About Me

I'm a C and dynamic language (Python, Perl, Ruby, etc) hacker, living in the Pacific Northwest. I'm on the board of directors of the Python Software Foundation and The Perl Foundation, co-founder of the FLOSS Foundations group for open source leaders, and founder and president of Onyx Neon Press. I've been involved in Ubuntu since 2005, and am the Debian Maintainer for Parrot. I'm a "graduate" of Canonical, class of 2010-2012, where I worked as technical architect and open source advisor. My first UDS was 2006 in Mountain View, which would have been called UDS-F by the current naming convention, but back then it was just "UDS Mountain View".

Contact Information

Launchpad ID:



wendar on, allison on,, and


<allison AT lohutok DOT net>



I suppose my contributions are a little non-traditional, since I tend to work quietly in the background, and lean toward one-on-one conversations. I encourage people who are feeling discouraged, listen to people who have great ideas to reflect and refine them, add a spark of inspiration to UDS sessions, and occasionally raise a controversial topic that needs scrubbing with air and sunshine. My brain loves complex systems, so I tend to keep an eye on the overall fabric of the project, and look for the gears that need a little extra grease. I bake brownies for LoCo events.

A few specifics:

  • Worked with Nick Barcet to draft the ExtensionRepositoryPolicy, and with the Ubuntu Technical Board to review, revise, and approve it

  • Worked with the Application Review Board (which had a controversial start) to bring it in line with Ubuntu community policies and procedures
  • Working with Canonical's Design Team to improve collaboration with volunteers
  • Just starting up collaboration with GNOME to improve developer documentation on GTK APIs, etc.
  • For several UDS's in a row, launched public brainstorming for blueprints, and architectural summaries after (it's a bit fuzzy whether this is a contribution, but it wasn't strictly part of my job description, I just thought it'd be helpful for people to get the big picture, and I plan on continuting this as a volunteer)
  • Some packages I've worked on recently (merges, bug fixes, FTBFS, etc): backuppc, magics++, gpsdrive, parrot

Future Goals

For me, seeking Ubuntu Membership is a statement that I'm committed to the Ubuntu project. At some point in the future I'll likely apply for PPU on Parrot or MOTU.

I passionately believe that it's critical for the future of free software to have a successful, consumer-focused distribution of Linux, and that Ubuntu has the best chance in that role. But, simply gaining a large number of users is not enough. It's a hollow victory unless we succeed the healthy way, with good collaboration between volunteers, employees, upstreams, and downstreams. That's what I work for.


If you know me and have something nice to say, please leave a comment here.

I think this application is overdue. Allison's contributions to Ubuntu are definitely sustained and significant. I have particularly appreciated her efforts at trying to facilitate collection of inputs for UDS. She is a passionate advocate for broad community based participation in Ubuntu development and well able to build bridges between the somewhat disjoint pockets of the Ubuntu community that are inevitable as it's grown. ScottKitterman

Allison has made a number of contributions that have been incredibly helpful as I've worked with her on the Application Review Board. She has been instrumental to setting up the board & keeping it running since its inception, and I was quite surprised to hear that Allison was not yet an Ubuntu member, with the work that she has put in. AndrewMitchell

I believe Allison to be an excellent candidate for membership. Actually it was only a few weeks ago that I discovered she was not already a member, and I remember being surprised at this. The fact that I assumed that she was a member says enough to me. I've found her patient diplomacy (both at UDS and online) to be a valuable asset to the community that we should celebrate. IainLane

Allison has contributed in many ways over the last couple of years since I've known her, from the start of each cycle (getting broad input for UDS and structuring it in a useful way), filling in the gaps during (packaging tasks) to the wrap up (answering my plea for editiorial passes and adding content to the Ubuntu release notes). She has been consistently helpful and constructive on coming up with good ideas to make things better for the entire Ubuntu project. This membership application is overdue and her contributions are indeed sustained and significant. +1 from me. KateStewart

AllisonRandal (last edited 2012-03-12 15:18:39 by 99-191-111-134)