Fedora Week of Diversity 2024: With Robert Wright

Originally published at: Fedora Week of Diversity 2024: With Robert Wright – Fedora Community Blog

Today marks Day 2 of Fedora Week of Diversity (FWD) 2024! This exciting week-long celebration is dedicated to honoring the diverse voices, backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives that enrich our vibrant Fedora community. Throughout Fedora Week of Diversity 2024, the DEI Team will be showcasing the incredible stories and journeys of our members through engaging interviews and captivating social media spotlights. Join us in celebrating the unique contributions and talents that make Fedora Week of Diversity 2024 a truly special event!

Contributor Stories

Today’s Contributor Story comes from: Robert Wright

What’s your Fedora story? Take us back to your beginnings with Fedora!

As a child, my father ran two mailing lists, PCSOFT and PCBUILD, as well as a website called FreePCTech. As he was actively moderating these mailing lists, I had a lot of exposure to the world of computers. I was given a few Linux distro CDs to play around with when I was 11 years old, and after playing with many of them, Red Hat Linux was the easiest to get started with. I used Red Hat Linux for a while, and of course, after version 9, the launch of Fedora got me interested in what open source really was and what this community was all about. I got involved with some of the ambassador programs and Free Media programs; I remember sending out a few CDs to folks at an early age. I learned more about the communities here, and I fell in love with the whole ethos of open source.

As a teenager entering High School, I came out as gay in the 9th grade. Around that time, my focus was less on my computer and instead on trying to understand the world around me and dealing with some of my own personal struggles with that. As my friends, family, and the world around me changed, I moved into advocacy in LGBTQ+ spaces. After many years had gone by, careers changed, and other activities occurred, I rejoined the project in 2023 while looking for something to put my energy into. Something that would give me that feeling as a kid again of doing good for the world. I jumped into Fedora Pride and have been here since, working on our data and being involved in the community.

Fedora’s appeal and your contribution style: Tell us both!

Fedora is more than just a Linux distribution; it’s a community of hackers, a culture of innovation, and a space where I found friends. My background in data governance has led me to partner with Justin to help solve community questions. I love SQL, and I love data, so this was an area to which I could contribute more than code itself (someone could argue that SQL is code too), but I am excited that I can just get my hands in the weeds and just work on things. If I want to do something, there is space in the community to do it. The biggest thing I’ve learned is to help others take on and learn more about how to contribute, which I’ve become more passionate about.

Fedora day-to-day: A walk-through of your Fedora involvement

I typically start my morning by checking my Fedora Chat (Matrix) account to see if anyone has pinged me and needs a response. I usually do this when I start to work at my day job, and I am grateful I can work on Fedora, contributing for part of my day. I usually participate in 1-2 meetings a week with community members and check in with folks.

Outside of that, I try to spend an hour or two every other night working on Fedora contributions. I typically work on writing Python scripts to understand our data, updating GitLab issues, and trying to wrangle different problems that are in our data!


Image by Emma Kidney. CC BY-SA 4.0.