Thursday, April 22, 2010

Bugfixing at PyOhio

Jesse Noller wants to know what's holding you back from working on Python.

He's looking to make the process of contributing to Python more smooth and self-explanatory, less intimidating. That's a good discussion, and I'm not sure what to tell him right now, but it does bring to mind something I really want to see.

Let's have a Python Bug Fixing Tutorial at PyOhio!

Walk everybody nice and slooooowly through the process of browsing through the Python bug tracker (for bugs in Python itself, in its standard library, etc.), checking out code, fixing and testing, making a diff file, submitting the fix. Don't assume that people are familiar with VCS, diff files, the test suite, etc. - all those tools and jargon that separate veterans from intimidated users. Let's break down that separation.

Our Call for Proposals is open right now (through May 10). What a coincidence! I'm not actually on the program committee, so I can't promise that such a proposal would be accepted, but let's just say that the committee will give it serious consideration if they know what's good for them. :)

I'm asking you to propose this, not me, because I am not crazy enough to think that I can lead such a tutorial while chairing the conference; especially since I've never actually done it before myself. Actually, maybe there's one way I could do it: taking the role of the leader/learner in a "Teach Me Twisted"-style you-teach-me session. In that case, I'd want commitments from... hmm... let me say 3+ experienced bugfixers to talk me through it in front of a live audience.

One way or the other, let's see to it that PyOhio transforms some Python users into contributors!


Steve said...

Brilliant idea, Catherine. Please make sure someone gets video of this!

Jeremy Boyd said...

This is a fantastic idea. Additionally, it would be a great service to the whole community if video of such a demonstration were available. I'm sure many of us who aren't in Ohio or otherwise won't be attending are nonetheless interested in helping Python grow.

Jesse said...

"That's a good discussion, and I'm not sure what to tell him right now, but it does bring to mind something I really want to see."

You don't need to tell me anything, you're already doing it.