Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Power of Developer Meetings

Since several years, we have lots of small developer meetings in the KDE project, gratefully supported by the KDE e.V. There, developers of a certain project (e.g. KMail/kdepim, Plasma, you name it) meet to discuss further plans and to push the project further. From experience we can tell that those meetings are really beneficial in several ways:
  • Social aspect: You get to know the other developers involved in the project in real life, which is a great motivation factor. This also happens at KDE's annual conference Akademy, although there are a lot more people.
  • Productivity: Since you are sitting next to each other discussions about how to do what are very focused. It's amazing how quickly a project can evolve this way. (I haven't seen such focused work in companies, yet. I guess the variance in the knowledge of people involved is higher. And the motivation is usually very different).
  • Knowledge Transfer: Since participants are experts in different areas, discussions lead to knowledge transfer. This is essential, as sometimes developers have very few free time to contributes to a project. Spreading the knowledge helps a lot to keep the project alive.
  • Steady Contributions: We are always open for new contributors. Just send a patch, get commit access and join development. Experience shows that participants of a developer meeting usually contribute for years to come.
Enough said, here is what happened the last three days in Kate:
There are even more changes I left out. Most of those changes will be in KDE 4.4.1. If you want to help, join #kate in!

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