Meeting — December 2, 2019

Attendees: Salt, smichel, wolftune, iko, MSiep, mray, alignwaivers


Discourse (over past week):

  • Signups: 0 -> 0
  • New Topics: 1 -> 0
  • Posts: 8 -> 1

Reminders on building new best-practice habits

Sociocracy stuff

  • Drivers, describing driver statements:
    • Current situation + effect + what’s needed + impact of doing it
    • forum discussion of our use:
    • Objections vs concerns
    • Example of proposal phase:

Use of GitLab kanban boards

  • Use the boards to pick your tasks, dragging or marking To Do and Doing appropriately

Hand symbols for conversation queue

  • “o/” or “/” means that you have something to say and want to be put in the queue
  • “c/” or “>” means that you have a clarifying question and want to jump to the top of the queue
  • “d” means thumbs up, encouragement, agreement, etc.


## Salt met author of unfinished book on patronage funding at Communications conference
- NEXT STEP (salt): follow up with conference contacts, D. Yvette Wohn

## Marking prominently that we're under-construction
- NEXT STEP (mray): finish mockup & get feedback

## Volunteer / role recruiting etc
- SeaGL volunteers, Civi status, board recruiting etc, follow up by mid-Dec with or without Civi

## Volunteer recruiting application
- NEXT STEP (msiep): Wireframe of (or wherever the form will live), potentially with second stage "fill out profile" option (see meeting notes )

## Last meeting feedback
- salt: there's toe-stepping / issues with talking over each other, maybe we could use some form of "raise-hand" signal on Mumble
- alignwaivers: we really should be starting on time!
- wolftune: we could use rounds more, with varying order, make sure to hear from everyone, can use during meeting to just get general feel from everyone, people can pass easily

Advanced agenda planning for meetings

  • wolftune: Not completely thought through, but from other groups, it’s sometimes nice to have to wait until meeting starts to build some agenda.
  • wolftune: We’re probably missing some stuff currently, that people think of but not during agenda building.
  • Salt: agreed. it would be nice to have agenda items ahead of meeting. That’s running (good) meetings 101.
  • Salt: I still want to leave some time in the meeting to add items, but maybe also the 5 minutes before the meeting starts?
  • wolftune: that comes under the Secretary role. it would be ideal if there was a point person for wrangling agenda items
  • wolftune: [meta] [sociocracy] We should have a process for dealing with tensions instead of just bringing them up and saying “yeah, that’s a tension”. I’d like to feel like I can bring a tension to a meeting and resolve it immediately.
  • alignwaivers: yeah that sounds good
  • smichel: once the notes are captured, the pad is empty until the next meeting, so if you think of something throughout the week, you can add it to the pad
  • NEXT STEP (wolftune): create a thread to discuss how to resolve this tension [DONE]

Issue grooming / dumping etc

  • wolftune/Salt: This has been a carryover for a long time. Let’s discuss briefly before moving it back.
  • Salt: How can we help with this?
  • smichel: the 1st issue is the amount of time I have available to spend (will talk about that later)
  • smichel: as far as the actual work of doing it goes, it may be helpful to work with someone on it, not sure yet
  • wolftune: What is the closest we have to a “guide for grooming issues”? If someone looks at an issue and doesn’t know where to start, maybe we could have a checklist, “Does it have a good title, driver statement, etc?).
  • alignwaivers: if we have it, it’s not easy to find unfortunately
  • Salt: maybe we should compile a list of references on the topic
  • smichel: What if we added a “needs grooming” tag?
  • MSiep: this particularly task (esp. with limited bandwidth) is hard to get motivation to work on because it seems too vague. it competes with other more concrete tasks for my motivation
  • wolftune: we can have a step-by-step procedure to make it less overwhelming
  • smichel: I agree with both of you, though I find that when I’m active and have the tasks/details already in my head, then issue grooming is easier
  • Salt: agreed
  • smichel: following on that, a higher-level overview might the next logical step. currently I can’t tell from the current pages where the project stands since my last time here, as someone who hasn’t been able to spend as much time lately on the project
  • wolftune: reminder — if you take on a task, it’s fine/encouraged to ask for help if you need it
  • mray: regarding the use of tags, weren’t we using (kanban) columns before instead of tags?
  • wolftune: tags can be columns in GitLab (EE feature), and we can have multiple boards, e.g. things assigned to me. they can essentially be views of tags, and you can move things back and forth
  • Salt: alignwaivers, see if you can find a reference for grooming of non-development tasks
  • wolftune: sociocracy may have some stuff under “review” (vs “grooming”)
  • alignwaivers: I will try
  • NEXT STEP (align_waivers): compile a list of references or links that explore the issue of grooming-guide
  • NEXT STEP (wolftune): create a “needs-grooming” group tag on GitLab [DONE]
  • NEXT STEP (smichel17): Delete or close the LFNW 2019 milestone
  • NEXT STEP (smichel + wolftune + alignwaivers + msiep): schedule grooming session
  • NEXT STEP (msiep): groom design repo issues

Code development progress

  • wolftune: I got a message from Bryan, “If you can build the site & upload a binary, I’ll try to get it online”
  • wolftune: we don’t have a build server yet and we’re waiting on things [OSUOSL]
  • wolftune: I didn’t remember how to build (w/ keter?) in a way that generates a local binary. I know I’ve done it before, just not on my own
  • Salt: is this something you have done previously, might iko or smichel know about?
  • Salt: seems like a good opportunity to ask in irc or discord asking for help
  • wolftune: the other option is to ping chreekat and ask him how to do it, the point being we should document this clearly once we figure it out
  • Salt: I think that’s good, I’d reach out to kyriarchy, tuxayo, fr33domlover
  • smichel: I vaguely remember the instructions being embedded as comments in the script (, not 100% sure
  • NEXT STEP (chreekat): run the backlog of crowdmatches (blocked by needing to build and deploy updated site)
  • NEXT STEP (wolftune): contact people, chreekat and/or others, verify how to build and send build to the server; also add mention of this in

Engagement / “Community member” recruiting

  • smichel: I realised that my reduced involvement in snowdrift I can tie to when jazzyeagle left. I think the reason is that he was a big presence in irc, for being around in the community and chatting, which kept me around snowdrift more. in the last 6-9 months, I haven’t been around irc much, and it’s a big contributor to how much time I might spend on the project. what if we recruited more people as of a snowdrift community (to chat and not necessarily directly work on snowdrift) which seems a bit lacking lately?
  • Salt: this is something I intended to do more, was a bit demotivated from technical issues & being overloaded in grad school, but still do want to spend time on.
  • wolftune: Can we do a round? I’m curious where people stand on this.
  • Salt: (already shared)
  • wolftune: There’s a tension — we had a code contributor on irc who felt maybe they should leave the community because it was too interesting: they felt like they were getting sucked in to more when they originally just wanted to do some code contributing.
  • wolftune: we have a forum category — winter lodge — for this type of thing. We want to strike a balance between overloading and not losing people.
  • wolftune: In 2019, I took a step back to take care of things I was neglecting. I think it’s been a success, but also it has contributed to having less of a community.
  • iko: No opinion either way. community nurturing is important, though in terms of recruiting I think we’re more in need of developers.
  • msiep: I personally don’t spend much time in irc. In terms of having a community, it’s definitely a balance. Especially good for people who are new.
  • mray: I recognize the issue. I think we lack some progress/movement in the project that would automatically generate some community. When things move, problems appear, we troubleshoot, we talk more — it’s a feedback loop. I agree with Iko that getting more people in development will help.
  • alignwaivers: I agree overall, I can relate to the feeling of being able to ping someone online at the same time to discuss a task. it also depends, people are motivated by different things.
  • Salt: I think it’s worth specifically recruiting for community — recruiting only devs will create some momentum but I don’t think it will necessarily lead to a vibrant community
  • wolftune: I feel a tension when i’ve not been active on specific tasks — I don’t want to do “link-dumping” or random stuff to make up for my lack of progress on what I actually wanted to do. sometimes engaging the community for feedback on how to proceed with something can be helpful
  • Salt: I think it’s a good thing, and also a time-and-place type situation. I do agree it should not be just your voice that is doing it. More voices with less activity > one voice with lots.
  • smichel: I’ve been more active in discord communities recently. one thing I noticed was having chat split into multiple channels makes it easier to filter certain backlog when I’m away for a short time, e.g. announcements in one channel
  • Salt: I agree, but don’t know if I want to risk breaking things up — it’s a bit harder until there is the activity to warrant breaking up.
  • smichel: I think a plain sentence is more engaging than a link
  • alignwaivers: I think it’s useful to have a sense of how people operate. Maybe too much work, but could create a spreadsheet or whatnot
  • wolftune: one idea, people can write a manual about themselves as an interesting exercise (e.g. preferences, how to interact with me)
  • Salt: any next steps?
  • smichel: I just want to bring this topic up for discussion, not necessarily any next step
  • wolftune: one potential next step, we could establish a “cheerleader” role?
  • Salt: we should consider recruiting more voices, not just roles. I would also love a better/maintained bot
  • smichel: Discord has a “roles” feature — one Discord I’m part of has a role called “regulars” for like active community members, no specific privileges, just a visual indicator
  • NEXT STEP (Salt): create a driver statement for an active community voice role

meeting evaluation / feedback / suggestions round

  • Salt: great to have all the attendees, still have tention of not starting on time
  • smichel: handraising worked surprising well
  • wolftune: handraising worked well, personally felt less like interrupting, we seem to be engaging with issues rather than just noting them
  • iko: miss older format, this is a bit more rigid, but if people are happy I don’t mind (understandable people might prefer it overall to reduce mic collision)
  • MSiep: happy to keep trying to format
  • mray: willing to keep testing, why don’t we use Matrix for more things that integrate this
  • alignwaivers: thing hand raising good idea, but want way to say two words without having mics fighting, type more things out, esp simple yes/no questions