The Metamorphosis

07 February 2007

day-job java jboss north-carolina opensource

Monday morning, I woke up to find myself transformed into a Red Hat employee.

Yes, that's right, I've joined Red Hat. More specifically, I joined JBoss, a division of Red Hat, to lead up JBoss.ORG . You may recall that a little more than a year ago, JBoss acquired the Drools business rule engine. At that time, Mark Proctor joined JBoss to lead Drools, while I wandered off to pursue other interests. In the intervening time, I followed the project of course. I was impressed with how well it functioned under the larger umbrella of JBoss. When the JBoss.ORG community-centric opportunity arose, I felt I had to finally jump aboard the good ship JBoss.

And here I am.

I join a talented team who already have a lot of cool things underway:

(You may now notice that my decision to learn Polish wasn't quite as arbitrary as it may have initially seemed.)

JBoss is of course one of the pioneers of the professional open-source model. In that, we can never forget our open-source community roots, even when vast sums of money are thrown around. Ultimately all open-source survives and grows based upon goodwill. Tending to the community is required, else you risk alienating your own users. I aim to use my experiences from a variety of open-source projects and communities to make sure the JBoss community is one of which I'm proud to be a member.

So, what exactly am I going to do?

I'm going to find our weaknesses within how we handle our community. Anything that we could be doing better. Perhaps an existing bit of the infrastructure used by projects is irritating. Perhaps we're missing some tooling that folks wished we had. Perhaps we need to help projects organize their documentation or create some tutorials.

Within a community is a continuum of participation. Our job is to remove anything that stands in the way of people moving as far along as they wish.


Once impediments are torn down, a feedback loop exists, with community members helping each other.

I'm truly excited about this opportunity to work with open-source communities full-time. Things are afoot. And let me know what you think we need to do so that we can leave you with warm and happy thoughts of JBoss at the end of the day.

Update: Here is the official press release (PDF)