19th September, 2006 — Dunc-Tank.org is pleased to announce its first fund-raising experiment: collecting donations to help Debian GNU/Linux 4.0, codenamed etch, be released on schedule on the 4th of December, 2006.
Dunc-Tank.org aims to support Debian’s efforts to meet its release schedule for etch by financially supporting the volunteers working on managing the release process, allowing them to devote their full attention to that task. The experiment’s initial goal is to be able to raise enough funds to pay both release managers enough to work exclusively on the release of etch for a month each, having Steve Langasek available full-time during October and Andreas Barth available full-time during November, with the release expected to follow soon after in the first week of December. Whether it will be possible to fund other efforts to help etch release, or embark on other projects after etch has released will naturally depend on the level of support the project receives.
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Debian has faced numerous difficulties in meeting projected release dates since the release of Debian 1.2 in 1997, and made numerous attempts to address those problem over that period. But this work has not yet overcome all the problems in managing releases of the world’s largest free software distribution. The Dunc-Tank.org experiment is not intended to replace those efforts, but is instead proposed in recognition of the huge advances made in the fifteen months since the release of Debian 3.1 (sarge). Dunc-Tank.org believes these improvements make an on-time release look more achievable than at any time since 1997, and as such, the Dunc-Tank.org board have each made a personal commitment to contribute to an on-time release by being involved in this experiment in addition to their regular Debian activities. It is Dunc-Tank.org’s belief that by harnessing the support of the Debian user community to allow full-time release management, the Debian project will be able to meet its release goals for etch on time, and in so doing gain the ability and confidence to set and meet higher standards for future releases.
Dunc-Tank.org is an independent group of developers, users and supporters of Debian.
Dunc-Tank.org is being created and run as an experiment in the distributed funding of Debian work by Debian users and supporters. After the release of etch, there will be a public evaluation of the effects of the experiment to determine whether to continue the experiment and, if so, how to adjust it. If the project continues, it may end up being incorporated into Debian itself, expanded to support additional free software projects other than Debian, or continue largely unchanged.
More information about Dunc-Tank.org, including information on how to contribute, is available at its website, www.dunc-tank.org.
Debian, organized by the Debian Project, is a widely used distribution of free software developed through the collaboration of volunteers from around the world. Since its inception, the released system, Debian GNU/Linux, has been based on the Linux kernel, with many basic tools of the operating system from the GNU project.
Debian is known for its adherence to the Unix and free software philosophies, and for its abundance of options — the current release includes over fifteen thousand software packages for eleven computer architectures […]. Debian GNU/Linux is the basis for several other distributions, including Knoppix and Ubuntu.
More information about Debian is available at its website, www.debian.org.