About Me

Personal Details


Launchpad ID:

James Tait


jamestait on irc.freenode.net


<james DOT tait AT wyrddreams DOT org>



Linux Counter:


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I am a 36-year-old father of two, Connagh (9) and Callum (6), married to Michelle. Currently living and working in Derby, with a view to moving to South Africa at some point in the hopefully-not-too-distant future. I have been a Java programmer for most of my professional life, but I joined Canonical in August 2010 and have since been using mostly Python. I maintain a network of computers at home, all running Ubuntu. I have also been known to write C/C++ and a little Perl.

I started using Slackware Linux (Slackware '96) on an old 486 I got from a skip while I was still at Middlesex University back in 1997, wanting a free Unix-based OS on which to develop a MUD. Eventually it found its way onto my "proper" computer, which went through several hardware upgrades and after serving as my external web/mail/DNS server has now been retired. Upon joining South Derbyshire LUG, I was convinced of the merits of switching to Debian to help reduce the burden of maintaining my machines, in spite of its reputation as a hacker's distribution, and installed it on both my external server and my intranet server. Both have since been migrated to Ubuntu and upgraded to Lucid.

I first installed Ubuntu Breezy on my wife's desktop after getting frustrated with Red Hat and being impressed with the package management in Debian, but wanting a distribution oriented towards "normal" users. This machine has also been retired and replaced with an Asus EeePC 701, currently running Lucid, which has been handed down to my eldest son, while my wife has inherited my Asus EeePC 1000HA, also running Lucid. In February 2006 I bought an Acer Ferrari 4005WLMi and installed Breezy AMD64 on that, then later edited my /etc/apt/sources.list to follow the changes to Dapper, before following the prescribed process for upgrading to Edgy, Feisty, Gutsy, Hardy, Intrepid and Jaunty. I managed to trash my hard drive with a misplaced dd command, and repartitioned my drive to install the stable Jaunty and Karmic alpha 3 to ecryptfs-protected roots, with shared home and boot partitions. The Karmic installation was upgraded to Lucid, before the machine completely died and was replaced with a Sony Vaio VPCF11J0E, currently running Maverick.

Ubuntu Contributions

  • Some testing on the Acer Ferrari 4005WLMi (including off-list discussion with a couple of other users, Lakin Wecker and Stefano Rivera).

  • Contributions to several bugs (65159, 53216, 69872, 46771, 66900, 90709, 47971, 93413).

  • A member of the UK LoCo team and Launchpad Beta Testers team.

  • Some advocacy work -- burning Dapper CDs and handing them out to friends and associates.
  • Somewhat active on IRC (#ubuntu-uk) and UK Team mailing list.
  • Wrote to my MP about EDM179. Unfortunately, my MP is Margaret Beckett, Foreign Secretary, and cannot sign EDMs. She did, however, forward my letter on to Alan Johnson, Secretary of State for Education and Skills, who replied with a stock response.
  • I have created the Hedera project to allow synchronisation of a local Thunderbird address book with CouchDB.

  • I am employed by Canonical and work on Ubuntu One.

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