Saturday, March 6, 2010

Building a healthy community around FOSS project

Dear Lazyweb, I am looking for suggestions for building a healthy community around one of my FOSS project.  Recently I initiated re-launching of  Zope 3 project with a new name: BlueBream. You may know from my old posts that I am very interested in Zope 3 and Zope Component Architecture (ZCA).  I have written an entire book about  ZCA in 2006. You can read more about the new project in the BlueBream project blog.  I am looking for your suggestions.  You can send mail to me: baiju.m.mail AT gmail.com or add comment here.

Well, I will continue with my past experience with FOSS. This is my second largest FOSS project, the first project which I started in 2001 (SMC) is still very active.  However, for the past few years, I am not active in that project. I still watch that project growing (of course, I help them whenever possible). There are more than 500 members in the group itself.  The developers regulary meet at various events.  They organize lots of workshops, camps etc. SMC might be the most active FOSS project from India. However, there are so many differences between SMC and BlueBream.  The scope of these projects is very different. SMC is an i18n,l10n and more over a "local language computing" project.  BlueBream is a Python web framework.

These days, I am thinking more about this project and its success.  I know, a FOSS project is not just some source code released. There should be active contributors, regular community activities, good documentation, presence in various events etc.  So, how to attract contributors to this project.  How to build a healthy successful community around this project.  At this point, I have taken the role of "self-assigned release manager".  I think that's a good way to lead this project. I am looking for your thoughts :)