[Python-Dev] Encouraging developers

Brett Cannon brett at python.org
Thu Mar 8 01:01:01 CET 2007

On 3/7/07, Titus Brown <titus at caltech.edu> wrote:
> On Wed, Mar 07, 2007 at 11:10:22AM +0100, "Martin v. L?wis" wrote:
> -> Giovanni Bajo schrieb:
> -> > On 06/03/2007 10.52, Martin v. L?wis wrote:
> -> >
> -> >> I can't see that the barrier at contributing is high.
> -> >
> -> > I think this says it all. It now appears obvious to me that people
> -> > inside the "mafia" don't even realize there is one. Thus, it looks like
> -> > we are all wasting time in this thread, since they think there is
> -> > nothing to be changed.
> <delurk>
> Hi, I just wanted to interject -- when I used the word "mafia", I meant
> it in this sense:
> """
> Informal. A tightly knit group of trusted associates, as of a political
> leader: [He] is one of the personal mafia that [the chancellor]
> brought with him to Bonn.
> """
> (Martin, I certainly didn't intend to offend anyone by implying that
> they were part of a criminal organization. ;)
> I have a longer explanation of my view in the blog entry, and anyway I
> don't want to belabor my own experiences too much, but I would like to
> point out three things:
>  * there's definitely a group of "trusted associates" -- committers,
>    perhaps? -- and it's not at all clear to outsiders like me how new
>    features, old patches, and old bugs are dealt with.
>  * python-dev is an all-volunteer community.  In true open-source
>    fashion, that means that it's incumbent upon people who HAVE
>    problems/issues with a process (like me, and Giovanni) to propose
>    solutions that either someone wants to implement, or that we can
>    implement.  I certainly don't expect any of the committers to put
>    tons of effort into a new initiative.
>  * Much of the discussion on this issue of encouraging developers comes
>    down to communicating better with non-python-dev people.
> Unless someone is already doing it, I will try to write a summary of the
> last few days of discussion and post it for review. The idea would be to
> provide a simple one stop wiki page for people who want to contribute.

My hope (along with many other hopes =), is to get a good document
that explains exactly what is expected for bugs and patches in general
and then what is specifically expected for things like new modules for
the stdlib or new syntax proposals.  With it all written in one place
we have something to point people towards (basically what
http://www.python.org/dev/intro/ was meant to be, but replaces most of
what is in http://www.python.org/dev/).

And I hope that once the tracker is up and we have some experience we
can make it help us by possibly annotating issues with that they hare
or are lacking (e.g., needs tests, needs docs, etc.).  That way people
can read this doc, understand what is expected for code and such, and
then search the tracker for stuff that needs those thing and help deal
with it.  Basically make it so that if someone goes, "I want to help
write a test", they can find out what needs a test.

But I get the docs for the new tracker written first.  Once that is
done I plan to start working on this doc (or docs if it gets too long)
as my next big Python project.


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