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From Christofer Dutz <>
Subject [DRAFT] First Podling Report PLC4X
Date Thu, 28 Dec 2017 13:48:00 GMT
Hi all,

So, I whipped up a first draft of a podling report … please feel free to comment.


Some additional background for the new Apache committers here:

Each project at Apache has a bunch of committers. These are allowed to change the code in
the repositories, file and work on issues, confluence and alike. Then usually a subset of
these committers forms the projects PMC (Project Management Committee). These have so called
“Binding Votes”. When it comes to voting, the binding Votes are the ones that count officially.
However, the votes of committers and even uses (So-called “non-binding votes”) should
be and usually are taken into account, but they are not required to be. One member of the
PMC is elected to be Chair of the project. In contrast to other organizations, this role is
more to be seen as the elected chief secretary of the project and not the King of the project.
It is his duty to communicate with the so-called Apache Board.

One of the projects Chairs duties is to file regular project reports:

Every Apache project has to regularly report to the board on how it’s been working in the
past. This is usually done in quarterly board reports which each project has to file and that
the PMCs Chair submits to the Apache Board. Not providing this report for several times usually
is an indicator that the project is not working properly anymore. Sometimes the Board will
then suggest moving the project to the Apache Attic. In this case all code repos are switched
to read-only, confluence, jira etc. are turned off and all mailing-lists are archived and
also turned off. If the projects PMC agrees or doesn’t respond this will usually happen.

In these reports, the projects can inform the Board about any success, problems in the project
and in general how it has been performing in the past. As the ASF currently has more than
350 projects you can imagine that if the members of the board had to follow all of these,
they would probably not be doing anything else. These reports are the condensed form of communication
with the board. This is also where big problems in a project can be addressed that could require
the Board to step in.

Our Podling report is slightly different as we are not yet an official top-level project.
We are part of the Apache Incubator project and hereby report to the PMC of the Incubator
project (Which then itself issues a report to the Apache Board) That is also why we have a
PPMC (Podling Project Management Committee) and not a PMC. When it comes to voting only the
Incubator PMC has binding votes.

So much for a little Apache knowledge (I hope it’s ok to do it this way … if not … just
tell me and I’ll stop)



Apache PLC4X (incubating)

PLC4X is a set of libraries for communicating with industrial programmable logic controllers
(PLCs) using a variety of protocols but with a shared API.

Most important issues to address while moving towards graduation:

  *   Building the community: The PPMC and committer group has a large percentage of codecentric
employees, we have been recruiting people from other companies, but will have to continue
these efforts for establishing a healthy Apache community.
  *   Onboarding of new committers: With PLC4X several people on the team are not very familiar
with the Apache Way. We have started and will continue our efforts on this onboarding.
  *   Podling name search: We have invested a lot of time on the name search prior to starting
to work on the project, but we still need the official OK that we’re allowed to keep the
Name of Apache PLC4X.

Any Issues the Incubator PMC or ASF Board might wish/need to be aware of:

  *   Still not all members of the initial PPMC and committers have finished signing up for
all mailing lists
  *   In order to get access to some of the specifications the ASF will eventually have to
become Members of some external foundations: OPC, EtherCat, Modbus … these memberships usually
have a free level, that allows us to use the specifications but doesn’t result in any regular
costs. We will have to discuss these details with the ASF and the other foundations.
  *   One of the external foundations (Profinet) doesn’t have a free membership. In general,
the CEO of the European branch of the Profinet Foundation has signaled that it should be possible
for the ASF to become a member and have an outside company pay the membership fees, but we
have to discuss the details (With them as well as the ASF).

How has the community developed since the last report?

  *   We have been accepted into the Apache Incubator just a week before Christmas, we are
still in the process of setting up
  *   Prior to joining the Apache Incubator however, we have managed to recruit people from
other Apache projects and are working on getting other people familiar with the protocols
and the industry involved. After the Christmas break we are planning on contacting a big group
of people that have claimed to be wanting to be involved (A list of about 20 Companies, but
we can’t tell how many will be using and how many would also be willing to contribute)
  *   We have started the onboarding of new committers and will be continuing to do this (extended
emails with a lot of explanations on why we are doing things the way we are)

How has the project developed since the last report?

  *   There was no last report.

How does the podling rate their own maturity?

  *   Even if we do have a lot of new participants in the project, we also have a list of
highly experienced Apache people on board.
  *   So far, the new participants have shown great willingness and success in adopting the
Apache Way.
  *   However, we still need to continue:
     *   the on-boarding
     *   increasing the diversity of the team
  *   Also, will we need to decide and establish all the processes involved in releasing software
at Apache

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