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From Christoph Jopp <>
Subject Re: Is there any way to reach extension authors?
Date Fri, 13 Apr 2012 06:08:53 GMT

Am 13.04.2012 03:42, schrieb Jürgen Schmidt:
> On 4/13/12 1:13 AM, Christoph Jopp wrote:
>> Am 12.04.2012 17:45, schrieb Rob Weir:
>>> On Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 11:35 AM, Louis
>>> Suárez-Potts<>  wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> On 2012-04-12, at 15:57 , Jürgen Schmidt wrote:
>>>>> On 4/12/12 4:23 PM, Rob Weir wrote:
>>>>>> On Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 10:17 AM, Roberto
>>>>>> Galoppini<>   wrote:
>>>>>>> On Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 5:02 AM, Rob Weir<>
>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>> I think it would be good if we could get them the message
>>>>>>>> AOO 3.4
>>>>>>>> should be released soon, and that they are invited to
>>>>>>>> download/install
>>>>>>>> our latest dev back and verify that their extensions work
>>>>>>>> make any
>>>>>>>> needed updates.  We would point them also to the details
of the
>>>>>>>> changes described in the readme file.  Of course, we hope
that no
>>>>>>>> changes are needed, but it is worth checking.
>>>>>>>> How would we get such a message out?  There is no mailing
list of
>>>>>>>> extension authors, right?
>>>>>>> We could contact Extensions' authors via direct mailing.
>>>>>> How?  Is this something that SF can send out, if we draft the text?
>>>>>> Also, is there any community mailing list or forum for extension
>>>>>> authors?
>>>>> I guided all subscribers of the former api and extensions dev
>>>>> mailing list to our ooo-dev list.
>>>> I think it actually also makes sense to initiate a new effort to get
>>>> extension writers. We did this several years ago, but at the time,
>>>> b/c of the typical politics of some big corporations, we ran up
>>>> against some obstacles, that I think won't exist now.
>>>> What I would like to do, then, is to have a programme that could
>>>> work with community colleges such as Seneca, with which I have
>>>> contacts and with which OOo had worked before, and with universities
>>>> Eric B. has worked with. As well, with the many smaller companies
>>>> making up the ecosystem.
>>>> Do keep in mind that we realized many years ago that the best way to
>>>> expand the developer and contributor community of OOo was via the
>>>> extensions. It was this idea that impelled me, that compelled
>>>> Juergen, that stimulated the early creators of the Extensions project.
>>> Would it make sense to start with a new list, ooo-extension-authors or
>>> similar, with the aim to:
>>> 1) Develop a community of extension authors, where they can share tips
>>> and techniques with each other, as well as with the AOO programmers.
>>> 2) Provide a single place where the AOO PMC can give head's up warning
>>> of API changes or additions, advertise the availability of new dev
>>> snapshots, and in general try to coordinate a release cycle where AOO
>>> releases are accompanied by simultaneous availability high quality 3rd
>>> party extensions.
>>> 3) Provide a place for new extension authors to ask questions and get
>>> support
>>> I think in most Apache projects, the "users" list would be where such
>>> topics would be handled.  But our "users" are end users, not developer
>>> users.  So we would want a different list for this.
>>> (ooo-dev was another logical place for this, but I think the traffic
>>> level would be a deterrent for someone who is only interested in
>>> extensions)
>> +1000 to all three points.
> well, it was the initial idea to create further lists on demand. I don't
> see this demand at the moment and would prefer if we continue for now
> here on the list by simply using the tags [API],[EXTENSIONS] that we
> have introduced at the beginning. That would make it easy for all to
> create filter to focus on this email but it would also allows others
> (newcomers) to see, read and join efforts that going into this direction.

Yes, you are right. Although I think it would be easier to have a
meeting point first and then leading people there, this would have been
true for others (NL-Groups). So changing the policy would probably be
not fair and maybe it is really the wrong way.

The meeting point might be the second part.
The first part is answering louis question: Next steps?

I think the first step is to attract extension authors. One part of the
reasons for developers to fiddle around with extensions has gone with
the change in the license and structure of the project.

If you are able and willing you can now work on the core more easy than

If you are willing but not able to do this even the creation of
extensions might be to difficult for you.

Although there is plenty of good documentation of the API the barrier is
very high. Especially for people writing macros elsewhere.

To lower the barrier I see three things:

1) Write more entry-level documentation for extension development and
make the new and existing documentation findable for"normal" people

2) Produce more and maybe combined helper tools for extension authors
I know there are good tools around from Bernard Marcelly and Paolo
Mantovani f.e. but I think there is still something missing.
Another effect of such new tooling would be the "New-Effect": People
would come to see. But this would take some time...

3) Get some "Simple API" for extension authors
I do not prefer this way but maybe others?

I'm willing to help with points 1 and 2.
Unfortunately my time is very restricted (as it is for many on this
list). But right now it is is impossible for me to do more than reading
a fraction of this list now and then. So don't expect any action from me
before the end of April.

> Juergen
>>> -Rob
>>>> louis
>>>>> Juergen
>>>>>> -Rob
>>>>>>> Roberto
>>>>>>>> -Rob
>>>>>>> ====
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