A 45min talk exploring what is to be to find jobs as graphic designer using only free software, and a deeper talk on how to change things.

Final words for posterity:

Do not sacrifice what you believe in for what others expect from you. Never. Is not worth it.

If you believe you’re good enough and you support what you use, and if that’s not a job that’s gonna provide you the freedom you need, then move to the next one.

It’s gonna be hard, but you’re gonna find your place in the world.


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I’ve been trying Canva since a few months ago, and truth is, it has blown my mind. HEY, I still LOVE inkscape, but when I started giving workshops to people who wanted to improve their social networks, reality was that my students were not experts on design, and tools like this became my allies.

I’ve always supported Freeware, since those are simply apps that have a free version along their paid features. Best from Canva is that their free version doesn’t expire, which is definitely a highlight. And that’s why today I want to tel you some of the pros and cons that I found along the way.

NOTE: This is a comparison made between Inkscape (in case you’re an Illustrator user the comparison would fit just fine)  and Canva’s free version.

Inkscape

Pro

  • Absolute control over vectors, both in shape and color.
  • Absolute control on gradients.
  • Wider design freedom.
  • Export to any available format.
  • No need for an internet connection to design.
  • Editable vector that works on any design app.

 

Cons

  • Final original vector files are larger, so take longer to share (specially when you embed a bitmap)
  • If you want a template, you have to download it.
  • If you want to add some graphics, same, you have to download them>

Canva

Pro

  • Real time contribution.
  • Graphics and Photos gallery included (quite enough even at the free version)
  • Pre-built Templates to save time (both static and animated)
  • Graphics available at your computer and phone. (only online)

Cons

  • Terrible gradient management.
  • Only png downloads available (free)
  • Can’t add fonts (free)
  • Can’t edit shapes, and several times, can’t edit colors either.
  • No internet, no Canva.

Which one is the best? It will depend on the purpose you need. Truth is that the high content demand that comes from social media and the insane grow of creators, has lead to this kind of graphic assistant to become into a necessity.

Both apps have their pros and cons, and at the end, which one to use will only depend on the expertise of the designer, and the future uses for the graphic you want to create.

and you, what’s your opinion on both apps?


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There comes a time when you feel that you don’t fit anywhere. Where your ideas, principles, motivation and struggles simply don’t align with anyone else. For years, I felt part of something that was larger than myself, had the motivation to use a huge part of my free time to contribute to projects and in several cases, make personal sacrifices to help others, and even envisioned a future for myself in places where I thought it was impossible.

That didn’t changed, but I feel that everything around me changed and I don’t fit anymore, and that’s OK.

It’s that struggle trying to find our place in this huge Open Source world what usually ends up in personal meltdown and professional burnout. It’s not a secret that as fast as technologies evolve, the faster we end up being obsolete, unless we dedicate most of our time to keep up to date on every break through.

I’m not the exception to this, and after being an active contributor for almost 15 years, and then have my “time off” to be a full time mom and employee, what happened in the Projects I used to Contribute left me feeling way far from my comfort zone. I’m grateful that most of the places where I’ve contributed has been because people asks for my help, and even after a long absence it was not different from before.

I’ll be where people want me to be… But at what cost?

I feel myself struggling between doing what people expect me to do, and what I really would like to do.

My last role at Fedora community was Diversity Advisor, and I expected that role to be a nice opportunity to showcase people inside the community. What they do, how they contribute, how they manage to overcome their challenges and inspire others with their experiences. But then I got pregnant, and after years of personal struggle to have a baby, my priority changed towards my family and had to left behind my contributions. At the end, communities don’t represent an income, so work and family will always come first.

After stabilizing my personal life, enjoy motherhood early days and finish some personal projects, I told myself “it’s time to come back”, and I came to a community I didn’t recognized.

I entered a place where I barely knew anyone, and where most people I already knew were experiencing burn outs, were bored to death or were pissed of with something. I’m a designer, not a programmer, so my area of expertise is marketing and people. I saw many projects die as I was joining back, Ambassadors for example, and I saw this insane need of making everyone accept causes that had nothing to do with Open Source.

Where do you fit when you don’t fit anymore?

I was offered to help with some graphics that nobody noticed and had no usage plan, I was offered a position to inspire people but felt that my mindset was old compared to what people wanted from me, and even was offered a couple of jobs to work full time on my passion, but again, my mindset was probably too old for it. So I took a step back and asked myself, do I truly believe in this and want to spend time getting back?

Answer was a plain No.

I don’t want to fit, because I’ve never have, and the sole idea of giving up on my thoughts just to make things smother goes against everything that makes me be who I am. I’m only interested on join Fedora and other communities because the work they do with software, and receive as much respect as I need from my fellow contributors. That’s it.

I’m a feminist, I come from a really complicated country, I had to learn a different language to communicate with a wider audience, I love to motivate people to find their place inside Open Source projects… but I’m not an advocate of social causes that I don’t affect me directly, not because I don’t care. It might sound heartless, but it’s not.

This is NOT the reason why I joined an Open Source Community.

Being part of a community should focus on the main goal of it, not on its side goals. There’s a lot of people I don’t agree with at Open Source Communities, and people know how passionate my discussions can be when they get to my comfort zone, however, I will always stand by the right of people to not agree with me (unless offenses come to… so understand that if people is a jerk, their disagreements are just chaos).

I also feel uncomfortable that someone makes statements to support mainstream causes that don’t have anything to do with Open Source just because they are popular, but never stood by smaller and less controversial causes. That’s not support, it’s just marketing. My personal causes are mine, and so should everyone be.

I’m tired of feel that the Open Source work is being used to things that aren’t related to the main goal of a Software Community.

So where do I fit in all this cute mess? Well, I believe I fit at the same place I did since day one: Helping people understand how communities work and facilitate them see where they fit in this beautiful environment. I honestly don’t want to spend more of my time being an advocate for initiatives that don’t even apply to my personal situation just because they are all over media, because honestly, nobody gives a damn on the initiatives that I go personally. I don’t care about who’s president on another country than mine, I can’t care about riots at different countries where I struggle with that at my own place, I can’t fight for wages when each country is different…

My battles, both personal and professional, shouldn’t mix with my contributions. One of the things I loved the most about Open Source is that nobody cared who I was, but people only cared about what I did to help and how I behaved while doing it. To my sanity, I would like to keep it that way.

Everyone knows I support diversity, feminism, free of speech, LGBTQIA+… but honestly, what does that has to do with Open Source Software? Isn’t making it accessible to others without restrictions enough? I want to go back to the easier days when all that matter was contributions, and if I’m old and I don’t fit anymore, so be it.

I like to think I’m a creative person, so since I don’t fit anymore, I feel myself like a shining star with no strings and ready to fit myself a new role inside all of this:

I’m an “Open Source Motivational Coach

I can tell you what I stand for:

  • I believe that what we do at Open Source matters and helps countless people around the world.
  • I stand for free of speech, as long as you don’t become an asshole and be mature enough to disagree with people without offending them.
  • I honestly think that donations, paid support and revenues are needed to let people to continue the Open Source work they do.
  • I think there’s a place for absolutely everyone at Open Source, whatever you do.
  • I believe nobody becomes obsolete, even if their mindset is not popular.

If you got here reading, my respect! I had ages without posting on my blog because I know somehow it became a place for people to learn, and not to read rants, but it’s mine, and it’s my window to show what it’s really inside my head.

You want to talk to me? Do you want to find your place inside Open Source? You want to argue with me because everything I wrote here disagrees with you? Do you want to hire me to be your coach and pay me with coffee or money? Do you need a design for an Open Source initiative? Go for it….

I’m here, I’ve always been here, and I’m back on my own terms, because life is too short to stand for what others think and leave your soul behind.


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It has been so long since I went to my last Fedora conference that to be honest, I was overwhelm. Having so many friends around who actually understand my love for open source and communities, was something that I needed. After 4 countries, I finally arrived to this lovely city that mesmerize me in every way. Budapest has become my favorite city in the world and I will take with me all my life everything that happened during FLOCK… I can literally say that my life changed here. I will try to make a resume of what happened at Flock, so please fetch yourself a drink and lets start.

Diversity and Inclusion: Expanding the concept and reaching ALL the community.

Timing not always seems perfect, but sometimes things work just as they should at the end. When I was named Diversity & Inclusion Advisory I didn’t knew that life would get in the middle and would ended up actually helping people after a bit more than 3 years. I’m glad I was able to catch up with this team who has been doing a fantastic job. I’ve been contributing with amazing people for years, and finally meeting my team, Amita, Justin, Jona and Bee, was like a dream come true.

Probably the best from FLOCK was to being able to record several members from our community who kindly accepted to say their names, the places where they come from and the language they speak, and create a small video showing how Diverse and Inclusive Fedora is. Produce a short 2min video in such a chaotic schedule is challenging enough, so after 3 hours of recording, and a rough 2:30hs of editing, I ended up finishing the render of the video just as I was plugin my laptop to the main stage… People usually don’t know how long it takes to do something like that, but I’m just glad everyone seemed to like it and that my laptop didn’t died in the process.

While working on the video, I was able to have small interviews with several folks from Fedora and got to ask them how comfortable they felt in the community. It was satisfactory to learn from them that the overall care we have take to make minorities feel more included has worked, however, it was a bit sad to learn how hard has been for our contributors to deal with burn out, how tired they are of putting fires out instead doing new projects and mainly getting a general sense of getting stuck into the same routine.

As our team says, our labor is not only to help with the diversity efforts for making everyone feel comfortable, but we also need to work more to include more effective ways to give people a sense of purpose, provide new challenges that put them on a fun path and give them the recognition they deserve. Fedora has always put a lot of effort into bringing new people to contribute, but I’ve seen that the old contributors are getting on a side because “everything is working” and we need to take care of that. They need the same attention (and I would dare to say that probably more) than new contributors do. At the end, is this amazing group of people who has to mentor new contributors. Feel free to reach me or any member of the Diversity and Inclusion Team if you feel that this words got your attention and you’re willing to share some thoughts. Anonymity is a top priority.

Marketing: You won't sell what you don't show.

I like to think that conferences like this have 3 parts: Friends, Knowledge and Memories. Meeting your old friends face to face or making new friends is what motivate us to enjoy this conferences. Knowledge is spread and connections between people from same and different projects are made allowing new ideas to flow… but Memories are what keep people motivated and active during the months or years before meeting again. In a world full of cameras and social networks, we sometimes forget that best moments are captured while people is concentrated in the first two items. If you want to get the real face of conferences you need to document it while people is not seeing, when people is making friends and sharing knowledge.

It was quite satisfactory to see the reaction of people at the Helia Conference Room once they saw the Flock resume video. Being able to show them how fun the last 4 days were, was a key point to conclude a fantastic experience. Filling the Social Networks with good quality pictures increased the attention into our community, and more people was willing to share their content so everyone could see the things we were doing. Having quality content is key to spread what we do. Having quality writers and proper localization will help us reach more fantastic people that will help us grow.

Lets never forget the importance of Memories. At the end, these are the ones we can look back and the best way to remind us why we contribute in projects like this. It’s not just the contributions we make, but also the connections we make.

Design: If it's not broken... build it from the scratch!

Who doesn’t like a bit of a challenge? After the “Survey no-Survey” (lets call it -interviews- so we don’t get into Legal) I did notice that there are several services that are working, but could be better. Meeting riecatnor and Tanvi was one of the highlights of FLOCK. Design team has always been a small group, but numbers aren’t exactly growing. Marie’s badges workshop ended up being a fantastic opportunity not just to check and close tickets, but brought a great discussion about how Badges are being used and where should we aim to. Having Renata there to conduct a small usability test with new and old contributors, help us identify some things that could be done better at Badges. We have no idea right now about the specifics, but I think great things will come for the Badges platform. Having friends at different team is probably what makes this community the best… so when pingou heard that we might do some changes to Badges, he and Xavier jumped in… we don’t even have a design or anything for it… but that’s when you realize that “is more fun (and productive) to build from the scratch instead just fixing old bugs”.

I’m trying to figure out if a badges simplification, both as in quantity and quality would be good for the overall behavior of the website, and probably going from pngs to svg’s and having a badge reduction could also make us have a faster website… so If you’re interested on helping us explore this ideas, come to the Badges channel (both irc and freenode) or just ping me wherever you see me.

Serious stuff goes here: Catching up with the new Fedora structure.

I used to knew the Fedora structure like the palm of my hand, but again timing isn’t perfect, and Fedora changed EVERYTHING as soon as I went into my maternity leave… I won’t lie that even if things look better on an organizational level, it has been harder than ever to get around how things work now. One of the hardest things I’ve always seen at Fedora resources is that we are so energetic into explaining how our process work, that we end up with more web pages explaining the same thing than we should. I hope someday this changes and it seems that we are on that path, but there’s still a lot of work to do there.

I wasn’t able to attend the Mindshare meeting since it collided with D&I, however, thx to telegram and an angel who helped me have a voice there, I was able to drop a couple of comments and get some answers. Time to divide the final part into sections:

– LATAM: It was really disappointing to learn that FUDcons stopped while I was on my break. Conferences like this are not just a fantastic opportunity to get things done faster since everyone is at the same place, but also a reward to the effort that our contributors put during a long year into having the community working smoothly. Latin America is a complex region due distances and that’s a fact, but it seemed a decision with no solid -communitary- arguments to just stop. LATAM people is worth the effort, and we will work on making them feel more included. Our diversity is awesome, recognition is needed but also guidance into taking the community to a level where we all feel like doing more.

– Burn out: Most of us who join a community do it for the challenge of doing new things and meeting new people who understands the geeky world we live in. But when you have to do the same thing for a couple of years (or even a decade), getting stuck into repetitive tasks tends to get you exhausted. I thought I was alone on that path, but seems that not. We did empathize on working towards helping our contributors into get new challenges that put them on that creative and joyful path once again, so a refreshment allows them to cope with the routine of supporting a community like Fedora. No easy task, but we can all make a good impact if we look to our sides and try to encourage our fellas.

Final thoughts

If you got here, thank you. Has been a long time since I had the opportunity to see my old friends, catch up with a community I love and learn everything that happened while I was afk being a mom. Sometimes I get the feeling that I’m jumping into things that might be done or already discussed, but if there’s something I’ve learn in so many years, is that new energy (even from old contributors), can shake things enough to make actual improvements.

NOTE: If you see yourself in a picture and want me to remove it or if you want to get a photo I took from you, just send me a message :)


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A couple of friends were curious about how I did my ghost picture for my recent project. Just in case you have no idea what I’m talking, I started a small photo-project to explore light and shadows and as usual, tell stories… long time I didn’t do it, right?

I tried to record it 2 times with Gnome’s desktop recorder but kept failing (I was an avid user of recordmydesktop), so finally on my 3rd attempt I used SimpleScreenRecorder which ended up being super easy to use, and not lagy at all. Since I got the recording on the 3rd time, this is not the picture I posted (probably better after so much damn practice, but who cares), so if you see differences between both, now you know the reason.

Here’s the TimeLapse video of the edit because I doubt you want to see 39mins of me cleaning sky and fabrics with a mouse, however, since I know people might get bored, below the video you will find a list of some of the parameters I used for the full edit.

After selecting the images that would help me archive the final output I started the editing. I used darktable for the pre-processing and get the main black/white images. For most images I used pretty much the same modules (a few adjusts here and there to exposure since was working with 100% natural light):

  • Monochrome Module: Just because I like to have a base sample of the monochrome version.
  • Filmic
    • Middle Gray Luminance: 9.13%
    • White Relative Exposure: 2.81 EV
    • Black Relative Exposure: -7.98 EV
    • Contrast: 1.574
    • Shadows & Highlights: 2.25%
  • Equalizer (Check Video)
  • And a bit of Highpass to help my old camera (Check Video)

Once that was done, copied the style to the rest of the pics and ended up with several images to play.

It’s mostly play with each image until you get the result you want. The GIMP process is hard to explain through steps, but there are a couple of tricks that I think are important to follow while doing this kind of edits:

  • Work with mask layers… If you use just the eraser, you will end up deleting things that you might need later. So use masks, own them… love them…
  • When come to fabric borders, use the curve and fine tune them easily.
  • Merging fabric isn’t easy and takes time. There’s no magic formula.

So for the editing part you will definitely will have to check the video and enjoy the 39min -to- 5min cut :)


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Si al entrar a la opción de verificar estado de su GitLab y observa el siguiente mensaje: Migrations are pending. To resolve this issue, run: bin/rails db:migrate RAILS_ENV=production, solo debe ejecutar el siguiente comando:

sudo gitlab-rake db:migrate RAILS_ENV=production

Espero que esta información les sea útil, saludos.

A veces es necesario enviar mensaje que aparezcan en la pantalla del equipo en forma de notificación, para esto solo se debe ejecutar el siguiente comando.

msg * /server:x.x.x.x /time:600 Escriba su mensaje aquí.

x.x.x.x corresponde al IP del equipo al cual va a enviar el mensaje. En cambio si desea enviar el mismo mensaje a varios equipos el procedimiento es el siguiente:

  1. Cree un archivo de texto llamado lista.txt que contenga los IP (un IP por linea) de los equipos que recibirán el mensaje.
  2. Cree un archivo de texto llamado mensaje.txt con el siguiente contenido:
FOR /F %%p IN (C:\lista.txt) DO msg * /server:%%p /time:600 Escriba su mensaje aquí.

Cambie la extensión del archivo mensaje.txt a mensaje.bat, luego de esto solo falta ejecutar el script.

Espero que esta información les sea útil, saludos.