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From Ross Gardler <rgard...@opendirective.com>
Subject Re: [RELEASE]: preparation for our first release
Date Sat, 25 Feb 2012 11:07:10 GMT
On 25 February 2012 05:36, Rob Weir <rabastus@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Feb 24, 2012, at 11:05 AM, Ross Gardler <rgardler@opendirective.com> wrote:
>
>> Without commenting on the dates, schedules and technical issues I
>> would urge you to make sure you allow significant time for IP review
>> from mentors and the IPMC. I imagine this release will get a great
>> deal of attention and, almost without a doubt, someone will come up
>> with something that needs to be addressed.
>>
>
> Mentors and IPMC members have had 8 months to offer IP related
> comments. They are welcome at any time. But in my experience declaring
> a Release Candidate is especially effective at concentrating their
> attention on that task.

Exactly (this is especially true of those who are not formally mentors).

> We should plan on having multiple RC iterations. There are enough
> unwritten rules related to release requirements that we'll almost
> certainly need several iterations.

You've been paying attention to recent discussions on
general@incubator.a.o I see ;-)

Glad to see this is a part of the release planning process.

> But the most effective way to
> uncover these unwritten rules is by proposing a RC for a release vote.

I would caution against this approach, generally a vote (any vote)
should only ever be called when you know it will pass. If you call for
the vote indicating that it is likely to pass because of the process
followed people are less likely to become involved and dredge up a
half dozen edge cases as objections.

I happen to be be sat with Nick Burch, during a fashion show in a
hotel lobby in Sri Lanka believe it or not! Nick is a very experienced
ASF member who until recently was chair of the POI project, a project
that has experience of being under the IP microscope (he also hit
significant problems with the first ODF Toolkit release). He and I
have been discussing what we believe will be the least painful way of
getting the first AOO release out. Between us we suggest that you
invite the IPMC to start the review now in order to attract as many
interested, but helpful, volunteers as you can. We both feel that by
inviting some key IPMC members to participate now a stronger, more
positive vote can be called later. Votes attract attention from many
more people than requests for assistance.

Consider sending a mail to general@incubator.a.o along the lines of...

"The AOO PPMC is getting ready to prepare for our first release. As
you can imagine we have done a great deal of IP work. We believe we
are in good shape and our mentors have been asked to further review
our work. However, we are also aware that releases from the IPMC can
often highlight many grey areas in the legal policies of the ASF.
Outlined below is the process we intend to follow in ensuring that our
first vote on a release candidate is successful, if you are well
versed in Apache policies relating to releases we welcome your input
on this process and invite you to help us review our code prior to our
first RC build and vote."

I realise this is only a small difference from what you propose with
multiple release candidates. My point is that calling a vote attracts
much more attention than calling for help. Whilst feedback on a vote
is often very useful it can also be contradictory. If we ask for input
from experienced parties and document their recommendations and the
actions taken in the issue tracker we can then refer to this in the
vote, in some cases breaking the deadlock that can occur where
feedback contradicts.

All that being said. this is just an alternative approach to the
multiple RC approach. There can be no predicting which is will be the
least painless - whichever route is followed there will almost
certainly be pain, even the simplest of projects usually have items
that have been missed by the project community and mentors.

>  Of course we should first make sure were following all the written
> rules.

I think, in this respect, the project is doing well. Although I have
not yet done my own complete review.

Ross

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