Contributing

Timeline is an open source project that is developed by a community of people. Anyone interested can participate in the development.

What to contribute?

There are many ways you can contribute to the development of Timeline. The most useful thing you can do is to just use Timeline and tell us how it works for you. Send feedback and comments to the Mailing list and participate in discussions.

Here is a blog post that might be useful that talks about ways to contribute to open source projects in general: 14 Ways to Contribute to Open Source without Being a Programming Genius or a Rock Star.

Process

This section describes how changes to Timeline are made.

It describes how we work.

If we find better ways of working we can change this process to reflect that.

General workflow

  • We continuously collect problems to be solved
  • We work in sprints that are around 3 months long
  • In each sprint we work on the most interesting problems
  • After each commit a beta release is built automatically
  • At the end of each sprint a final release is made

Backlog

The backlog is here: https://sourceforge.net/p/thetimelineproj/backlog

The backlog contains problems that have been identified by users of Timeline.

Collecting problems

The old way of collecting problems looks like this:

  • The main way users of Timeline interact with the project is via the Mailing list.
  • Requests that users make are transformed into problem descriptions
  • Usually a conversation is needed to find the problem description
  • Crash reports are already clear problem descriptions
  • Problems are stored in the backlog

The new experimental way of collecting problems looks like this:

  • Users discuss Timeline on the forum
  • Some discussions will result in problems being identified
  • Discussions with identified problems might be tagged so that they can be easily found

Prioritization

  • A problem is prioritized higher if more users have experienced it
  • Anyone is allowed to comment on problems to indicate its importance to them

Sprints

  • A developer picks an identified problem (preferably a problem with high priority) and works on it

  • To be accepted for inclusion in Timeline, each patch must
    • follow guidelines
    • pass tests
    • have an entry in the changelog if major user visible changes was made
  • A patch is delivered by pushing to the repo (if the developer has push-access)

  • A patch is delivered by sending it to the mailing list (if the developer lacks push-access)

Release

  • At the end of a sprint a developer creates release packages and uploads to SourceForge