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From Rob Weir <>
Subject AOO volunteers: essential skills and tasks
Date Fri, 19 Oct 2012 16:17:44 GMT
I am thinking about what new project volunteers need to get started.
Obviously there are area-specific things.  For example, developers
need to know how to download and build.  Translation volunteers need
to understand Pootle, etc.  But there are also some basic things that
all volunteers should probably do.

Although we have all of this information (or at least most of it) on
the website or wikis or mailing list archives, it is scattered all
over the place.  I think it would be good if we could collect this
information (or at least links to this information) into one place and
put a linear order behind it, a step of specific steps we want new
volunteers to take.

Now, I can hear the objections already -- you can't tell volunteers
what to do.  That is why they are volunteers.  You can't regiment
them, etc.  This is true.  But at the scale we need to operate at --
I'm aiming to attract dozens of new volunteers on the project by the
end of the year -- we need some structure.  So what can we do to make
their first 2 weeks in the project easier for them, and easier for us?

One idea:  Think of the new volunteer startup tasks in terms of
"stages" or "levels", a defined set of reading and other activities
that leads them to acquire basic skills in our community.

For example:

Level 1 tasks:

1) Read the following web pages on the ASF, roles at Apache and the Apache Way

2) Sign up for the following accounts that every volunteer should
have:  ooo-announce, ooo-dev, ooo-users,  MWiki, CWiki, BZ, Forums

3) Read this helpful document on hints for managing your inbox with
rules and folders

4) Read this code of conduct page on list etiquette

5) Send a note to ooo-dev list and introduce yourself

6) Edit this wiki page  containing project volunteers. Add your name
and indicate that you have completed Level 1.

Level 2 tasks:

1) Using the Apache CMS in anonymous mode

2) Readings on decision making at Apache

3) Readings on project life cycle and roles within the AOO project

4) Introduction to the various functional groups within the project:
development, qa, marketing, UX, documentation, support, localization,

5) Pick one or more functional groups that you want to help with.
Edit the volunteer wiki and list them.  Also indicate that you have
now completed Level 2.

Get the idea?  After Level 2 this then could branch off into
area-specific lists of start up tasks:  how to download and build.
How to submit patches.  How to update a translation.  How to define a
new test case.

Is any one interested in helping with this?


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