
> : Not that I'm saying this isn't good!
> : We can't limit this to attendees of FUDConF11,
> of course.
> Ian Weller <ianweller(a)gmail.com
> GnuPG fingerprint: E51E 0517 7A92 70A2 4226 B050 87ED
> 7C97 EFA8 4A36
> "Technology is a word that describes something that
> doesn't work yet."
> ~ Douglas Adams
> Fedora-marketing-list mailing list
> Lisa Brewster
I know there are a lot of discussions and tasks opened in Marketing
project and I don't want to overcharge with another one. I want,
instead, start talking about another key elements I would suggest to
discuss and work on.
You know Release Events : those are events that contain both the
knowledgeable side and the enjoyment one in a unique, amazing mixing
to have an interesting occasion to meet the new fedora release. As you
know, moreover, Ambassadors took (and will take) care of the event
organization, from the budget to the schedule and so on.
Now, I'm here talking with you, marketers, to start thinking a way to
optimize the visibility of those events, trying to figure out a way to
have a better relation with the outer world and, maybe, get the most
from those one (new contributors, new users and so on).
I know what I'm asking is not so simple: we are talking about
organizing a marketing campaign. I know it's earlier, we are currently
holding some F10 Release Events, but I want to ask Marketing Leading
Team to consider this for the future (F11).
Over the summer, one of our Marketing contributors created an article
for a Linux magazine featuring Fedora 9. The magazine is looking to
feature Fedora 10 and wants to have a similar article by around
Christmas (25 December) for later publication.
Is there someone in the marketing team interested in producing such an
article? I can provide details, a contact point, and probably even a
pointer to the original article to help provide scope.
Paul W. Frields http://paul.frields.org/
gpg fingerprint: 3DA6 A0AC 6D58 FEC4 0233 5906 ACDB C937 BD11 3717
http://redhat.com/ - - - - http://pfrields.fedorapeople.org/irc.freenode.net: stickster @ #fedora-docs, #fedora-devel, #fredlug
Moving Fedora Marketing Forwards
I've been way out of the Fedora loop lately, but I wanted to try and
get some thoughts down that might provoke some conversations about
what the marketing team should be doing, how we work, and how we can
become more effective in the future.
Apologies if no one finds this long winded rant useful. I hope that
people might be interested in holding a meeting dedicated to some of
these issues and planning for the Fedora 11 release cycle in the near
future, but I think the mailing list is probably the most accessible
place to bring plenty of people in on the conversation. I hope in the
near future to try and pick up some of these things myself, especially
considering I have two out of the next four weeks where my time will
be much more my own.
What the team does now
As things stand, it seems to me that the main activities related to
marketing Fedora are:
* FPL's release interviews
* Ambassadors events
* Documenting media coverage on the mailing list
* Occassional developer interviews
* Occassional blog posts & articles pimping features/community
* Responding to and correcting articles that are inaccurate Re: Fedora
Of these, the marketing team, as a *team* are responsible for 3
(although this is largely done by Rahul) and now 6. Red Hat PR are
responsible for 1 and for the most part 5.
Correct me if I'm wrong here.
How the team works now
We largely co-ordinate via the mailing list, with sometimes weekly
meetings that track the task list closely.
Seems like we could be doing a lot more as a team.
How can we improve?
* We made a marketing plan this year, it establishes what we want to
be promoting and what we think the project is about
* We should create a *time based* marketing plan that ensures we
have things to be doing, promoting, throughout the release cycle
* We need to do this asap to make sure that we have lots prepared
for the F11 release cycle
* We need to work closer with Red Hat PR.
* Not sure how this can work better, but a lot of stuff seems to
happen that no one outside RH ever realises. (Correct me if I'm wrong)
* Have no idea if RH PR take advantage of work that the community
does, is our work just going to waste?
* We need to work closer with the board, and all other parts of the
project, to ensure that we're actually representing what people
believe they're doing.
* Related to this, we should be working with websites and docs to
shepherd the content on the static pages
* We should record media coverage of Fedora on the wiki instead of
just on the mailing list. Make a good historical archive and provide
us with the opportunity to better track how Fedora is perceived
outside of our own community across releases.
* Could even make a good static page and promotional material. On
the front page, "Read what people are saying about Fedora. Click
* We should create a central location for people to come and learn
about what's happening in Fedora and our wider community
* I still believe that a Fedora Magazine style project is the best
way to do this
* We should consider establishing a more formal organisation for the
project, as well as thinking about how to make the best use of meeting
* Having been out of the loop, I'm not really qualified to comment
on the current state here, but that aside I beleive:
* Meetings should be less about tracking progress (this is easily
done *quickly* on the mailing list)
* Meetings should be much more about exploring new tasks that we
want to persue, goals, ways to achieve these.
I also believe that it may be worth reassesing our marketing
priorities. Our attempts to present Fedora as the innovative
distribution, claiming credit for features that our community creates
and pushes upstream first seemed to be successful this time last year;
now the same features that I thought we'd successfully gained
recognition for as created in Fedora are being attributed to other
distributions as they integrate it, without even acknowledging that
Fedora has feature parity. I don't know if this is our failing or
whether this is just the result of the internet being full of people
who have easy access to a large audience and don't even bother to
thoroughly research what they're going to say. It begs the question,
however, if promoting Fedora as a distribution based on the features
it contains is the right thing to be doing.