I, Chris Coulson, apply for core-dev


Chris Coulson

Launchpad Page

Who I am

I am a 28 year old software engineer from the West Midlands, UK. I started life out as a hardware engineer originally, but converted to software because it's way more enjoyable.

My Ubuntu story

I started using Ubuntu with Breezy, but didn't really start to get involved until around the time of Gutsy. I got involved with helping out the desktop team (packaging and fixing bugs etc) and eventually became a MOTU and also a member of the ubuntu-desktop team

My involvement / Areas of work

I'm currently Firefox maintainer in Ubuntu (looking after Firefox, Thunderbird and related friends), but I still try to help out with other general desktop tasks where I can.

Examples of my work / Things I'm proud of

  • I wrote globalmenu-extension recently to add support for the Unity menu in Firefox
  • I've implemented support for GNOME 3.0 technologies in Firefox and Thunderbird (still being reviewed by upstream though).
  • I was heavily involved with rolling out Firefox 3.6 to all of our supported releases last year, hopefully making lots of users happy Smile :)

  • I've spent a fair bit of time in the 11.04 cycle tracking down and fixing issues in dbusmenu, and making the menus work more reliably (and use less memory)

Things I could do better

I don't do nearly enough sponsoring outside of my allocated time as patch-pilot. I guess this is partly due to the fact that the universe queue is so small, but also - I generally don't touch that much in Universe now and I am unable to process most sponsoring requests for main.

Plans for the future


  • The way we distribute translations for Firefox is broken. This is something I'm going to fix in the 11.10 cycle.
  • Implement Unity launcher and quicklist integration in Firefox. I've already got some ideas for this, I just need to start hacking.
  • I wouldn't mind working on touch support for Firefox too. Don't tell that to anyone else though, else I might regret volunteering for it Wink ;)

  • More sponsoring.

What I like least in Ubuntu

There isn't much I dislike in Ubuntu to be honest, but if I had to think of one thing which really annoys me, then that is lazy sponsoring. What I mean by this is when a sponsor looks at a sponsoring request and responds with something like "Unsubscribing sponsors, please provide a debdiff and resubscribe". There are several reasons why I hate this approach:

  • The sponsor could be dismissing a perfectly good patch
  • This is very unfriendly to fly-by contributors
  • It takes, maybe, 20 additional seconds or so for the sponsor to create a changelog entry if there is no debdiff. If this additional time is a serious burden, then there is something wrong with our sponsoring process.

Sure, we should recommend contributors provide a debdiff in future if they want to be credited with the upload. Contributors who are serious about becoming involved on a more long-term basis will be fine with this.

Rant over Wink ;)

I also dislike the fact that I cannot target bugs to a release for packages that I maintain (and can upload) in main. I guess this is more of a Launchpad annoyance than anything specific to Ubuntu though, but it's annoying to have to keep pinging people and asking them to do things for me that I should already be able to do.


If you'd like to comment, but are not the applicant or a sponsor, do it here. Don't forget to sign with @SIG@.


As a sponsor, just copy the template below, fill it out and add it to this section.


=== General feedback ===
## Please fill us in on your shared experience. (How many packages did you sponsor? How would you judge the quality? How would you describe the improvements? Do you trust the applicant?)

=== Specific Experiences of working together ===
''Please add good examples of your work together, but also cases that could have handled better.''
=== Areas of Improvement ===

ChrisCoulson/CoreDevApplication (last edited 2011-03-25 17:54:48 by w-58)