incubator-ooo-dev mailing list archives

Site index · List index
Message view « Date » · « Thread »
Top « Date » · « Thread »
From Kevin Grignon <>
Subject Re: After AOO 3.4, attracting new contributors
Date Thu, 29 Mar 2012 04:54:57 GMT
Great points in this thread  

Question: Does OO community have a history if working with academic or professional groups
to recruit volunteers? Developers, designers and beyond. 

What is the protocol to recruit?


On Mar 29, 2012, at 12:23 PM, <> wrote:

> Hi Rob,
> Well, the large talent pool is available here in India with millions of
> students graduating in Engineering,MCA(Master of computer applications).
> They all look for a project for their final semester. We can somehow try to
> attract them but they also try to see what  is the benefit for them. Most
> of these guys they learn C/Java as part of their  syllabus.But we need to
> retrain them as they generally  just try to pass and not to be master of
> it.
> So we need to train them and make them useful.
> I have not seen the code base yet but based on the search results what i
> have understood is that it is implemented in 
> Java,
> OOBasic,
> Cpp,
> Python,
> XSL,
> ooRexx
> From Freshers point of view they prefer the new languages like
> Java(ofcourse it is a old one but still new when compared to C/C++) or
> advanced stuff like Android. But still we can train people in C++ but it is
> easy to attract people for Java.
> If we know the exact requirement of people then we can try to gather the
> people and train them and make them good to contribute to the project.
> We have a software training institute and staff are from top MNC's.Lot of
> students approach us for Live Projects to gain some real experience. 
> So we may try to accept the people and train them. We charge the students
> for training as we have to pay the trainers. 
> Ultimately what students expect is an experience letter from Apache so that
> they can utilise it for future employment. In addition to issuing the
> certificate we should have their contribution mentioned in our website
> otherwise other job seekers will fake the cetificates.
> I think if the company(Apache) is ready to issue a certificate mentioning
> their contribution towards the project and list their contribution in AOO
> website then it should definetly work.
> Thanks & Regards,
> Ram,
> Im Software Systems
> On Wed, 28 Mar 2012 15:11:59 -0400, Rob Weir <> wrote:
>> On Wed, Mar 28, 2012 at 12:05 PM, <> wrote:
>>> Hi,
>>> I am sorry i am new to this dev mailing list. What is the real
>>> requirement.
>>> In what areas we need people for the next 1 year. What is the exact
> skill
>>> set needed. Let me see if i can computerof help you in anyway.
>>> i
>> Hi Ram,
>> As you can probably tell, from reading the ooo-dev list posts, we're just
>> finishing up the OpenOffice 3.4 release. So it probably appears chaotic
>> right now, but this is just a sign of the high activity level as we
>> complete the remaining tasks for this release.
>> We have not had a community discussion about "the next 1 year", so what
>> follows expresses my personal view only.
>> Areas where we especially need help:
>> - C/C++ programmers to work on the core OpenOffice code on feature
>> development and bug fixing.
>> - There is some interest in developing some test automation based on a
> Java
>> testing framework that IBM said they would contribute.  So someone with
>> skills in QA and Java could help with this.
>> - There is plenty of work to do with manual testing, especially with test
>> case definition.  It might make sense to start with defining the test
> cases
>> and execute them manually at first, but overtime migrate to test
>> automation.
>> - We have had some discussion about making a more intelligent install
>> program, so it can bring down a small core program and then download
>> additional modules, like spell checkers, language packs, etc., when
> needed,
>> over the internet.
>> I would also return the question and ask, what kind of things do you want
>> to do?  The project works best, I think, when people are working on
> things
>> that they find interesting.
>> Regards,
>> -Rob
>>> Thanks & Regards,
>>> Ram,
>>> Im Software Systems
>>> On Wed, 28 Mar 2012 08:47:30 +0100, Ian Lynch <>
>>> wrote:
>>>> On 28 March 2012 02:38, Kevin Grignon <>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> Many great thoughts here.
>>>>> In addition to supporting the open source movement, perhaps we could
>>>>> market participation as a way to learn and develop skills.
>>>> Maybe a certificate for AOO development professional? Work out the key
>>>> skills needed to contribute to development and write a set of
>>>> indicative
>>>> assessment criteria. Get a mentor to verify the candidate's evidence
>>>> that
>>>> they can meet the criteria. If there was interest in it we have the
>>>> facilities to support it including secure on-line testing facilities
>>>> and
>>> a
>>>> Drupal system for managing coursework evidence which we would do as a
>>> free
>>>> contribution to the project. We'd just need help defining the criteria
>>> from
>>>> the most experienced developers.
>>>>> As a newbie, it appears that much our message is around what we need
> -
>>>>> which is essential to understand, however we may want to focus on why
>>>>> someone may want to join and help them realize their goals.
>>>>> For example, if someone is looking to demonstrate their skills and
>>>>> develop
>>>>> portfolio work products, then AOO offers a sandbox of opportunity.
>>>> And a potential certification of skills.
>>>>> Some thoughts.
>>>>> Regards,
>>>>> Kevin
>>>>> On Mar 27, 2012, at 10:47 PM, Rob Weir <> wrote:
>>>>>> On Mon, Mar 26, 2012 at 9:39 PM, Louis Suárez-Potts
>>>>>> <
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>> Hi,
>>>>>>> On 2012-03-19, at 08:41 , Rob Weir wrote:
>>>>>>>> Any ideas and the best ways how we can improve in this area
>>> AOO
>>>>>>>> 3.4 releases?
>>>>>>> Lots, and these would complement the rather good ideas already
>>>>>>> proposed.
>>>>>>> What we did at OOo actually worked--to attract developers and
>>>>> contributors
>>>>>>> of all sorts. What worked against us I do not think I need spell
>>>>>>> out,
>>>>> but
>>>>>>> the cussedness of the code was not really the determining factor.
>>>>>>> What really would help, besides giving would-bes a clean entry,
>>>>>>> to
>>>>> have
>>>>>>> mentors, more or less do-able tasks that are identified as such.
>>>>>>> (We
>>>>> tried
>>>>>>> getting to this many times, and I strongly urged my erstwhile
>>>>> colleagues in
>>>>>>> this area for, uhm, years. Finally happened, and we got our to-dos
>>> but
>>>>>>> still not clearly identified according to level of difficulty.
>>>>>>> can
>>>>>>> conceive of several  here whose work would assist in the
>>>>>>> identification
>>>>> of
>>>>>>> tasks newbies could approach--and even post-newbies-and perhaps
>>>>>>> even
>>>>>>> in
>>>>>>> mentoring.)
>>>>>>> Also, what helps tremendously is what we are doing already:
>>> presenting
>>>>>>> a
>>>>>>> community that is open, friendly, and generally has a good
> attitude
>>>>> about
>>>>>>> what it is doing and where it is going. There are millions using
>>>>>>> OOo
>>>>>>> as
>>>>>>> their primary ODF implementation, and those mostly include those
>>>>>>> who
>>>>> have
>>>>>>> come to it via the national or sub-national government agency.
>>> think
>>>>> it's
>>>>>>> about time that they are looking to AOO for the next step.
>>>>>> I think the idea of a new contributor mentor is essential.   This
> is
>>>>>> true
>>>>>> for coders, but also website, translation, documentation, test, UI,
>>>>>> etc.
>>>>>> What we have today is very much a "swim or sink" and "drink from
> the
>>>>>> fire
>>>>>> hose" approach.  If someone is highly motivated, highly skilled and
>>>>>> persistent, and is able to withstand the apparent chaos of the
>>>>>> ooo-dev
>>>>>> list, and penetrates the noise and asks questions, and repeats
> their
>>>>>> questions until answered, then they might have a 50/50 chance of
>>>>>> contributing.
>>>>>> But let's be honest with ourselves -- there are a range of projects
>>>>> someone
>>>>>> can contribute to.  For would-be volunteers it is a buyer's market.
>>> If
>>>>> we
>>>>>> make it too hard to get involved and contribute, technically,
>>>>> procedurally,
>>>>>> socially, then we lose.
>>>>>> But getting new volunteers on board requires effort.  If someone
>>>>>> spending 100% of their time on their own features, then they have
> no
>>>>>> time
>>>>>> to help new volunteers become productive.
>>>>>> One approach might be to define "essential skills" or "essential
>>>>> knowledge"
>>>>>> that a new volunteer needs to master in order to become productive,
>>> and
>>>>>> then a list of project members who are willing to help mentor new
>>>>>> volunteers to acquire those skills.
>>>>>> For example, for the website, the essential skills might be:
>>>>>> 1) Assume HTML/CSS, we're not here to teach that
>>>>>> 2) Help them get started with Markdown Text
>>>>>> 3) Help them use the CMS to generate patches
>>>>>> 4) Help them build website locally via the scripts
>>>>>> 5) Understanding the larger site design, including recurring page
>>>>> elements,
>>>>>> footers, etc.
>>>>>> 6) In parallel with above, understanding Apache, roles, decision
>>>>>> making,
>>>>>> lazy consensus, CTR versus RTC, what Infra does versus what the
>>> project
>>>>> is
>>>>>> responsible for, etc.
>>>>>> 7) Help them establish a record of contributions to become a
>>>>>> committer
>>>>>> Anyone who has done the above can do 95% of what is needed to
> become
>>>>>> a
>>>>>> master of our website.
>>>>>> It would be wonderful if we had something like that, a check list
>>>>>> even
>>>>>> a
>>>>>> curriculum, for other common functions, as well as volunteers able
>>>>>> to
>>>>> take
>>>>>> on new project volunteers willing to help.
>>>>>> This is all an investment in the future success of the project. 
>>>>>> grow
>>>>> by
>>>>>> attracting new volunteers.  But the investment is time spent on
>>>>> mentoring.
>>>>>> This would all be over-kill for the average Apache PMC of 8-12
>>>>>> people.
>>>>> But
>>>>>> with 10 million lines of code, a PMC nearing 100 members, and the
>>>>>> largest
>>>>>> project at Apache, we need an approach to training new volunteers
>>>>>> that
>>>>>> works to scale.  I think something like the above helps get us
>>>>>> closer.
>>>>>> -Rob
>>>>>> And I can think of at least two, and probably more, national bodies
>>>>>> so
>>>>>>> interested.
>>>>>>> Do these give us developers straight away? I don't know. The
>>>>>>> problem
>>>>> with
>>>>>>> OOo was, as [not] said ultimately political, not codical
>>>>>>> (comical?).
>>>>>>> Engaging these longtime users, as well as new ones, with the
>>>>> possibilities
>>>>>>> represented by this community, which is open and
>>>>>>> unencumbered--ought
>>>>>>> to
>>>>> be
>>>>>>> easier.
>>>>>>> My own approach is to focus on ODF and on the benefits offered
>>>>>>> only
>>>>> by
>>>>>>> the AOO implementation but by its community.
>>>>>>> -louis

View raw message