[Linux-aus] Should Linux Australia change its name?

Anthony Towns aj at erisian.com.au
Wed Apr 25 16:53:34 EST 2012

On Sun, Apr 22, 2012 at 15:44, John Ferlito <johnf at inodes.org> wrote:
> Linux Australia has been around for over ten years and we are no longer an
> organisation focussed mainly on Linux and running LCA each year. All of our
> members use or contribute to open source projects in one form or another. Linux
> Australia has also become involved in open source and open culture events that
> are not specifically related to Linux.

A couple of questions on this:

 - Linux Australia has, in the past, supported events other than
linux.conf.au in two different ways: by acting as the formal
organisation running the event, and by sponsoring an event run by
another organisation with money or other resources. I don't think
there's been much problem with the name for the latter -- having
"linux" sponsor a "python" or "ada initiative" or whatever event
doesn't seem confusing; so my question is: what non-Linux events have
been *run* (not merely sponsored) by LA, and what ones are being

 - what things aren't appropriate for the new organisation to address?
If someone wanted to run a user group/conference on arduino would that
be acceptable? (if so, would having "software" in the new name be
confusing?) How about for Linux games, even if they're mostly
proprietary -- is the free OS enough to give that a pass? Android
games -- even if discussing new OS features whose source hasn't been
released yet? Mobile games, covering iOS and Windows Mobile as well as
Android? How about an event about weird hacks people do in minecraft
(proprietary game, but open technology within the game?)?

 - if, after the name change, members of the organisation wanted to do
"linux" things other than linux.conf.au under the "Linux Australia"
banner, would there be any boundaries on things that would (not) be
appropriate? Some possibly borderline examples that come to mind:
doing a white paper on why Linux is better than Windows; why Linux is
better than BSD/Hurd; why Oracle db runs better on Linux than Windows;
why Red Hat Enterprise Linux is better than Oracle Enterprise Linux;
why Oracle on Linux is better than Postgresql on Linux? (Or
equivalently if BSD folks who join the renamed organisation wanted to
do a white paper on why BSD is better than Linux)

 - does the council have or know of any plans to do Australian Linux
advocacy/events other than linux.conf.au; and if not does that mean
that folks who want to "take over" linux.org.au should be doing it
within the organisation, and encouraged to start thinking about
forming a (sub)committee under the renamed organisation to focus on
Linux (whether just the kernel, or linux based distros more

I think changing the name of the organisation if a good response to
the evolution of our focus, but I'm not sure it's clear enough what
the focus is (going to be?) to make a good decision on a name. (For
example, if we're intending to support hardware hacking via arduino
and hackerspaces and so on including "software" in the name is
probably a bad idea)

Oh, I have another name suggestion: Open Code and Collaboration
Australia, pronounced "occa". ;)

Hmm, actually, a slightly more serious one: "Oz Hackers" ?


Anthony Towns <aj at erisian.com.au>

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