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Interview: Sam Hocevar, new Debian Project Leader

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Sam Hocevar recently became the next Debian Project Leader (DPL), defeating seven other candidates while running on a platform that emphasized ways to improve how project members interact. Hocevar's election comes at a time when Debian may be losing mindshare among both users and developers to Ubuntu, and looking for ways to improve its efficiencies and to mend internal divisions. Recently, discussed these challenges with Hocevar via email in his first interview since his election. What are your first priorities as Debian Project Leader?

Sam Hocevar: The first thing I need to do is to gather information about current internal conflicts and tensions that could prevent certain people from working together, or at least make those organisational changes require more diplomacy.

I plan to focus on the social part of my platform, mostly because they require more time to do properly. People didn't wait for my election to start doing the technical stuff I talked about: We have a Google Summer of Code project for a Web interface to our bug tracking system, at least one tool is under development for the debugging infrastructure, and quite a few proposals about improving the Web site have popped up.

LC: In your platform, you talk about "conservatism" and "control freaks" and "an important concentration of powers amongst a very small number of individuals" as being part of the problem with Debian today. Can you explain more?

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