[Chaoss-members] Proposal for a FOSDEM devroom

Jesus M. Gonzalez-Barahona jgb at bitergia.com
Mon Sep 11 01:46:05 UTC 2017

Hi all,

As I committed during one of our preparatory meetings, I've prepared a
proposal for a devroom at FOSDEM [1]. I think most of you know about
FOSDEM, but just in case, it is the major European conference for FOSS
developers, with 5,000-8,000 developers meeting together in Brussels in
February. It includes some main tracks, and devrooms. devrooms are
rooms devoted to specific topics, and there are several tens of them
running in parallel. Every year, they publish a call for devrooms, and
there is where I propose to submit our proposal. 

[1] http://fosdem.org

I've prepared the proposal based in the work some of us did for FOSDEM
2013 (which didn't succeed), and in other related proposals in which I
participated in 2006-09 (which succeeded, with a FOSS research devroom
running for several years).

The draft proposal is below. Any comment (including proposals of
change) is welcome. If you would be interested in backing the proposal,
and finding some other backers, that would be great (I've preferred to
base the proposal on persons rather than on CHAOSS as a group to make
it clear that our idea is inclusive to others).



* Proposal for a FOSDEM devroom: FOSS Development Analytics*

** Main objectives **

To reinforce the emerging community interested in FOSS (free, open
source software) development analytics.

More specifically:

- To discuss the current status of FOSS tools in this area
- To share models about FOSS health and sustainability based on factual
- To share experiences by FOSS projects already doing their own
- To find ways of pooling development effort and other resources
- To explore the requirements and functionality of future platforms

** Summary **

Tools and platforms for analyzing and visualizing information from
software repositories (source code management, bug reporting /
ticketing, code review, mailing lists, etc.) are flourishing. Many of
them are proprietary, which means that in many cases, FOSS (free, open
source software) projects are having to use proprietary tools to
analyze themselves.

There is also a lot of interest in models to evaluate the health,
quality or sustainability of FOSS projects, based on factual data
retrieved mainly from their repositories. But there are little
opportunities of sharing these interests, and the experiences in
building and applying these models, in venues were all stakeholders are
represented: developers, academics, project managers, users, etc.

We believe that the FOSS development model is specially well suited for
being applied in both cases. In fact, many projects are already
developing software and setting up platforms for analyzing their own
repositories, some FOSS systems and tools do exist for retrieving,
analyzing and visualizing information about FOSS development, and some
health and quality models for FOSS are being created and discussed
using practices quite similar to those of FOSS development.

If a certain critical mass is reached in this domain, it is reasonable
to assume that usual mechanisms observed in FOSS development will
enable incremental innovation and the quick improvement of the
capabilities of these tools and models.

The FOSS Development Analytics devroom intends to be an open venue to
present these models, tools, and analysis that are already under
development, and to discuss about collaboration, synergies, etc. The
devroom will be organized to foster discussion and finding of
synergies, but also development of new tools and models, improvement of
existing ones, and spread the knowledge about what is being done and
can be done in this area. Given that the devroom will happen in the
context of FOSDEM, it will be focused on the needs, interests and
contributions of FOSS developers.

** Backers **

This proposal is put together by the CHAOSS group, which includes
contributors from well known FOSS Foundations, companies producing FOSS
tools for software development analytics, and academics with experience
in analysis of FOSS projects. To ensure that the needs of the wider
FOSS development community are met, CHAOSS has contacted other parties,
and all together have put together this list of people backing the
proposal, and with interest in contributing to the success of the
devroom (alphabetic order, all of them representing themselves,
affiliation is only informative):

The responsibility for the organization and coordination will be led by
the CHAOSS group, in a way as inclusive as open as possible.

* CHAOSS Group: http://chaoss.community

** Participants **

Participation as speaker in the devroom will be subject to an open call
for contributions. This call will be communicated through mailing lists
and social media channels related to the subject, in which the backers
of the proposal participate.

The backers of this proposal commit to prepare at least five
presentations for the devroom, which will be submitted through the open
call. They will  be subject to the same review and selection process
than the other proposals.

In addition, anyone could attend, provided there is space. Interaction
between speakers and other attendants will be promoted as much as

** Organization **

An organizing committee will be established to promote the devroom, the
open call, and the organization in general. It will be composed by the
backers, plus some other persons related to the subject of the devroom.
It will be as much inclusive as possible, giving voice to FOSS projects
and developers interested in the subject.

The organizing committee will produce the call for contributions, which
will be based on this proposal. They will receive all proposals, and
will openly discuss about how to better accommodate as many of them as
possible, while at the same time fostering discussion and reserving
some slots for open interaction.

The devroom will include some time for demos and live explanations of
how to use FOSS applications for analyzing software development,and
models of FOSS health, specifically focused to FOSS developers.

All the materials used in the talks, demos and other activities will be
published under free culture licenses.

Since this is the first year the devroom will be celebrated, we
envision having a half-day (morning or afternoon) devroom, but a full
day devroom will also be possible.

Bitergia: http://bitergia.com
/me at Twitter: https://twitter.com/jgbarah

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