[AstroPy] Fwd: Numfocus & AstroPy.org

Perry Greenfield perry at stsci.edu
Mon Jun 11 15:34:06 EDT 2012

I thought it would be useful to pass this along from Travis.

Begin forwarded message:

> From: Travis Oliphant <teoliphant at gmail.com>
> Date: June 8, 2012 4:01:10 PM EDT
> To: James Turner <jturner at gemini.edu>
> Cc: Perry Greenfield <perry at stsci.edu>, Thomas Robitaille <thomas.robitaille at gmail.com 
> >, Erik Tollerud <erik.tollerud at gmail.com>, admin at numfocus.org
> Subject: Re: Numfocus & AstroPy.org
> Hey James,
> Thanks for your email.  I'm CCing my response to the NumFOCUS board  
> as well.   The purpose of NumFOCUS is to support open source Python  
> for science projects.   It is a legal organization that can own  
> things and is in the process of applying for 501(c)(3) status  
> (trying to get it by November of this year).   We are registered as  
> a non-profit in Texas.
> The projects that NumFOCUS supports maintain their independence and  
> but can use NumFOCUS as a resource.   We are sponsoring SciPy and  
> EuroSciPy, have paid legal bills on behalf of IPython, are setting  
> up continuous integration services, are starting a technical  
> fellowship program to sponsor open-source developers, and are  
> willing to own things like domains and be a care-taker for open  
> source property.
> We are just now figuring out bylaws and how the organization will  
> evolve.  Right now it is governed by the board of directors which  
> consists of 5 people (me, Fernando Perez, John Hunter, Jarrod  
> Millman, and Perry).
> There is a full-time administrative assistant who is making sure  
> things keep going (all of us are still pretty busy with other things  
> as well).   Funding the astropy domain is certainly something we  
> should consider doing.   I had wanted to get our bylaws in place  
> which articulated how the board of directors is appointed so that  
> people could feel confident in trusting NumFOCUS to hold domains.     
> We are working on that right now and will let you know when we are  
> ready for your consideration.    In the mean-time we will discuss  
> your proposal again.   The board meets every other week and we  
> should be able to respond by the end of June.
> Best regards,
> -Travis
> On Jun 8, 2012, at 2:39 PM, James Turner wrote:
>> Hi Travis,
>> I gather Perry has spoken to you about the possibility of your
>> Numfocus foundation looking after the astropy.org domain for us.
>> Thanks for your willingness to do that! I registered the domain
>> after last year's SciPy and am the current owner, but it would be
>> preferable for a suitable non-profit to hold it for the community.
>> (Perry may have told you that STScI owns it, but he was getting
>> mixed up with astrolib.org).
>> After a quick look at the Numfocus page, I still wasn't all that
>> clear on what it's all about, its relationship with projects like
>> NumPy and its legal status etc. I understand you're currently
>> applying for non-profit status; do you have any idea how long
>> that's likely to take? Does Numfocus currently exist as a legal
>> entity that can own things (like domains)? Is its longevity
>> reasonably assured? I know there was some SciPy discussion about
>> all this, but I just can't keep up with that list :-(. Your mission
>> statement is quite high level and it would be good to know a bit
>> more about what you do and its scope.
>> I also wondered whether you already own any domains, thinking
>> about the technicalities of DNS administration. I see scipy.org
>> belongs to Enthought. Currently the AstroPy committee members keep
>> fiddling with CNAME records etc., as the site is getting up and
>> running. We are registered through GoDaddy and their interface has
>> some provision for guest administrators. We'd need to figure out
>> whether there's a way for the AstroPy committee to update those
>> records through your registrar (the transfer would be easiest if
>> that's also GoDaddy but it should still be doable if not).
>> Our renewal is due on 21 July and I had been expecting to transfer
>> it to "the AstroPy project" by then, but it's not really a problem
>> to pay for one more year if we're not quite ready for Numfocus to
>> take it over yet. In that case, we could talk some more at SciPy,
>> assuming I'll see you there?
>> Perry has also solicited feedback on the mailing list, as I think
>> you requested, with only one reply so far that had questions
>> similar to mine.
>> Thanks a lot!
>> James.
>> -- 
>> James E.H. Turner
>> Gemini Observatory Southern Operations Centre,
>> Casilla 603,		Tel. (+56) 51 205609
>> La Serena, Chile.	Fax. (+56) 51 205650

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