Christopher Sean Morrison <brlcad@...
2014-12-01 11:22:30 GMT
If you’re not a GCI mentor, you can stop reading now.
If you’re a veteran GCI mentor, there’s not much different this year other than what we’re doing to
manage tasks. You can jump to TASKS below. For new mentors, please read this in full.
GCI is about to begin in just a few hours so be prepared for a huge influx of requests, comments, and task
reviews! This first week is always the busiest. For those of you new to GCI mentoring, what will happen is
that students will claim a task and it is our job to assign all claim requests as quickly as possible. They
can ask questions right on the google-melange website, and we respond there. The most dedicated tend to
join IRC too, so it’s helpful if you could be there too. When students think they’ve completed a task,
they upload their file(s). Mentors review the files and mark the task as either complete or not.
DON’T just accept their work! The participants are young and very inexperienced. Be constructive but
critical if there are ways their work can be improved, especially the design tasks. Accept it when
they’ve put in good effort or they fully comply with the task description. If it’s code, don’t worry
about style but make sure it compiles and at least seems to be functionally correct. If you test a patch /
pull request and it looks good, document the contributor in our AUTHORS file, add a note if it’s a
user-visible feature in our NEWS file, and leave a comment in Melange letting them know that their patch
was accepted and (if relevant) that they’re credited in our project’s authorship documentation.
You’ll become familiar with
https://www.google-melange.com/gci/dashboard/google/gci2014#all_org_tasks — see the Columns
button at the bottom to turn additional columns on (e.g. Modified on) or useless ones off (e.g., Organization).
Melange sends out notifications for all GCI activity via e-mail to our brlcad-tracker mailing list. Note
that it will be a LOT of e-mail (approx 50-100 per day), so I suggest filtering into a mailbox that you can
keep separate from your regular mail. You can and should join our mailing list so you can be responsive to
the students: https://lists.sourceforge.net/lists/listinfo/brlcad-tracker
Note that this is a timed contest. We WANT to assign all claim requests as quickly as possible. The faster we
assign, the more work gets completed. There are very few reason to not assign a task immediately — one
being if that student already completed that exact same design task already. Similarly, tasks submitted
for review need to be evaluated as quickly as possible, within 24 hours at a minimum. You’re welcome to
extend their deadline if anyone asks for extra time, or ask them if they’d like more time. If they’ve
genuinely spent a lot more time and effort working on a task than we anticipated, let me know so we can
consider subtasks for them to claim.
Remember that these are very young participants. That means you will all be held to a very high standard of
behavior. Please be courteous and helpful at all times. Never ask them personal information nor
discriminate. If you are unable to uphold the standard expected for whatever reason, let me know and we can discuss.
TASKS: Huge thank you goes out to Jacob for creating a task management system that is more efficient than
melange. You’re all welcome to add additional tasks or additional detail to existing tasks there. It
doesn’t do much input validation, so be careful (i.e., don’t delete anything you didn’t add and
don’t input bad data). The site HERE: http://brlcad.org/gci-dev/tasks
Two random mentors get assigned to all tasks. At a minimum, please make sure you respond to your tasks. You
might not know the answer to the task, but you should know how to get their question answered (and that
shouldn’t be to ask me). GCI tasks are engineered towards newbies, so this is a great opportunity for new
contributing mentors to get a lot of breadth and experience. You can certainly respond to more tasks than
those that have your name on them too. Last year, Harmanpreet did a fantastic job keeping on top of
responses! Other mentors did great sticking to a schedule and responding to everything in their time
window. With even more mentors this year, it should be even easier to respond without there being a huge
burden on any single person.
Right now, we have about 150 tasks published and I have about 100 more tasks to write up this week. We’ll
need a few more (especially OGV, benchmark, and modeling tasks). Remember to scope tasks so that they’d
take someone familiar and set up about 2 hours to complete. Single functions and features work well.
We need someone to go through our Deuces page and add any task ideas that are not in the gci-dev task tracker.
Note that tasks need to be defined one at a time when there’s a primitive involved (e.g., implement
curvature function). For all tasks, the more detail you can provide, the better, and that includes links
to files and download/compile/setup/install instructions. This is a somewhat decent example: http://brlcad.org/gci-dev/tasks/edit/72
If you have questions, please don’t hesitate! Thank you everyone for your efforts. This is looking to be
our biggest GCI year to date. We didn’t get everything done like I’d hoped, but we have a lot of good
momentum started. Hopefully we’ll get those straggler issues sorted out this week (website, patches,
style sync, web tasks defined, VM updated).
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