Here we go ...

**Dear community,
As you may have read I am now officially a candidate running for one of the open positions on the openSUSE Board in this year’s election. Who am I, what do I do, how did I get here and what am I going to do on the board? In this first blog post I’ll make a start in giving some answers to these questions. Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be back with more blog posts to provide some more background, elaborate on some of my thoughts on the openSUSE Project.

**Who am I?
Well, my openSUSE user profile ( here ) is from 2010, but I wouldn’t change much. One son has left the building, we have four cats, for those interested.
For those of you using openSUSE Connect: here’s more
Next to all this a simple 50% tech-, 50% people-person would cover my openSUSE “about me”.

**What do I do

**Outside the openSUSE world I’m a self-employed allrounder in ICT. My activities vary from complete ICT management to hacking and building webapplications, system adminstrating small business office ICT, training and supporting volunteers, writing documentation. Where ever possible and feasible I use openSUSE. Within the openSUSE community I’m active in the forums, from 2010 as a global mod and founder of the dutch subforums. From 2011 involved in the dutch launch parties, which we begin with a live install of the newly released version. A couple of times a year I do openSUSE presentations, the best result was a group of elderly people that I created openSUSE install media for, using SUSE Studio, with everything they needed installed by default. My fun in this is that I find help where I need it, and have yet another thing that I can help others with.
…and I still play the guitar

**How did I get here?
To be honest, I never considered standing up for the openSUSE Board before. When asked to do so just before the end of last year I was, understatement, slightly confused. But it got me thinking, asking myself why I shouldn’t or couldn’t. One of the things I learned in this community is that asking for feedback can really help. One remark in the feedback specifically made me stop doubting and go for it. It was in dutch but in short it was about threading new paths for the sake of love and care for something. So, the motivation for running for board is actually the same as my motivation to help out in forums, social media, to help out manage/moderate these. And my travels through the build service, suse studio, openqa, same thing. openSUSE is kind of home and over the years I’ve seen many parts of that home, and am still delighted to see things move, develop, grow. When I posted my intention-to-run email on the project mailing list, I was sure; I want to do this.

**What am I going to do on the board?

**Before anything else, I’m very pleased with the directions taken by the current board. To be on the openSUSE Conference 2015 in Voorburg and be able to discuss ( the things going on in ) the project with some of them and many others was a wonderful experience. In fact, a lot of the inspiration for the things below originate in that Conference and the people I met and spoke to
Like said, in the next blog posts I’ll elaborate on the things I’m only touching here. Of course I’ll need some time to find my way around, but there are a couple of things that I would like to see happen, and am willing to invest time and energy in:

  • Some kind of program to activate users. Get up, stand up, help out.
  • Aligned with the first item, get (f.e. to become) a cross-community platform where everything happens
  • Get full Kolab support into (open)SUSE
  • Discuss a new wiki.
  • SUSE’s code base: can the benefit be even bigger?
  • Propagate the fun of being active in this community

So far for now, thank you for reading