Minutes:2008 BOSC Meeting

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  • Old Business
    1. Approval of minutes from 2007
  • New Business
    1. Current Board
      • Confirm past term expirations of those who did not run again for the Board.
      • What to do about the Secretary seat?
      • Some of the items on the agenda here need a legitimate vote by the Board (with prior notification and quorum satisfied). Should plan for a (presumably virtual) voting Board meeting soon afterwards.
      • How can we better ensure quorum?
    2. Voting on the board appointments
      • Kam Dalhquist has already served as a major organizer for BOSC and is interested in helping lead the OBF to achieve more outreach and education.
      • Darin London has served as BOSC chair for the past 4 years
      • Strengthen connection with O|B|J
      • Procedure for appointment of additional BOD members
    3. Financial report (Treasurer)
      • Account standing, reserves
      • 501(c)3 accounting and filing status
      • Sponsorship accounting
    4. BOSC
      • Short 2007 report (attendance, talk highlights)
      • BOSC 2008 summary (attendance, talk hightlights)
      • Should BOSC 2009 to be held in conjuction with ISMB2009?
      • Possibilities for including submitted papers for a publication.
    5. OBF Membership accounting and drive to register more members
      • Membership forms physical records
      • Members who are citizens of trade-restricted countries - legal advice, file for exemption?
      • Form doesn't give date, need to amend
    6. OBF future directions
    7. Review of By-Laws (Parliamentarian)
      • 10-days prior notice of Board meeting requirement: need to change or have a standing Board meeting (BoF) on day 1 or 2 of BOSC
      • Not clear who elects officers - members may, but not a requirement, Directors can elect officers too. Leave as is or change?


Location: Radisson Harbourfront, 5th floor poolside, July 18, 2008


  • current BoD members: Jason Stajich, Hilmar Lapp
  • Director nominee: Kam Dahlquist
  • Guests: Aaron Mackey, Mauricio Herrera Cuadro, Michael Heuer, Paul Gordon, Andrew Jenkinson, Saravanabamuttu Gnaneshan

Meeting minutes:

Approval of 2007 meeting notes

  • unanimously approved

Introductions of present BoD members and guests

OBF Board

  • Term expirations confirmed.
  • Board currently consists of Jason Stajich, Hilmar Lapp, and Chris Dagdigian.
  • How to ensure Board meetings to meet bylaw requirements?
    • Teleconference over the phone
    • IRC not favored, might pose undue burden, also identification might be problematic
    • multi-jabber would be a possibility but also disfavored as creating a barrier (and technical issues)
    • Teleconference will be our future modus for binding vote-entitled Board meetings, meetings at BOSC will have BoF/membership discussion character
  • Soliciting new leadership contribution
    • OBF is a volunteer effort.
    • Ability of people to commit time may depend on their institution's or employer's commitment to support this.
    • Frequent observation of volunteer projects is that there is a small group of people doing everything, getting burned out, and then moving on, requiring a new leadership to be recruited.
    • One can only encourage people to join if there is critical mass, professional conduct.
    • Consider projects and organizations that weren't presenting (Cytoscape and Ensembl as examples).
  • Size of Board: bylaws doesn't make a stipulation.
  • Election procedure
    • Explained procedure laid out by the bylaws.
    • Nominating committee should network and advertise broadly to obtain a pool of Director candidates.
    • Aaron Mackey volunteers to serve on the Nominating Committee.
    • Set ourselves a deadline of Sep 15 to have the nomination process complete and hold the BoD meeting the elects them.
    • Will approach members and consituents for suggestions of whom to approach.
    • Should aim for electing at least two new Directors, possibly 3.
    • Kam is on slate to be nominated for Director, and is committed to serve.
    • Should invite Darin London whether we would be interested in serving.
    • Should invite Toshiaki Katayama, or someone else he suggests from OBJ, to serve.
    • Would we want to be exclusionary to anyone? Only to people or organizations who would want to commercialize the organization, in whatever aspect.
  • Secretary officer will temporarily held by Parliamentarian.

Financial report

  • No update from Chris Dagdigian.
  • Haven't lost any money, still have about $30,000 in two accounts.
  • Kam will get ISMB account straightened out.


  • Bad catering for the meeting (only coffee, less-than-great lunch)
  • No computer support for presentation.
  • Need to resign ourselves to the fact that ISCB is factually no longer accountable to the SIGs since they absorb the losses and keep the profits.
  • Concern that ISCB will factor the accounting such so that our historical surplus drops to zero, and may cut BOSC then.
  • Is there an alternative venue for people to present instead of at BOSC?
    • Possibly OSCON, but who would attend / be able to attend OSCON?
    • ISMB covers many of the areas that motivates our constituency to come.
    • Should we hold the meeting at the same place at ISMB but organize it separately?
    • Conclusion: Hold BOSC 2009 in conjunction with ISMB.
      • But don't want to end up with the same situation as in Brisbane.
      • Supporting organizing committee attendance; OBF needs to be prepared to absorb the travel of the BOSC organizing committee chair (if the person's attempts to secure funding from elsewhere fail).
  • Structure of BOSC:
    • Balance between demonstrations and presentations should be improved.
    • Could be very useful to fold OBF project tutorials (or others) into BOSC.
    • Software could be subject of talks on the first and of tutorials on the second day. Should presenters come prepared to give tutorials?
    • Content seems to work though for user-developers in terms of getting the information that they were looking for?
  • Marketing the conference can be improved upon a lot.
    • Professional review with for the first time got feedback to the submitters.
    • Open source requirements were pretty rigorously enforced.
    • Emphasis on quality should help with marketing in the future.
  • BOSC 2007 attendance was 97 (registered)
    • Have 77 primary sign-ups this year.

BOSC proceedings:

  • Page charges from BMC are very high (BP850 normally, BP500 in bulk (BP10,000 for 20 papers) but then we have to do all the work ourselves).
  • Authors may not have the incentive to use this venue because they may want to publish a full paper in a higher-impact venue.
  • Should BOSC have Proceedings?
    • People should have the possibility to present at BOSC.
    • We are not at the level of quality as ISMB is.
    • The main thing that comes out of BOSC is code, presentations don't really add the main value.
    • We're not ready for having
  • Looks like this is a non-issue?

OBF fund drive

  • Using training to gain funds?
  • Having more people on the Board should give us more possibilities to explore opportunities to raise funds.
  • Sponsorship
    • BioTeam donates bandwidth, colocation space, domain purchases. Should acknowledge that appropriately on the OBF website.
    • Have sponsorship for BOSC from Helicos ($1000) and an anonymous donor ($250). The latter will fund the student travel fellowship and the former will subsidize the keynote speaker.
      • Possibly remaining funds will be used towards travel fellowships in 2009.
    • May in the future need to secure sponsorship to fund organizer travel.


  • Trade restrictions:
    • Can we re-incorporate in Canada?
    • Should we seek legal advice? Yes, pro-bono if possible.
  • Should chang the form to include date, having that is useful.