Around early 1996 I started getting some emails from a guy called Bruce Perens about a program I wrote called rspfd asking me about it so he could better integrate it into a distribution called Debian. I helped him out where I could and during that time learnt about the Debian project. It sounded really interesting and was a distribution you could directly influence and help grow.

Finally in early 1997 I became a Debian developer. I cannot get the exact date but I was on the developer email list 20 January 1997 and the first email to the developer-only lists was 23rd January.
My first package was the old ax25-utils package, here is its changelog:

ax25utils (2.1.37a-1) unstable; urgency=low

  * Initial Release.

-- Craig Small <[email protected]>; Thu, 10 Jul 1997 22:15:45 +1000

Times have changed now, to become a developer back then I just had to help out and then eventually get a login. Now things are a lot bigger and a lot more formal, which is just part of the developing of a project.

You may not of heard what Debian is. It is a group of over 200 developers who package up programs to make a distribution of Linux. Other groups that do this include Ubuntu, Slackware and RedHat. Debian is somewhat unusual as it is quite an open organisation.

Debian Logo information

Due to some historical coincidences, people think I have something to do with the Debian logo. I don’t really, but because I get so many questions about it, here are some facts:

  • The Debian logo was designed by Raul Silva, after winning the Debian logo competition.
  • Originally the logo with the bottle was for open use, the swirl only for official. In June 1999 the Debian developers voted to swap the logos to what they are now.
  • The font used by the logo is Poppl-Laudatio Condensed, it is a commercial font.
  • As Debian an image using the font, not the font itself, there is no copyright issue for Debian using this font. If you want to use the font, then you need to buy it.
  • The red used in the font is PANTONE Rubine Red 2X CVC, other equivalents of the red include:
    • CMYK – 15%,96%,67%,%
    • RGB – 206,46,76
    • HEX – CC3333 (This is actually a bit off but its web safe)

Raul suggests that you do not use the font for other things that have the Debian logo as it can create confusion as to what is the logo (because the logo and the text would “merge” a little as they use the same font). Besides, you would need to buy that font to use it.

My Debian Packages

Debian now has a nice Package Tracking System that does a much better job at tracking packages than static html, my packages
are all listed under Debian Packages for Craig Small.

Other Debian Packages

I keep some packages out of the Debian archive proper. This is either because they are new, and Debian ftp masters need to check they are distributable, or because they are for a niche market.

I keep all those packages on my page hosted by my ISP and you’ll find the details about the apt repository at Craig/s Home at Internode.