Daniel Sockwell candidacy for Board positon
Mon, 16-Aug-2021 by
Stuart J Mackintosh
We would like to present Daniel Sockwell as a candidate to join the Board. He has worked with the foundation over the last year, participated in the monthly community meetings and presented Raku at a variety of events.
The board will vote on Daniel's appointment at the board meeting 27th August 2021.
Below are Daniel's responses to the application questions.
## Brief biography
Before becoming a programmer, I earned a J.D. from Columbia Law School and was a practicing attorney with a large law firm in New York City.
I currently serve on the Raku Steering Council and the TPF Legal Committee and was a moderator for the 2021 Perl and Raku Conference.
## Why do you want to become a member of the TPF Board?
Yet Another Society does not currently have any board members who serve on the Raku Steering Council.
I would like to join YAS's board to help it and the RSC/the Raku community more broadly better work together.
## What goals would you like to see TPF pursue in the next years?
I would like to see YAS help Perl and Raku help each other – and prevent them from getting in each other's way.
More specifically, I'd like to see the YAS board develop a framework for continuing to share infrastructure and other logistical resources while also giving both languages space to develop their independent identities and developer mindshare.
Here's why I think that goal is worth pursuing: Perl and Raku have a tremendous amount in common (as is only natural for two languages that spent decades with Larry Wall as BDFL).
Both languages are deeply committed to expressive, flexible code; both want to stand up and say that there should be more than one way to do it – pushing back against a landscape of "modern" programming tools that want to enforce a one-size-fits-all approach and style. Accordingly, both languages have a common interest in promoting the overall linguistic approach to programming that distinguishes Perl-family languages.
Moreover, both languages have open-source/free software at their heart. Though both languages gratefully accept corporate contributions, each is committed to remaining a community project, without undue influence from any single tech giant.
This brings many advantages, but it also many costs: neither language is likely to have the financial resources that a Facebook, Google, or Microsoft provide to their own languages. Given this constraint, it makes sense for Raku and Perl to work together through YAS to more efficiently handle the many administrative, logistical, and infrastructure issues that could otherwise be solved with (more) money.
However, Perl and Raku also risk getting in each other's way if our relationship isn't handled correctly.
For example, consistently promoting Perl and Raku in the same breath risks giving the (absolutely false!) impression that Perl is the deprecated/old version of Raku; it also risks giving the (equally false) impression that Raku is an incremental change from Perl that is unlikely to appeal to an audience beyond Perl programmers.
Sharing administrative burdens and working together to promote Perl-family languages without getting in each other's way is a tricky balance, but it's one I believe we can strike.
For example, the recent creation of a "Raku Foundation" alias for YAS seems like a step in the right direction – and I'd personally like YAS to build on that step by deploying a separate website for the Raku Foundation and thereby freeing the Perl Foundation website up to be more Perl-focused.
I'm not exactly sure what other opportunities like that will come up, but I'd be happy to help find any that do.
I wholeheartedly support Daniel and particularly his view to work together to help the two languages.
I would prefer to see someone added to the board who has more experience on other FOSS foundation boards. Perhaps someone from outside the community. Such a person would add valuable experience for what other foss foundations have done, a new network of contacts, and perspectives from outside the perl bubble.
This should not be considered as a slight against Daniel in any way.
@dean, thanks for the comment. I agree that a candidate with the experience you describe would be a valuable addition to the Board. The foundation's bylaws don't specify the size of the Board, so someone like that could be added at any time, regardless of whether or not I join the Board. https://www.perlfoundation.org/bylaws.html
Such an "outside" person could certainly be useful, once it is found. In the mean-time, I think Daniel would be a useful (and orthogonal) addition to the board.