DebianPlanet: Wichert Akkerman: Looking backwards, looking forwards

“It’s been weeks in the making, and for those of you who reside
on OpenProjects, you’ve known it’s been coming (and delayed
countless of times too). In an exclusive interview with
DebianPlanet, Wichert Akkerman gives what could possibly be his
last interview as Debian Project Leader. After two years in the top
job at Debian, Wichert has decided to calls it quits and not to
rerun for election in a bid for third term. In this interview with
Edward Lang (woot) and myself at linux.conf.au (plus some recent
updating), Wichert reflects not only about the past of the Debian
GNU/Linux distribution and his own role in it, but also the
project’s most pressing issues today from its community to the
constitution. This insightful interview with Wichert, wouldn’t be
complete without a peek into Wichert’s own crystal ball on the
project’s future and the promise of dpkg v2 on the horizon. So
enjoy this look forwards and look backwards into Debian with
Wichert Akkerman.”

“When did you join the developer community and start maintaining

“It was around the time when the switch from the a.out to the
ELF binary format and the do-it-yourself thing I built was already
completely ELF while Debian was still doing the switch. The strace
package hadn’t switched yet so I sent in a patch to compile on an
ELF system and the maintainer basically said, ‘Ah, okay, thanks for
the patch. I don’t have time to maintain this, would you like to
take it over?’, so that’s how I got the strace package.”

“How did you rise through the ranks of Debian to eventually move
yourself into a position to getting elected as Project Leader?”

“Just do stuff. Yeah, basically just do stuff and post emails.
Soon people will recognise your name and figure what you’re doing.
At some point I decided for some reason to nominate myself for the
DPL elections and people were crazy enough to vote for me. :)”

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