[isf-wifidog] Roadmap and Project Manager

Matthew Asham matthewa at bcwireless.net
Mar 3 Jan 12:41:45 EST 2006

> On January 3, 2006 05:01 am, Max Horváth wrote:
> > Hi,
> >
> > in the last few weeks we've all been discussing about the things 
> > WiFiDog lacks about.
> >
> > One thing I'm sure we currently miss the most is an active project 
> > manager and of course one of his most important responsibilities to
> > create: a roadmap.
> Unlike others, I had no vacation this Christmas while 
> everyone else suddently seemed to have heaps of time to work 
> on wifidog.  I even excused myself before christmas.  Bashing 
> me publically is not really the best way to start an 
> intelligent conversation about it.

Happy New Year.
> > Just an example of my situation as a developer. I have a 
> lot of ideas 
> > WiFiDog could need as improvements. Sure we have a bug and 
> feature list.
> >
> > But what we really need is a roadmap so developers among us could 
> > concentrate on specific things to work on step by step.
> As was mentionned before (several times) the roadmap is 
> obtained by searching the bugs and RFEs by group:  
> -For 1.0
> -Post 1.0
> -Long term
> This would be done automatically if we had a more decent 
> developper support platform.  Considering the fact that we 
> are apparently going to go trough a third wiki transition 
> anyway, and that we are having problems with sourceforge's 
> CVS, I think we should take this opportunity to move to SVN 
> and an integrated wiki and task manager like Trac. 


> > So - any input and/or ideas?
> -I think the lack of a unified design document hurts us much 
> more than the fact that the roadmap is hard to use.  
> Unfortunately, I am not even sure the few design-like 
> documents I posted to the mailing list over the years after 
> reaching a consensus after hours of arguing on mailing lists 
> or in person were even carefully read by most people.  It 
> takes hours to agree on relatively simple but important 
> things such as the Smarty integration level desired.  This is 
> somewhat normal, but getting a consensus on a full design 
> document that people will actually honor and respect would be 
> weeks of pretty much fulltime work for the coordinator.  I 
> don't think anyone has that kind of time to commit to just writing.
> Right now (well, up till a month ago), I spent hours every 
> week on wifidog related things, almost 100% of it being 
> invisible project management of some sort.  No time left for 
> coding and actual work, this is just no fun.  
> Unfortunately, every organisational change I proposed to 
> implement simple OSS best practices and make international 
> developement easier have meet moderate to heavy resistance 
> locally.  

Maybe we should fly out your local resistors and drop kick them in the
pants. ;)

> To put it bluntly, there is little point in doing 
> project management if people won't either do what the manager 
> proposes or come up with and defend an alternative.  I am 
> emotionally tired of it, and I don't intend to attempt it 
> again untill people seem to be more open to it.  
> It may just be that the project doesn't want or need a 
> singular project manager (I certainly don't think it's 
> workable at this stage).  At least a lot of people seem to 
> independently recognise the need for change.

I think it needs someone who can actively troll other's for input (this
is not meant as an offense to you personally, Benoit) -  If there is local 
resistance perhaps disconnecting WifiDog's management from Ile Sans Fil 
would be a wise idea to help achieve long term goals.

At the very least we should have the core managers from other groups
with each other to help define the roadmap and keep everyone on the same
A dedicated Wiki could help, as would using IRC, and of course, voice
are nice too.  As much as an in-life meeting would be helpful that isn't
always going to be practical.  Someone still needs to take the lead on this
though, I nominate Max (Sorry Max)

> But here are a few communication related things that are easy 
> and that I think should be priorities to help the project in 
> the short term:
> -I've been very liberal with commit access to lower the 
> barrier of entry.  
> However, if you want to commit a change that isn't a bugfix 
> or simple improvement, it is probably best to check on the 
> mailing list if it has been discussed before.
> -Someone should make sure that the doxygen documentation for 
> the auth server actually builds, and should create a nightly 
> corntab entry to build it from CVS and put it up on the web.  
> There is a ton of design-related documentation in there.
> -Use the IRC  channel (#ilesansfil on freenode, or we can 
> create a #wifidog one if it makes anyone feel better).  We 
> used it exensively when we coded the gateway, and it helped 
> smooth out cummunication massively.  We are the only OSS 
> project of significance I ever heard of that actively resists 
> this idea.  
> Hopefully I don't have to explain why this is almost essential.


> -It may be more on a psychological thing, but I think wifidog 
> should have it's own wiki.  People are just too shy to ask 
> for permissions on the ISF one.
> -We need a better and really simple task and milestone 
> manager like Trac (I don't really care which one we pick, but 
> we should pick one).
> -Now that max has proposed coding standards, and no one 
> opposed, we shold respect it.
> -We should make the mailing list archives searchable.

Sounds good.


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