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Wikimedia Technical Conference 2019 Unconference: Reducing barriers to entry for new developers
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Authored By
debt, Oct 4 2019

Description

Session

  • Track: Local Development and onboarding
  • Topic: Reducing barriers to entry for new developers

Description

We will discuss the current state of onboarding for various groups (WMDE, WMF teams, volunteer devs, etc), entry points for newcomers, and the barriers they are facing. We will then discuss how we can make it easier for a new developer to get started with the Wikimedia ecosystem (This should focus on all other points aside from improving local dev env and documentation/support channels, as those are handled in other sessions.)

Questions to answer and discuss

Question:
Significance:

Question:
Significance:

Related Issues

  • ...
  • ...

Pre-reading for all Participants

  • [add links here]

Notes document(s)

[link to notes document (gdoc and / or etherpad)]

Notes and Facilitation guidance

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Technical_Conference/2019/NotesandFacilitation


Session Leader(s)

  • [name]
  • [name]

Session Scribes

  • [name]
  • [name]

Session Facilitator

  • [name]

Session Style / Format

  • [what type of format will this session be?]

Session Leaders please:

  • Add more details to this task description.
  • Coordinate any pre-event discussions (here on Phab, IRC, email, hangout, etc).
  • Outline the plan for discussing this topic at the event.
  • Optionally, include what this session will not try to solve.
  • Update this task with summaries of any pre-event discussions.
  • Include ways for people not attending to be involved in discussions before the event and afterwards.

Post-event summary:

  • ...

Post-event action items:

  • ...

Event Timeline

debt created this task.Oct 4 2019, 3:17 PM
josephine_l updated the task description. (Show Details)Oct 4 2019, 5:35 PM
TK-999 awarded a token.Oct 5 2019, 2:54 PM
AnneT awarded a token.Oct 7 2019, 12:46 PM
Addshore added a subscriber: Addshore.
Tpt awarded a token.Oct 11 2019, 7:46 PM
Tpt added a subscriber: Tpt.
TheDJ added a subscriber: TheDJ.EditedOct 12 2019, 1:33 PM

The description seems clear yet when I read it, I still have no idea what we would be doing in this session.. Identify pain points ? Throw ideas at the wall and see what sticks ? These things tends to get incredibly broad and vague ('better documentation')

We should make sure that we have a good idea of what input and what output this session will have.

Personal Idea for improvements:

  • Gitlab's onboarding template
  • Delete outdated pages and/or move them into a Historic namespace (to prevent conflicting and confusing information being mixed with the useful information)
  • Write heavily interlinked tutorials and publish them separately. The hardest part of MediaWiki is learning how to write an extension that does things. How to use the database, how to use the config system etc etc. The Laravel documentation has been hugely helpful to me over the past 1,5 years as I was getting into that.
josephine_l added a comment.EditedOct 12 2019, 5:50 PM

@TheDJ That makes sense - I think we can definitely add more specific goals once we start the process of building this session. Would you and/or @Tpt like to be the session leader/co-leader?

I'm not sure what to get out of this session. Quoting https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/New_Developers/Quarterly :

New developers continue to struggle with the code contribution process. They experience more or less same set of challenges each quarter with understanding Gerrit, code-review, coding conventions, and missing documentation. [...] Former developers who were last active a year ago expressed frustrations with slow code review process.

"Reducing barriers" translates to improving those areas which are dependencies of this Epic. See for example dedicated sessions T234634: Wikimedia Technical Conference 2019 Session: On-wiki documentation & documentation as code: strengths, weaknesses, and compromises or T234660: Wikimedia Technical Conference 2019 Session: Code Health/Code Review.

Tgr added a subscriber: Tgr.Oct 13 2019, 7:33 PM

The description seems clear yet when I read it, I still have no idea what we would be doing in this session..

+1, this is an incredibly important topic but also very broad. Code review, documentation and support, outreach, mentoring / training, entry points (such as the total mess of Github clones which don't even link to the correct repo, or the confusing mw.org extension templates), usability in the case of on-wiki code (Scribunto etc) are all topics worthy of their own sessions.

Onboarding thoughts (with obligatory "i am not a dev" disclaimer):

Hi all, we're still looking for a session leader in order for this session to go ahead. :) Once we have one, we can proceed to narrow the scope down, perhaps splitting into subtopics based on feedback here.

+1, this is an incredibly important topic but also very broad. Code review, documentation and support, outreach, mentoring / training, entry points (such as the total mess of Github clones which don't even link to the correct repo, or the confusing mw.org extension templates), usability in the case of on-wiki code (Scribunto etc) are all topics worthy of their own sessions.

Hmm, I don't think we are allowed to add new sessions after last Sunday unfortunately. :( But we could definitely split this session up into more specific subtopics. I think code review and documentation are already covered in other sessions, but the others sound like good subtopics.

  • I think it would be useful for other groups/affiliates/teams to share what they currently use (e.g. WMDE?)
  • It might be useful for any recent newcomers to the movement to explain what pain points they remember being specifically confused/frustrated by. (ideally right here, and before TechConf!)

Great idea IMO!

greg added a comment.Wed, Oct 23, 9:42 PM

(Programming note)

Due to our inability to find a session leader(s), this session was NOT accepted and will NOT be pre-scheduled.

What can I do?

There will be approximately a day's worth of time devoted to unconference sessions at this year's Technical Conference. You are free to use that time to discuss this topic if there is interest.

greg renamed this task from Wikimedia Technical Conference 2019 Session: Reducing barriers to entry for new developers to Wikimedia Technical Conference 2019 Unconference: Reducing barriers to entry for new developers.Wed, Oct 23, 9:43 PM
josephine_l removed josephine_l as the assignee of this task.Mon, Nov 11, 5:09 PM