David B. Harris


My full name is David Barclay Harris, and most people refer to me as "ElectricElf". I am not the David Harris of Pegasus Mail fame. I was born in rural Ontario, in the latter half of 1980. I currently live in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Personal curiosa

I've been using computers since approximately 1984, when I received an Atari 1200XL or so. My first experiences with Unix were in the late 80's. I've been using Linux since around 1995, exclusively since 1997, and Debian wherever feasible since 1998.

I'm currently in the process of starting a business; a privately-held colocation facility, with a close friend and family member as partner. This has provided me an excellent view into the business world, though once started my responsibilities will remain primarily technical and managerial. I am currently in the process of studying for ITIL certification.

I would have no trouble being an active member of the SPI board, I have enough free time.

Relevant experience

For five years starting 1994, I was a member of the Royal City chapter of DeMolay International (http://www.demolay.org - please ignore the propaganda, that site is very American-centric, while DeMolay's nature changes from region to region - in Canada, it's a citizenship group). I served as Chairman of the chapter for one year, Secretary for one year, and Treasurer for one year.

I was involved in every aspect of the chapter's operations, and never hesitated to take a leadership role. Most notably, I was heavily involved in the process of making the chapter a not-for-profit under Canadian law. I also served as Secretary for the Ontario chapter of DeMolay for a year. DeMolay's activities primarily consist of charity work, fundraising, and other activities designed to help the community while at the same time promoting good citizenship among its members.

I am currently a contributor to the Debian project, and I maintain five smallish packages. I believe my best contribution to Debian, however, has been offering countless hours of free, real-time technical support in #debian on irc.freenode.net. I started offering this tech support in late 1998, and have continued until just recently. I also maintain that forum, doing my best to make sure that it's a productive, useful resource.

I am currently the Technical Lead for OFTC, and I am a member of the OFTC Network Operations Committee. As the technical lead, not only am I responsible for OFTC's basic infrastructure, but I'm also responsible for making sure that all those who are interested in helping with that infrastructure have the skill and the opportunity to do so. I also do my best to work closely with all sponsors, who provide free bandwidth and hardware usage to the project.

I also wrote, with David Graham, the constitution for OFTC, viewable at http://www.oftc.net/constitution/. We're about to undertake a revision of the document, but I believe it was a good first version and don't expect many changes. It was especially well-written given the circumstances, requirements, and goals of the time.

Position statement

I have no position. I have no vision. Those who started SPI had the vision, I simply wish to carry it onwards. Administrative problems aside, I believe SPI has been doing a reasonably good job, and I believe it is providing a very valuable service to the Free Software/Open Source communities. There have been some problems, and they're being fixed. I'm not interested in ill-considered, sweeping changes. At most, I'm interested in identifying real problems and fixing them. I am not qualified to define what I believe are problems at the moment, since I am not a member of the board, and I have virtually no experience with the inner workings of SPI.

Instead, I will attempt to bring to the board one more sharp mind, and a new active body, to work on whatever problems are identified.

That's what I offer - a relatively experienced, relatively knowledgeable, active individual for your use.