[openstack-dev] [nova][core] Expectations of core reviewers

Gary Kotton gkotton at vmware.com
Tue Aug 19 08:30:22 UTC 2014

From: Joe Gordon <joe.gordon0 at gmail.com<mailto:joe.gordon0 at gmail.com>>
Reply-To: OpenStack List <openstack-dev at lists.openstack.org<mailto:openstack-dev at lists.openstack.org>>
Date: Monday, August 18, 2014 at 9:31 PM
To: OpenStack List <openstack-dev at lists.openstack.org<mailto:openstack-dev at lists.openstack.org>>
Subject: Re: [openstack-dev] [nova][core] Expectations of core reviewers

On Mon, Aug 18, 2014 at 8:18 AM, Russell Bryant <rbryant at redhat.com<mailto:rbryant at redhat.com>> wrote:
On 08/18/2014 06:18 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:
> Doug Hellmann wrote:
>> On Aug 13, 2014, at 4:42 PM, Russell Bryant <rbryant at redhat.com<mailto:rbryant at redhat.com>> wrote:
>>> Let me try to say it another way.  You seemed to say that it wasn't much
>>> to ask given the rate at which things happen in OpenStack.  I would
>>> argue that given the rate, we should not try to ask more of individuals
>>> (like this proposal) and risk burnout.  Instead, we should be doing our
>>> best to be more open an inclusive to give the project the best chance to
>>> grow, as that's the best way to get more done.
>>> I think an increased travel expectation is a raised bar that will hinder
>>> team growth, not help it.
>> +1, well said.
> Sorry, I was away for a few days. This is a topic I have a few strong
> opinions on :)
> There is no denial that the meetup format is working well, comparatively
> better than the design summit format. There is also no denial that that
> requiring 4 travels per year for a "core" dev is unreasonable. Where is
> the limit ? Wouldn't we be more productive and aligned if we did one per
> month ? No, the question is how to reach a sufficient level of focus and
> alignment while keeping the number of "mandatory" travel at 2 per year.
> I don't think our issue comes from not having enough F2F time. Our issue
> is that the design summit no longer reaches its objectives of aligning
> key contributors on a common plan, and we need to fix it.
> We established the design summit as the once-per-cycle opportunity to
> have face-to-face time and get alignment across the main contributors to
> a project. That used to be completely sufficient, but now it doesn't
> work as well... which resulted in alignment and team discussions to be
> discussed at mid-cycle meetups instead. Why ? And what could we change
> to have those alignment discussions at the design summit again ?
> Why are design summits less productive that mid-cycle meetups those days
> ? Is it because there are too many non-contributors in the design summit
> rooms ? Is it the 40-min format ? Is it the distractions (having talks
> to give somewhere else, booths to attend, parties and dinners to be at)
> ? Is it that beginning of cycle is not the best moment ? Once we know
> WHY the design summit fails its main objective, maybe we can fix it.
> My gut feeling is that having a restricted audience and a smaller group
> lets people get to the bottom of an issue and reach consensus. And that
> you need at least half a day or a full day of open discussion to reach
> such alignment. And that it's not particularly great to get such
> alignment in the middle of the cycle, getting it at the start is still
> the right way to align with the release cycle.
> Nothing prevents us from changing part of the design summit format (even
> the Paris one!), and restrict attendance to some of the sessions. And if
> the main issue is the distraction from the conference colocation, we
> might have to discuss the future of co-location again. In that "2 events
> per year" objective, we could make the conference the optional cycle
> thing, and a developer-oriented specific event the mandatory one.
> If we manage to have alignment at the "design summit", then it doesn't
> spell the end of the mid-cycle things. But then, ideally the extra
> mid-cycle gatherings should be focused on getting specific stuff done,
> rather than general team alignment. Think workshop/hackathon rather than
> private gathering. The goal of the workshop would be published in
> advance, and people could opt to join that. It would be totally optional.

Great response ... I agree with everything you've said here.  Let's
figure out how to improve the design summit to better achieve team

Of the things you mentioned, I think the biggest limit to alignment has
been the 40 minute format.  There are some topics that need more time.
It may be that we just need to take more advantage of the ability to
give a single topic multiple time slots to ensure enough time is
available.  As Dan discussed, there are some topics that we could stand
to turn down and distribute information another way that is just as

I would also say that the number of things going on at one time is also
problematic.  Not only are there several design summit sessions going
once, but there are conference sessions and customer meetings.  The
rapid rate of jumping around and context switching is exhausting.  It
also makes it a bit harder to get critical mass for an extended period
of time around a topic.  In mid-cycle meetups, there is one track and no
other things competing for time and attention.

I don't have a good suggestion for fixing this issue with so many things
competing for time and attention.  I used to be a big proponent of
splitting the event out completely, but I don't feel the same way
anymore.  In theory we could call the conference the optional event, but
in practice it's going to be required for many folks anyway.  I can't
speak for everyone, but I suspect if you're a senior engineer at your
company, your presence will be required for customer meetings or key
conference presentations.  I think it'd be naive for us to think that we
could split our the summit without effectively requiring 4/year travel.

This sounds like an optimization for the wrong group of people. We should be looking for the best format for the largest number of interested contributors, not for just senior engineers.

[Gary] Agree 100%. We need to encourage people to contribute and become a part of the community.

Russell Bryant

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