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Re: I still can't help

> > Has anybody of you ever taken notice of "the cathedral and the bazaar",
> > the now popular article about the power open source?
> Yes. At least myself and Jean have read it.

In fact I theorized something similar months before ESR wrote its

> Now here's my question for you: have you ever been an active developer in
> an open source project, and seen how the bazaar model works in practice ?
> You've read the manifesto, but do you understand it ?
> > You say you get a lot of people who are willing to contribute, but don't
> > do a thing in practice. 
> No, I don't say this. I say that a lot of people *say* they are willing to
> contribute, but when you give them something to d, they don't do anything.
> > The reason is in my eyes is that they cannot try. 
> This is a load of nonsense. When someone comes on to the list, and says
> "I'm interested in helping", we  don't hesitate to tell them what needs to
> be done.
> > They all have limited spare time and are not sure if they can spend
> > it on you.
> Bingo. People do have limited time, and they can't work on a volunteer
> project full time. They have a job, and often, family. This is why a lot
> of interested people are unable to do as much as they'd like to.

So do I.  First error was that when we created Indy it was May and
that means students havce exams and summer holidays are not too far.
When people returned from holidays they had "coldened".

Second: was that the repository was an unexciting goal.  We should
have gone directly for the distribution.  Gael Duval just added KDE to
a RedHat and now he has created Mandrake.  We had a far cleaner KDE in
Indy and planty of additional cool stuff just asking to be added to a

> > Imagine the following example: you make the complete sources of the
> > website available, with instructions on how it should be edited and
> > what's important. 
> They are already available.
> http://independence.seul.org/~donovan/indy.tar.gz
> It's updated nightly by a cron job.
> > I then can grap this source, improve it, and if AND
> > ONLY IF I think that I have made real improvements, I offer you my
> > changed version. 
> You already can do this. Look, it isn't very hard. 
> (1)	Subscribe to the list. 
> (2)	Ask: "where can I download the website"
> If you're interested in the project, you've already done (1). I don't
> think (2) is setting the bar reasonably high. 
> However, I will post some instructions. However, I put it to you that
> doing so will make very little difference.
> > Any free software developer starts just by TRYING if he
> > can improve something, without having to make promises, right?
> Actually, one of the popular myths is that you declare a project open
> source and millions of developers come from nowhere and start submitting
> contributions.  The reality is that this only happens to very large
> projects ( such as the linux kernel ). 

The kernel didn't happen by Linux telling: 'Hey we will build a cool
system'.  It started when Linus told: I have MADE a kernel who
supports VM'.  That is Linus built a seed befor declaring and in
addition it was something exciting.

Second people need to see that the project is moving and it was verty
frustrating this spring when I was unable to do much while answering
to people who entered the lsit.

You also need a good goal who sets you apart.  There are dozens of
distributions claiming they are the most user friendly.  I notice
Indy's resurection started shortly after I modified the front page
towards being a revolt of the users.

> It's certainly true that with almost any open source project, everyone
> contributing something substantial is subscribed to the project's mailing
> list. 
> > This way you avoid a lot of talking about nothing, 
> > but you will also get
> > the spontaneous improvements. 
> Again, this is ( to some degree ) a myth. The truth is that 99% of the
> work on most opensource projects is done by a very small core of
> developers.

Not quite treue for the kernel.

> Seriously, do you have any experience managing open source projects, or
> are you just blowing smoke ? If you don't have any such experience, can
> you quit lecturing us about project management ? Thanks.

Don't be so harsh.  We beleived in the same things when we started Indy.

			Jean Francois Martinez

Project Independence: Linux for the Masses