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From Rob Weir <>
Subject Re: Information for volunteers
Date Sat, 20 Oct 2012 20:21:07 GMT
On Fri, Oct 19, 2012 at 2:41 PM, jan iversen <> wrote:
> As agreed with Rob, I have put together a list of information, that would
> have me problems and time for all those that helped me.
> This list is just a starting point (all the information is out there, so it
> should just be a list with links)
> Suggested reading for all volunteers:
> - Where do I find information (wiki, cwiki, mailing lists) ?
> - What can I do to help ?
> - How is the organization (contributor, committer etc....all the way up) ?
> - Who is who ? (It would be good to have a list of the key persons) ?
> - What are our relationship to other openOffice packages (can I use my
> contribution elsewhere) ?

OK.  The above corresponds to what I've been calling "level-1" (until
I find a better term).  The documentation for this is in progress,

> Suggested reading for Wiki contributors
> - Which writing rules do we have (do I change a page directly or use talk)
> - How is the content controlled, basically I can write anything, are there
> any QA ?
> - How is the structure of Wiki ? (and temporary, which parts are old and
> outdated) ?
> - Who do I contact if I have problems/questions/need guidance ?

Personally I think of the wiki as a tool, not a role.  So developers,
QA, translators, support, doc, we all use the wiki and contribute
content.  It is a general skill, something I might put in a general
"level-2" doc.

> Suggested reading for a translator
> - Where do I find correct information about localization (some wiki pages
> are misguiding, and is NOT a good starting point)
> - Where can I see status of the ongoing translations ?
> . Which tools do I need and how do I use them (any standards) ?
> - Who do I contact to get started ?

Now we get to the meat of it.  Or the tofu of it, if you are vegetarian ;-)

Each volunteer has their own particular interests, and it is a little
dangerous to generalize, but I think in practice these are the common

1) Volunteer wants to help maintain a translation of AOO for their
language.  They don't desire broader engagement with the project.  In
fact they find the traffic level on the lists annoying.  They might
pop in once or twice during the development of a release, but in
general are not engaged with the project.

2) Volunteers who want be more engaged with enabling AOO for their
locale.  So they help maintain the translation, but also an NL
website.  They might help on an NL discussion forum.  They might
control a NL-specific Twitter account or Facebook page.  They might
help organize local events related to AOO.  In their country, they are
"Mr. OpenOffice".  So such a volunteer is cross-functional, but
focused on activities related to that single language.

3) Volunteers interested in the general internationalization process
with the project.  So not just a single language, but end-to-end,
including the parts that intersect with the programmers and admins.
They define and support the processes and tools that support the
localization volunteers.

So it might make sense to split this into two "levels" (until I find a
better word!), one focused on localization.  They don't need to
understand the tools and SDF files and the messiness that occurs
behind the scenes.  They just need to know how to get the files to
translate, how to translate, how to submit the translations, and how
to get a test build to verify the translation.  So it is a loop of

My group 2 above would benefit from further documentation about
marketing, about website design, etc.,  but that is best covered by
those groups.  It is not really a localization question.

Group 3 volunteers -- that involves procedures that are not fully
defined and which require manual intervention.  So I think we'll be
documenting and improving in parallel.

The big question we should ask ourselves is this:  when do we feel
good enough about our documentation for localization voluntees that we
can do a broader "call for volunteers" on the website?  If next week
we had 10 volunteers introduce themselves on the mailing list, for 10
different languages, could we handle it?  I don't think so, not
without a great deal of confusion.  So I think we need two basic

1) Accurate, current documentation for volunteers that are focused on

2) A more automated way to process PO files, so we don't drive
Juergen, our Release Manager, crazy with requests for special
translation builds.  Maybe if we can get to a steady heart beat of
snapshot builds (say every week or every two weeks) we can
automatically include any updated translation in that build?

> Suggested reading for a tester
> - How can I help testing ?
> - Is it possible to test in my native language ?
> - Which tools do I need ?
> - How do I report bugs ?
> - Who do I contact, if I want to be a tester ?
> Suggested reading for a developer
> - Where do I find guidance on how to write a source code (naming standards
> etc.) ?
> - Where do I find build instructions (I found 5 different for Ubuntu...the
> last one was pretty good, but I still had to ask on dev for the last bit (a
> simple flag was wrong))
> - Where do I find source ?
> - When do I need to use the sources, and when to use extensions ?
> - Where do I find the bug reporting system ?
> - How can I "reserve" a bug for me to solve ?
> Then of course as you grow more into the community you get more questions
> (like CMS etc), but I think to cover that would be too much.

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