[volunteers] Speaker Coordinator Introduction

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Tue Mar 29 10:29:13 PST 2011

Quoting Mehma Sarja (mehmasarja at gmail.com):

> My name is Yudhvir Singh Sidhu and I've volunteered as the Speaker 
> Coordinator.

Thanks for helping out, Yudhvir.  I've just edited the 'Speaker
Coordinator' entry on http://www.svlug.org/officers.php to credit you. 
I hope/assume you don't mind your e-mail address being linked, there.

Something I need to explain, with my apologies for your having stumbled
on it:  You had:

   To: volunteers at lists.svlug.org, svlug at lists.svlug.org

You may recall my mentioning on the svlug at lists.svlug.org the huge
political fight that erupted among about a half-dozen people on the 
latter mailing list, overwhelming it with angry advocacy traffic, near
the end of SVLUG's hyperaggressive alcoholic president Paul Reiber's
term of office in 2008.  The half-dozen offenders refused to confine
their fighting about SVLUG's organisational matters to Volunteers
because it has a smaller audience, so they misbehaved on the main SVLUG
mailing list to reach the largest possible crowd (svlug at lists.svlug.org
tending to consist largely of people interested in Linux but not SVLUG).

I put an end to that situation through my ruling as mailing list
administrator that all SVLUG-administrative matters must be confined to
Volunteers, but the offenders attempted to test my tolerance and refused
to comply.  Morever, they started cross-posting between Volunteers and
the main SVLUG mailing list.  I asked them to voluntarily behave
themselves:  They refused to comply, essentially wanting to be banned,
which presumably would have made them feel important.

Getting tired of that sort of engineered confrontation, I eventually 
ceased asking politely, and instead installed an anti-spam filter on the
main SVLUG list (svlug at lists.svlug.org) to reject cross-posts.  The
list's listinfo page (http://lists.svlug.org/lists/listinfo/svlug)
discloses that filter's presence:

   Note:  Past episodes of abusive crossposting have lead to installation
   of filters that autoreject postings also cross-addressed to some other
   mailing lists, including the SVLUG Volunteers list. 

That is why your cross-posting to the two mailing lists was accepted onto
Volunteers but auto-rejected by svlug at lists.svlug.org, FYI.

(The same people who bitched, whined, and treated me as if I were asking
a personal favour when I politely asked them to not crosspost, shut up
entirely and started behaving themselves when I merely stopped asking nicely
and just made it not work.  There's a lesson in there, somewhere.)

If you think it essential to be able to crosspost, I'm willing to remove
that filter (just ask, if you'd like me to do that).  In my own experience as a
mailing list administrator, cross-posting is almost always a bad idea, 
for reasons including extra hassle it creates for the listadmins when
replies are attempted.

> I've got a couple of ideas for potential speakers but am 
> asking the membership and plan on pursuing your leads as well. I don't 
> know any of these people/companies/products - just interested.
> a.  TABLETS - Since tablets are the current craze, Linux on tablets.

It's perhaps relevant that HP announced recently that all of their
tablet, desktops, laptops, and mobile devices will soon run WebOS, the
Linux-based distro they acquired when they bought Palm Computing.  See:

I have no idea if anyone local from HP/Palm might be available or if
they're all in HP's other locations, but perhaps it's worth inquiring.

(WebOS is distinct from the firmware-level single-tasking OS in older
Palm, Handspring, etc. PDAs, which historically was called PalmOS but
has more recently been redubbed 'Garnet OS'.)

On a different note, I have the beginnings of a talk I could put
together about Android-based ebook readers, specifically Barnes and
Noble 'Nook' devices.  I've had one of the latter for this past year, 
and it was trivial to 'root' so that I gained full control over it 
and could upgrade it to run more-recent community Android builds 
with some additional software.  It remains pretty much a dedicated
ebook reader without much suitability for general-purpose computing, but 
I'm happy with it.

Also:  Mark Weisler, Margaret Wendall, and I can help backstop and help
you get things done.  In particular, we keep the mailing lists and
e-mail services running and keep the Web site contents updated.
(Mailing lists / e-mail services, lists.svlug.org, are on a fragile
physical box colocated at Via.net in Palo Alto that isn't backed up and
may be totally lost at any time.  I have warned many times about this
risk.  The non-Mailman Web pages, www.svlug.org are on a different host,
a virthost at Linode.  We would be glad to give you shell access on
either or both.

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