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ASWF TAC Meeting - July 1, 2020

Video Conference Link

Voting member attendance

  • Daniel Heckenberg - Chairperson, Animal Logic Pty Ltd
  • Gordon Bradley, Autodesk
  • Pilar Molina Lopez, Blue Sky Studios, Inc.
  • Michael O’Gorman, Cisco Systems Inc.
  • Henry Vera, DNEG
  • Bill Ballew, DreamWorks Animation
  • Matt Kuhlenschmidt, Epic Games, Inc.
  • Brian Cipriano, Google & OpenCue Representative
  • Sean C McDuffee, Intel Corporation
  • Larry Gritz, Sony Pictures Imageworks
  • Jean-Francois Panisset, VES Technology Committee
  • Cory Omand, The Walt Disney Studios
  • Kimball Thurston, Weta Digital Limited
  • Eric Enderton, NVIDIA
  • Sean Looper, Amazon Web Services
  • Michael Min, Netflix
  • Michael B. Johnson, Apple
  • Dave Fellows, Microsoft
  • Sean O’Connell, Advanced Micro Devices
  • Ken Museth, OpenVDB Representative
  • Michael Dolan, OpenColorIO Representative
  • Cary Phillips, OpenEXR Representative
  • Joshua Minor, OpenTimelineIO Representative
  • Chris Kulla, Open Shading Language Representative

Other Attendees

  • John Mertic, Linux Foundation
  • Emily Olin, Linux Foundation
  • JT Nelson, Pasadena Open Source consortium / SoCal Blender group
  • Greg Denton, Microsoft Azure
  • Rachel Rose, ILM, Diversity+Inclusion WG
  • Alex Meddick, Rising Sun Pictures
  • Jeff Bradley, DreamWorks

Apologies

  • Bill Ballew, DreamWorks Animation (represented by Jeff Bradley)
  • Cary Phillips, OpenEXR Representative

Agenda

  • Goals for TAC: Year 2

  • OpenCue Incubation Review (Brian)

    • Much development work last year

    • Windows Support, Python 3

    • CI system merged into ASWF infrastructure, soon to be GitHub Actions

    • Small work: bug fixes, stability fixes, successful effort, closed 193 GitHub Issues, a lot of this work related to getting OpenCue ready for Open Source

    • Good growth in engagement in all channels

    • Stats from GitHub, users lists: 499 GitHub stars, 148 members on user list, around 100 people on developer list

    • Contributions to CI eg Docker Images

    • 50% Java / 50% Python

    • Multi-component enduser app, including GUI

    • Helps to push ASWF in different directions than other projects (typically C++ based)

    • Goals for next year:

      • ASWF Graduation: would like to get guidance from TAC on priority of CII badge completion / graduation instead of feature work

      • Cloud compatibility (GSoC)

      • Users/Permissions system

      • Packaging and distribution

    • Graduation progress:

      • 5 committers from 4 different companies

      • 25 contributors

      • 83% complete CII badge

      • Prioritized feature work and test coverage

      • Static analysis still to be done

      • Other checklist items complete

    • Joshua: did you run into any issues transitioning from your own GitHub organization to ASWF org? Brian: went pretty smoothly, had to figure out CLA system, it’s been stable over last few months. The project was fairly new to GitHub in the first place, so no deep legacy of existing integrations with original organization. Joshua: some projects had “gaps” with key contributors no longer covered by CLA? Brian: yes, some contributors had to fill out new CLA again.

    • Daniel: can you identify any of the bigger challenges / stumbling blocks that could be improved for other projects? Brian: technical aspects went pretty well, did have to spend time to set up CI system, project with template project really helped and will help in the future. Biggest obstacles are non technical: integrating new contributors, growing the community.

    • Brian: there is overlap between bug fixing and CII badge, but competition for resources with important features like Windows and Python 3. Lots of work to deal with all static analysis reports, many false positives that take a lot of time to deal with. Some issues are simple and could be “good first issues”, some issues about database interaction are subtle and need deeper knowledge.

    • Daniel: what are the crucial areas where the projects could use greater support from ASWF or the community? Brian: some technical areas are missing coverage due to original authors not being around anymore. For instance some deeper database expertise could be useful. But overall growing community / engagement / non-technical issues are probably more important. Have been tracking GitHub and email, but hard to identify exactly what is the user base. It would help to have hard data on engagement to report back to corporate sponsors.

    • Vote on OpenCue status. Daniel: move to vote to extend incubation phase for 6 months. Seconded by Kimball. 6 months would be to consider moving from Incubation to Adopted status, give them more time to get ready for graduation. Michael Min: would community engagement also be a factor in further review in 6 months? Daniel: same criteria would be considered in 6 months. Brian: intent is to move for graduation before 6 months.

    • All ayes, no oppose or abstain, motion passes, 6 month extension to Incubation status for OpenCue.

  • Open Source Day, SIGGRAPH (Emily)

    • Discussion on TAC mailing list.

    • What to do about Open Source Day vs DigiPro

    • Most projects are still interested to have a 1hr BoF

    • Do we keep it the same week as DigiPro or move it? Are people blocking out their day for DigiPro? Will people be taking a whole day?

    • Kimball: more concerned about timezone

    • Emily: trying to figure better support for timezones: pre-record sessions + live Q&A for instance.

    • Kimball: BoF discussions are usually the best part, but of course no perfect solution

    • Emily: as per Larry said, at lot of discussions already happening via TSC, mailing lists, Slack.

    • Kimball: at OpenEXR BoF last year, we had a number of attendees who are not involved in traditional channels, but someone who has a free hour at SIGGRAPH would just drop by.

    • Larry: argument for still having the BoFs while we have a conference. If someone won’t join a video TSC meeting, will they join a video BoF?

    • Daniel: our TSC meetings assume a lot of context, a BoF targets a larger audience.

    • Wave: lots of coworkers are interested in specific projects, value is the snapshot of the current state of the project, what they want to share, and what is their roadmap. Can point coworkers to specific events. A BoF can be a good “summing up point” where the video can be valid for a few months afterwards. Project contributors can make themselves available via Slack.

    • Larry: forcing ourselves to do BoFs in a concentrated time may be bad for attendees? Emily: Open Source Days provide a good opportunity to present the progress of the foundation and all our projects, important to show progress from all projects.

    • Wave: agree with Larry to avoid DigiPro. People at work have little control over their schedule unless they are travelling, and no one is travelling right now.

    • Wave: a lot of people will be watching on one screen, while working on another screen (example of WWDC).

    • Emily: could move to the week after DigiPro (SIGGRAPH “on demand content” week). Larry / Daniel: that does seem like a good option.

    • Emily: planning to use Zoom webinars, presenters will be able to see attendees, but attendees won’t be able to see each other unless they are using chat. We can potentially do it in the Zoom meeting format (potential security issues). There are other platforms as well, but Zoom is well understood.

    • There will be a separate Slack channel.

    • Michael Min: helps to have a dedicated moderator, is that possible with Zoom?

    • Emily: Real Time Conference is using Zoom webinars, and designate someone to be moderator.

    • Emily: look to doing a full day the week before SIGGRAPH, 1 hr BoF sessions.

  • ASWF Fund and Grants

    • Remote review tool?

    • Daniel: revisit presentation from David Morin

    • DIscussion has gone quiet on TAC, anything in the TSCs?

    • John: the Governing Board had a strong desire to see if there are ways to use some of the funding available in the ASWF to see if there are opportunities to accelerate not only project development, but also help with D&I. The Governing Board sees a huge need for improving D&I in the industry, lead to WG which has made a lot of progress. But also is there an avenue to help the existing projects, or projects outside the foundation looking to move in. LF has seen projects use a grant structure to do very targeted development, or targeted services such as documentation or infrastructure. Also a path for a mentorship route. The TSCs / TSC chairs often think about “how do we get the next group of people to join / contribute” (example of Larry leading the GSoC initiative).

    • Rachel: from D&I WG, sent out survey and got really good responses, going over results and will have next meeting soon. Being able to set up some sort of mentorship program, with an eye towards contributing to existing ASWF projects. A lot of work remains to be done.

    • John: a lot of concepts around net new projects that could be started within ASWF. Until now the ASWF has been bringing in existing projects and helping with sustainability. But now we should be looking at gaps in the open source offerings. Conversations around asset management, and specifically around gathering and distributing assets that can be used for testing. This is tricky due to copyright issues.

    • Michael Min: there is some ambiguity as to how funds are allocated, and how do engineers from contributing companies are used. How would these funds / grants be used? What does it mean to get a “grant” if you are already staff at a contributing company?

    • Daniel: it is up to TAC and Governing Board to define what is appropriate. LF has offered the Community Bridge framework as a model of how to do this. A transparent mechanism, can look at how other open source projects / foundations have used their funds.

    • Kimball: as an individual corporate, cannot match what GSoC can do, but as a group we could make a difference

    • Larry: we could afford the funds that GSoC spends on our 3 students ($6K per student). We could definitely do something similar, with an eye towards D&I for instance.

    • Kimball: could use this to bootstrap new projects / communities, and reach out to film schools for instance. Larry: could be more targeted effort.

    • Wave: we talked about assets / test footage, could offer a grant to a film school to generate material, go shoot some footage, generate some models…

    • Daniel: will create Action Item for TSC leads and WGs to come up with proposals for the next TAC meeting. If we wanted to look at a remote review tool as a specific project, what would we do to move ahead with something like that.

    • John: WG structure is probably the most practical structure available for this, might be quickest way forward. Some foundations have concept of a “Lab” or “Sandbox” which could be parallels, but these could be the result of a WG. An incubation project may not need funding to succeed, it may be overkill, whereas a more mature, graduated project may be able to make use of a specific grant to address a specific need.

  • Technical Project updates

  • Working Groups

    • CI

    • Diversity & Inclusion

    • Python 3

    • USD

      • Cory: short meeting last wednesday, picked up a few Action Items from previous meetings. Knowledge Base Wiki, waiting for Confluence being deployed by LF.

      • John: just got that live today. Cory: will get some content in there.

      • PR from Aloys to move some CI workflows to GitHub Actions, team is busy with a current release.

      • Next meeting on Wednesday next week.

  • Summer of Code Review (Larry)

    • Larry: this coming week is when the first set of student evaluations are due, first payment to students gets unlocked based on passing reviews. 2 submitted so far, and are highly positive, except third one to be as well.

    • Very positive results

    • Another review due a bit later

  • Next meeting

    • 15 July 2020

Action Items (AIs)

  • Daniel: follow up with TSC chairs for grant process

Notes

Chat