Internship with the FSF tech team

by bandali on

Originally published on the Free Software Foundation’s sysadmin blog:
Introducing Amin Bandali, intern with the FSF tech team

Hi there, I’m Amin Bandali, often just bandali on the interwebs. I wear a few different hats around GNU as a maintainer, webmaster, and Savannah hacker, and I’m very excited to be extending that to the Free Software Foundation (FSF) as an intern with the FSF tech team for spring 2020.

Growing up around parents with backgrounds in computer engineering and programming, it did not take long for me to find an interest in tinkering and playing with computers as a kid, and I first came into contact with GNU/Linux in my teenage years. My first introduction to the world of free software came a few years later, when a friend kindly pointed out to me that what I had vaguely known and referred to as “open source” software is more properly referred to as free software, and helped me see why “open source” misses the point of free software. After learning about and absorbing the ideas and ideals of free software, I have since become a free/libre software activist. As a computer scientist who enjoys studying and hacking on various programs and sometimes writing my own, I have made a point of releasing all I can under strong copyleft licenses, particularly the GNU AGPL license.

My involvement with the GNU Project started in 2016, first as a volunteer webmaster, and later as one of the maintainers of GNUzilla and IceCat late last year. Also around the same time, I led a group of volunteers in organizing and holding EmacsConf 2019 as a completely online conference, using only free software tools, much like the excellent LibrePlanet 2020. I love GNU Emacs, and use it more than any other program. GNU Emacs helps me do a wide variety of tasks such as programming, reading and composing emails, and chatting via IRC.

More closely related to my internship with the FSF tech team, I have been familiarizing myself with various pieces of the GNU Savannah infrastructure with help from veteran Savannah hacker Bob Proulx, gradually learning and picking up tasks helping with the administration and maintenance of Savannah. I am also a member of the Systems Committee of my university’s computer science club, overseeing and maintaining a large fleet of GNU/Linux servers for our club members.

For my internship with the Free Software Foundation, I will be working with the FSF tech team on a number of tasks, including helping with the free software forge project, as well as various improvements for I look forward to learning many new things and picking up valuable skills through my internship with the FSF’s exceptional tech team, who do so much for the GNU project and the wider free software community.