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Re: Congrats and thanks


Hannie, Kevin, et. al,

Thank you for your detailed replies. One never knows the response to expect
with a "laundry list" as I presented. I'm encouraged that most roadblocks
mentioned are not surprises, but well-known, and actively being addressed.

I also want to add my thanks to Cartsen and Sylvie for the work they did
with the screenshots. My suggestion for a team of "screenshotters" was
ill-advised as Carsten and Sylvie were that team. The genesis of my
question involved the communication of who would be responsible for
screenshots during the Raring iteration. I'm sure I missed a communique to
this regard, which explains my cries for help directly to Carsten as the
editing phase concluded.

I feel we have a great team of authors, editors, and coordinators that
works in concert with each iteration. The minor changes I've suggested will
only make the process more smooth...as well as selfishly satisfy my OCD
tendencies to have everything in order! There, I said it! :)

I agree with Kevin in that we don't know why we lack authors/editors, or,
as you've suggested Hannie, why some authors would sign up, then drop out
at the last moment. There has to be some way to get a general idea of why
people are averse to helping with this project.  I think it's imperative
for those of us with blogs to start talking this up now for the Saucy
release--I just (finally) started a blog a few weeks ago, and I'm sure I'll
be writing on this topic soon. In writing these blogs (and getting
feedback) maybe we can not only increase our ranks, but also better
understand the roadblocks.

When offering my perspective, I was not presenting a view void of a desire
to be a part of a solution. If there is anything I can do to complement
communication, coordinate, whatever, please let me know, and I'll be happy
to add my abilities to the mix.

Thank you for allowing me to be a part of this awesome team. I look forward
to working on the next iteration.


On Mon, Apr 29, 2013 at 12:17 AM, Hannie Dumoleyn <
lafeber-dumoleyn2@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>  Hello Jim,
> Thank you so much for your detailed feedback. It will be very useful and
> helps us in our effort to improve the way we work at the Ubuntu Manual
> Project.
> Kevin has already answered most of it, I will add a few of my thoughts.
> 1. Need for more authors and editors. This is always the case. Ideally we
> would like to see that every chapter/section has an author/editor pair. As
> it is now, we have not (yet) reached this ideal situation. Also, there can
> be situations in which a person who promised he would contribute, suddenly
> withdraws for whatever reason. That is a coordinator's nightmare. We have
> just welcomed a new contributor, Craig, but the question is: how do we get
> more contributors?
> 2. Schedule: I agree that we should start as soon as possible. Expect a
> call for authors soon.
> 3. Meetings: we should have meetings more often. The planning for meetings
> can be included in the schedule.
> 4. Screenshots. Let's not forget that especially Sylvie and Carsten have
> done a tremendous job for Raring. We should try to get the ideal situation
> in which authors upload the screenshots for their chapter/section according
> to the instructions in the style guide so that it is not up to a few people
> who have to do most of the screenshots at the last moment. Screenshots
> cannot be taken at an early stage because we have to wait for the beta
> release.
> I talk about ideal situations. Unfortunately we do not live in an ideal
> world. But we must try to improve the way we work as much as possible.
> Hannie
> Op 27-04-13 20:24, Jim Connett schreef:
>     I, too, wish to add my congrats and thanks to everyone for their hard
> work on the release of the Raring manual. It's really wonderful to see a
> team so diverse in skills and localities come together to accomplish a
> task.
>  As I am wont to do, I've thought about the positives and negatives of
> this iteration of the manual. Each manual presents its own surprises and
> its own unique set of "emergencies". Of course, my desire is that we
> capitalize on the positives and find ways to learn from the negatives.
>  *Positives
> *
> o Good communication between leads and all involved with regards to due
> dates and assignments.
>  o Well-developed and tested "help" documents released to aid in
> installation (tex) and version tracking (bazaar)
>  o A good foundation for the document has been created, allowing us to
> reduce our focus on the general information and focus more on the specific
> changes introduced with each iteration.
>  *Negatives
> *
> x Not nearly enough authors.
>  x Editing was a challenge this iteration as some authors missed the
> deadline.
>  x Too many changes in what was finally released in 13.04 that kept us
> scrambling up to the last second (Gwibber).
>  x Screenshots seemed to be a bit of an unexpected issue this time
> around.
>  *Recommendations
> *
> ! There should be a meeting one week before the due date for authors (and
> editors if they wish) to gain an assessment of where authors are at in the
> process...reassign sections if needed, etc. I don't think it works very
> well to have an authors/editors meeting 1/2 way through the editing
> process. I think it's better to have these as separate connection points.
>  ! More communication is needed when calls-for-authors and
> calls-for-editors are made. I remember only seeing one "call" on the
> 300-or-so RSS feeds I follow. Calls for authors/editors should be done 3-5
> times...up to two weeks before the author deadline. In fact, I would even
> go so far as to recommend we start getting authors/editors lined up now for
> Saucy.  It appears the Ubuntu Documentation Project is hurting (very badly)
> for authors/editors, and they've already put the word out for
> assistance...this means the pool of potential volunteers may become more
> limited.
>  ! Shave one week off of the author due date and give 3 weeks for
> editing.  We have all this time to write, but a very narrow window to
> edit/rewrite as needed.  If our goal now is to always release the new
> manual with the release of the new version of Ubuntu, I believe editors
> need just a little more time to do their job.
>  ! Re-instate the screenshot team. Screenshots should be uniform across
> the entire manual. Having everyone do their own screenshot...even when
> using the default theme, tends to produce ever-so-slightly different
> results. I would estimate it would take two people about 4 hours each at
> the end of the editing phase to do all the screenshots. (As a side-note...I
> do not think screenshots should be in the margin! If the concept is
> important enough to have a screenshot, it should be in the main section of
> the document.)
>  So...that's my perspective. take it or leave it.  Again, great job
> everyone! I'm looking forward to getting started on the next iteration in a
> few months!
>  --Jim
> On Fri, Apr 26, 2013 at 1:17 PM, Mehmet Kani <m.kani@xxxxxxx> wrote:
>>  Dear all,
>> Thank you all for all the support during the authoring stage. Look
>> forward to the next project.
>> Happy days.
>> Warm regards
>> Mehmet
>>  --
>> Mehmet Kani
>> m.kani@xxxxxxx
>>  [image: View Mehmet Kani's profile on LinkedIn]
>> <http://uk.linkedin.com/in/mehmetkani>
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