“So, what are you up to, these days?”

23 Sep

This is the end of the W3C TPAC week (technical plenary and advisory committee meetings, our yearly mass), in Lisbon. It was stressful –a bit, but also very rewarding.

As I was prepping Wednesday for a public address, a participant came up to me to greet me and chat. He recounted how I had helped him with the W3C Incubator Group he was running years ago (they are the former version of W3C Community Groups, which we deployed in 2012.) He went on saying how I had shared with him some aspirations to do different things at work and that he should tell my boss I was helpful as it might help me.

I don’t recall telling him that, nor thinking that at all, but I trust his memory more than mine. He continued, “So, what are you up to these days?” I showed him my badge as though it was going to give more strength and validity to my point and said “Well, I’m now the head of W3C Marketing and Communications.”

The puzzled look on his face was really priceless. Surprised and amused. “Thank you,” I added.

Le rôle du staff W3C pour continuer de (ré)inventer le Web de demain

14 Sep

“Ré-inventer le Web de demain” est le thème de Paris Web 2016. C’est de fait également celui de la séance qui clôture la conférence : les lightning talks, où a été retenu le sujet que j’ai proposé à deux ou trois heures du matin après la limite de dépôt, et dont voici la teneur :

Livrer 10, 20 ou 30 standards Web par an ? Oui, Messieurs-Dames, c’est le travail du staff W3C. Mais comment font-ils ?

Je voudrais présenter le travail des petites mains du W3C; celles sans qui les rouages des groupes de travail pourraient gripper, sans qui les technos Web seraient développées dans un chaos certain. Le W3C, dirigé par le papa du Web Tim Berners-Lee, est un consortium international d’adhérents au staff à temps-plein où les standards du Web sont développés, sous l’oeil tantôt bienveillant tantôt scrutateur du public, et ce depuis 1994. Par quels mécanismes livrons-nous 10 ou 20 standards par an ? Quel est le cycle de vie d’une spécification ? Où est la place à l’incubation ? etc.

Élie et Nicolas, qui animeront la session, ont fait leur choix entre les sujets et rendu leur verdict aujourd’hui. C’est avec joie et embarras que j’ai lu leur message en fin d’après-midi.

J’ai donc quelques jours pour rassembler mes idées, préparer des transparents, et présenter ça en 4 minutes le vendredi 30 septembre.

Un exercice de développement professionnel mais un chalenge personnel aussi.

Making Christmas cards

6 Dec

I started to make Christmas cards yesterday, thinking that was going to be a quick thing. Wrong.

I wanted to use either or both watercolour pencils and watercolour pens. I went for the latter.

The pens are easy enough to use. Either apply colour on paper and quickly work with a brush and water, or apply colour on a plastic surface and mix on brush with water. My paper was barely thick enough, but that will do. 

I sketched my scene, cut the elements, did the layout, drew on paper, painted cut out the elements and glued them.


Christmas cards with red baubles 

And I continued today, with different colours.

 Christmas cards with blue baubles 

Update 12 December: I made a few more this week:

 Christmas cards with Santa and reindeer 

 Christmas cards with Santa, presents and little cabin 

I intend to create a few more and hope there is time, as it’s quite time-consuming.

Update 19 December: I made a few more today and I’m done:

 Christmas cards with Santa and reindeer; and with Santa, presents and little cabin  

Photo of all the Christmas cards I made this month 

Webizen became W3C Developers Avenue

8 Nov

Webizen is no more. Yay! We released W3C Developers Avenue instead, and it’s a good thing! It’s much simpler, streamlined and more scalable.

Webizen kept a public task force busy for a year and went through two major iterations between W3C TPAC 2013 in Shenzhen and TPAC 2014 in Santa Clara, where the W3C Advisory Committee approved the proposal.

In the year leading to last week’s TPAC 2015 in Sapporo, we redid all again! An implementation of Webizen representation groups was going to be a forum. Meanwhile, the Team had been experimenting with a new forum, Discourse, to which anyone can bring ideas; and the Web Platform Working Group charter was being developed, a component of which was for the community to incubate new web platform features via Github and Discourse. So, we slowed down rolling out Webizen as we realised some Webizen participation benefits were going to be made available for free under the Discourse banner, and to rethink what would make sense to put together.

While Webizen was a modestly fee-based participation program, we abandoned the idea of benefits for a fee, and introducing instead a gratitude program, Friends. We focused on how W3C gives developers a greater voice, and which services the Web developers value in particular: our free validators and tools, to build Web content that works now and will work in the future; W3C Community Groups that more than six thousand people have embraced since 2011, to propose and incubate new work; our free and premium Training program, to learn from the creators of the Web technologies; and Discourse, to share ideas and feedback with the community on Web Standards.

It was important for us to release during TPAC 2015, and it was high time we did, really. After all, it was an anniversary date of the question from which it all stemmed. The first anniversary was the approval of a version, the second had to be the launch. And we did it, in the nick of time, but it was challenging.

I tested my abilities to manage a project and I learned a lot for the future, to say the least. Meanwhile, to make up for this, I worked over weekends, in the plane, and every night in Japan leading to the launch. Karen gave good feedback on content and Guillaume, as designer and integrator, scrumed with coding. The foundations of the work had been laid out months ago, but many of the building blocks still needed attention and polish, that we applied right up to the release on the W3C Technical Plenary Day, literally two minutes before the H hour.

I had aimed for much earlier in the day and for a fuller version, but a piece of code in the Friends component stopped working and when it was obvious it was not going to be fixed in time, we had to back-track a little. Donations to support the W3C mission and free developer tools are thus possible via Paypal only at this point, but soon we will accept contributions via credit card through MIT, a 501(c)(3) organization, which are tax-deductible for United States citizens.

Next steps for W3C Developers Avenue are more Developer meetups and outreach, and general (r)evolutions to further developer engagement at W3C and the value of W3C to the Web community. You have thoughts on those? I welcome your input!

I wrote on the topic before: Individuals influencer of the Web at W3C –utopia? (February 2014), Introducing #Webizen electoral college (April 2014).