This Wednesday I was helping Mel with the POSSE class in Singapore. Basically, I covered what open source content in Fedora does (technical docs, process docs, community self-knowledge docs), the common tools and styles we try to propagate, and then walked the class through how to contribute to the release notes. The exercise was focused on editing to the wiki. I explained the rest of the process in the abstract with lots of links (scroll down for the sections “4. Documentation” and “5. Activity: become a release notes writer”.)
The process was made easier when one of the teacher-students noticed that a desktop environment he enjoys, LXDE, didn’t have any noted changes in the release notes source on the wiki. Suddenly there was a clear reason to edit the wiki derived from their personal interests beyond just learning. This is what we call the, “Ah, ha!” moment. Now they knew i) why to bother contributing to the release notes, and ii) how easy it is.
The class were all instructors in polytechnical or business schools in APAC – Singapore, Shangai, and so forth. Ideally, they take back the “how to be an active contributor in an open source community” training to their classes. Even better, if they do classes where part of the student work is being active in FLOSS communities.
You may find the IRC log interesting, but Mel did a good job capturing the basics in that screencast. It is useful for showing to anyone who drops by #fedora-docs. We’ll try to get an OGG version to grab from somewhere so we can have it in the /topic on #fedora-docs. 🙂