Voice Board of Directors Meeting
November 26, 2008
Present: Roderick Klein, President <Roderick^>
Gordon Snider, Treasurer <Gord>
John Edwards, Secretary <JWE>
Neil Waldhauer, Guest of Board <Blonde_Guy>
NOTE: All time references are Eastern Standard Tim
09:15:11 <Roderick^> Welcome everybody to this board meeting of 26th of November 2008
09:15:21 <Roderick^> About 2 years ago since there has been an IRC meeting.
09:15:27 <Roderick^> For the members that read this log.
09:15:40 <Roderick^> A lot of stuff has happened in the private lives of a lot of people involved with VOICE.
09:16:03 <Roderick^> There are enough people in the OS/2 community to not call us dead. As employee of Mensys I notice there is enough interest.
09:16:10 <Roderick^> That said about VOICE is true as well.
09:16:20 <Roderick^> Walter Metcalf resigned because of health reasons
09:16:31 <Roderick^> John
09:16:40 <Roderick^> Could you help me refresh my memory.
09:16:57 <Roderick^> The current board, me you and Gordon asked if any member would step forward
09:17:09 <Roderick^> that would be interest to fill up a seat on the board.
09:17:17 <Roderick^> Did I remeber correctly nobody stepped forward ?
09:17:59 <JWE> That is correct. No one responded to to request for new members to the Board.
09:18:25 <Roderick^> Well I'm typing it here so its on the record now for the public to read and not just E-mail exchange.
09:19:49 <Roderick^> The current board members
09:20:00 <Roderick^> have kept them selves in office since there was no follow up.
09:20:20 <Roderick^> Because are private lives have been changed (health reasons)
09:20:34 <Roderick^> and the president me is in a relationship
09:20:55 <Roderick^> time to work on VOICE.
09:21:14 <Roderick^> I will now hand the Microphone to Gordon
09:21:50 <Gord> I have the microphone. What is your question?
09:22:24 <Roderick^> Gordon can you give the members an update on members and the financial situation of VOICE ?
09:23:24 <Gord> Sure. We have 200 members and US$17,543 in the bank.
09:24:28 <Gord> The membership has increased steadily since PMMail was offered to members.
09:25:26 <Gord> I have given out 132 licences to PMMail.
09:25:34 <Gord> That's it.
09:28:01 <Roderick^> Thanks for that update Gordon.
09:29:01 <Roderick^> Thanks for doing the updating all does years
09:29:05 <Roderick^> and doing the accounting.
09:29:15 <Gord> You are welcome.
09:29:16 <Roderick^> Before I put my proposal forward.
09:29:33 <Roderick^> Is there anybody Gordon or
09:29:38 <Roderick^> John wants to say ?
09:29:41 <Roderick^> Or discuss ?
09:29:45 <Roderick^> Shoot ?
09:29:45 <Gord> NO.
09:29:45 <Roderick^> :-)
09:29:59 <JWE> no
09:31:58 <Roderick^> OK
09:32:18 <Roderick^> Well from what I remember VOICE wanted to let people pay for the VOICE license so we could
09:32:26 <Roderick^> recover the cost of $2500
09:32:37 <Roderick^> US Dollar to purchase the source code for
09:32:40 <Roderick^> PMMAIL.
09:32:52 <Roderick^> I guess its fair to say we did not count on that many people buying a license.
09:33:22 <Gord> And the flow of requests is still going on.
09:33:26 <Roderick^> VOICE now has a pretty large amount of money that belongs to members and over the last 2 months we had discussion how we could put this money to good usage.
09:33:39 <Roderick^> For the general benefit of the OS/2 community.
09:36:51 <Roderick^> We right now have two points in mind.
09:37:06 <Roderick^> The first one of the problem that printer drivers on OS/2/eComStation are a real issue.
09:37:09 <Roderick^> Neil could you
09:37:24 <Roderick^> outline this for our members ?
09:39:06 <Blonde_Guy> OK, the situation is this: IBM is no longer writing printer drivers for us.
09:39:44 <Blonde_Guy> Neither is anyone else. But Paul Smedley has been porting CUPS from Linux.
09:39:56 <Blonde_Guy> CUPS is the Common Unix Printing System
09:40:18 <Blonde_Guy> I have tried Paul's port, and it works once you have it set up correctly.
09:40:43 <Blonde_Guy> There are a few bugs and inconvenient aspects, and I have seen very few reports of people using CUPS.
09:40:58 <Blonde_Guy> CUPS supports thousands of printers.
09:41:26 <Blonde_Guy> More than that, it seems that many new printer manufacturers support CUPS.
09:42:27 <Blonde_Guy> If we could get a solid implementation of CUPS on OS/2, printer support could be better than it ever was under IBM.
09:42:46 <Blonde_Guy> I think that's enough summary for now.
09:43:20 <Gord> Does CUPS support only networked printers?
09:43:20 <Roderick^> Thanks for the update.
09:44:13 <Blonde_Guy> CUPS supports printers attached by network (LAN) network (Internet) and directly attached (parallel, serial, USB, paper cups and string...)
09:44:47 <Blonde_Guy> The OS/2 support has yet to be completed, but I have used LAN and USB.
09:45:46 <Gord> What besides CUPS itself is needed for a full installation?
09:47:06 <Blonde_Guy> Each printer has to be added to the postscript driver.
09:47:24 <Blonde_Guy> LPR printing has to be enabled
09:48:18 <Blonde_Guy> For directly attached printers, the LPR server has to be configured.
09:48:28 <Blonde_Guy> The CUPS server has to be configured.
09:49:03 <Blonde_Guy> GhostScript needs to be installed, but can be separate from the user's current GhostScript.
09:49:24 <Blonde_Guy> Port drivers for the CUPS printer and for the LPR server.
09:50:50 <Blonde_Guy> Some printers (basically what we call WinPrinters) need extra programs to be compiled and running.
09:51:23 <Gord> eCUPS will run WinPrinters?
09:51:36 <Blonde_Guy> Paul has compiled a few of these extra programs. I haven't used them, but there are reports of them working already on OS/2.
09:52:27 <Blonde_Guy> eCups will support quite a few of them. But so few people are currently using CupsPort we need to see what happens when we try.
09:52:48 <Blonde_Guy> CUPS on Mac/Linux supports a lot of printers.
09:53:04 <Blonde_Guy> So I expect eCups to support quite a few
09:53:09 <Blonde_Guy> Win Printers
09:53:52 <Gord> What about Gutenxxxx? What is its function?
09:55:59 <Blonde_Guy> Gutenprint, formerly named Gimp-Print, is a suite of printer drivers that may be used with most common UNIX and Linux print spooling systems
09:56:23 <Blonde_Guy> To support more printers, we need to have a fresh release of Gutenprint
09:57:05 <Blonde_Guy> There were releases in Jan 2008, Oct 2008 and Nov 2008.
09:58:07 <JWE> What is your best guesstimate as to how soon the eCUPS will be ready for 'prime time', bearing in mind that it is a moving target as new printers come onto the market?
09:58:42 <Roderick^> Sorry for jumping in :-)
09:58:54 <Roderick^> I guess this situation is the same as with Open Office, UNIAUD and Firefox.
09:59:08 <Roderick^> The code evolves so new updated versions need to be always made.
09:59:16 <Blonde_Guy> My idea is to quickly work to making eCups available to ordinary users who would be reluctant to try CupsPort as it stands today.
09:59:42 <Roderick^> When Neil puts in the work to create a build environment so its easy to package and easy to install for the end user.
10:00:40 <Blonde_Guy> Roderick is right. I can build a new release of PMMail in five or ten minutes. My goal is no less for eCups.
10:00:56 <Gord> What do we need to decide here and now?
10:01:16 <Roderick^> Well Neil you had price tag in mind for your work ?
10:01:36 <Roderick^> That's what we need to decide on if the board agrees if not
10:01:56 <Roderick^> what price we would want Neil to work for.
10:02:23 <Roderick^> If we then agree this can be put to a vote to the members.
10:03:43 <Roderick^> Neil could tell what your price tag is
10:03:54 <Roderick^> and how long you will work on it
10:04:03 <Roderick^> and what you will do for that amount of money ?
10:04:25 <Blonde_Guy> I think the proposal you wrote was suitable for submitting to members. But now I see that my asking price, $7000 USD, was not included.
10:05:41 <Roderick^> Will you also do code fixes to the postscript for this money ?
10:05:57 <Roderick^> Because I'm certain Paul can not do this alone.
10:06:01 <Blonde_Guy> I submitted a proposal to the board on Nov 15.
10:06:20 <Roderick^> Yeh sorry about it.
10:06:29 <Roderick^> I read in the train to Dusseldorf for Warpstock.
10:06:32 <Roderick^> Has been hectic :-)
10:06:49 <Blonde_Guy> I don't know about fixes to the postscript code. My picture was organizing the testing so Paul got good test cases.
10:07:20 <Blonde_Guy> But I'm also going to be able to build every part of eCups, so technically, I will be able to fix bugs in the postscript driver.
10:08:10 <Roderick^> For the rest of the board members.
10:08:21 <Blonde_Guy> Paul has already fixed some bugs in the postscript driver. I feel that given good test cases, he'll fix them better than I ever could.
10:08:21 <Gord> What would Paul get from this?
10:08:44 <Blonde_Guy> And if not Paul, perhaps others. Many programmers cannot resist the appeal of a good test case.
10:08:52 <Roderick^> I talked to some people about the 7000 Dollars Neil is asking.
10:09:00 <Roderick^> Some people replied its a lot of money.
10:09:05 <Roderick^> My take on it is.
10:09:17 <Roderick^> This is a lot of work creating testcases
10:09:26 <Roderick^> and debugging stuff.
10:09:34 <Roderick^> I see this daily with eComStation testing!
10:09:48 <Roderick^> Paul is a very good coder.
10:10:01 <Roderick^> And with lot of projects in the eCS community times by the developer is wasted
10:10:14 <Roderick^> because he needs to communicate with end users.
10:11:43 <Roderick^> The thing is we have few developers around.
10:11:48 <Roderick^> Joachim does with Open Office.
10:12:05 <Roderick^> He filters the stuff coming from end users and the developer can focus on what he is good at coding!
10:12:12 <Roderick^> Now CUPS IS a big effort.
10:12:33 <Blonde_Guy> Essentially, I would be the eCups champion, and give people someone to contact. I'd also do some tasks Paul and other developers skipped, like documentation and publicity.
10:12:54 <Roderick^> And having such a person to work on CUPS I would personaly be in favour of agreeing with proposal.
10:13:11 <Roderick^> So many things in OS/2 land stand still on doubt and looking around when something gets started.
10:13:26 <Roderick^> So its not put the vote but I'm personaly in favour of this.
10:13:59 <Gord> What would Paul Smedley get from this?
10:14:13 <Roderick^> Aaah good point!
10:14:25 <Blonde_Guy> Paul is not asking for anything.
10:14:36 <Blonde_Guy> Except donations. It's on his website.
10:14:48 <Roderick^> Paul already indicated he would work on USB support over the XMAS break from work.
10:15:01 <Roderick^> I do however feel we should also sponsor Paul.
10:16:07 <Roderick^> This is what kind of problem for me as well Neil.
10:16:13 <JWE> I see three questions here on this matter: 1) Do we take on the project? 2) Do we agree with the $7000 fee? 3) Do we add any additional dollar amount to assist Paul?
10:16:36 <Roderick^> I know what Paul has received from the donations over the years.
10:16:44 <Roderick^> And I know business is business.
10:16:54 <Roderick^> But the 7000 Dollars is a lot of money.
10:17:27 <Gord> I say 1) yes, take on the project, or at least put it to a vote.
10:17:33 <Blonde_Guy> OK, could you propose an amount that would fly better? I don't want to make a proposal that the members just reject.
10:18:05 <Roderick^> Well Gord putting to the vote is one but then the financial side comes.
10:18:21 <Gord> Neil, management is a valuable skill.
10:19:06 <JWE> 1) Do we take on the project? 2) Do we agree with the
10:19:06 <JWE> $7000 fee? 3) Do we add any additional dollar amount to assist Paul?
10:19:13 <Gord> Neil, how did you arrive that number?
10:20:16 <Gord> Yes, we take on the project. I would like to see Paul get something. I have no idea how he feels about his current level of donations.
10:22:39 <Blonde_Guy> It's based on my US tax situation. Which is likely going to change next year due to political changes in USA.
10:23:14 <Roderick^> I just talked to Neil.
10:23:20 <Roderick^> He agreed to the following.
10:23:52 <Roderick^> $2000 US dollars for Paul for CUPS
10:24:01 <Roderick^> and $4000 US dollars for the same proposal.
10:24:15 <Roderick^> Thank you Neil for accepting my lower proposal.
10:24:38 <Roderick^> The argument I put forward
10:24:57 <Roderick^> was to balance it more also in the direction of Paul.
10:25:03 <Gord> A bit more explanation is needed. $4000 for what?
10:25:18 <Roderick^> Neil his current proposal on the table not done for 7000 Dollar
10:25:24 <Roderick^> but 4000 dollar in total.
10:25:43 <Roderick^> So we save 3000 Dollar and of does savings
10:25:47 <Roderick^> 2000 we donate to Paul.
10:26:13 <Gord> What about SCOUG? Are they willing and able to participate?
10:26:35 <Roderick^> I'm already talking to SCOUG to participate in other projects.
10:26:59 <JWE> How is this amount to be paid? Lump sum -- at start or at some milestone? In increments -- based on time or milestone reached?
10:28:20 <Blonde_Guy> I'd prefer lump sum, and that can be after the release of eCups for the public and my build system for any interested developers.
10:28:47 <Roderick^> Paul I would like to suggest he gets the money if it gets approved he already delivered.
10:28:48 <Blonde_Guy> But my main work would not be the programming, but the management of the project.
10:29:06 <Gord> Neil, understood.
10:29:23 <Roderick^> Gordon JWE how do you guys feel with the different price level.
10:29:28 <Roderick^> Should we continue discussion later on this ?
10:29:34 <Roderick^> I remember John has a doctors appointment.
10:29:52 <Gord> I like the lower price.
10:30:10 <JWE> 1) Do we take on the project? Yes, I support it.
10:30:10 <JWE> 2) Do we agree with the $4000 fee? Yes, I support this level of fee to be paid after initial release of eCUPS.
10:30:10 <JWE> 3) Do we add any additional dollar amount to assist Paul? Yes, I support donating to Paul $2000.
10:30:11 <Gord> I think the higher price would have met member resistance.
10:30:53 <Roderick^> JWE outlined it correctly the conditions.
10:31:02 <Roderick^> Do you agree on this as well Gordon ?
10:31:18 <Gord> Yes, to all points.
10:31:23 <Roderick^> The same for me :-)
10:31:44 <Roderick^> I guess from this log its clearl the board supports it 100% to put it the vote of the VOICE members.
10:31:48 <Gord> So now we have to present it to the members.
10:32:02 <Roderick^> I was already busy writing a text for this.
10:32:11 <Roderick^> I also have a proposal for warpevents.eu
10:32:30 <Gord> We need to send out a cover letter, Niel's proposal, and maybe this log.
10:32:52 <Blonde_Guy> I will be unavailable for a few days due to the US Thanksgiving holiday. I won't even be checking e-mail until Friday night.
10:33:00 <Roderick^> OK
10:33:06 <Blonde_Guy> I'd like to be able to answer member's questions.
10:33:13 <Roderick^> OK
10:33:37 <Roderick^> Should I write a proposal text for a website to be put up for VOICE members to read ?
10:33:42 <Roderick^> based on this board meeting ?
10:33:48 <Gord> Neil, could we have an ASCII version of your PDF proposal?
10:34:08 <Blonde_Guy> OK with me. ASCII version, yes, I'll send it to the ADMIN list.
10:34:12 <Gord> Maybe send out as an E-mail to MEMBERS.
10:34:31 <JWE> Neil, while you are here, would you like to join the Board of Directors of VOICE?
10:34:43 <Roderick^> Well that's a good point :-)
10:34:58 <Blonde_Guy> I am interested in being on the board. Do you see a conflict of interest?
10:35:03 <Roderick^> Then again
10:35:09 <Roderick^> aaah OK Neil just typed my thought :-)
10:35:11 <Gord> Might there be a conflict of interest there?
10:35:22 <Roderick^> It can look that way...
10:36:03 <Gord> Maybe not until after the members vote.
10:36:20 <Roderick^> We all know each other but the community does not know us...
10:36:34 <JWE> It would depend on the timing of Neil's appointment. If before the matter of eCUPS is settled, then possible conflict of interest. If after, no conflict of interest.
10:36:49 <Blonde_Guy> If the proposal is approved, I would be open to joining the board after eCups is delivered.
10:37:30 <Gord> OK, something for the future.
10:37:41 <JWE> I move that we adjourn this Board meeting.
10:38:20 <Roderick^> I support that!
10:38:25 <Gord> Aye.
10:38:28 <Roderick^> aye
10:38:32 <Roderick^> Thanks for coming all!
10:38:33 <JWE> aye