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Re: Newbie Project...



Hi Paul,

> One of the most significant voids I have noticed in the Debian project
> since I climbed on about 4 monthes ago is that we have a surplus of
> developers.  A lot of the newer developers have a high level of
> entusiasm but a low level of experience.  My suggestion is simply a plan
> to see how we can improve in this error.  I would be willing to take
> initial responsibility for and to coordinate such an effort.

Please subscribe to debian-mentors and go ahead.

> The first step would be to make a good list of jobs and projects we need
> done for the Debian prject that could be done by "newbies".  For

We already have:

 . Work Needed and Prospective Packages
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/prospective-packages.html>

 . The Bugtracking System
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/Bugs/>

   Everyone can find packages with lots of bugs and work out fixes.
   Most maintainers would apreciate that.

 . The Debian FAQ
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/FAQ/>

   And some FAQ-O-Matic mechanism is installed nowardays.

 . We have policy and development discussions on debian-devel and
   debian-policy.


> example, maybe we could train some newbies to help with the processing
> of newly uploaded packages.  Or not, if that takes a little too

That's the job of dinstall.

> much knowledge.  Anyways, other, more literary newbies could help with
> the Debian documentation project by collecting information and
> writing/building some better Debian documentation. In this area
> might

This is mostly always appreciated.  I don't think it needs so be
adressed separately as it's just logical.

> fit projects such as a "Newbie's Introduction to Linux(/Debian???)". 

Who needs such a thingy and what should be covered?

We already have

 . The Debian Documentation Project
   <URL:http://fatman.mathematik.tu-muenchen.de/~schwarz/debian-doc/>

 . The Debian Policy
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/debian-policy/>

 . The Debian Developer's Reference
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/packaging-manuals/developers-reference/>

 . The Debian Packaging Manual
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/packaging-manuals/packaging.html/>

 . The Debian Menu System
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/packaging-manuals/menu.html/>

 . Several non-english texts
   <URL:http://www.debian.org/international.html>

I have to admit that all of the links were stolen from the
"Developer's Corner" at <URL:http://www.de.debian.org/developers_corner.html>
So just keep your eyes open.

> Not a guide, just an introduction...somewhere to start, where/how to
> find help and information.  And these documents could be then be
> submitted for *review* by our gurus.  And so on.

As the new-maintainer folks tell new maintainers:

   You should have read these documents before working on your packages.

     o The Debian Social Contract
       <URL:http://www.debian.org/social_contract.html>

     o The Debian Policy Manual
       <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/debian-policy/index.html>

     o The Debian Packaging Manual
       <URL:http://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/packaging-manual/index.html>

     o Debian GNU/Linux - Developer's Corner
       <URL:http://www.debian.org/developers_corner.html>

> And other projects as such.  (Not all quite so big)  The basic
> qualification for these jobs are things which are techically easier (and
> thus sometimes not as fun/attractive for experienced maintainers), but
> still are very necessary and needed for the Debian project. Maybe a
> couple newbies could help by recomiling some bo packages to hamm which
> simply need to be recompiled with no actual effort or editig, just the
> keys punched in.  This would enable newbies to participate, learn more,
> have fun, and actually want to stick around with the Debian project.

Most of these packages are orphaned.  If not already listed the
maintainer needs to be contacted and the package added to the wnpp.
Poeple should take over the package.  Just go ahead and pick some of
them.

If you want to start a new sub-project, tell us your ideas and go
ahead.  If the ideas are well you'll receive your submissions.

I have to admit that when I phone new maintainer up most of them tell
me that the packages in the wnpp are not of major interest for them so
they're not going to take over any of them.

> And the third step (or maybe step two and three should switch) would be
> to get information about the "Newbie Project" on the web site near the
> "How Can I Help" page and in the Debian FAQ (which needs to be updated,
> I could do that?) in the same type place. Then people who think
> "Debian...neat. I want to help but I don't even know how to program in
> C" can email us and say "How can I help???  Please, use my time...".

It seems that you haven't noticed already but it's being worked on the
Debian FAQ again.  This time it won't be a static document but
maintained by the faq-o-matic program so there will be several
maintainers for several sections on it.  Contact Igor
<igor@debian.org> for more information.

> And remember, even newbies have a little brain so please find some
> things for them to do!  :)

I'd suggest you'd put together a page of 'things that should be done'
and we're including it in the new-maintainer mails - and Jay puts it
to the web pages.

Regards,

	Joey

-- 
   / Martin Schulze  *  joey@infodrom.north.de  *  26129 Oldenburg /
  / linux: Unbekannter Terminaltyp                                /
 / Ich weiß nicht, auf was für einem Terminaltyp Sie arbeiten -  /
/ alles, was ich habe, ist 'linux'.              -- Solaris 2.5 /

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