Expert board members - a suggestion

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
>
> > Still doesn't work.  And yes, it needs an executive level decision,
> > and it
> > needs a kick in the ass from the board to get the executive level to
> > make
> > that decision.
>
> That work is being done at the moment, I'd think that it is being
> handled properly. On the other hand, I'm no longer in position of
> judging that from above, and can enjoy fully not caring ;-)
>

I'll believe it when I see it.  AFAICT, the dumps still don't work, and you
still haven't hired a new CTO.


> > How many millions of dollars were left unspent by the tech team a
> > couple
> > years ago?
>
> How many?
>

1.7

Why are you looking for faults?
>

The first step in fixing a problem is identifying the faults.


> CTO had to operate under constraints
> set by financial management, financial management was done based on
> conservative non-profit operation model.
>

The CTO came up with a budget.  He submitted that budget.  That budget was
accepted.  Then the money which was budgeted went unspent, while glaring
problems which required spending remained.


> > You can't have a bunch of
> > people adding little things here and there and expect a working
> > product, and
> > it's unrealistic to expect someone to take charge of this sort of
> > thing for
> > free, especially in the current economy.
>
> You seem to have entirely failing understanding of motivation
> technology volunteers can have.
>

It's not a matter of motivation, it's a matter of reality.  If you're going
to limit your selection to people who are independently wealthy, you're not
going to get as many qualified individuals for the task.  If there are
people willing and able to fix the dumps for free, and you can find them and
give them the tools they need to do it, fine.  But that didn't happen, and
*in this particular case*, it's probably unrealistic.  Three years ago,
before the economy went into the crapper, you probably could have found
someone to do it.  I probably would have even done it myself, if someone had
given me access to the servers so I could do it.  What I remember from the
time is that the story was always "this is being worked on", not "we need
someone to volunteer to redesign this".  Actually I was under the impression
then that you didn't really want to fix the dumps - remember this was during
the beginning of the oversight days.  But today it's probably tougher
finding qualified individuals willing and able to do it for free.

Whatever.  Whether it's done for free or for a price isn't what's important.
 What's important is that it gets done.

We have amazing project work done on search by Robert, toolserver
> operation by River, do note, how much work on CDN infrastructure that
> was done by Mark, or simply all the work done before by Brion and Tim.
>

Have any of these people fixed the dumps?  Maybe if the current system
wasn't written in Python you could have found someone to do this, but as it
was, it simply wasn't a task which anyone was motivated to do for free.
 "Let's just wait a few years and see if someone turns up" isn't the answer
to that problem.  "Let's spend a little of this 1.7 million we have sitting
in a bank account doing nothing" is.
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Thomas Dalton
2009/9/15 Anthony <[hidden email]>:

>>
>> > Still doesn't work.  And yes, it needs an executive level decision,
>> > and it
>> > needs a kick in the ass from the board to get the executive level to
>> > make
>> > that decision.
>>
>> That work is being done at the moment, I'd think that it is being
>> handled properly. On the other hand, I'm no longer in position of
>> judging that from above, and can enjoy fully not caring ;-)
>>
>
> I'll believe it when I see it.  AFAICT, the dumps still don't work, and you
> still haven't hired a new CTO.

Progress has been made - we do now have most of the dumps sorted. It
is just the full history dump we still don't have.

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Domas Mituzas
In reply to this post by Anthony-73
Hi!

> I'll believe it when I see it.

;-)

> AFAICT, the dumps still don't work, and you
> still haven't hired a new CTO.

Dumps work better, and there's work done to get a new CTO.

> 1.7

How was that budgeted? Which year? Can you point me at that unspent  
software development budget number?

> The first step in fixing a problem is identifying the faults.

Ones known already?

> The CTO came up with a budget.  He submitted that budget.  That  
> budget was
> accepted.  Then the money which was budgeted went unspent, while  
> glaring
> problems which required spending remained.

You know who'd do better job? I guess WMF would welcome referrals :)

> It's not a matter of motivation, it's a matter of reality.  If  
> you're going
> to limit your selection to people who are independently wealthy,  
> you're not
> going to get as many qualified individuals for the task.

Well, apparently there are people on payroll - so we're not limiting.
On the other hand, can we afford proper .com-level salaries to  
qualified engineers?
Even though there's recession, there's always need for good engineers.

> If there are
> people willing and able to fix the dumps for free, and you can find  
> them and
> give them the tools they need to do it, fine.  But that didn't  
> happen, and
> *in this particular case*, it's probably unrealistic.

Indeed, because this isn't project that is really attractive or  
rewarding technology-wise.
For now we got lots of things done because stuff we did was interesting.

> Three years ago, before the economy went into the crapper,
> you probably could have found someone to do it.
> I probably would have even done it myself, if someone had
> given me access to the servers so I could do it.

One doesn't really need access to servers to fix the code. Well,  
eventually one may need, but that is quite beyond the whole  
implementation.

>  What I remember from the
> time is that the story was always "this is being worked on", not "we  
> need
> someone to volunteer to redesign this".

Depends whom you were talking to, or maybe they were mistaken about  
the project, or maybe they were mistaken about themselves committing  
to it :)

> Actually I was under the impression
> then that you didn't really want to fix the dumps - remember this  
> was during
> the beginning of the oversight days.

How is that any related?

>  But today it's probably tougher
> finding qualified individuals willing and able to do it for free.

I wouldn't be that sure. It was always tough to find anyone  
experienced enough.

> Whatever.  Whether it's done for free or for a price isn't what's  
> important.
> What's important is that it gets done.

It gets done. It is being done.

> Have any of these people fixed the dumps?

In a way, everyone did, just probably not enough for your absolute  
benchmark.
Still, all these people volunteered to do great things, requiring more  
work than dumps.
My point is that we can find volunteers for really challenging in-
depth projects, it gets a bit more difficult if the project in  
question does not provide too much motivation.

>  Maybe if the current system
> wasn't written in Python you could have found someone to do this,  
> but as it
> was, it simply wasn't a task which anyone was motivated to do for  
> free.

LOL, replace 'Python' with pretty much any other language, and you can  
use it again.

> "Let's just wait a few years and see if someone turns up" isn't the  
> answer
> to that problem.  "Let's spend a little of this 1.7 million we have  
> sitting
> in a bank account doing nothing" is.

You are trolling and you're piggy-backing.
We have dedicated resources for that, paid out of donations, yes.

Is repeating yourself these things over and over something you're  
doing to try to support yourself as original author of these ideas?

Cheers,
Domas

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

thekohser
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
Domas says about Anthony:

++++++++++++++++

How was that budgeted? Which year? Can you point me at that unspent
software development budget number?

...

You are trolling and you're piggy-backing.
We have dedicated resources for that, paid out of donations, yes.

++++++++++++++++

I would consider it equally "trolling" to assume or pretend that an
unfortunate financial situation did not happen, just because you haven't
taken the time or effort to pay attention to when these issues have been
discussed in numerous, varied forums across the Internet.  Here are at least
a dozen for you, Domas:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22%241.7+million%22+technology+wikimedia+%22sue+gardner%22

Greg
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Andrew Whitworth-2
On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 3:56 PM, Gregory Kohs <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I would consider it equally "trolling" to assume or pretend that an
> unfortunate financial situation did not happen, just because you haven't
> taken the time or effort to pay attention to when these issues have been
> discussed in numerous, varied forums across the Internet.  Here are at least
> a dozen for you, Domas:
>
> http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22%241.7+million%22+technology+wikimedia+%22sue+gardner%22

I wouldn't consider any of those dozen to be credible or reliable
sources. Nobody has a responsibility to monitor the entirety of the
internet to follow various discussion minutia or unfounded rumors, and
it's not trolling to not assume that responsibility for oneself.

--Andrew Whitworth

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

thekohser
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
Andrew Whitworth opined:

++++++++++

On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 3:56 PM, Gregory Kohs <thekohser at gmail.com
<https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l>> wrote:
>* I would consider it equally "trolling" to assume or pretend that an
*>* unfortunate financial situation did not happen, just because you haven't
*>* taken the time or effort to pay attention to when these issues have been
*>* discussed in numerous, varied forums across the Internet.  Here are at least
*>* a dozen for you, Domas:
*>*
*>* http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22%241.7+million%22+technology+wikimedia+%22sue+gardner%22
*
I wouldn't consider any of those dozen to be credible or reliable
sources. Nobody has a responsibility to monitor the entirety of the
internet to follow various discussion minutia or unfounded rumors, and
it's not trolling to not assume that responsibility for oneself.

--Andrew Whitworth

++++++++++

Yes, you certainly wouldn't want to click the first returned result:

http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Foundation_report_to_the_Board,_May_2008

...Where Sue Gardner (you may not know or trust her credibility or
reliability, but she is the Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation,
which is the subject of this mailing list) herself says:

The biggest departmental underspend was in the technology budget

(-$1,673). We attribute this underspending to general conservatism and
caution on the part of the tech team, a desire to defer equipment purchases
while various donations and sponsorship deals were under negotiation, and
delays in hiring.



Is it just me, or is there a significant amount of cotton stuffed in many
ears around here?

Sorry to sound so rude in reply, but you really do turn some of these
would-be contested lay-ups into backboard-shattering slam dunks.

Greg
--
Gregory Kohs
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Domas Mituzas
In reply to this post by thekohser
Gregory,
> Here are at least a dozen for you, Domas:
> http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22%241.7+million%22+technology+wikimedia+%22sue+gardner%22

Oh wow, I got my chance to read Valleywag, probably that should be the  
major point of insight for all the efficient non-profit governance,  
right, Gregory?

Now, for those who fail at reading comprehension, let me point out to  
the report from ED to board:
"a desire to defer equipment purchases while various donations and  
sponsorship deals were under negotiation"

We had major sponsorship deals pending, which didn't happen because,  
dear oh dear, bad economy.
Thats why we stretched a bit, and were doing hardware acquisitions  
next FY.

If you think it wasn't worth getting to those talks and trying to get  
free hardware (or second datacenter, or multi-petabyte storage  
expansion, or ...), you seem to be one in the mood of wasting money.
Oh well, we also did some optimization work (volunteers mostly ;-)  
that allowed us to grow a bit longer.

Do note, our major capacity benchmark is September-October season,  
summer season allows us to restructure lots of stuff.

Yes, we could've done hiring faster, and more aggressively I guess -  
which we discussed at the board level (especially at October 3-5  
meeting in 2008).

> Yes, you certainly wouldn't want to click the first returned result:
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/ 
> Foundation_report_to_the_Board,_May_2008

Thats second to me, first is Valleywag.

Cheers,
Domas

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
In reply to this post by Domas Mituzas
On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 3:39 PM, Domas Mituzas <[hidden email]>wrote:
>
> > 1.7
>
> How was that budgeted? Which year? Can you point me at that unspent
> software development budget number?
>

http://blog.p2pedia.org/2008/06/foundation-who-cried-wolf.html

Correct me if I'm wrong, but here's what I can gather: Total spending was
$1.7 million less than budgeted.  Tech spending was $1.7 million less than
budgeted.  And $1.7 million was sitting in the bank accounts at the end of
the fiscal year.

> It's not a matter of motivation, it's a matter of reality.  If
> > you're going
> > to limit your selection to people who are independently wealthy,
> > you're not
> > going to get as many qualified individuals for the task.
>
> Well, apparently there are people on payroll - so we're not limiting.
> On the other hand, can we afford proper .com-level salaries to
> qualified engineers?
>

The solution to not being able to afford "proper .com-level salaries" is to
offer people nothing?

I'll fix the dumps for minimum wage plus daycare for my two kids.


> > If there are
> > people willing and able to fix the dumps for free, and you can find
> > them and
> > give them the tools they need to do it, fine.  But that didn't
> > happen, and
> > *in this particular case*, it's probably unrealistic.
>
> Indeed, because this isn't project that is really attractive or
> rewarding technology-wise.
>

I don't know about that.  It's a pretty cool problem, it's just a difficult
one to solve.  Or maybe it's a cool problem because it's difficult to solve.


> > Three years ago, before the economy went into the crapper,
> > you probably could have found someone to do it.
> > I probably would have even done it myself, if someone had
> > given me access to the servers so I could do it.
>
> One doesn't really need access to servers to fix the code. Well,
> eventually one may need, but that is quite beyond the whole
> implementation.
>

It would certainly help.  The problem with the dumps is that they're so
huge.  Not being able to test solutions on a system just as huge is a
serious constraint.  Plus you have to remember that the WMF's particular
installation is not the common one.  There's probably enough information out
there to pretty much replicate it, but that's another serious constraint.
 I'm certainly not willing to deal with those unnecessary constraints.

> Actually I was under the impression
> > then that you didn't really want to fix the dumps - remember this
> > was during
> > the beginning of the oversight days.
>
> How is that any related?
>

It was the existence of the history dumps that enabled Judd and I to find
the oversighted SlimVirgin edits.


> > Whatever.  Whether it's done for free or for a price isn't what's
> > important.
> > What's important is that it gets done.
>
> It gets done. It is being done.
>

Once again, I've heard that for three years now, so forgive me for not
believing it until I see it.
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Domas Mituzas
Hi!

> Correct me if I'm wrong, but here's what I can gather: Total  
> spending was
> $1.7 million less than budgeted.  Tech spending was $1.7 million  
> less than
> budgeted.  And $1.7 million was sitting in the bank accounts at the  
> end of
> the fiscal year.

We did not spend on hardware, because, well, I explained already in  
some other email.
We did not reallocate the money to hire lots of developers because we  
didn't know how the hardware spending will look like.

> The solution to not being able to afford "proper .com-level  
> salaries" is to
> offer people nothing?

We're not competitive on the job market. So, if we don't get qualified  
engineers willing to work for less, what should we do - hire less  
qualified ones?

> I'll fix the dumps for minimum wage plus daycare for my two kids.

;-) Are you for these conditions for other projects too?

> I don't know about that.  It's a pretty cool problem, it's just a  
> difficult
> one to solve.  Or maybe it's a cool problem because it's difficult  
> to solve.

I find it very boring problem myself. Probably thats because I'm  
spoiled by really cool problems at work, or maybe somewhat cooler  
problems at Wikimedia ;-)

> It would certainly help.  The problem with the dumps is that they're  
> so
> huge.

They're small. :) And yes, I know what is the problem with dumps :-)

>  Not being able to test solutions on a system just as huge is a
> serious constraint.

Problems are known well enough to create quite some work. Resolve 10  
"what ifs" and you're nearly done.

> Plus you have to remember that the WMF's particular
> installation is not the common one.

Agreed.

>  There's probably enough information out
> there to pretty much replicate it, but that's another serious  
> constraint.
> I'm certainly not willing to deal with those unnecessary constraints.

OK!

> It was the existence of the history dumps that enabled Judd and I to  
> find
> the oversighted SlimVirgin edits.

That encourages production of dumps, right? :)

> Once again, I've heard that for three years now, so forgive me for not
> believing it until I see it.

OK!

Domas

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 5:00 PM, Domas Mituzas <[hidden email]>wrote:

> Hi!
>
> > Correct me if I'm wrong, but here's what I can gather: Total
> > spending was
> > $1.7 million less than budgeted.  Tech spending was $1.7 million
> > less than
> > budgeted.  And $1.7 million was sitting in the bank accounts at the
> > end of
> > the fiscal year.
>
> We did not spend on hardware, because, well, I explained already in
> some other email.
> We did not reallocate the money to hire lots of developers because we
> didn't know how the hardware spending will look like.
>

And that has proven to be a huge misjudgment.

> I'll fix the dumps for minimum wage plus daycare for my two kids.
>
> ;-) Are you for these conditions for other projects too?
>

For tech projects that I find interesting, and can do from home, sure.
 Daycare alone is $80/day, though.

> I don't know about that.  It's a pretty cool problem, it's just a
> > difficult
> > one to solve.  Or maybe it's a cool problem because it's difficult
> > to solve.
>
> I find it very boring problem myself. Probably thats because I'm
> spoiled by really cool problems at work, or maybe somewhat cooler
> problems at Wikimedia ;-)
>

Could be.  But then, I'm probably interested in different types of problems
than you.  And I'm not sure you've considered this problem in the same way
that I have (I'd like to modify the compressed files "in place", though that
short description doesn't really capture the solution).
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Andrew Whitworth-2
In reply to this post by thekohser
You said:

> ... you haven't
> taken the time or effort to pay attention to when these issues have been
> discussed in numerous, varied forums across the Internet

To which I replied that it isn't Domus' responsibility to monitor the
entire internet for rumors, discussions, and idle speculation about
this or that nefarious deed.

I could really care less about what Sue has to say about the budget,
what you think about what she says about the budget, or what "slam
dunks" you think you're making on these issues.

On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 4:11 PM, Gregory Kohs <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Yes, you certainly wouldn't want to click the first returned result:
>
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Foundation_report_to_the_Board,_May_2008

That link doesn't appear on the first page of results when I click your link.

> Is it just me, or is there a significant amount of cotton stuffed in many
> ears around here?

This coming from a man who refuses to hear or believe that the WMF is
not some evil, conspiratorial, criminal organization who commits fraud
and deceit at every turn? Who frivolously and malevolently wastes the
hard-earned money of it's donors? Who purposefully employs people of
substandard moral fortitude and professional capability? Please let me
know when the pot is done calling the kettle black, until then I'll be
out back laughing until I hurt.

--Andrew Whitworth

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Domas Mituzas
In reply to this post by Anthony-73
Hello!

> And that has proven to be a huge misjudgment.

Which didn't entirely depend on us. We're a young organization, we  
depend on lots of external influences. You going and pointing fingers,  
without trying to understand, that there were reasons to behave in  
that way, isn't constructive.

> Could be.  But then, I'm probably interested in different types of  
> problems
> than you.  And I'm not sure you've considered this problem in the  
> same way
> that I have (I'd like to modify the compressed files "in place",  
> though that
> short description doesn't really capture the solution).

This is entirely off-topic, and could be continued in wikitech-l, if  
you're really eager to tell how you modify compressed files "in  
place". ;-)

Cheers,
Domas

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 5:42 PM, Domas Mituzas <[hidden email]>wrote:

> Hello!
>
> > And that has proven to be a huge misjudgment.
>
> Which didn't entirely depend on us.


The WMF tremendously overestimated future hardware costs by making horrible
assumptions, which I pointed out on this very list.  That depended entirely
on the WMF.

This is entirely off-topic, and could be continued in wikitech-l, if
> you're really eager to tell how you modify compressed files "in
> place". ;-)


I've already posted a lot on the subject on wikitech-l, and I have most of
it already working at home.  If you'd like me to go further, I've already
posted my terms.  I'm not eager to tell how I did it.  I'm eager to finish
it, to put it into place, and to watch it work.  And that's not going to
happen at this time unless I can get daycare for my kids and a few bucks for
myself.
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Brion Vibber-3
On Tue, 15 Sep 2009 17:55:56 -0400, Anthony <[hidden email]> wrote:
> The WMF tremendously overestimated future hardware costs by making
horrible
> assumptions, which I pointed out on this very list.  That depended
entirely
> on the WMF.

The 2007-2008 Wikimedia budget was the company's first systematically
built budget ever, and many of the numbers were based on estimates and
extrapolations from the previous year's spending which didn't turn out to
be as accurate as originally forseen. While it may be fair to criticize it
as a sub-ideal budget, it's rather pointless to continue on about it over a
year after that fiscal year ended.

You may wish to pay more attention to the 2008-2009 (last FY) and
2009-2010 (current FY) budgets if you're interested in oversight.

As for the decision not to immediately reassign overbudgeted monies to
other unbudgeted uses -- money doesn't just disappear at the end of the
fiscal year! Spending money for the sole purpose of using up the budget
before year-end would have been gross mismanagement and would likely have
been harshly criticized. Given the relatively new company leadership and
the uncertainly of how fundraising might go, treating donors' money
conservatively makes a lot of sense.

Instead of spending it on anything we could think of right away, donors'
money was kept in store so it could be spent more wisely under future
budgets. Over the last couple years we've been building up our human
capacity, and we're now in a position where we actually can do and are
bringing in a lot of new staff and contract developers, both to the general
pool and on specific project teams.

I'm afraid we're not in a position to change what we spent two years ago;
all we can change is what we're spending today, and I don't really see
anything for you to object to. We *are* hiring more tech staff as you
recommend. We *have* assigned the dump fixing to a single responsible
individual as you recommend (and everything is now working except the
English full-history, which is still being worked on). We *are* hiring a
new CTO with a strong administrative background, as you recommend.

What's left?

-- brion

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

metasj
In reply to this post by Domas Mituzas
I always read Domas's posts, because they raise my spirits :)

On Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 4:20 PM, Domas Mituzas <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Now, for those who fail at reading comprehension, let me point out to
> the report from ED to board:
> "a desire to defer equipment purchases while various donations and
> sponsorship deals were under negotiation"
>
> We had major sponsorship deals pending, which didn't happen because,
> dear oh dear, bad economy.
> Thats why we stretched a bit, and were doing hardware acquisitions
> next FY.
>
> If you think it wasn't worth getting to those talks and trying to get
> free hardware (or second datacenter, or multi-petabyte storage
> expansion, or ...), you seem to be one in the mood of wasting money.
> Oh well, we also did some optimization work (volunteers mostly ;-)
> that allowed us to grow a bit longer.

Why are we revisiting something from 2007-08 financial planning two
years after it happened and 15 months after the final report?

Putting aside the unnecessary bad faith and challenges to the
foundation's integrity:   I find this all exciting - planning for
significant tech budget support, possible major sponsorships (I've
always hoped we would one day find multiple sources for long-term
in-kind support of servers and bandwidth), &c.  I would simply like to
see more open discussion of what our perfect-world tech dreams are,
and how to pursue what sorts of sponsorships.

We're going to get into a lot of these issues as a community, during
the Strategic Planning process this year, so it will be especially
helpful if people who've worked on Plans and related prioritizing +
analysis are willing to share their knowledge of how the planning
process currently works.

Measuring project health, and being able to compare monthly or
quarterly projections against actual measures, would be helpful for
all sorts of feedback within the projects.


> Do note, our major capacity benchmark is September-October season,
> summer season allows us to restructure lots of stuff.

Cool; what's the best way to observe the high water mark, and how the
systems are holding up?

SJ

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Domas Mituzas
>
> Cool; what's the best way to observe the high water mark, and how the
> systems are holding up?

it isn't 2007 or 2006 ;-)

http://wiki.wikked.net/wiki/Wikimedia_statistics/Yearly

Domas

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
In reply to this post by metasj
On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 4:46 AM, Samuel Klein <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Why are we revisiting something from 2007-08 financial planning two
> years after it happened and 15 months after the final report?
>

Because there isn't enough data on the mistakes that are being made today.
 15 months ago, there was "oh, the dumps will be fixed real soon now" and
"that money which wasn't spent will be spent in 2008-09".  But today we know
"no, 15 months later they still aren't fixed" and "no, that money will get
rolled into the general budget where it won't even be spent".

And there's not even an acknowledgment by the board that it made a huge
mistake.

Maybe there's an acknowledgment privately.  There is some evidence of that.
 I don't know.  I tend to take people at their word when they say publicly
that everyone is doing a great job.  I tend to take people at their word
when they say publicly that they want foundation decisions discussed
publicly. Maybe I should just chalk it up as a bunch of lies.  But then,
there's really little incentive for me to do that.
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Chad
On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 8:04 AM, Anthony <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 4:46 AM, Samuel Klein <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Why are we revisiting something from 2007-08 financial planning two
>> years after it happened and 15 months after the final report?
>>
>
> Because there isn't enough data on the mistakes that are being made today.
>  15 months ago, there was "oh, the dumps will be fixed real soon now" and
> "that money which wasn't spent will be spent in 2008-09".  But today we know
> "no, 15 months later they still aren't fixed" and "no, that money will get
> rolled into the general budget where it won't even be spent".
>

Have you not read people's replies to this? All dumps are working except
for the full enwiki history. That's certainly a lot better than
before, when pretty
much every dump was failing. They've got all but one dump for one wiki
working, and that's still being worked on too. What more would you ask?

-Chad

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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Anthony-73
On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 9:51 AM, Chad <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 8:04 AM, Anthony <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 4:46 AM, Samuel Klein <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >>
> >> Why are we revisiting something from 2007-08 financial planning two
> >> years after it happened and 15 months after the final report?
> >>
> >
> > Because there isn't enough data on the mistakes that are being made
> today.
> >  15 months ago, there was "oh, the dumps will be fixed real soon now" and
> > "that money which wasn't spent will be spent in 2008-09".  But today we
> know
> > "no, 15 months later they still aren't fixed" and "no, that money will
> get
> > rolled into the general budget where it won't even be spent".
> >
>
> Have you not read people's replies to this? All dumps are working except
> for the full enwiki history. That's certainly a lot better than
> before, when pretty
> much every dump was failing. They've got all but one dump for one wiki
> working, and that's still being worked on too. What more would you ask?
>

I don't think you've been following the dump situation for the past three
years.  Maybe there are others on this list who also don't understand the
situation.  During the last three years or so, all dumps have been produced,
albeit intermittently, except the full history en.wikipedia.  In order to
"get all but one dump for one wiki working", the "solution" was primarily to
1) throw more hardware at the problem and 2) stop even trying to produce the
en.wikipedia full history dump.

What more I would ask for is to fix the actual problem.  That means
redesigning the dump system, which was not designed for such large amounts
of data, and needed to be rewritten three years ago (when the WMF plan was
to simply throw more hardware at the situation, which they didn't even do).
One or more people are apparently working on this.  I haven't seen any
redesign plans or progress reports though, so I have my doubts, not that one
or more people aren't actually working on this, but as to whether or not
it's going to get done.

Maybe if we could get a report on the status of the redesign, the plans for
the redesign, etc., at least those doubts might be allayed, and this would
become an example of a past mistake.  But it still would be worth talking
about.
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Re: Expert board members - a suggestion

Gerard Meijssen-3
In reply to this post by Anthony-73
Hoi,
Your argument about the "mistakes made today" is so wrong. If we want to
move forward in a positive way, we have to particularly acknowledge what
does go well. That motivates people. The incessant carping about the past
does not help at all. Insisting on acknowledgement of mistakes only serves
in offending and alienating people. Calling something a mistake is
problematic in the first place.

There are people who want the WMF to build huge reserves and there are
people who consider that the operations of the WMF are woefully underfunded.
There are people who want more funding for other languages and there are
people who consider that it is sufficient to develop for English. <grin>
that still allows me to pitch for for instance subtitling so that the
English Wikipedia can use video that was recorded in oher languages </grin>

However you slice it, the least that you can say is that the WMF is putting
in a best effort. This does not mean that you are always happy with their
choices and it does not mean that you have to be happy withthe results of
all the choices . In the end you do not have to be happy because it is
always robbing Peter to pay Paul.
Thanks,
      GerardM

2009/9/16 Anthony <[hidden email]>

> On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 4:46 AM, Samuel Klein <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > Why are we revisiting something from 2007-08 financial planning two
> > years after it happened and 15 months after the final report?
> >
>
> Because there isn't enough data on the mistakes that are being made today.
>  15 months ago, there was "oh, the dumps will be fixed real soon now" and
> "that money which wasn't spent will be spent in 2008-09".  But today we
> know
> "no, 15 months later they still aren't fixed" and "no, that money will get
> rolled into the general budget where it won't even be spent".
>
> And there's not even an acknowledgment by the board that it made a huge
> mistake.
>
> Maybe there's an acknowledgment privately.  There is some evidence of that.
>  I don't know.  I tend to take people at their word when they say publicly
> that everyone is doing a great job.  I tend to take people at their word
> when they say publicly that they want foundation decisions discussed
> publicly. Maybe I should just chalk it up as a bunch of lies.  But then,
> there's really little incentive for me to do that.
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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