[tc][election] campaign discussion: how TC can solve the less contributor issue?
moreira.belmiro.email.lists at gmail.com
Mon Apr 6 23:36:17 UTC 2020
+1 to Melanie comments. I feel exactly the same.
And this is specialy hard for Operators.
On Mon, Apr 6, 2020 at 9:57 PM melanie witt <melwittt at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 4/6/20 08:36, Donny Davis wrote:
> > On Mon, Apr 6, 2020 at 11:22 AM Artom Lifshitz <alifshit at redhat.com
> > <mailto:alifshit at redhat.com>> wrote:
> > On Sat, Apr 4, 2020 at 9:12 PM Ghanshyam Mann
> > <gmann at ghanshyammann.com <mailto:gmann at ghanshyammann.com>> wrote:
> > >
> > > This topic is a very important and critical area to solve in the
> > OpenStack community.
> > > I personally feel and keep raising this issue wherever I get the
> > opportunity.
> > >
> > > To develop or maintain any software, the very first thing we need
> > is to have enough developer resources.
> > > Without enough developers (either open or closed source), none of
> > the software can survive.
> > >
> > > OpenStack current situation on contributors is not the same as it
> > was few years back. Almost every
> > > project is facing the less contributor issue as compare to
> > requirements and incoming requests. Few
> > > projects already dead or going to be if we do not solve the less
> > contributors issue now.
> > >
> > > I know, TC is not directly responsible to solve this issue but we
> > should do something or at least find
> > > the way who can solve this.
> > I'm not running for TC, but I figured I could chime in with some
> > thoughts, and maybe get TC candidates to react.
> > > What do you think about what role TC can play to solve this? What
> > platform or entity can be used by TC to
> > > raise this issue? or any new crazy Idea?
> > To my knowledge, the vast majority of contributors to OpenStack are
> > corporate contributors - meaning, they contribute to the community
> > because it's their job. As companies have dropped out, the
> > count has diminished. Therefore, the obvious solution to the
> > contributor dearth would be to recruit new companies that use or sell
> > OpenStack. However, as far as I know, Red Hat is the only company
> > remaining that still makes money from selling OpenStack as a product.
> > So if we're looking for new contributor companies, we would have to
> > look to those that use OpenStack, and try to make the case that it
> > makes sense for them to get involved in the community. I'm not sure
> > what this kind of advocacy would look like, or towards which
> > companies, or what kind of companies, it would be directed. Perhaps
> > the TC candidates could have suggestions here. And if I've made any
> > wrong assumptions, by all means correct me.
> > I don't think you are too far off. I used to work in a place where my
> > job was to help sell Openstack (among other products) and
> > enable the use of it with customers.
> > Customers drive everything vendors do. Things that sell are easy to use.
> > Customers don't buy the best products, they buy what they
> > can understand fastest. If customers are asking for a product, it's
> > because they understand its value. Vendors in turn contribute
> > to projects because they make money from their investment.
> > Now think about the perception and reality of Openstack as a whole. We
> > have spent the last decade or so writing bleeding edge features.
> > We have spent very little time on documenting what we do have in
> > layman's terms. The intended audience of our docs would seem
> > to me to be other developers. I hope people don't take that as a jab,
> > it's just the truth. If someone cannot understand how to use
> > this amazing technology, it won't sell. If it doesn't sell, vendors
> > leave, if vendors leave the number of contributors goes down.
> > If we don't start working at making Openstack easier to consume, then no
> > amount of technical change will make an impactful difference.
> I'm not running for the TC either but wanted say Donny's reply here
> resonates with me. When I first started working on OpenStack, I was at
> Yahoo (now Verizon Media), a company who consumes OpenStack and depends
> on it for a (now) large portion of their infrastructure.
> At the time I joined the OpenStack community in 2012, the docs about
> contributing and the docs about each component were dead simple. I was
> up and running in under a day and started my first contributions
> upstream shortly after.
> Fast forward to now, I find the docs are hard to read and navigate.
> There's not much layman's terms. And most of all, at least in Nova, is
> that the docs are in dire need of being organized. They used to be
> simple but when docs moved in-tree things were hastily cobbled together
> because as you mentioned, we're always already stretched trying to
> deliver bleeding edge features.
> And, there are also differences in opinion about how docs should be
> organized and how verbose they are. I have seen docs evolve from simple
> to complicated because for example: someone thought they were making an
> improvement, whereas I might think they were making the docs less
> usable. I'm not aware that there is any guideline or reference
> documentation that is to be used as a design goal. Such as, "this is
> what your landing page should look like", "here's how docs should be
> organized", "you should have these sections", etc.
> Sometimes I have thought about proposing a bunch of changes to how our
> docs are organized. But, full disclosure, I worry that if I do that and
> if it gets accepted/merged, someone else will completely change all of
> it later and then all the organization and work I did goes out the
> window. And I think this worry highlights the fact that there is no
> "right way" of doing the docs. It's just opinion and everyone has a
> different opinion.
> I'm not sure whether that's solvable. I mentioned a guideline or design
> goal to aspire to, but at the same time, we don't want to be so rigid
> that projects can't do docs the way they want. So then what? Per project
> design goals and guidelines I guess? Or is that too much process? I have
> wondered how other communities have managed success in the docs department.
> So, back to the contributors point. I was lucky because by the time docs
> got hard to consume, I already knew the ropes. I don't know how hard it
> has been for newer contributors to join since then and how much of the
> difficulty is related to docs.
> I'm not sure I've said anything useful, so apologies for derailing the
> discussion if I've done that.
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