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Wireless summit at FUDCon in Berlin -- thanks!

On 26-27 June 2009 a Linux wireless mini-summit was hosted by the
Fedora project as part of their FUDCon event in Berlin, Germany.
This event was attended by well over a dozen upstream Linux developers
representing various kernel wireless LAN drivers, kernel wireless
LAN infrastructure components, and related userland applications.
Attendees also represented hardware vendors, Fedora and other Linux
distributions, and other members of the overall community.

Discussions covered a number of development issues, including
status updates related to recent developments and preliminary
design discussions for future API enhancements.  In particular,
the face-to-face involvement of hardware vendors revealed the need
for a "testing mode" extension to the new cfg80211 API for wireless
LAN configuration.  One of the attendees is a voting member of the
IEEE802.11 standards body, and he gave a very useful overview of
current standards activities and their likely impacts on Linux over
the next few years.

On the BarCamp day of FUDCon some of the wireless attendees provided
content for two one-hour slots.  One of these was an introduction
for would-be developers to understand the basics of the wireless LAN
APIs in the kernel.  The other was split between a short overview
of some of the powersaving improvements happening for wireless LANs
and an interesting presentation on Freifunk, a community-based free
wireless LAN deployment in Berlin.  The Freifunk presentation also
touched upon some similar projects ongoing throughout the world.

Given my position as the Linux kernel wireless LAN maintainer, I
found this meeting to be extremely valuable.  Developers are far
more productive when they know each other and have some personal
connections.  Further, face-to-face meetings enable fast-paced
discussions that would be difficult or impossible to complete in an
electronic (i.e. email, IRC, etc) environment.  Keeping these people
working well together is the key to further improvements and successful
maintenance in RHEL, Fedora, and the rest of Linux community.
On behalf of the upstream Linux wireless LAN developer community,
I would like to express our gratitude to the Fedora project for doing
its part to enable our continued progress.

Of course, I also want to thank the wireless LAN developers (and
those who may have sponsored their travel) for coming to the event.
You guys are the ones who make all these good things happen.  The fact
that you are all friendly and cooperative makes things even better!
I enjoyed seeing all of you in Berlin, both the ones I had already met
and the new faces as well.  I look forward to our next opportunity to
meet face-to-face, and I anticipate lots of productive email between
now and then!


John W. Linville		Linux should be at the core
linville redhat com			of your literate lifestyle.

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