RelEng “group gathering” in the Toronto office

Last week, the entire RelEng group gathered in Toronto. Everyone in the Toronto office was amazingly welcoming to people camping out in conference rooms and on sofas; many many thanks!
Random highlights:

  • Welcoming Chris AtLee to Mozilla and to the RelEng group. He has just started, and survive the first day hazing orientation, so this seemed like a good time for us all to get together in person. He’s already wading through some long standing items, and getting to figure his way around. Expect to hear good things from Chris soon.
  • Getting the entire group together in one place at one time was great. The only time we’ve ever managed this before was in March 2008, and it was also great. In the 6 months since we last met in person, we’ve had people move countries, have babies, helped Mozilla move from cvs->hg, shipped the FF3.0 release, and shipped the FF2->FF3 major update. Needless to say, we had lots to talk about, both in scheduled meetings, and in those all-important spontaneous two-people-doodling-on-a-whiteboard “meetings” that crop up all over the place. This entire week reaffirmed to me just how valuable that face-to-face time can be.
  • Airplane on a treadmill. This came up early in the week, and continued for the entire week. Without further comment, here’s what Mythbusters and xkcd.com(!) had to say.
  • Discovering that Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders was located in the same building as Mozilla. I’ve always had great respect for the work of MSF, and somehow found it inspiring that they were even in the same building as Mozilla.
  • Learning just how important coffee & food was to the Mozilla Toronto office. Every morning started with a long discussion about the virtues of this bean roast vs that bean roast, while powering up the various caffeine dispensers (see Madhava’s photo on flickr). There is also an interesting low-tech, but effective, postit note on the wall tracking monthly coffee consumption for the office. Hopefully, they’ll remember to discount the spike in late October from their math!
  • Half way between the hotel and the office was a “Second Cup” coffee shop. By the 2nd day, I was being recognised by name as I walked in the door. By the 4th day, they would make my drink when they saw me walking down the sidewalk towards the cafe, so it was ready by the time I reached the counter.

Thats it. Again thanks to everyone in Toronto… next time, Rockband! 🙂

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