Turning the Table on Brian Teeman
A Founder Member of Joomla! with an often quoted blog tag-line of 'agree or disagree - I don't care' we turn the table on Brian Teeman with a 5 minute interview, a format he successfully uses on his own award winning blog. From achieved childhood hopes he has become a 'Man of Joomla!', a counsellor, advisor and an advocate with a passion for fairness and our Joomla! Community.photo: Peter Russell
Name: Brian Guy Joseph Teeman—to use my full name and I do like to use all the names—after all my parents went to the trouble of choosing three first names so I should honour them and use them all.
Online Name: brianteeman
Location: 127.0.0.1—I seem to live more of my life online these days and I'm sure that it won't be too many years, after IPv6 is finally adopted, that we will all have a personal IP address for life. “I am not a number” but I could be one very soon.
Job: Training, troubleshooter and consultant
5 Minute Interview
I wish people would take more notice of…
…the little things.
The most surprising thing that has happened to me is…
…in 2002 I jumped out of an airplane at 10,000 feet over the Namibian desert and let's just say the jump didn't quite go as planned. I have a video of the jump but it's stuck on something called vhs tape and one of these days I really must transfer it to something more 21st Century.
I'm good at…
…finding opportunities where others see difficulties.
I'm very bad at…
…suffering fools. I do not believe in humouring people and keeping silent when I believe something is wrong. Some may see it as a flaw but I see it as an asset. If you do not take the opportunity to speak out and contribute then I believe you lose the right to complain. Too many people in today's society like to sit back and find fault, expecting others to do the hard work for them, without ever taking the opportunities presented to them to help.
The best age to be is…
…What is age? My biological clock says I am 43, my wardrobe says I am 23 and my head says I am 33. Age is just a number and the days of automatically having respect and reverence for people older than oneself have been left behind us.
What did you dream of becoming as a child?
As a very small boy I dreamt of going into space but as a teenager I dreamt of becoming a professional youth worker. I was lucky to have a very easy childhood with many opportunities and comforts and wanted to help others who perhaps didn't have the same stable family life that I did. I was fortunate that for many years I was able to do this until burn out from the pressure of working in a disturbing environment took its toll.
My philosophy on life is…
…if something is worth doing then it's worth doing to the best of your abilities. I don't believe in the ethos of just getting things done in the shortest time possible. I like to be able to take pride in what I do and get incredibly frustrated when circumstances prevent that.
How did you get involved in Joomla!?
Back in 2002, I was looking for a database driven Open Source application to build a web site for a local charity, but everything I found was like phpnuke and designed to have comments on every article. After struggling for a while, and almost giving up, I saw an announcement on freshmeat.net for a beta release of something called Mambo. The name Mambo meant nothing to me but I recognised the name of the person making the announcement, Robert Castley, as a customer of the ISP that I was operating. So I took a quick look at his personal site on our servers, saw something I liked, picked up the telephone and spoke to Robert and that, as they say, is history.
I am involved in Joomla! because…
…Joomla!, and true Free and Open Source Software, are a unique experience and opportunity in today's world. It provides the opportunity for people of all abilities to work together to share skills and experiences to produce something better that we can all freely benefit from. Henri de Saint-Simon advocated a society “based upon cooperation and technological progress, which would be capable of eliminating poverty” and I consider “poverty” as not just a lack of money but a lack of opportunity.
What one feature would you like to see in Joomla!?
A site builder wizard. As part of the installation process I would be asked various questions about the site and its purpose and then Joomla! would build all the relevant menu links and populate the site with dummy content that I could edit as required. I can dream can't I but one day I'm sure this will be true.
What is the first extension you install in Joomla!?
That is a trick question as for many years I have maintained my own distribution of Joomla! with about five additional extensions that I consider essential for any Joomla web site.
Complete the sentence “Joomla! rocks the world because…
…it is the only true community driven Free and Open Source web site building software. It provides those with limited funds or technical knowledge the opportunity to present themselves to the wider world on an equal footing.”