[openstack-dev] [election][tc] Annoouncing candidacy for the technical committee election

Steven Dake (stdake) stdake at cisco.com
Tue Mar 29 19:54:27 UTC 2016

All My Peers,

TL;DR - I will increase adoption of OpenStack by removing governance

RED TAPE and mentoring individuals interested in these objectives.

A brief history of time:

I started my journey in OpenStack by doing a gap analysis of AWS to

OpenkStack at my previous employer Red Hat, Inc.  This gap analysis

turned up all kinds of gaps in OpenStack four years ago.  I

personally believed for OpenStack to be successful, it needed to expand

beyond a compute kit and deliver a complete IaaS platform.

Four years ago there was not really a way to add projects to OpenStack.

There was no big tent, but instead an incubation track.  It was very

poorly defined (half a wiki page), so I went about the efforts of

solving one of the most fundamental problems in OpenStack: Adding a

new project to OpenStack.  I did this by combining my previous gap

analysis with my experience starting and leading Open Source projects

to solve one of the most fundamental gaps in OpenStack: Orchestration.

This led to the founding of the Heat project with Angus Salkeld of

which I served as PTL for 18 months.  At the time the bar to add

projects to OpenStack was stratospheric.  Fortunately the

dedication and perseverance of the Heat project team resulted

in the addition of Heat as an incubated and later integrated

project as did another project Ceilometer led by Nick Barcet

that also went through the same process at nearly the same time as Heat.

Once Ceilometer and Heat were integrated into the integrated

release of OpenStack, a herd of projects attempted incubation

into OpenStack and the technical committee was faced with a dilemma.

In early 2014, OpenStack governance isolated projects into

"programs".  The technical committee believed it was necessary

to integrate all these new projects into existing programs.

The learning process from that led to the origination of the

Big Tent, of which I am a super hard-core fan.  Once the Big Tent

was reality, the bar for entry as a legitimate OpenStack project

was far lowered, creating a framework for new innovative projects

to flourish, evolve, and add value to the OpenStack community.

In mid 2014 I was feeling a little frustrated after recruiting a

fantastic diversely affiliated team and community and still

feeling like a track athlete for jumping all the hurdles in the

way of making Heat an integrated program.  How could others go

through this effort without all the hurdles?  I lacked an answer.

Fortunately the technical committee cut the RED TAPE by introducing

the Big Tent in late 2014 which re-energized me into solving

OpenStack's next two major gaps.  The first gap was lack of

support for container workloads (solved by Magnum), where Adrian

Otto served a PTL while I recruited a majority of the core

reviewer team and implemented much of the original architecture.

At the nearly the same time in 2015, I personally believed existing

deployment of OpenStack was too complex and error prone and formed

the Kolla project.

I recruited a great core review team with Kolla and trained this

young team on how to "Open Source".  I feel Kolla is one of OpenStack's

greatest successes - a team with a high degree of diverse affiliations

to solve OpenStack's #1 problem: How do I deploy the damn thing!

Now, I as the PTL of Kolla am faced with a problem: RED TAPE!

The technical committee decided during the Big Tent process that

projects should be labeled with tags.  Whether tagging is dangerous

or not to OpenStack projects I leave for a different forum, but

there is Operator value in the tagging process.

Tags provide a mechanisms to automate information transfer and serve

as a selection criteria for the OpenStack Operator community who

represent the folks that are actually going to deploy the software

the OpenStack developer community creates.

The current tags as they are written are full of RED TAPE [1].  It

is not easy writing a tag that doesn't require onerous hurdle jumping.

I wrote a couple type: tags myself [2][3] and it is not the blame of

the technical committee that the tags can appear so onerous to fresh

projects like Kolla that have only been in the Big Tent for ten

months.  It is a complex challenge handling all cases with a

limited document.  To correct the deficiencies of the governance

repository, we need to collectively involve the community in the

governance repository development process.

I don't want to "overthrow" the technical committee as it stands.

I think they have done a fantastic job of keeping up with rapid

pace of OpenStack's growth.  I honestly don't think I could have

done a better job in the past.  That said, I would appreciate the

opportunity to contribute to the technical committee's efforts

bringing to the table my 4 years of experience as PTL or co-PTL

of the Heat, Magnum, and Kolla projects as well as my previous

work in Open Source including leadership positions in the high

availability community, leading Corosync, and serving as

an author for the Linux Foundation's Carrier Grade Linux

specifications.  My professional mission in the past has been

to make OpenStack and the developers I mentor grow.  I want to

expand my professional mission with:

"Grow the OpenStack ecosystem by reducing or removing hurdles

and mentoring individuals interested in these objectives."

If elected for the technical committee I will deliver on this

mission by:

* Promoting project affiliation diversity wherever possible.

* Serve as a Champion for community members wishing someone

  else would just remove the RED TAPE so they could get on

  with their jobs by authoring and driving changes to the

  governance repository at request.

* Enforce via automated tooling and human intervention an accurate

  accounting of the tags used in the governance repository so that

  Operators can actually count on the tags being accurate rather

  than applied inconsistently.

* Mentor fresh Project Team Leads how the governance repository


* Mentor Project Team Leads on the governance repository workflow

  to solve their own problems.

* Lead the development of a feedback loop between the technical

  committee and Project Team Leads relating to tagging and

  RED TAPE removal.

* Democratize the governance repository so thirteen individuals

  don't decide feature tagging of technical projects; rather the

  project teams feed their ideas into the governance repository

  directly.  This can already be done today but is rarely undertaken.

I am able to do most of these things today in an unofficial

capacity.  Becoming a member of the technical committee with your

vote would help reach a wider audience with my mission and permit

me to have a bigger impact by helping shape the governance of


I would be pleased to accept your vote and serve as your technical

committee representative and deliver on the commitments made above.

With my twenty years of R&D development experience coupled with my

four years of PTL experience and extensive technical involvement

in the growth of OpenStack [4][5], I believe I am in a fantastic

position to serve as your voice and mentor others to use theirs.

Warm Regards,

Steven Dake

My freenode IRC nickname is: sdake

[1] https://review.openstack.org/#/c/294212/

[2] https://review.openstack.org/#/c/295528/

[3] https://review.openstack.org/#/c/295971/

[4] Reviews: http://stackalytics.com/?user_id=sdake&release=all&metric=marks

[5] Commits: http://stackalytics.com/?user_id=sdake&release=all&metric=commits
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