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Old 03-10-2009, 11:15 AM
Thilo Bangert
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

> Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's what
> irc is for.

while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am close
to never.

the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available via
IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could realize
more of its potential by better integrating people who dont do IRC.

kind regards
Thilo
 
Old 03-10-2009, 07:52 PM
Markos Chandras
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

On Tuesday 10 March 2009 14:15:36 Thilo Bangert wrote:
> > Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's what
> > irc is for.
>
> while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
> contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am close
> to never.
>
> the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available via
> IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could realize
> more of its potential by better integrating people who dont do IRC.
>
> kind regards
> Thilo

To be honest , I don't agree with that. Being around on irc is quite helpful
to get direct feedback from users and fix bugs before they hit more users.
This is a good way to reduce the amount of bugs that hit bugzilla.
--
Markos Chandras (hwoarang)
Gentoo Linux Developer
Qt/KDE/Sound/Sunrise
 
Old 03-10-2009, 10:05 PM
AllenJB
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

Markos Chandras wrote:

On Tuesday 10 March 2009 14:15:36 Thilo Bangert wrote:

Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's what
irc is for.

while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am close
to never.

the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available via
IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could realize
more of its potential by better integrating people who dont do IRC.

kind regards
Thilo


To be honest , I don't agree with that. Being around on irc is quite helpful
to get direct feedback from users and fix bugs before they hit more users.
This is a good way to reduce the amount of bugs that hit bugzilla.


While IRC is undoubtedly a useful communication medium, it is pretty
much a "here and now" thing. I believe that Gentoo would benefit quite a
lot if teams started using more permanent forms of communication such as
blogs, wikis or websites. Not only would this allow the current set of
developers within a team to know what one another are up to and what
needs to be done, but it would also allow those who are not so
intimately involved (both other devs, contributors and users) to keep up
to date and contribute as well as leaving something for future
developers to be able to look back on and see what options /
improvements / etc were considered / done in the past.


I recently wrote a blog post that went somewhat along these lines:
http://allenjb.me.uk/blog/why-only-think-about-projects-for-gsoc

As someone who's very interested in getting involved in Gentoo
Development, I often find it hard to gather information on what projects
/ people are up to, what's currently going on and what the plans for the
future are.



AllenJB
 
Old 03-10-2009, 10:16 PM
AllenJB
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

AllenJB wrote:

Markos Chandras wrote:

On Tuesday 10 March 2009 14:15:36 Thilo Bangert wrote:

Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's what
irc is for.

while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am
close

to never.

the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available via
IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could realize
more of its potential by better integrating people who dont do IRC.

kind regards
Thilo


To be honest , I don't agree with that. Being around on irc is
quite helpful to get direct feedback from users and fix bugs before
they hit more users. This is a good way to reduce the amount of bugs
that hit bugzilla.


While IRC is undoubtedly a useful communication medium, it is pretty
much a "here and now" thing. I believe that Gentoo would benefit quite a
lot if teams started using more permanent forms of communication such as
blogs, wikis or websites. Not only would this allow the current set of
developers within a team to know what one another are up to and what
needs to be done, but it would also allow those who are not so
intimately involved (both other devs, contributors and users) to keep up
to date and contribute as well as leaving something for future
developers to be able to look back on and see what options /
improvements / etc were considered / done in the past.


I recently wrote a blog post that went somewhat along these lines:
http://allenjb.me.uk/blog/why-only-think-about-projects-for-gsoc

As someone who's very interested in getting involved in Gentoo
Development, I often find it hard to gather information on what projects
/ people are up to, what's currently going on and what the plans for the
future are.



AllenJB



Just wanted to quickly add mailing lists to the explicitly mentioned
venues for improved communication.


As a quick example, I'm interested in the PR / Newsletter side of
Gentoo, but I find it very hard to keep up-to-date. I recently learned
that there's a new blog-like version of the newsletter in development
but I've heard nothing else about it and searching hasn't turned up
anything.


While I am on the gmn irc channel, I don't have time to read through all
the backlogs for relvent information. I am also on the gentoo-pr mailing
list (among many others, as well as checking on the lists via gmane) and
it's basically completely silent. I'm currently waiting to catch one of
two devs who might be able to give me more information on IRC.


To all eyes looking from the outside in, unless they happen across the
one forum thread I did, the newsletter is dead and nothing is being done
about it, which gives a poor view of the state of affairs within Gentoo
Development.


To take the bus analogy to this, if these 2 developers are hit by a bus,
then who knows what's currently going on with the newsletter and where
all the resources are?


I have said it before and I will say it again, yes the newsletter may be
a current weak point for Gentoo, but it's a very obvious one because
it's the one that's visible to everyone in the community. I still think
my points are valid for any area of Gentoo development tho.


AllenJB
 
Old 03-11-2009, 05:06 PM
Thilo Bangert
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

Markos Chandras <hwoarang@gentoo.org> said:
> On Tuesday 10 March 2009 14:15:36 Thilo Bangert wrote:
> > > Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's
> > > what irc is for.
> >
> > while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
> > contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am
> > close to never.
> >
> > the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available
> > via IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could
> > realize more of its potential by better integrating people who dont
> > do IRC.
> >
> > kind regards
> > Thilo
>
> To be honest , I don't agree with that. Being around on irc is quite
> helpful to get direct feedback from users and fix bugs before they hit
> more users. This is a good way to reduce the amount of bugs that hit
> bugzilla.

my complaint isn't about people using IRC. i object to the way that much
of our knowledge, discussion and decision making process appear to have
been moved into the temporal black hole that is IRC.

realtime communication is an valuable tool, but IRC has drawbacks as well.
this is alienating a lot of people who dont happen to be on IRC at the
right moment/timezone or who dont have the time to be always on.

it looks like many projects within Gentoo have resorted to a communication
process which uses IRC exclusivly. this is unfortunate...

kind regards
Thilo
 
Old 03-11-2009, 05:35 PM
Maciej Mrozowski
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

On Wednesday 11 of March 2009 19:06:33 Thilo Bangert wrote:
> my complaint isn't about people using IRC. i object to the way that much
> of our knowledge, discussion and decision making process appear to have
> been moved into the temporal black hole that is IRC.

> realtime communication is an valuable tool, but IRC has drawbacks as well.
> this is alienating a lot of people who dont happen to be on IRC at the
> right moment/timezone or who dont have the time to be always on.

> it looks like many projects within Gentoo have resorted to a communication
> process which uses IRC exclusivly. this is unfortunate...

Hard to disagree with this.
I observed it myself - when I started maintaining ebuilds in overlay,
consequently I started to use IRC to be in touch with the rest of KDE Gentoo
team. Unfortunately it has some drawbacks like less my availability on forums
(and I used it much more often) - to the point that I forgot to update whole
4.2 release announcement in Desktop Environment (in that sticky "Read before
posting" thread).
IRC is black hole definitely and from developers point of view everything looks
just, as they actively communicating with each other - unfortunately being
somewhat isolated from the rest of the world.
This may increase that feeling from typical user point of view - that
developers are somewhere there cooking something, and there's no way to get to
them (unless they find about IRC).
This is the problem as most users used to sweep forums first as it's "medium"
available for them out of the box - just google for some problem and there you
are.

Now, important.
While I don't propose for developers to visit forums - it may be another
*solution*.
Developers - they (we/you) already chosen IRC as best/fastest/favourite medium
for communication apart from mailing list that is - it could stay that way.

Why not integrate more users by creating *Support* *staff* role?
They could be recruited as typical staff (like moderators) - using staff quiz.
Their "job" would be to:
- wander on forums answering user questions
- poke developers on IRC with some issues (maybe proposed patches)
- filling bugzilla bugs (they'd need some *basic* bugzilla knowledge - just to
be able to find whether are such issues already and to properly, descriptively
create new bug) - not full bugwrangling with assigning and such
- provide living evidence that "Gentoo is not dying" whatever and has support

They could be given @gentoo.org aliases to make them motivated.
It would be easier for those alike to become developers later.

There's thread related to user contribution on forums - as reference:
http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-702248.html

(this should rather be discussed on gentoo-project I guess, but nm)

--
regards
MM
 
Old 03-11-2009, 07:44 PM
Markos Chandras
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

On Wednesday 11 March 2009 20:06:33 Thilo Bangert wrote:
> Markos Chandras <hwoarang@gentoo.org> said:
> > On Tuesday 10 March 2009 14:15:36 Thilo Bangert wrote:
> > > > Bugs aren't a good way to keep in touch with developers, that's
> > > > what irc is for.
> > >
> > > while i dont necessarily think, that bugzi is the best way to stay in
> > > contact with me, it surely is a better way than IRC - on which i am
> > > close to never.
> > >
> > > the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available
> > > via IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could
> > > realize more of its potential by better integrating people who dont
> > > do IRC.
> > >
> > > kind regards
> > > Thilo
> >
> > To be honest , I don't agree with that. Being around on irc is quite
> > helpful to get direct feedback from users and fix bugs before they hit
> > more users. This is a good way to reduce the amount of bugs that hit
> > bugzilla.
>
> my complaint isn't about people using IRC. i object to the way that much
> of our knowledge, discussion and decision making process appear to have
> been moved into the temporal black hole that is IRC.
>
> realtime communication is an valuable tool, but IRC has drawbacks as well.
> this is alienating a lot of people who dont happen to be on IRC at the
> right moment/timezone or who dont have the time to be always on.
>
> it looks like many projects within Gentoo have resorted to a communication
> process which uses IRC exclusivly. this is unfortunate...
>
> kind regards
> Thilo
I would prefer it if devs were using team emails ( sound@gentoo.org,
kde@gentoo.org etc ) more often than IRC communication. At least, important
discussions, or decisions etc should at least announced on such mailing lists.
If this is not possible, an e-mail with the irc logs about an important
discussion would be a good idea. Of course this is not necessary in occasions
were teams are composed by 1-2 members or when all developers of the team are
available on irc.
--
Markos Chandras (hwoarang)
Gentoo Linux Developer
Qt/KDE/Sound/Sunrise
 
Old 03-13-2009, 02:37 PM
Duncan
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

Thilo Bangert <bangert@gentoo.org> posted
200903101315.52142.bangert@gentoo.org, excerpted below, on Tue, 10 Mar
2009 13:15:36 +0100:

> the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available via
> IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could realize
> more of its potential by better integrating people who dont do IRC.

This has bothered me too. Some people simply don't do well in
"immediate" (textual) communication mode. They much prefer the minute-
resolution mode of email/web-form/newsgroup to the second-resolution mode
of IRC/IM. I'm one such person.[1] As a result, I have experienced a
high barrier to getting further involved with Gentoo, toward becoming an
AT or dev.

That may be simply the way things must be (after all, to take an extreme
example, who could reasonably argue that snail mail contributions could
even work at all for more than the one-off, for something like Gentoo),
but I can't say I see it that way. Even in instances where the second-
resolution of IRC really does work better, say meetings, a mixed-mode
approach much as the council has recently taken, with most of the
discussion via minute/hour resolution mailing list leaving the official
IRC meetings as ideally little more than formalizing the vote, arguably
works far better.

---
[1] I like to be able to type up my message, look at it, revise a bit
where necessary, then send, on second-resolution media such as IRC/IM,
that's hardly possible as it looks like "dead air" from the other end
when there's 2-3 participants and the discussion has usually long moved
on by the time the submission is ready, in larger groups.

--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman
 
Old 03-13-2009, 03:00 PM
Christian Faulhammer
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

Hi,

Duncan <1i5t5.duncan@cox.net>:

> Thilo Bangert <bangert@gentoo.org> posted
> 200903101315.52142.bangert@gentoo.org, excerpted below, on Tue, 10
> Mar 2009 13:15:36 +0100:
>
> > the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available
> > via IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project could
> > realize more of its potential by better integrating people who dont
> > do IRC.
>
> This has bothered me too. Some people simply don't do well in
> "immediate" (textual) communication mode. They much prefer the
> minute- resolution mode of email/web-form/newsgroup to the
> second-resolution mode of IRC/IM. I'm one such person.[1] As a
> result, I have experienced a high barrier to getting further involved
> with Gentoo, toward becoming an AT or dev.

I am a dev with sparse internet connectivity and seldomly found on
IRC...and even as an AT I chose to stay away from IRC. So I see few
problems there.

V-Li

--
Christian Faulhammer, Gentoo Lisp project
<URL:http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/lisp/>, #gentoo-lisp on FreeNode

<URL:http://www.faulhammer.org/>
 
Old 03-13-2009, 05:24 PM
AllenJB
 
Default devs on IRC (was :Regen2 ( was QA Overlay Layout support ))

Donnie Berkholz wrote:

On 19:06 Wed 11 Mar , Thilo Bangert wrote:
the presumption seems to be, that as a dev one has to be available
via IRC. it has long been my feeling that Gentoo as a project
could realize more of its potential by better integrating people
who dont do IRC.


I think IRC helps to build a more tightly knit community and, because of
this, is very important to Gentoo. The less close we are as a community,
the more free we feel to be hostile because we don't see the folks on
the other end of the big tube as real people. It's much like a technique
that militaries use during wars to de-personalize the enemy, except with
the Internet, we start that way and have to apply effort to grow closer.




While it may be tight nit, there's the danger that it's so tight no one
else can get in, so to speak.


I don't think anyone's saying anything like "no more IRC". What I at
least am advocating is that what goes on on IRC gets summarized
somewhere in addition. As I said before, this not only helps keep a
"log" of what goes on for "future generations", but also allows others
(users and devs who don't have time to follow everything) to look in and
follow what the devs are doing more easily.


I think that this would ultimately help make Gentoo development more
visible and more accessible, ultimately leading to an increased
conversion of users to contributors, if not users to devs.


AllenJB
 

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