Support for submitting bug reports
I had the pleasure of having dinner with Helen (aka Hamster) last night, she and
her partner being on holiday in my part of the world. We naturally got to
talking about the debian-women project and what might be one of many
constructive things to do with the project from where it stands.
We both have the impression that there are quite a lot of debian related things
that people on the mailing list and the IRC channel would like to learn about or
to practise doing better. One of the things that makes it interesting is that
we have such a wide range of skills and knowledge. If I may say so, we are a
talented and interesting bunch :)
The wide variety in our backgrounds and expertise makes it impossible to pitch
anything at everyone. But one thing I have noticed that a number of people are
both interested in and having difficulty with is submitting bug reports on
debian packages. This will be trivial to some people and not of interest to
others, but I believe that there are a number of people who would be interested
in getting more practise at and support with this. Certainly, I've helped a
couple of people on IRC with their bug report submitting, with good results.
So, Helen and I were thinking that we would like to do the following:
1) set up a section of the website about Submitting Bugs
2) explain in this section that we understand that submitting bug reports can be
scary or technically difficult or both, for people who are inexperienced at
that, and that we have all been there before and understand how people feel
3) include links to the stuff on the main debian website about bugs ie
4) explain that the debian-women project is happy to help people be sure that
what they have is a bug, write their bug report, check that the bug isn't
already reported, get the headers right, proofread the description of the
problem, help them deal with confusing responses from the package maintainer
etc. Include an email address for people to write to for more help (I am happy
to be at the recieving end of that), and also suggest that people get onto the
#debian-women irc channel and ask for help there.
I think that this will help to achieve the following:
- get some people involved in submitting bug reports who might otherwise have
difficulty with doing that. This will increase their participation in debian
and will hopefully encourage them to think about particpating more in the future.
- get some bugs reported in a better/faster way than they might otherwise be.
I think this will be good for the debian-women project and good for debian as a
So, if people agree with this, can we set up such a section on the website. I
don't do html (hangs head in shame), but Helen (ie the other Helen - I know it's
confusing) is happy to do that part of it, if nobody else wants to. I can
write the text for the comments and so on.
What do you think?