Archive for August, 2011

Desktop Summit: Bugsquad BoF

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

As Tiffany already mentioned in her blog post, Pedro and me hosted a Bugsquad BoF at Desktop Summit. There were not too many folks around (mostly the people from the previous session stayed in the room) but nevertheless it was very interesting as blauzahl was kind enough to answer lots of my questions about KDE’s bugtriaging processes.

No groundbreaking stuff to post, but it was an interesting insight.

  • KDE Bugzilla has the Voting feature enabled. GNOME Bugzilla has not. I’m rather neutral about this so I was just curious.
  • In KDE, bug reports of unmaintained or deprecated modules can be closed as RESOLVED UNMAINTAINED (though this is not done consequently), while GNOME Bugzilla uses RESOLVED WONTFIX combined with a “gnome[unmaintained]” Status Whiteboard entry for this. I like the idea of a separate resolution though I don’t remember if RESOLVED UNMAINTAINED is used for KDE3 apps that are dead, or KDE3 apps that have a KDE4 replacement, or both.
  • Currently no community has bugdays (GNOME, KDE) which traditionally are an easy way to get new people involved (outreach) in the projects as many bug triagers move on to writing code after some time in the Bugsquad. Ubuntu has topic-oriented bugdays every week and uses them mostly to clean up the bug database of specific modules. The “Triaged” status in their bugtracker (Launchpad) helps avoiding duplication of work.
  • Remaining question that was also a topic in the previous BoF in that room: Where to share patches, especially for long-term distributions (RHED, SLED, LTS) && projects that are unmaintained in upstream development (e.g. KDE3-only components or deprecated GNOME2 components), and how to improve upstreaming efforts. One idea was to use Bugzilla’s “Default CC list” option for downstream packages to get notified of patches (but bugmail options don’t have a “trigger for patches only” setting).
  • Speaking about statistics in general (and as I am impressed by the MeeGo Community and Activity Metrics), efforts in KDE seem to be very similar to those in GNOME, namely Quarterly reports and a Commit digest, but nothing targetting the bigger picture either.

Desktop Summit: A GUADEC bid story

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

I’m late with commenting Desktop Summit in Berlin as I spent the last week offline in France and fifteen minutes of it at the mayor’s (La mairie) to afterwards celebrate the wedding of an old friend and great artist. Plus French food was awesome as usual…

One particular pleasure I had at Desktop Summit was to present together with half of our team our proposal for hosting next year’s GUADEC conference in Brno (CZ) to GNOME’s Board of Directors. We had a well-prepared bid in place (mostly thanks to Jiří Eischmann‘s hard work). I congratulate the A Coruña team and their impressive proposal for making it in the end!

Comments by board members after their decision on the bids, plus Stormy’s blogpost were particularly helpful to understand how tough decision making can be.
When you work on a proposal there are many areas to cover. Our team considered the geographical aspect (there has never been a GUADEC in Eastern central Europe) as one of the main arguments. However the members of the board obviously are individuals having differing priorities. Stuff like centralized accomodation and a large get-together area at the venue likely had a bigger weight this year than e.g. the region or accomodations covering different budgets. Please note that this is no criticism but rather a potential pointer for next year’s teams.

However if my impression was correct, more preparation might be the one thing that I wish for next year’s applicants: With regard to a few questions we received while presenting which were already covered in our proposal paper published weeks before, it felt like some board members had not read it closely before. Times might be busy, but in case proposals are not really read everybody could save some time next year.

Last but not least, a big “Thank you” to all those people that spoke to me after the decision was announced telling me that they had looked forward to going to Brno next year. See you in A Coruña!

Berlin City, Baby!

Tuesday, August 9th, 2011

I’m in Berlin for a conference. And I am sleepy, so this will be short.

New Evolution User Docs, no questions left.

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

Last year I had the megalomaniac idea of rewriting the user documentation of GNOME Evolution from scratch.

As GNOME 3.2 approaches quickly I had to realize that perfect is the enemy of good. After putting the remaining TODOs into the random categories FIXLATER, NEEDHELP, MUSTFIX and DONTCARE and after having no MUSTFIXes left, I merged the new User Documentation today into the codebase. It will be available on from August 17th on (that is when the next tarball 3.1.5 will be released), and while a few pages could still be improved I can at least promise that nothing is worse than in the old manual.

I’ve mostly failed to attract contributors but I welcome everybody to fix any remaining issues by searching for TODOs in the checkout (how-to), to translate the new docs to your favorite language, to file bug reports about stuff that is improvable, and to buy me some icecream or beer at Desktop Summit Berlin tomorrow. Or next year in Brno in case our proposal will be successful. Cheers!

Desktop Summit 2011