[OLPC-devel] Good engineering practice
wmb at firmworks.com
Sat Aug 26 13:42:02 EDT 2006
Folks, I'm starting to get really frustrated.
Coming up to speed on this project has been challenging because the
communication is so haphazard. Issues just "float around in the air" -
on IRC and devel list conversations that diverge wildly from the thread
topic. Finding out the history and status of a particular issue is at
best time-consuming, and on average nearly impossible.
I posted a plea for using trac and suggested that two specific issues
should be moved there because they need to be tracked.
But instead, people immediately started discussing those two issues on
the mailing list *under the thread about engineering practice*.
Call me a stick in the mud, but I know this for certain from involvment
in lot of projects:
Disorganized projects do not converge, and thus fail to meet quality and
schedule goals. Failure on either count is usually fatal.
I appreciate that this project has a lot of volunteer labor and that
many people are borrowing time to do the work. But that's not an excuse
for haphazard communication. On the contrary, if you want your time to
have been spent meaningfully, the project needs to succeed. And that
requires convergence on issues, which in turn requires disciplined
communication. And disciplined communication saves you, and everybody
else, time in the long run.
Any issue or question that probably requires a change to the hardware or
software should be moved to the bug tracker, and further discussion
should be via that medium.
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