You may have heard of these…Since September 2007, K.Mandla, conducted interviews with forum members on his blog, Motho ke motho ka botho, giving all of us an opportunity to get to know some of the people who are consistently helpful and friendly contributors to our community. This has been a fun way to introduce the wonderful members of our worldwide forum community to one another in a little bit deeper way, with posts coming once every two to six weeks*, depending on the time of year, how busy everyone is, and how easy or difficult it is to get a response at a given time.
Then in July 2008, K.Mandla decided that he didn’t have enough time to keep up the interviews. Rather than letting them end, matthew took on the task, and has since provided many fantastic interviews with both forum and general community members alike. The most notable of these being Mark Shuttleworth (SABDFL) himself, all of which provided a great insight into who the person behind the name is. Sadly, matthew has suffered a similar fate to K.Mandla and found a lack of time to dedicate to the interviews.
Thankfully Joeb454 was able to step up in August 2009 and take the reigns. He has scoured the community and provided us with many memorable interviews including with Jono and Mako. For this we thank him for investing his time in keeping the interviews alive. Sadly Joeb454 is a little too busy with real life to continue the interviews.
This is where I come in. Similarly to what has happened before – I will be taking over the role from Joeb454, and hopefully beginning series in the next week or 2. As Joeb454 did, I won’t be limiting the interviews to specifically forum members. So, to all of you lovely people on Planet Ubuntu, you may very well get an email from me one day – don’t say you haven’t been warned! Though if you do want to volunteer, feel free to email me.
The bottom line reason for doing these interviews is that everyone has a life beyond the nickname and avatar that we see, and it is interesting to find out a little bit more about the human being behind the screen, the blog, or the reputation. To that end, I am picking up on an idea that was borrowed from an idea originally suggested by forum staff member extraordinaire aysiu, and given legs by K.Mandla, further expanded by matthew and then finally by Joeb454. I will be asking the same simple series of nine open-ended questions.
- Tell as much as you’re willing about your “real life” like name, age, gender, location, family, religion, profession, education, hobbies, etc.
- When and how did you become interested in computers? in Linux? in Ubuntu?
- When did you become involved in the forums (or the Ubuntu community)? What’s your role there?
- Are you an Ubuntu member? If so, how do you contribute? If not, do you plan on becoming one?
- What distros do you regularly use? What software? What’s your favorite application? Your least favorite?
- What’s your fondest memory from the forums, or from Ubuntu overall? What’s your worst?
- What luck have you had introducing new computer users to Ubuntu?
- What would you like to see happen with Linux in the future? with Ubuntu?
- If there was one thing you could tell all new Ubuntu users, what would it be?
The questions are intentionally generic; that gives everyone a common ground to start with, and allows them to direct their replies in whatever way they see fit. Interviewees can answer as fully or as briefly as they like, and might even skip questions. Replies are only edited for punctuation, grammar or clarity, and so what you read is what they responded.
* Now as you read this you may assume I’m taking this on as I have a lot of free time – I don’t. Though I do hope to get at least 1 interview per month if possible (e.g. every 4 weeks), so I feel that should be spaced out evenly enough for those who don’t want to read them while still being regular.
List of Interviews: