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From Stack <st...@duboce.net>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] Using the new 'help wanted' tool from comdev
Date Sun, 15 May 2016 05:05:26 GMT
On Sat, May 14, 2016 at 7:18 PM, Daniel Vimont <daniel@commonvox.org> wrote:

> The first step in working through a problem is acknowledging that there IS
> a problem, so in that respect, this conversation is going well so far!!
> Here are some thoughts (some of which are barely half-baked, so pardon the
> "raw dough").
> I know that HBaseCon2016 is very close, and all the speaking slots and
> topic sessions are locked into place, but I do have a few suggestions:
> (1) At *several* points (not just once!) throughout the plenary sessions,
> make a statement that this conversation has come up on hbase-dev, and it's
> an issue that you think is worthy of our attention and discussion. (I think
> we're just at the beginnings of a very long conversation, but just
> announcing that the conversation is underway and inviting people into it
> seems a good way to start.)

We can do that.

> (2) I see that Intel is sending four representatives to make presentations
> (two women and two men!). Intel seems to be at the forefront of
> diversification efforts in the broader IT community, having set its goal
> for "full representation" in its workforce by 2020. If these Intel
> presenters feel comfortable, it would be great to devote a few minutes in
> one of the plenary sessions to allow them to informally talk about how the
> Intel z is going from their
> perspective, and whether that offers any lessons that might be applied in
> the Hadoop/HBase ecosystems.

Let me ask the Intel'ers who are coming to the conference.

> (3) For HBaseCon2017, devote complete sessions to the issue of
> diversification. (Perhaps invite Intel's Chief Diversity Officer, Danielle
> Brown, to lead up some proactive discussions.)
Yes. I like this suggestion.

> Stepping back to the generic questions of how and why to "recruit" new
> contributors, perhaps this is where my "newbie" eyes can assist in taking a
> fresh look at things, beginning with a big lead-in question:
> The current "staff" of the HBase project: how were we "recruited", and why
> are we here?
> When I look at the contributors list, I see what I expect to see: Almost
> all of the contributors are employees of companies that are the biggest
> stakeholders in the HBase ecosystem, with the biggest number coming from
> those companies that are existentially bound to the HBase/Hadoop
> ecosystems, and a smaller number of contributors coming from companies that
> make strategically vital use of HBase in their operations. My assumption is
> that these companies are not magnanimous philanthropists, they're just
> (quite appropriately) looking after their own vital interests. Bottom line:
> this majority of contributors are *paid* to be here; their employers
> "allow" them to spend a percentage (or maybe in some cases, all) of their
> working hours tending to the care and feeding of the open-source golden
> goose that keeps their proprietary enterprises going.
> And then there are people like me (likely in much smaller numbers) who are
> here to beef up their expertise in current technologies in a way that also
> gives them a publicly-displayed "portfolio" of work with which to
> subsequently seek out paid engagements (of either the contract or
> employment variety). I'm sure I don't fully buy into the prevailing wisdom
> that "code is the new resume" and "just put your stuff out there on GitHub
> -- WE'LL find YOU!!"; nonetheless, for the last several months I've been
> setting aside my doubts and building just such a "portfolio".
The above is a fair assessment I'd say.

> So, if my take on the current "staffing" situation is approximately
> correct, it suggests to me that the quickest path to "full representation"
> in the HBase project is initially through conversations with the Human
> Resources chiefs and the CEOs of the corporations that provide the majority
> of this project's "staff". What initiatives are underway in these firms (1)
> to recruit a diverse workforce and (2) to assure that once members of
> underrepresented minorities are brought in, that they find themselves in a
> safe, supportive environment in which they want to stay? Finally, if good
> initiatives are already underway, what might be done to hasten the "trickle
> down" from these initiatives into a more diversely-staffed HBase project?

There was a call-to-arms a while back that echoed around the valley (Here
is one origin story [1] that references this interesting looking project
[2]). Where I work there is a special project afoot to work on problem #1,
at least, from your list above. Ultimately it should translate into better
numbers out here in projects like ours but I'm not sure improving presence
in open source is a captured metric. Let me ask.


2. https://github.com/triketora/women-in-software-eng

> On Sat, May 14, 2016 at 12:39 AM, Sean Busbey <busbey@apache.org> wrote:
> > On Thu, May 12, 2016 at 10:10 PM, Stack <stack@duboce.net> wrote:
> > > On Thu, May 12, 2016 at 8:37 PM, Daniel Vimont <daniel@commonvox.org>
> > wrote:
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >> With regard to recruiting new contributors, I'll just toss out a
> > question
> > >> which I hope does not give offense: What can be done to encourage more
> > >> gender-diversity in this project (and projects like it)?
> > >>
> > >>
> > > Thank you for raising this 'awkward' question up here on the dev list.
> > >
> > > Our ratio is awful. I'm ashamed to cite numbers.
> > >
> > > I don't know what we can do to encourage participation. I'd be
> interested
> > > in any ideas others might have and would be up for acting them to try
> and
> > > make redress.
> > >
> >
> >
> > Yes, thank you Daniel. This is an issue that weighs on me. The ASF in
> > general has a demographic problem, and our particular corner of it
> > seems particularly homogenous.
> >
> > I'm a firm believer in "can't fix what you don't measure." Stack do
> > you have numbers from somewhere? I was looking at ways we could run an
> > opt-in poll to get an idea of how our community looks outside of what
> > I can already see in the committer  and PMC ranks from meetups.
> >
> > I don't think there are any fast answers to this issue, but I think
> > there are some things we could try doing that would help the project
> > generally:
> >
> > 1) We could use better student outreach. Presuming we come up with
> > some materials for trying to get students involved overall, we should
> > get a few folks go out of our way to present those materials to
> > student groups that try to provide space for folks who aren't in our
> > dominant demographic.
> >
> > 2) Similar to #1, there are meetups (at least in my area) that try to
> > make things accessible and comfortable for e.g. women. We could make a
> > habit of presenting to these meetups in addition to our normal "big
> > data" themed groups.
> >
> > 3) I've noticed that none of the meetups or conferences where I see
> > HBase stuff have child care options. This doesn't only impact women,
> > but it disproportionately impacts them due to societal expectations.
> > We the community could start pushing folks to have something and we
> > the PMC could perhaps push this a little harder, like we do the need
> > for a Code of Conduct.
> >

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