Open Inbox – Oh, look another email from a recruiter…

As of late I’ve seen a significant uptick in the volume of emails that filter their way into my inbox that look like posts I read on @recruiterbro. I am sure that these emails have nothing to do with the fact that I (publicly) work on a large OpenSource project, have “hot skills” listed on my LinkedIn profile, or that I have a background in development, operations, etc (please tell me you caught the sarcasm…).  Sometimes I struggle with the best way to respond to these messages. Other times it is exceptionally easy to fire off an email turning them down. Lately I have been very careful in evaluating what I would want if I were to be looking for new employment and the questions the recruiters should answer before I’ll even get on the phone with them. What do I say that will result in talking to the right people about the right roles when I do find myself looking for a new position?

It all starts with how big a soapbox I am standing on…

I am very open with my boss and coworkers that we should be contributing more to the OpenSource communities we draw from. That isn’t to say we are contributing a small amount (or even an insufficient amount) I simply want to see even more go upstream. I have started taking the tack that any recruiter that wants to hire me away from the awesome position I have now (“I am paid to write FOSS, free opensource software, how cool is that!?“, yes I say that to  myself with enthusiasm every day) I have some basic requirements:

  1. The company can be founded on (or at least heavily invested in) FOSS (this includes in supporting the projects financially by joining foundations, paying developers to be OpenSource contributors as their primary job, etc). There are relatively few of these companies, but they are not the rarity that some people assume.
  2. If the company is not one of the aforementioned “invested in FOSS” organizations, they should be looking to hire me to help align them with those lofty FOSS-friendly philosophies. Simply put, I don’t give them credit for saying they are “OpenSource friendly”, there needs to be a real show of direction down the path.

I guess this means I start by being more confrontational, and demanding in what I want from an organization that wants to court me as a potential employee. Interviews go both ways, and they should know I am opinionated  from the start. This also means the recruiters get to see that I am not going to go quietly. It is better for me and better for the  organization to know where everyone stands from the get-go. Have I burned my chances at a potential job because of the giant soapbox? Probably. However, I feel that I would be dishonest to myself if I didn’t standup for my philosophy when it comes to working with FOSS and the communities around those projects.

This post was largely driven by “yet another” email I received tonight, but also related to the following two tweets I saw recently:



In short, can someone convince me that a company not heavily aligned with FOSS is a good place to go? Sure thing! But that organization better be ready to hire someone like me to forward a shift in culture to an appropriate FOSS-friendly stance and I’d be happy to help with forwarding that agenda.

First Post!

As my first post I feel the need to share one of the picture I took a while back.  The Griffith Observatory is one of my favorite places in Los Angeles to visit.  It just-so-happened that I had my DSLR (Canon 5D2) with me one evening.  With a little color balance changing, I found the sweet spot that highlighted the observatory itself but did not lose the lights of the cityscape.


“Observing the City”
Canon 5D2
ISO 3200 50mm f/2.0 1/40 sec

Unfortunately, I didn’t have a tripod with me so I had to crank the settings;  There is far more ISO noise (among other things such as a small blur) than I would have liked to capture.


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