Home = community: my open source story

Home = community: my open source story

I was invited to tell a story last night at Agora Rollberg – a budding community space in the old storage hall of Neuk├Âlln’s Kindl Brauerei. The event was bringing together practitioners of open source collaboration, and Alice & Simon, two of the organizers, suggested that I share how I got started down this road. I guess most people start out in open source with software, but my experience was a little different – so this is what I shared with the group: Around 10 or 11 years ago, in my hometown of Auckland, New Zealand, I was in need of a place to live, and heard from a friend about a beautiful old house with a large garden, available to rent, not far from town. With only a little embellishment, I told the landlord that I was a responsible young professional, as I had a stable job working for for a reputable firm (at the time I was the production runner on the [ahem] critically-acclaimed TV show Power Rangers). I also told the owner that I already had the perfect group of other responsible young professionals, keen to move in with me. So they let me have the house, and suddenly I had two weeks to find at least 8 housemates to share this huge place with me. Somehow, thanks to helpful friends and the magic of MySpace, it happened, though responsible young professionals these were not. I had found 8 guys and one girl, who stretched the entire spectrum from unemployed to underemployed. We had members of three different bands, with 12 guitars and two drum kits...