The HeliOS Project is now.....

The HeliOS Project is now.....
Same mission, same folks...just a different name

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Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due...

It was both an honor and a surprise.

When I was notified by Mr. Hugh Forrest that I had been nominated for the Dewey Winburne Community Service Award, it was surprising.  When I was named as the 2010 Dewey Award winner, I was humbled...

And a bit bothered.

The Dewey Award is traditionally given to individuals and having come to understand a bit more about the man, Dewey Winburne, I fully appreciate the recognition and the reason behind it.


Who should be recognized for an effort?  The person who conceived the idea or the people who carry that idea to fruition?

By my poor attempt to Gimp in the text on the award, I think you know what I think...

And I'm here to acknowledge it.

Since 2005, members of The Linux Community have supported The HeliOS Project.  Selflessly and with huge amounts of personal sweat and substantial contribution, you people have helped us place just short of 1100 computers to the kids that need them most.

You have helped us Put Technology In Tomorrow's Hands.

Not only did many of you aid us in one way or another to build and support the Bruno Knaapen Technology Learning've moved us to form, facilitate and maintain two computer repair/building labs for kids this summer.  One will be held here in Austin and the other will be held in Hutto Texas, a small town just a few miles outside of Austin.

So aside of my limited photo editing skills, I want to put this award in your hands.  Yeah, I've got the original...the physical award.  I am deeply honored by the award but.there is a deeper significance than what is engraved upon it.

The physical manifestation of this award is secondary to what you've allowed us to do.

And I thank you.

Each and every one of you.

If you would like to see some of the pictures taken at the awards ceremony, they are included below.  Many thanks to Lori Luza of As You Wish Photography .  She has kindly licensed the photos for our non profit use and we appreciate it.

The Air/Knowbility and Dewey Awards drew a crowd of over 200.  Buffet was supplied and many stayed to party long after the awards were presented.

Issac Winburne addresses the crowd.  Issac is the son of Dewey Winburne and is a member of  the group Mother Falcon.  These people are great.  They do tour extensively and have played venues such as Austin City Limits.

Hugh Forrest, Event Director for SXSW Interactive warms up the crowd prior to the ceremony.  Hugh has put his life into the Interactive portion of SXSW and having attended the event, I can't say enough about his energy and talent.

Here are the nominees for the Dewey Award.  It was a humbling experience to even be recognized in this group of people.  Take a look at the folks who have contributed so much to the Austin Community and see what they've done.

Ken accepts the Dewey Award in the name of The Linux and Free Software Community.  Dorothy Gilbertson-Winburne presents the award and the microphone to Ken.  Dorothy is pictured further in the loving tribute to Dewey Winburne.

'Nuff said...

All-Righty Then...


Amenditman said...


No matter how many times you argue to the contrary, we all know that we are the support team. Without your passionate, stubborn, refusal to give up this whole thing would come crashing down and cease to exist.

Deal with it. Accept it.

You are the lead dog. Yours is the vision and the passion to continue in the face of any opposition.

Which one of your support community has put in the time, effort, sacrifice that you, personally, have?

Not I!

The honor is richly deserved and properly addressed to

Ken Starks

Get over it.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Ken, for the long-overdue well-deserved recognition of your selfless efforts!

Colonel Panik said...

/°_° Mr. Starks

You just kept going and going and going...
Thats why you are holding the trophy.

Greg Charland said...

Congratulations, Ken! The honor is well-deserved.

And through this blog you inspire other people and groups to work in the same spirit.

Thank you and keep up the good work!

Kevin (Whizard72) said...


Do you know what the definition of standard-bearer is? Here's the definition straight from my dictionary on my ubuntu box:

n 1: an outstanding leader of a political movement
2: the soldier who carries the standard of the unit in military
parades or in battle [syn: color bearer]

Definition #1 doesn't have to be just a political movement, it applies to any organization of any type. You're definitely the voice, heart and soul of the helios initiative.

Definition #2 also applies. You see, back during the Napoleonic era of warfare, including the American civil war, the standard-bearers were considered among the best soldiers of the entire regiment. They were selected to bear the standards of the regiment and country based on merit. It was considered a great honor. It one or both of them fell, morale could be greatly affected.

So both definitions apply to you for certain. Don't ever forget the impact you're having on today's youth in how they see software as a philosophy and a tool.

James Dixon said...


What Bob said. :)

Mike Regan said...

Ken accepts the Dewey Award in the name of The Linux and Free Software Community.

Ken, I was not only impressed when you did this, I was also moved when you stated, "There is no law that says the next Richard Stallman, Bill Gates or Steve Jobs has to have a Westlake Hills address."

I think that statement embodies what you and your fine organization is accomplishing. I don't know if that was your first-ever ovation but it moved me.

Thanks for what you do.

It was good to see you and Diane again. Hope to see you at Texas Linux Fest.


Gavin said...

We all play a part in the community of GNU/Linux, but at the end of the chain that connects GNU/Linux to the less fortunate children of Texas is a single link. That last one that alone is merely a lonely loop of metal, but becomes imbued with great importance when used as a final hook to keep the children of Texas from falling into oblivion. Without that last seemingly normal link, the chain would not be complete; it would not be able to reach the children of Texas; it would be of little use to anyone.

That chain is there because of you, Ken. Because you saw that there could be a chain. Because you decided to hook those children. Because you screamed and yelled and stamped your feet to the rest of us to just hold on, to keep working on that chain, and to never let go.

As members of the GNU/Linux community, do the rest of us do great things? Hell yes! But without you... we would each have long ago moved on to another chain. Most of us are "middle of the chain" people. We do not create great software, nor do we create great opportunities. We participate, and we proudly do our part to the death, but do not think for a moment, Ken, that you are any more replaceable than Richard Stallman or Bruno Knaapen to the children of Texas. Some of you are destined to be "end of the chain" people. And while you could not build a chain by yourself, the rest of us would have nowhere to put our links if you were not there to say, "start here and end over there."

You keep that award, Ken, as a symbol of what it means to show up at a child's home carrying but a single link - the last one in the biggest chain of which any of us could possibly imagine being a part!

And, if you please, post another picture of that award in its original form. It seems to me that your first picture is a bit proprietary in nature! ;)

- Gavin

Anonymous said...

Hey Ken,

Man, you look a lot better. Looks like you put on some weight, You really needed it. Glad to see you looking vibrant. Please pass along my congratulations to all your Directors and volunteers. You folks are doing fantastic work.


WE ARE *NIXED! said...

Congratulations Ken. I truly am proud of what you have done. You are living proof that any individual is capable of performing miracles. :)

Please drop me a line @ my gmail address. There's so much to talk about, and with the end of the semester for me, things are about to get interesting...