Zeitgeist Project


The Zeitgeist team consists of several enthusiastic developers, academics, and non-techies who strive to provide the desktop with new options to that applications can make use of to extend their user experience. The roots of Zeitgeist can be seen in several others projects, however Zeitgeist team stands out because of its unique democratic governance and dynamic development model.

Rockstars (Active Maintainers and devoted developers)

Seif Lotfy Project driver and innovative engine

Seif is both the withdrawn God Father “General Spanker” pulling all the strings behind the project and the outgoing, communicative epicenter, with an open engaging passion. Working from top to bottom in the engine as well as with data providers and user interfaces he the one with the overview from the bare metal to the end user. He is the main initiator of the project and spends a lot of his time finding new ways to enrich the features of the engine as well as deploying it in other existing applications.

When not hanging out and joking on IRC he is hanging out and joking somewhere else. When he is silent it is because he is deeply immersed in another of his crazy UI experiments or Algorithms.

Siegfried Gevatter Performance doctor and SQL ninja

Mr. “wunderkind”. He can find a solution for every technical problem and there is no code that he wont optimize. His reputation as the SQL voodoo master is well deserved, given that team is hardly ever able to enhance his SQL code. As the youngest in the team he brings lot of enthusiasm to the project ensuring a very healthy project life cycle. Mr. Siegfried joined the team during GSoC as the third developer. His fast coding tends to make other developers feel redundant on a constant basis.

His hobbies include: Giving Seif heart attacks, making Seif feel stupid, installing pygames on everyones PCs, watching Stargate.

Mikkel Kamstrup Semantic jumbo; architectural and technical mastermind

The wise man in the team. He is considered the technical genius and lead who gets things done perfectly. His ability to hack any given task, while being objective towards every spec and ensure it can be delivered in a reliable state, is ridiculous. He gained his reputation by Xesam and can be seen as the semantic-desktop guru of the team. Mikkel is the guy behind the core design of Zeitgeist and many of its API features

His peaceful nature makes him very pleasant to hack and hang out with. When he is not hacking he is usually with his kids watching Teletubbies or at work doing some other semantic stuff.

Markus Korn Uncanny eye for details and code quality

Markus Korn is the team quality freak. His eye for detail and “German” organized nature to keep the code as clean and simple as possible allows the team to be able to ensure a maintainable extensible code. He is considered the “pessimist” in the group yet always staying cheery, helpful and energetic. Markus is responsible for making Zeitgeist extensible and helping out the team with *ALL* kinds of python questions.

When he is not hacking he is usually watching any kind of sports (from curling all the way to football), or playing the role of a crazy scientist in a lab.

Michal Hruby Chief injector and deployment

There somthing strange in the neighbour hood? An Application needs a plugin for Zeitgeist or else its no good? Who are you gonna call? Michal Hruby… Our bad ass deployment fanatic doens’t just hack applications to make use of Zeitgeist but also pushed the code upstream. After suffering under the mentorship of the Zeitgeist team he now gets to be a lazy diva. If he is not hacking he is mostly travelling or studying.

Randy Barlow Senior Bling Bling

Give Randy a use case or an application that could be enhanced with Zeitgeist and he will deliver it in no time. He is a former lead developer and maintainer of GAJ, where he is demonstrating his hacking as well as problem solving skills. Speed and accuracy are his strengths, allowing him to adapt to any technology and comprehend any given user story.

Other than being sarcastic and ironic he is a keen cyclist.

Manish Sinha Mr. Sharp and upstream

Manish comes with more enthusiasm than needed. He is the developer and maintainer of the Mono bindings for Zeitgeist. He works on deploying Zeitgeist in Mono applications and pushing upstream. He is slowly working himself into the engine, but already provides enough knowledge to answer almost any question and handle any issue concerning Zeitgeist in public, being active forums and websites. When not hacking he is a master flirt and booze expert.

Stefano Candori The italian “mystery” hacker

His work is mostly focused on the development and maintenance of the Activity Journal but he’s also involved with data-providers and hopefully in a near future with the engine. He enjoys surprising the team with new features or hacks and loves listening to Seif’s insults because this is the way he encourages the team: we love him for that. When not hacking he is usually playing any kind of sport or the guitar.

Morten Mjelva Dr. Wikipedia

The guy with a hat is responsible for bringing integration of contacts and communication to Zeitgeist in form of data-providers, ontologies and extensions to make Zeitgeist “know” more about how you interact with you friends and people. If you want Zeitgeist to log you contact communication activities he is your man. When he is not hacking he enjoys cooking and being sarcastic. Also he can be considered the human wikipedia.

Jamal Fanaian Webmonkey and Team Admin

Jamal rescued the team by providing them with a non-goofy web presense. He is the current maintainer of the website, mailing lists as well as all related stuff.
For some reason he is very quiet so we all think he is hiding skeletons in the closet. His sidekick and partner in crime is his wife Britta aka “Sha Nay Nay”.

The Band (Contributors and Inactive Developers)

Thorsten Prante The Mad Scientist

Thorsten has been involved in the world of timebased and context aware file browsing for the last 6 years. He is a PhD student and also acts as academic mentor of team. He is the visionist behind many of Zeitgeist’s user-experience concepts, and coordinates the scientific papers and research of the project. When not writing or scribbling his visions, he is mostly sailing or cooking with his fiancée.

Federico Mena Godfather

If it wasnt for him the Zeitgeist project would have never seen the lights of life. He keeps an eye over his minions and provides them with his long experience in the FLOSS world.

Hylke Bons Lord User Experience

The lead designer behind the GNOME Activity Journal and it’s User Experience, he is picky on every little visual and usability issue, pushing the GNOME Activity Journal to become better and friendlier’

Natan Yellin

Natan Yellin is a high school student in Ra’anana, Israel. He first became involved with GNOME development through Google’s Highly Open Participation contest in 2007. Since then, he helped start GNOME Zeitgeist and several other open source projects. When he’s not coding an open source project or doing freelance development, Natan can be found at his school’s robotics lab, with friends, or practicing one of several styles of Karate. He usually tries to blog about what he’s working on at http://theesylum.com/

Other Important Contributors