Quarterly Report from Fedora, July - September 2014

Tue, 2014-11-18 16:07 -- carol

From The Fedora Steering Group

Fedora Development - In the past quarter, the development team released two Beta releases of Fedora 4; detailed release notes are here:

These two releases bring us much closer to the Fedora 4.0 production release. Features of note include demonstrated support for large numbers of files, improvements to file-system projection, better support for transactions, demonstrated ability to support high-availability use cases via clustering, and many other improvements. In addition to these features, a great deal of effort has been put into improving the test coverage and overall performance of Fedora 4. We encourage the community to download and install Fedora 4 (a one-click installer is available) and test out the new features.

Fedora 4.0 is only the first release in the 4.x line - a number of features, including support for Fedora 3 to Fedora 4 migrations, are planned for subsequent 4.x releases. While releasing Fedora 4.0 into production is our top development priority, we must also start scheduling the 2015 January to June block of code sprints to work on the next 4.x release. Please consider contributing developer time to these sprints by contacting Andrew Woods (awoods@duraspace.org), the Fedora Technical Lead.

Fundraising

We have concluded our official annual membership campaign, which runs from early May until the end of October (though we will continue to accept new project members throughout the year whenever the opportunity arises). The annual membership goal for 2014 is $500,000, and as of this report we have exceeded this goal by raising $525,083. The Fedora project has a total of 62 members; this includes 23 new members and 39 renewals from last year's members. The Fedora Product Manager will continue to coordinate with members of the Fedora Steering Group to expand the pool of DuraSpace members supporting the Fedora project and build a sustainable funding base for the future.

Community Engagement and Outreach

In the past quarter, developers have continued to hold daily meetings in conjunction with development sprints, as well as weekly Fedora committer calls attended by the broader community. 

Widespread adoption of Fedora 4 from the Islandora and Hydra communities is critical to the success of the project. To this end, the Fedora Product Manager traveled to Toronto for Islandora Camp GTA  in August to engage with the Islandora community and encourage adoption of Fedora 4. Similarly, the Fedora Technical Lead traveled to Cleveland, Ohio for Hydra Connect in September to meet with the Hydra community and run a workshop on Fedora 4. Both communities have voiced their support for Fedora 4, and we expect to see many integration projects in the coming months.

Engagement with the international community is another critical success factor for the project, so the Product Manager traveled to Europe in September to attend and present at several events, including PASIG, the 4th RDA Plenary, and a Fedora User Group meeting. These events provided opportunities to meet with potential DuraSpace members and project collaborators, demonstrate the features and functionality of Fedora 4, and find out what more we can do to engage with the international community.

Fedora 4 Training

While this quarterly report covers the period of July to September, a number of important Fedora 4 training events took place in October and November that should be highlighted. The first training workshop was held in Washington, DC on October 7 following the DC Fedora User Group meeting. It was well attended (32 participants) and the feedback was very positive. The next training workshop was held in Denver, Colorado on October 16 following Islandora Camp CO. Attendance for this event was capped at 30, and it was full with a waiting list. The final October training workshop was held in Melbourne, Australia on October 31 following the eResearch Australasia conference. This event had 25 attendees and was an excellent opportunity for engagement with Fedora community members in the Australasian region. Further details on these events will be provided in the upcoming fourth quarter report.

Fedora 4.0 Production Release

Fedora 4.0 development is nearly complete; the production release will be available in December. This release marks the culmination of over two years of planning, fundraising, development, testing, and documentation effort from the Fedora community. Fedora 4.0 targets new repositories; planning is already underway to support Fedora 3 to Fedora 4 migrations in the forthcoming Fedora 4.1 release.

Upcoming Conferences and Events

After successfully completing Fedora 4.0 Beta Pilot projects, representatives from the Art Institute of Chicago, University of California, San Diego, and Stanford University will participate in a panel discussion at the CNI Fall meeting on December 8-9, 2014. The panel will be preceded by a project update from the Fedora Product Manager. The annual DuraSpace Membership Meeting will take place in Washington, DC on March 11-12, 2015. 

Plans are underway to develop and deliver a 3-day Fedora training event in 2015. This event, and the materials developed to support it, will increase engagement with Fedora 4 and provide tools for community members to host their own training events all over the world.