R1/Alpha : Welcoming the Newcomers

Blog post by stpere on Tue, 2009-04-07 16:00

Context

Imagine the release just got out the door; what needs to be ready at this point to get everything running smoothly ?…

Newcomers

We need some structure to welcome newcomers (developers and others) effectively. I think many – everything is relative – people with various skills will come and may ask things like :

  1. Where can I help ?
  2. I want to port [insert favorite software from linux] !!!!
  3. Many others...

We should make sure that we can “steer” them to the correct teams (according to their tastes).

My understanding is that the team concept is quite loose at the moment. It fits well with a relatively small core of developers, since it doesn’t add unnecessary “ceremony”. But I think as the community will grow, it might be useful to have some light structure. There would be no bosses for say, but welcomers, mentors. They would be a small set of people that knows the inners of the topics relative to the team tasks and can help the beginners to get started, invite them to suscribe to the MLs, etc..

We should stress out the fact that at that point, we need more than coders.. We will need people in those teams too :

  1. User guides, documentation,...
  2. Artwork
  3. Quality Assurance
  4. Public Relations
  5. ...

Some other peoples will without any doubts try Haiku out of curiosity, and know almost nothing from it before hand, and we might need to be able to answer their questions. A good first approach possibly means that they will share their experience with friends, and you see the cascade coming right? Depending the volume of those requests, it can be quite time consuming to answer verbosely to everyone.. So we should make sure the user guide is so good that we will gladly point them to it! :) But it might be nice to have some PR representants to help answer the questions.. ;-)

Again, comments welcome, it’s definitely not complete nor definitive.. Just some food for thoughts :)