Committee for 2011-12

The committee for 2011-12 has been formed:

As well as two members (Ian Lynagh and Malcolm Wallace) from the 2010-11 committee retiring at the end of their terms, two other members (Johan Tibell and Don Stewart) chose to resign as they didn’t have as much time as they’d have liked to commit and we received enough self-nominations to replace them.

This does mean a bit more than expected turnover in the committee membership, but we felt it best to have a committee that can be suitably responsive in the future. We’d like to thank all the departing members for their service to the committee as it got started.

We’ve also tracked down the details of our accounts for the last year, so we will post something about that as previously promised, as soon as we have time to write the information up for presentation.

Our main priority for the coming months will be to finally settle the incorporation issue.

First year report

The haskell.org committee is reaching the end of its first year of operation, so it’s time to look back and see what has been achieved.

haskell.org incorporation

The most important work for the year has been trying to get the ownership of haskell.org resources – principally some money from our GSoC participation, and various machines – on a sounder footing.

At the moment, Galois is kindly holding funds on behalf of haskell.org. However, this causes them administrative difficulties and it would also be better for haskell.org for them to be held separately in a vehicle with tax-free status (at least in the US) that can also accept donations.

The main option we have been exploring is joining the Software Freedom Conservancy (http://www.sfconservancy.org). After seeking the community’s consent, we have contacted them to begin the application process. Unfortunately they are currently rather overworked and as they prioritise work for existing projects over accepting new ones, we do not yet know when there will be progress with this.

In the meantime we are also investigating joining an alternative, Software in the Public Interest (http://www.spi-inc.org). Discussions about this option are still ongoing.

The committee would like to thank Jason Dagit who has been helping us to make progress on this issue over the last few months, with the support of his employer Galois.

Subdomain policy

In response to various requests for subdomains of haskell.org, we have formulated the following policy, now (belatedly!) documented at http://www.haskell.org/haskellwiki/Haskell.org_domain#Policy_on_adding_new_subdomains

Subdomains should be used for services rather than content.

Content should be normally be hosted at subpaths of http://www.haskell.org

So for example a Haskell graphics related website should normally go at http://www.haskell.org/graphics, rather than http://graphics.haskell.org.

In contrast, during the year, we did add revdeps.hackage.haskell.org for a hackage reverse-dependency lookup service, and of course hackage.haskell.org already exists.

Clearly the line between services and content, and indeed the precise definitions of each, is something of a grey area, and we are certainly happy to be flexible particularly if there are technical or other reasons for doing things one way. Our overall goal is to minimise unnecessary proliferation of subdomains and to try to keep the haskell.org domain reasonably well organised, while still helping people do useful things with it.

Move of www.haskell.org to a new dedicated host

For many years, www.haskell.org was generously hosted by Paul Hudak at Yale. This was becoming increasingly expensive for him so in late 2010 we moved to a new dedicated host (lambda.haskell.org). At the same time we put in place a policy that lambda would host only “meta” community resources, thus limiting the number of people who need to have accounts on it. For some time before this new project content had been created on community.haskell.org anyway, and this move gave us the opportunity to move “legacy” sites such as gtk2hs over to community. In addition, community.haskell.org is now also a VM running on the same machine.

The committee as a whole’s involvement in this was only to approve the change – the sysadmin team did all the actual work.

General

The haskell.org infrastructure as a whole is still in a rather tenuous state. While the extreme unreliability we saw for a while has improved with the reorganisation , the  level of sysadmin resource/involvement is still inadequate. The committee is open to ideas on how to improve the situation.

Unfortunately we can’t provide a full statement of haskell.org’s accounts with this report; we are doing our best to track down the necessary information and will produce them as soon as possible. Better control and visibility of our finances and assets is of course one of the benefits we are seeking by affiliating with SFC or SPI.

The haskell.org committee has formed

In recent years, haskell.org has started to receive assets, e.g. Google Summer Of Code funds, donations for Hackathons, and a Sparc machine for use in GHC development. We have also started spending this money: on the community server, on a server to take over hosting haskell.org itself, and on the haskell.org domain name. There is also interest in running fundraising drives for specific things such as Hackathon sponsorship and hosting fees.

To resolve who is responsible for haskell.org’s infrastructure development, open nominations were held to form a haskell.org committee, based on representatives from the open source Haskell community. Nominations were received, and we are pleased to announce that the new committee has formed.

The current members of the committee are:

Members are expected to serve a 3 year term, and terms are staggered so that 2 or 3 members step down each year.

What we’re working on

Over the past year, two of the core infrastructure nodes: http://www.haskell.org (which hosts the main wiki), and code.haskell.org (which hosts a lot of project repositories) have become increasingly unreliable. To address this, a new high-spec, dedicated host was purchased, which will be used to replace both services.

The commitee is now working directly to solve these issues:

More news on this work shortly.

Stay up to date

To help people better keep up to date on the status of the haskell.org infrastructure, stay up to date via:

  • Twitter: get status updates about haskell.org services via twitter.
  • Email: To get in touch with the committee, use the committee @ haskell.org address.
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