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To: gentoo-osx@g.o
From: Lina Pezzella <J4rg0n@g.o>
Subject: Elections for Project Lead Positions
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 2005 00:25:53 -0400
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We're happy to see feedback on the list in regards to our recent  
message about electing project leads. Hopefully there's been enough  
time for everyone to get their few cents in. At this point, we'd like  
to clarify what would change were we elected as leads, as well as  
iron out the details of the election process.

Operations:

1) Development of General Team Policy - With only four active  
developers, it has been pretty easy to develop consensus on how we as  
a project treat different situations. Our recent agreement to switch  
to 'use userland_Darwin' instead of 'use ppc-macos' in ebuilds is an  
example of this. However, the project will not always consist of four  
people (it now effectively consists of six active members). Since we  
are a relatively new project, we can avoid some of the issues that  
plague the -core and -dev mailing lists by keeping a general policy  
page up to date from early on (I.E. now). This will also be of great  
help to new developers and potential contributors. It might not be  
critical now, but as we expand as a project into the future, it will  
become more and more important.

2) Intraproject Relations - Some of us are self-motivated and like to  
do our own thing while others want direction. I am hoping that part  
of our problem with inactive developers comes from this lack of  
direction. Furthermore, if we all do our own thing without any  
central coordination, we will inevitably end up duplicating work  
(this has already happened more than just once). For both of these  
reasons, we think it might be a good idea to keep a listing of what  
each developer is working on with regards to the project (perhaps on  
the project page, which we all have CVS commit access to). For  
instance, Lina maintains a package in sci-biology and she maintains  
the sci-biology category for ppc-macos. We're not looking for a list  
of packages people are involved in porting each week; we're looking  
to keep track of long-term goals that each developer is working  
towards. This is also good for PR purposes, as well as in the  
recruitment/contributions department. (We don't feel that Bugzilla  
isn't suited for keeping track of each developer's current work in  
this way.)

Strategic:

1) Recruitment - Let's face it, we need more devs, badly. To make the  
recruitment process more manageable and coherent for all parties  
involved, some sort of central recruitment liason(s) need to be  
available and announced as such to the outside world. While virtually  
any developer is able to recruit, it's not as easy as just announcing  
open positions or a need for help, and then watching the e-mails come  
in. We tried that, and it didn't work so well. Often the best  
applicants are those who don't apply themselves. Fabian, our most  
awesomest recent recruit, did not send us an e-mail; rather, we e- 
mailed him after seeing some of his activity in Bugzilla. It's a  
pretty safe bet to say that good recruitment involves a decent amount  
of administrative work and research. Recruitment isn't just about  
getting new blood into the team either, though; there's a long  
training process involved (both before and after application for  
developer membership), and for this to be effective, a central  
training body needs to be established for the outside world to be  
able to correspond with. We don't want to repeat the initial  
recruitment disaster -- it's not fair to the rest of the Gentoo  
community, and it's not fair to the new developer not to receive  
adequate attention and training. As such, we plan to keep the  
recruitment process slow and sure.

2) Public Relations - This is something we're not even near having  
enough of. The documentation is outdated, and profile changes often  
go unannounced until after the fact, if they're announced at all.  
We're really happy to see some traffic on this mailing list again,  
and this needs to continue to improve. In case not everyone noticed  
yet, we, along with a few other devs, have been trying to promote ML  
traffic as of late, as opposed to getting things done via IRC and  
keeping them unannounced otherwise. We feel that this is a great PR  
move, and more action like this in the future needs to be built upon.  
Specifically, changes to the profile and anything that would qualify  
subjectively as large progress should be announced to the mailing  
list -- it's important to keep users informed of changes, and  
progress is great for keeping interest in the project. For example,  
if a use flag is removed from use.mask, it should be publically  
announced, as should news on major packages, such as baselayout- 
darwin or perl. Having a lead responsible for this keeps things  
easier on everybody. Of course, any other developer that wants to  
announce their own progress notes is more than welcome to do so. ;-)

3) Interproject Relations - In addition to PR, we need a designated  
liason to the rest of the Gentoo community. This becomes particularly  
important when other Gentoo projects need to interface with the Mac  
OS X project, and vice versa. For example, if a developer from  
another project has a Mac and wants to keyword their own packages,  
they need to be aware of project policies (such as the use of  
userland_Darwin). Having a designated person to go to for this sort  
of thing is easier than the current free-for-all situation. After  
all, this developer is helping us out; the least we can do is make  
things easy for him/her. On the flip side, there needs to be a  
designated person to deal with interproject conflicts. While this  
isn't exactly a fun job, it's better to have one unified face than to  
have split personality disorder. We are a project, not just a group  
of developers that occasionally talk to each other.

4) BugDay Participation (Operations && Strategic) - BugDay is a great  
way to meet new potential developers and to allow current developers  
to take time off from their current blocker-problem and tackle some  
easier stuff. We haven't been utilizing the potential here as much as  
we should be. We have a lot of bugs in bugzilla and we all know that  
it can be  a bit overwhelming sometimes. We might make better  
progress if all of us agreed on a short list of things we wanted to  
tackle in a day and took some time once a month to work together on  
them. Pine and Pango come to mind as two recurring problems we might  
be able to solve in such a session. The purpose here isn't to solve  
large problems, but to solve wide-spread 'little' problems. It has  
the additional benefit of introducing current developers to fresh  
blood, and vice versa.

To summarize, we are not looking to dictate development or assign  
duties to developers. We recognize a need for someone to assume some  
of the administrative roles, and we are offering to fill them. This  
project has made a great deal of progress by allowing its developers  
free reign to pursue their individual interests. No point in fixing  
this; it isn't broken.

If there are any questions about any of the above, please voice them!  
We are always open to suggestions.

In regards to actually voting, what does everybody feel on this?  
Should there be a formalized election (such as the use of 'votify'),  
or should there just be a public vote on IRC or via e-mail? Since  
this hasn't been done before within the Gentoo for Mac OS X project,  
we're breaking new ground here. Please make your opinions known!  
Also, how much time should be allowed for other developers within the  
project to announce candidacy?

- --
Hasan Khalil && Lina Pezzella
Ebuild & Porting Co-Leads
Gentoo for OS X

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Replies:
Re: Elections for Project Lead Positions
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Re: Elections for Project Lead Positions
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