Alexander Kellett

A Short Intro

  • Located in: Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Occupation: Programmer (currently seeking a new work place actually)
  • Nickname on IRC: "lypanov", though at the moment its commonly "lypie", which I think was a fad that misty started :)

The Interview

In what ways do you make a contribution to KDE?

A number of improvements to bookmarking in Konqueror, KEditBookmarks, some DCOP related stuff, very minor stuff to KSVG, and as of late polishing the QtRuby and Korundum projects with some example code and test cases.

When did you first hear of KDE?

When I first really began to use Linux as my primary platform, by installing a SUSE 5.1 CD-ROM :)

How and when did you get involved in KDE?

When KDE 1.98 snapshot tarballs were first made available, the screenshots really did look rather good at the time and I was severely impressed by the quality of code and the ease with which I was able to get to get to know the community.

Are you being paid to work on KDE?

Unfortunately not though i'd love to be. Hint Hint :)

How much time do you usually spend on KDE?

Anything ranging from 1 hour a week to 4-5 hours a day, at the moment though I'm kind of distracted by someone else and thats not at all a bad sort of distraction :)

Which section of KDE is underrated and could get more publicity?

The absolutely huge increase in available and useful bindings available in KDE now that 3.2 has been released. Now we have Python, Perl, Javascript and Ruby bindings all of which have several non-trivial applications making use of them.

What are your future plans for KDE?

The bookmarks components while much nicer than when I first started helping out still have a lot of work to be done before i'll really be able to feel happy about them, the number of wish list items in the bugs database shows that the bookmarks components are fairly important to most people :)

I'd love to see a well integrated RAD application design environment with easy to use GUI Designer application and plenty of application start points but something like this is far from a small weekend of work.

What motivates/keeps you motivated to work on KDE?

The community and the user feedback, for the work I've done on bookmarks I'm still receiving very nice thank you emails at least once a month. It's extremely nice to receive such a personal thanks!

What is your favorite widget style?

I'm still spending my time switching back and forth between Plastik and DotNet, I'm a bit fussy when it comes to the appearance of my desktop so I end up just going for something new at least once a week :)

Which of your family members do not use KDE and why not?

None of them unfortunately, it seems that the only way I'll be able to switch them over is by cheating and just marrying into a KDE using family. Much easier in any case than convincing my real actual family :)

What users do you have in mind when you're developing/contributing for/to KDE?

The group of users as a whole, but especially myself :)

Do you socialize with any other KDE contributors?

If IRC counts as socializing then thats a easy yes, I usually try to go to a few interesting KDE related events each year so I've seen many of my fellow contributors in person already, have also had a few visits from various people over the last year - Njaard and Riddell to be exact :)

If you had to be stuck in a lift/elevator with a KDE contributor who would it be?

Think I'd have to go for Zack, just to ask him what the status is on smileys in KDE.

What was/is your most embarrassing KDE moment?

Having Till point out his most embarrassing KDE moment in one of the previous interviews.

What the latest gadget you bought?

I just bought a new 50 cent pen. Its quite nice really, does its job.

Personal Questions

First things first. Are you married/do you have a partner? Or are you up for adoption?

Nope, happily in love :)

If someone visits your country, which spot is a must-see?

I'm really not sure I need to actually mention this, I live in Amsterdam after all. But just for the few that don't know, you really should visit the Van Gogh museum :)

Which book is on your bedside table?

David Eddings - The Tamuli.

Who or what in your life would you say influenced you most?

My family friends, and the books I've read.

Who do you admire? Why?

David Faure, for his awe-inspiring levels of concentration. I'd love to learn more from the master, currently I'm more easily distracted than a ill-concentrated goldfish who just received a frying pan to the head.

How would you describe yourself?

Umm... Very weird?
Dum di dum. La la la.
(Alex's eyes dart from side to side and he looks around the room, giving up on that approach he starts humming in the hope that Tink will jump to the next question)

What do you get passionate about?

Most commonly the things that make me raise my voice. But on occasions of boredom I'll get passionate about more or less anything.

What Are Three Positive Things Your friends Would Say About You?

  • "your ability to make strange noises", lucijan on IRC
  • "beside his disputable taste in clothing lypanov is some fun to have as a drinking buddy", chouimat on IRC

What two or three accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction? Why?

Finishing KRubyInit, probably the most difficult to find 6 lines of code that I'll ever write in my life. Making friends smile after a difficult day and loved ones stop crying after a difficult life. Guess my greatest achievement has been finding someone.

You're stuck on a bus for 6 hours and are bored out of your skull. What do you do to amuse yourself?

Read the rest of my book, hum a tune, request the bus driver to speed up.

What's your signature at the moment?

I'm currently without signature so instead I'll just use one of my current favourite quotes:
"Education is that which remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school."