Premonitions of a rising sun
Fast forward to 2008. Haiku is now not that far away from it's first alpha release. People are testing and playing with it in VMs and on real hardware. The (developer) community has been growing, and development is probably more active than it has ever been in the history of the project. Once deemed to be a crazy and perhaps even naive dream, Haiku is definitely becoming more like a viable catalyst of what was once thought to be a lost case. And people are starting to take notice.
Many in the community know SHINTA (second from the left in the photo), a Japanese developer who has authored a good number of applications for BeOS and ZETA over the years. SHINTA is one of those who has taken notice of our project's progress, and has recently jumped onto the Haiku development bandwagon. This is great news in multiple respects: SHINTA is not only one more important developer to join forces, but he can also bring a much needed perspective and knowledge relative to requirements specific to handling Japanese in our OS, including but not limited to things like double-byte character handling, encoding and localization as well. He is also the author of the port of the excellet Anthy Japanese input method to ZETA, which would be really nice to have in Haiku some day.
SHINTA considers himself an application developer, and apparently never expected to become involved in the development of an OS. His involvement is nevertheless proving very beneficial: as he works on trying to get his BeOS/ZETA applications working in Haiku, he us uncovering bugs in Haiku, reporting them to Trac and even submitting some patches too. I know little to nothing about software development, but SHINTA's blog posts have given me a nice insight into how an application developer can also contribute to the development of Haiku. Perhaps what SHINTA has been doing is not very unique from the POV of an app developer; but somehow he seems to be very proactive in uncovering bugs and helping fix them when he can; and his articulation of his involvement through his blog provides a great example of how others can follow suit and become involved.
I am really happy to see SHINTA has decided to become involved with Haiku. I really hope that he keeps making contributions to the Haiku codebase and that someday he becomes a member of the Haiku development team. Hopefully he can also become an inspiration for other Japanese developers to join our project. SHINTA san, arigato & ganbatte kudasai! :)
- My Impressions from SCaLE 2010
- The History Channel: 2003 Interview with Michael Phipps
- What do You Know About the Haiku Logo?
- OSCON & OpenSource World 2009 Double Report
- Haiku Coming to OSCON 2009 in San Jose
- Testing CSS Styles from Haiku User Guide
- Haiku at SCaLE 2009: the Report
- LinuxWorld 2008 as I saw it
- Video: Code_Swarm for Haiku
- Haiku Code Drive: May 16 update