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2018-2019 openSUSE Board Elections: Meet Vinzenz Vietzke

January 25th, 2019 by

Seven Candidates in Race for Three Vacant Board Seats

With only 10 days left to go until the ballots open on Monday, February 4, 2019, openSUSE News and the Elections Committee are running a “meet your candidates” series. Questions were sent out to the seven Candidates. The questions and answers will appear in the News, one Candidate each day, in alphabetical order.

You can find out more about the Elections at the Official Wiki Page.

Meet Vinzenz Vietzke

Intro/Biography

The Candidates were asked to give some biographical personal information, such as birthdate, age, their work, their openSUSE contributions, their hobby, and more, as they saw fit.

My name is Vinzenz Vietzke, but sticking with the much shorter “vinz” or “vinzv” is what I prefer. I’m 34 years old, live in a small town in southern Germany.

Vinzenz Vietzke aka vinzv

Like most German Linux users around my age, I made my first steps with S.u.S.E. back in the late 1990s. Over the years, I moved across various distributions and contributed to quite a few of them in different ways. My day job is product management and marketing at Linux hardware vendor TUXEDO Computers.

Starting with just one laptop running openSUSE, we at TUXEDO now offer around 20 different models plus a wide range of desktop PCs with Leap 15 pre-installed. Customers also get free lifetime support for their preinstalled system. Therefore, of course, our free phone/email tech support team need to be trained for openSUSE as well.

For this whole project, I was, and still am, in charge as the tech and project lead to “bring” openSUSE onto TUXEDO’s computers. I got in touch with oS, worked out how and when we get everything done.

In addition to technical affairs, I’m the pushing person at TUXEDO Computers to make our company step up with supporting openSUSE. As a result, since October 2018, we are officially sponsoring the openSUSE project.

We offer any of our models as demo and workshop devices at no cost and take care for the logistics and event booth support. Furthermore we’re sponsoring oSC19 in Nuremberg with demo and install fest machines.

Of course, these things are mainly financial efforts and company internal projects. Yet, to get openSUSE a wider reception, there needs to be someone coordinating, pushing, and taking care. That’s why I call my contributions to openSUSE mostly “meta contributions”.

Why you are running for the openSUSE Board?

Working together with both the Board and openSUSE devs during the last year really was a blast. There were huge efforts, ideas, and helping hands everywhere. And, as I’m no developer myself, serving at the Board would be a way to give something back.

2018-2019 Election Poster contributed by Aris Winardi

2018-2019 Election Poster contributed by Aris Winardi

Furthermore, I believe it’s important for the Community to have various candidates to pick from. And as I have the time I kinda feel obliged to at least offer my help.

What impact would you like to make as a member of the openSUSE Board?

From my perspective, the Board has two main roles: First and foremost, it is some kind of service provider. It serves the whole project as contact point for questions, projects coordination, and pointing in directions, etc.

This is crucial for the whole openSUSE Project and should never be changed, but merely extended if possible.

The second role might be named as “ideas sparking pot”. Most ideas coming from the Community are of a technical nature, which is entirely logical. Just, sometimes, there are things that the whole Project would benefit from, but no one sees them or has time to do so.

This is where the Board could jump in throwing sparks and giving input from someone being able to take a step back for viewing the bigger picture.

My role in this Board Team would both being approachable and helpful, for part one. But, also to give thoughts and ideas when needed, especially in the second part mentioned.

Why should openSUSE members vote for you?

I’ve been into Linux and open source communities for about 10 years now. Though I’m not a long term Contributor for openSUSE, I know how “things work” in such a big, diverse project, and how to handle this stuff.

If you want to get someone with no “Geeko glasses” on you should vote for me. Not that being deeply inside openSUSE’s Community is a bad thing! But I can bring in new perspectives, most of them related to end-users, Windows-ditchers, and the curious, but not tech-savvy, people. I both understand developers and tech people on the one hand, as well as people who are buying Linux preinstalled hardware with little will to tinker around.

This way I act as some proxy between those worlds which in the end might be good for everyone involved.

What’s one thing people would find interesting about you that is not well known?

I am a professionally trained pre-school teacher, which one might find useful for mailing list threads.

Contact information

Email: vinz AT vinzv.de
XMPP: vinz@vinzv.de
IRC: vinzv@freenode

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