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From Ross Gardler <>
Subject Some requests... ApacheCon and OpenOffice
Date Fri, 27 Jul 2012 16:44:31 GMT
The ApacheCon CFP closes on Aug 3rd. I'd like to float some ideas for
sessions that I would love to see there. I'm not equipped to deliver
sessions on AOO so I'm pitching them here in case someone wants to
submit them. If I am interested then maybe others are too.

First off, here's some info about the OpenOffice

The CFP is at

Note that there is travel assistance available to those who would be
otherwise unable to attend. There is no guarantee of getting
assistance as it is evaluated on a needs basis, but if your employer
can't pay for your expenses you might want to consider applying for
TAC, see

When I go to conferences I personally prefer sessions that are less
about presentation and more about engaging with one another. So I'd
love to see some sessions aimed at cross-project collaboration. One of
the great things about Apache is the breadth of projects we have here.
Cross-pollination is often valuable. Sessions designed to do this tend
to be small, probably 2-5 people per project. The goal would be to
explore the potential for collaboration between projects.
Unfortunately, as I write we are not sure of how flexible the venue is
in terms of space use (there is a site visit tomorrow) but we might be
able to accomodate some intimate sessions like these. I'm hoping that
we can create some smaller spaces to allow this kind of session to

What we need is someone to own them. That means touch base with the
projects in question and check someone will be there and then propose
the session in the CFP. That someone will also need coordinate
preparations and chair the sessions on the day. An example session
(which is completely made up as an example I don't know if there is
genuine value in this, but I'd like to explore it...)

"OpenSocial implementations, such as Apache Shindig, open
opportunities to share mini-applications across various platforms. If
Apache OpenOffice were to embed Shindig services then it could provide
social integration features such as messaging, collaborative research
and expertise discovery. Such social applications could be integrated
with document content and meta-data to provide automated
cross-pollination opportunities (e.g. an activity stream that
indicates Jane is working on a document that has some similar content
to Joe's). Furthermore, by enabling such features using OpenSocial it
becomes possible to extend AOO UI features into other applications
that act as a host, such as dashboards built using Apache Rave or
document management systems. Similar results can be achieved by
adopting the W3C Widget packaging standards as implemented by Apache
Wookie, also used in Rave.

In this session we'll start with demonstrating the potential of some
of these core technologies. The second half of the session will
explore, in an interactive style, use-cases and opportunities for
collaboration between projects represented by members of the audience.
This session is therefore intended for developers familiar with social
technologies and users who wished their office tools could integrate
better with more recently developerd collaboration tools,"

This would be a session for around 6-15 people. It might well lead to
a subsequent hackathon session in which some proof-of-concepts are
built (as it happens this is exactly what happened at OSCON when we
got an Alfresco guy together with a Rave guy)

I could imagine there being potential for a number of such sessions
(CMIS, Semantic data and content searching all jump to mind for
example). Pick your favourite topic, touch base with the appropriate
project communities and send in a CFP. Sessions like these take much
less time to prepare than full blown presentation and, personally, I
find them more rewarding.

I'd also love to see something on the A11Y opportunities with AOO4,
thanks to the IA2 work in Symphony. As I understand it this is a
non-trivial integration effort. This might be a great opportunity to
build some momentum in something that typically attracts only a few
developers. Such a session might spend as much time on *why* this is
important in the general sense since most developers don't understand
it beyond the moral justification of doing the right thing. For
example, how many people here know that "Around 10 per cent of the
world’s population, or 650 million people, live with a disability.
They are the world’s largest minority." -

It would also be great if someone could look back at the community
history of OOo -> AOO (Juergen a little bird told me you are well
placed for this...)  I'm not talking about looking at what went wrong
in late Sun and Oracle days. That's old news, combatative and boring.
I'm interested in hearing (from an old hand) what made OOo a success
in the early days. How it managed to become so popular. I'd then like
to hear what is good about the ASF, does it bring any of the good
times aspects back? Are there good aspects you'd like to bring back?
I'd like to think that such a presentation would have just one slide
covering the "bad stuff" - something that just said "some things
weren't so good - this led to a forking of the community" - AOO is one
of the outcomes from that forking and we're doing great thank you -
partly because the ASF has brought us...

My last request (for today at least) is for someone to run a session
on setting up a dev environment for AOO. Ideally this will go from a
fresh Windows install in a VM to building AOO in its entirety.
Furthermore it would be best for someone else to record this session
using a screen recorder and later turn it into a online resource.

I hope others can take the time to post their requests here and just
as importantly, some nice developers submit the sessions for us ;-)

Ross Gardler (@rgardler)
Programme Leader (Open Development)

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