[Python-Dev] Encouraging developers

Neal Norwitz nnorwitz at gmail.com
Tue Mar 6 10:00:56 CET 2007

On 3/6/07, Phil Thompson <phil at riverbankcomputing.co.uk> wrote:
> On Tuesday 06 March 2007 5:49 am, Martin v. Löwis wrote:
> > Phil Thompson schrieb:
> > > I'm not sure what your point is. My point is that, if you want to
> > > encourage people to become core developers, they have to have a method of
> > > graduating through the ranks - learning (and being taught) as they go. To
> > > place a very high obstacle in their way right at the start is completely
> > > counter-productive.
> >
> > And please be assured that no such obstacle is in the submitters way.
> > Most patches are accepted without the submitter actually reviewing any
> > other patches.
> I'm glad to hear it - but I'm talking about the perception, not the fact. When
> occasionally submitters ask if their patch is going to be included, they will
> usually get a response suggesting they review other patches. That will only
> strengthen the perception.
> This discussion started because the feeling was expressed that it was
> difficult to get patches accepted and that new core developers were not being
> found. I would love to contribute more to the development of Python - I owe
> it a lot - but from where I stand (which is most definitely not where you
> stand) I can't see how to do that in a productive and rewarding way.

I recognize there is a big problem here.  Each of us as individuals
don't scale.  So in order to get stuff done we need to be more
distributed.  This means distributing the workload (partially so we
don't burn out).  In order to do that we need to distribute the
knowledge.  That probably involves some changes.

I understand it's really hard to get involved.  It can be frustrating
at times.  But I think the best way is to find a mentor.  Find an
existing core developer that you relate to and/or have similar
interests with.  I've been trying to do this more.

So here's my offer.  Anyone who is serious about becoming a Python
core developer, but doesn't know how to get involved can mail me.
Privately, publicly, it doesn't matter to me.  I will try to mentor

Be prepared!  I will demand submissions are high quality which at a
minimum means:

 - it adds a new test, enhances an existing test or fixes a broken test
 - it has *all* the required documentation, including
 - most people think the feature is desirable
 - the code is maintainable and formatted according to the prevailing style
 - we follow the process (which can include improving the process if
others agree)
    ie, there's no free lunch, unless you work at Google of course :-)

It also means you are willing to hold other people up to equally high standards.

Your contributions don't have to be code though.  They can be doc,
they can be PEPs, they can be the python.org website.  It could even
be helping out with Google's Summer of Code.  The choice is yours.


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