[openbeos] Re: WalterCon 2008: Change of Plans

  • From: "Jorge Mare" <kokitomare@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: openbeos@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 23 Jul 2008 00:13:11 -0700

On Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 2:05 PM, Stephan Assmus <superstippi@xxxxxx> wrote:

> Dennis d'Entremont wrote:
> > On Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 5:23 PM, Urias McCullough <umccullough@xxxxxxxxx
> >
> > wrote:
> >
> > > 2008/7/22 Jorge Mare <kokitomare@xxxxxxxxx>:
> > > > http://www.haiku-os.org/getting_involved_in_haiku
> > >
> > > Oh...we need to update that indeed :)
> > >
> > > Still mentions M. Phipps as the "accountant".
> > >
> >
> > Part of the reason that I don't put a whole lot of faith in that page is
> > precisely that which you have just mentioned. It's hard to tell if what
> > is listed is still needed or not.
> >
> > I also think that new community members can be quite shy and maybe not
> > willing to speak up themselves right away. Maybe a weekly or monthly
> > message saying something like "We need your help" and listing current
> > tasks that general users and/or professionals can help with would
> > encourage more volunteers.
> >
> > Also, if there are a few people like me who don't check the website super
> > often (other than the RSS feeds of the main page) then we might not
> > notice when/if these sections of the website get updated.
> >
> > The last time I offered to help with general stuff nothing ever came of
> > it so that's also a little discouraging but won't stop me from donating
> > some of my time in the future. I may be qualified to help around the
> > website with general maintenance and content updating. I'm not a super
> > writer but I can manage. I will offer my help in that regard.
> > Unfortunately I am not an accountant, lawyer, or copyright nerd so I'm
> > sorry I can't help much there.
> We absolutely need help with all this stuff. The problem with regards to
> these administrative tasks and the website are:
> a) People who see what work needs to be done and then try hard enough to
> execute to get results are very rare.
> b) With code you can send patches. If memory serves, every single new
> contributor we have got has started by simply popping up with a patch.
> Sometimes they have been active in the bugtracker before, or have even
> attached patches to tickets. I may be forgetting someone, but I cannot
> remember a single instance where someone introduced himself on the
> developer list and asked for work or an introduction or help with getting
> started, and ever actually became a contributor. Regardless of how many
> nice welcome messages were the reaction or how throurough the getting
> started help. So either people pop up out of nowhere, see the work and
> become motivated enough to do it, or they don't. What is extremely helpful
> is accurate instructions on the website for getting and building the
> source. From what I hear from my student Andrej, our source code layout is
> quite lucent. The problem is that I don't see a similar infrastructure for
> becoming involved with the administration or website.

There is no basis on
> which people can pop up out of nowhere and fix something which always
> bothered them.

Some of the administrative tasks that we handle inside Haiku Inc. are not
open to anyone, as they deal with sensitive information There is, therefore,
the issue of privacy and trust, so this sort of tasks cannot be totally open
or offered up for grabs to whoever wants to do them.

Every other area of contribution, whether it is development related or not,
including all aspects of the website (Trac, Drupal, copywriting, content
moderation, etc.) has a certain learning curve. Whether this learning curve
is insurmountable or not for any given individual will depend on the area of
contribution, and the skills and motivation of the potential contributor.

Regardless of what it is that you want to do, a minimum skill set in the
area of contribution, time and motivation are needed; skills can be learned,
but time and/or motivation are esential.

Any ideas what we could do about this? Is what I am saying
> even making sense? :-)

We get a lot "I would love to help Haiku, but I don't have time or skills"
type of messages. While this shows that this people care about Haiku, and
that alone is nice, it does not solve our shortage of manpower.

We also get the occasional "I want to code for Haiku. Please tell me what to
do" message on the Haiku Inc. mailbox. We have religiously and thoroughly
answered those inquiries with all the relevant pointers that the person
would need to inform him/herself about Haiku development.

In most cases, we never hear hear from this people. Would have it made any
difference if we had more or different information on the website? I highly
doubt it, but I would love to be proven wrong.


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