Student papers, Reda report amendments, birthday and more!

I had two rather busy weeks doing plenty of exciting things. It felt really productive and fun. However when I spoke about it with friends recently, they said they had no clue what I was working on and sometimes did not even know where exactly I was traveling. So, there you have it: The Reda report needed amending, I am preparing a presentation about the role of patents in software, at Endocode we are developing on the company strategy, there was a CoreOS meetup, an Endocode meetup, and more work on the employee share program. My wife had her birthday and we partied a lot. The Open Invention Network is preparing an update to it’s Linux System Definition. The students presented the remaining papers for the winter term “Open Source and Intellectual Property” course at TU Berlin. And I had a flu. Want to know more?

In January Julia Reda presented her report on harmonization of copyright in the EU. Through OpenforumEurope, I participated with others in providing input for the report. Once the report had been presented, feedback was opened again in the form of amendments. The same group is now preparing the submission of suggested amendments to the “Reda Report”. This is one of the most exciting processes at EU level at the moment, I am very glad to be part of it.

The Joint Research Center of the European Commission will have a conference on “Innovation in a European Digital Single Market – The Role of Patents” on March 17. I was invited to speak about the patentability of software. In the speaker panel the number of proponents clearly outweights the number of critical voices. Because of that I will focus on giving a comprehensive overview of the reasons why the Free Software community is rather critical towards software patents. To develop the presentation, I am consulting with FSFE, OpenforumAcademy and ideally as many other experts as possible.

I wrote about Endocode and it’s philosophy here. The Endocode experiment so far has been going really well, an awesome team has assembled and we are working on some super-interesting stuff, as you can see in our Github account. It is time to look at what to do next, now that the initial goals have been reached. We had a first of a series of workshops with an external moderator, and started discussing what makes Endocode special, and in which direction we want it to develop.

Together with many other Endocoders, I attended the Rocket and the App Container Spec meetup. Containers are an exciting technology, and Endocode is working both in deploying them in projects as well as developing on some of the basic management tools. Jonathan Boulle presented especially about the app container spec is developed collaboratively out in the open. Great event, great presentation and free drinks, pizza and sushi. It feels great to be diving into stuff like that.

Endocode also has meetups (yay). Our meetups are, at least for now, internal events where Endocoders share interesting stuff they hack on or learned. The topics are not necessarily work related, more importantly they should be fascinating :-) This time, on February 10, it involved a Kinect and tracking skeletons and people that looked like ogers with two heads.

Right before that we had a presentation by the lawyer we work with about legal aspects of setting up an employee share program. It is not as easy as it sounds, mostly due to issues of taxation. “Virtual stocks” are an option. They have the disadvantage of not giving the employee an actual voting influence on the company. We will have to go back to the drawing board with this idea and discuss it with the employees.

February 16 is Alexandra’s birthday. We started to celebrate with breakfast at one of our favorite places, Tomasa in Kreuzberg. We both had to go to work that day. After a top-secret meeting :-) until 7pm I came home to find the house packed with friends. Some of them had been expected, and some simply drove for an hour to stop by. What a nice surprise!

The Open Invention Network is preparing an update to the Linux System Definition. The Linux System Definition defines the technical scope of OIN’s patent non-aggression community. Since the FLOSS ecosystem evolves at a pretty fast pace, the definition is updated on a regular basis. The process involves many stakeholders and it is important to make sure everybody is well informed and on the same page. This is an exciting process, even though it involves numerous phone conferences with Japan and the west coast at strange times.

The semester is almost over, so the course “Open Source and IP” at TU Berlin is wrapping up. The final student presentations where held on Feb 11, then it was time to grade the papers. The attendees were international and interdisciplinary again, which made for quite some interesting results. Then I caught a flu and was out for a day.

Finally last week I went to Erfurt for some C++ and Qt hacking. This is some rare fun these days, so I really enjoyed it. I do still hope to find more time in the future to do some technical work. It does seem like a dream, though. On the weekend we did some more birthday partying. Now it is time to do the same thing all over again :-)

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