In early 2000, I was sitting uncomfortably on the trade show
floor of LinuxWorld, lurching through my first and only book
signing. Being a strict egalitarian Hoosier, the whole thought of a
book signing seemed pretentious, especially at a convention of my
But I did get to meet one man who would change the course of my
professional career from full-time author to full-time journalist.
It was none other than Kevin Reichard, the man who offered me a
chance to write articles for LinuxPlanet as a freelance writer. And
thus began the journey with Internet.com.
While still happily freelancing, it was I who recommended
Michael Hall as a potential new hire for Linux Today's editorial
staff. Michael and I have worked together since our days on the
college newspaper, and when LT needed an editor, he was the best
candidate around. After he took over the reins at LT, it was he who
would in turn graciously recommend me when he was ready to move to
other things within the renamed Jupitermedia.
Since then, my relationship with Linux has become oddly...
personal. That may seem weird, but six years of covering such an
interesting technology created and supported by this really unique
band of characters has led me from being an interested observer to
an advocating participant.
It was, ultimately, the people who won me over. That might
really come across as ironic, given the scathing treatment I have
sometimes received at the hands of some of LT's more, ah, vocal
readers. But those incidents were few and far between when compared
to the positive support and encouragement I have received from so
The technology of Linux and the philosophies that surround it
have also been a big draw. The complexities of the free vs. open
source software have caused a lot of back and forth over the years,
but for me, the simple truth of making something then sharing it
with anyone who's interested so they can make it better is just
plain Good. With a capital G.
As time has passed, I must confess that my role as an impartial
journalist/editor has been compromised. Watching from the sidelines
is all well and good, but I have increasingly wanted to participate
in a more active way.
It is, then, in this context that I am sharing this news that
today is my final day as managing editor of Linux Today and the
other Jupitermedia Linux/Open Source sites.
This was not a quick decision, by any means. A few weeks ago, I
noted an opportunity had come along that would allow me to move
from the role of observer to participant. After some inquiries and
discussions, I was offered the opportunity and choose to take
In doing so, I leave a position that has been personally
rewarding, and a community that has been exceptional in its support
of me. But sometimes an opportunity really does come along that you
just have to take, or otherwise wonder what might have been.
Beginning Monday, I will begin my role as community manager for
the Linux Developer Network for the Linux Foundation. In that
position, I will begin by helping to re-launch the LDN effort,
turning that site in what should become the premier development and
technical resource for anyone interested in coding for Linux. The
Network will feature in-depth technical articles, white papers,
community forums, and wiki-based content that will provide the most
up-to-date information about the technology behind Linux.
It won't hurt that I will be able to work directly with kernel
developers, independent software vendors, and device manufacturers
to get high-quality documentation together, not to mention
thousands of open source software developers.
For me, this is a chance to give back to the community, lending
my skills as a writer to help advance Linux onto the desktop...
into embedded space... into data centers... into... wherever Linux
It's funny how things get finished. Six years, 40,000-plus
stories, and nearly 150,000 talkbacks later, I am saying goodbye to
the readers of LT, but not to the Linux community. If I were
leaving for good, I would regret not being able personally thank
all of the people who helped make Linux Today the site it is today.
But, since I'll likely be calling them anyway on Monday looking for
No, seriously: thanks to all of the friends, colleagues, and
readers who have been a part of my tenure here at Linux Today.
When I leave, LT will be left in the more than capable hands of
author and Linux expert Carla Schroder, which means it will
continue its editorial charter of providing links to the broadest
range of Linux and open source news, opinion, and tutorials.
So for now, it's not goodbye, but see you later. And until we
meet again, I wish you, as always, peace.