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From Ted Dunning <ted.dunn...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: Incubation capacity
Date Tue, 13 Oct 2015 04:26:22 GMT
I think that this is an excellent analysis.

The (gut) feeling I have about scarce resources are:

1) me.  As Marvin noted, I am a failure mode as much as a contributor
lately.  This is largely due to my crazy travel schedule combined with lots
of short term deliverables. Marvin has lightened that load enormously with
the report group and I see that as a good way forward

2) mentors. As Zukka mentions, the number of mentors is roughly constant if
you subtract away those who are MiA


I worry that the lull that others have noted in drama level may be
increasing again. I hope that we can manage that a bit by pushing to
recognize common points of reference, move on to points difference and only
then start discussing solutions.




On Mon, Oct 12, 2015 at 2:13 PM, Jukka Zitting <jukka.zitting@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Hi,
>
> On Mon, Oct 12, 2015 at 2:50 PM Marvin Humphrey <marvin@rectangular.com>
> wrote:
> > On Mon, Oct 12, 2015 at 8:08 AM, Jukka Zitting <jukka@zitting.name>
> wrote:
> > > It sounds like ruminations about the Incubator are on the increase
> again,
> >
> > I hope that we can make use of some of this bursting energy and channel
> it
> > into incremental improvements.
> >
> > The Incubator is a stable platform, and it has been functioning well by
> > historical terms, and with blessedly low drama compared to a few years
> ago.
> > My impression is that frustration with the institutional resistance of
> > Incubator to change is skewing impressions of how well it is doing its
> job of
> > incubating podlings.
>
> Yes, we're far from the drama of 2011.
>
> > > I believe the way the Incubator is organized sets an upper bound on the
> > > number of podlings it can effectively manage. Based on experience and
> > > historical data (http://incubator.apache.org/history/ *) I believe
> this
> > > limit is somewhere around 30 podlings.
> >
> > I'm curious, Jukka.  Why 30?
>
> I don't have a firm theory on why this is happening, only some key
> observations:
>
> * The entry rate of new podlings has been amazingly constant
> throughout the existence of the Incubator even though the total number
> of open source projects has been growing exponentially for much of
> this time.
>
> * The "limit" was first reached in 2006 during which the board first
> pushed back on Incubator reports and the current monthly 1/3 reporting
> schedule was adopted and the process of retiring dormant podlings was
> adopted.
>
> * The Incubator stayed at or slightly above the 30 podlings limit
> until around mid-2010 after which many podlings started getting stuck,
> leading to the crisis of late 2011.
>
> * We solved that problem with a concentrated effort in 2012 that
> brought the Incubator back to around 30 active podlings, a level that
> stayed mostly stable for the next two years.
>
> * The number of current podlings is again growing, and some of the
> issues that have shown up recently remind me of the problems seen five
> years ago.
>
> It could be that I'm just selectively interpreting history to match my
> theory, but from a systems perspective it does look as if the
> Incubator indeed has a structural bandwidth cap that probably feeds
> into and limits the entry rate.
>
> >  What are the scarce resources?
>
> Some possible answers:
>
> * Mailing list. There is only so much general@ traffic that a single
> IPMC member can reasonably process without starting to skip
> significant parts.
>
> * Mentors. The growth rate of the IPMC is fairly constant and, with
> most members becoming inactive over time, I believe the number of
> active mentors has not grown too much over the years.
>
> * Chair/Report Manager. Someone still needs to pay attention to
> everything that's going around, which I believe you and all other
> recent chairs agree is a daunting task.
>
> One could run some numbers to better quantify the above possibilities.
>
> > And how is this supposed degradation manifesting?
>
> The noise got loud enough to wake me up. :-) I don't have hard
> numbers, but we do have a couple of recent failures and it sounds like
> some people are getting concerned, which does remind me of early 2011.
> Of course the one thing you can learn from history is that things are
> never quite the same.
>
> > Additionally, I'll note that while we're at 43 or so podlings right now,
> we
> > have multiple podlings about to retire (Droids, Kalumet, likely
> Corinthia) and
> > others about to graduate (Kylin, Groovy).
>
> Right, this might be just a fluke.
>
> BR,
>
> Jukka Zitting
>
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