Panel 2: Open Source as a Career Path

Friday September 25, 11am to 12pm

This panel consists of panelists who have first-hand experience in the positive benefits of open source involvement as part of one's career path. While they are all engaged in the same open source project, their careers vary: management, entrepreneurship, development, documentation, and academia. Participants will have the opportunity to learn how one gets started with an open source community, what benefits they can gain, how to apply those benefits to their own career path, and the advantages of continued involvement even after one's career is well underway.


Dru Lavigne is a Technical Documentation Specialist at iXsystems where she maintains the documentation for the open source FreeNAS and PC-BSD projects. She is also the founder and current chair of the BSD Certification Group, a non-profit that creates and maintains professional certifications for system administrators of BSD systems. She has been using FreeBSD as her main platform since 1997, has published 3 books on the subject, and is a contributor to the FreeBSD documentation project. Dru is often seen at open source conferences, where she assists at the FreeBSD booth and offers presentations on FreeBSD-related topics, and manages several doc sprints per year to introduce new contributors to the FreeBSD documentation process.


Deb Goodkin is the Executive Director of the FreeBSD Foundation. For over 9 years, she has worked at the Foundation helping support the FreeBSD Project and community worldwide. She is passionate about recruiting more girls and women into the STEM career path, and is working on an initiative to get more women involved in the FreeBSD Project. Prior to working for the Foundation, Deb spent over 20 years working as an engineer in research and development, in the data storage industry. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from the University of California, San Diego, and her Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering from Santa Clara University. When she’s not busy working for the Foundation, Deb enjoys road and mountain biking, alpine skiing, running, and hiking with her two dogs.

Allan Jude is VP of operations at ScaleEngine Inc., a global HTTP and Video Streaming CDN (Content Distribution Network), where he makes extensive use of ZFS on FreeBSD. He is also the host of the weekly video podcasts (with Kris Moore) and Allan is a FreeBSD doc committer, focused on improving the documenting ZFS and implementing libucl and libxo throughout the base system. He taught FreeBSD and NetBSD at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Canada from 2007–2010 and has 13 years of BSD unix sysadmin experience.

Dan Langille has worked with open source projects since 1998. He has been a contributor to the FreeBSD project since early 1998 and become a FreeBSD ports committer in 2014. He has founded two open source conferences: BSDCan and PGCon. He has been working with open source in his day job since 2001. He has written extensively about this open source experiences since his first encounter, providing how-to guides for both novice and advanced users. This began at The FreeBSD Diary and has continued more recently on his Other Diary. He has given numerous talks at various conferences, always on open source projects.

Benedict Reuschling has a master's degree in computer science from the University of Applied Sciences, Darmstadt, Germany. He is working in the computer science department of his alma mater teaching Unix. The other part of his job involves administering the faculties' big data cluster systems used in research and education. Benedict became actively involved with the FreeBSD documentation team in 2009 while writing his master thesis. After contributing patches and translations for the german FreeBSD handbook, he was granted a commit bit. Since then, he has mentored a number of people into the FreeBSD project. Benedict is continuing to grow the community by speaking about FreeBSD's benefits and is willing to lend a helping hand to people who want to get involved in open source projects like FreeBSD.