Contributing to The Open Source Way

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Let your audience do your PR. They're pleasantly biased and decidedly not you.

A bit of wisdom from Rands that applies to communities and contributions: they are pleasantly biased and decidedly not you.

You are encouraged (HIGHLY) to contribute your thoughts, ideas, writing, expertise, critique, and just about anything.

Help improve this telling of how to know and implement the open source way.

A specific goal of this book is to have a community write about community.

This wiki is the upstream for the book and is where all of the collaboration on writing takes place. We can then form wiki-specific processes over time within the authoring community. That process is written up in Contributing to The Open Source Way.

A second step is the conversion of the content to DocBook XML for publication. That process is written up in Converting to DocBook XML.

The DocBook XML source is kept in a git repository at . Details on getting accessing, using, and contributing to that repository are in Contributing to The Open Source Way and Using git repository.

The Big task list is a good place to start
There is a Roadmap for this project that shows the path to the future.
If you get stuck, contact the team
The best way to get answers is to join the mailing list and ask your questions, but we don't want you to feel stuck with that. Contact the project leader with any questions.

Contribution areas

  • Wiki - any existing user can create a new user account for someone else
    1. Read and understand the Contribution policy.
      • If you have any questions about the policy, contact the contributors via the mailing list; read Contacts for ore information.
    2. Contact an existing user to sponsor you on the wiki.
      • Try searching the [[User:]] pages.
    3. Have that user follow the instructions on the page How to create a user account.
    4. Read Contributing to The Open Source Way.
  • DocBook XML
  • Mailing list is self-service joining.
Short-cut available
If any existing committer knows you and your work, that committer can sponsor you immediately for a wiki account and access to the git repository.

Edit the wiki

Fill in examples where it says Example needed.

Improve examples. We want examples that go beyond technology, especially beyond free/libre open source software.

Point out when an entire new section is needed using the discussion tab (aka the Talk: page.)

Editing process

  1. Edit content as you see fit; be bold.
    • That said, if you feel at all that you need support or permission, Contacting the team is a good page to use. We want you to feel comfortable about what you edit. Don't worry, there is no hurry, we have time to get it right.
  2. Everytime you save the page, include a Summary: that explains why you changed the content; an overview of the changes is acceptable but not required (it's visible from the history tab.)
    • Your first summary can include text that you are beginning one or more edits.
    • You are encouraged to save often to prevent content loss in the case of browser crash or mistake.
  3. When you are done with your edit, have the last Summary: text include the words, "Ready for XML conversion."
    • If you add content after that, repeat the usage of, "Ready for XML conversion" in each summary. This just moves forward the conversion point.
    • This technique lets the XML conversion contributor know the boundary limit when doing a diff of the page history.
  4. When you are done with your edits and it is ready for XML conversion, send email to the document lead or team that the changes are ready.
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