[Twisted-Python] optimizing for engagement

Glyph glyph at twistedmatrix.com
Sun Mar 24 16:40:24 MDT 2019

Hello Twistors,

It's been a good weekend for the Twisted ecosystem!  Despite spending rather more time on email than is usual for a weekend, I've been enjoying the mailing list activity so thanks to everyone for your contributions.

We had a good chat on IRC about some potential ways to increase contribution to the project.  (I'll let the authors of these proposals raise them themselves, if they want to bring it to the broader forum of this list.)  These proposals largely focused on structural issues with the way the project is maintained or the way the code is organized.

However, we have relatively few people who do much in the way of social organizing of Twisted and its constellation of ancillary projects.  We have ad-hoc presences at a few regional conferences, a sometimes presence at the PyCon sprints (which, unfortunately, I don't think I'll be able to make this year).

One thing I'd like to propose I think would really help us get more engagement with the project and the ecosystem, possibly in addition to and in concert with some of the aforementioned structural/technical changes, is some dedicated, intentional social organization, particularly of our distributed online community.

Hackathons and sprints (which have probably provoked the majority of Twisted's development over the years) are not a lot more than "let's get together and do X at Y time".  They can be organized online as well as in person.  Still, a successful sprint requires someone to thoughtfully select variables X and Y and then effectively communicate about the event, both to people already involved in the project and also to potential audiences of newcomers.  This involves finding students looking for projects to learn on, and finding users who might want get bugs that they have encountered fixed; in other words, "outreach".

It also involves some amount of celebrating accomplishments that come out of these events, to build enthusiasm for the next one.  (If you've been organizing local events that we're not aware of, it would be great to hear about them!)

So I'd like to encourage anyone who might be wondering what they can do to contribute to the project but find the prospect of debugging IMAP serialization or use-after-free IO completion port debugging to be bewildering, "online sprint organizing" is a potentially very rich seam to mine for potential contributions.

If you are interested in trying to do this but need access to any Twisted resources in support of doing this - the main ones I can think of being our Twitter (https://twitter.com/twistedmatrix <https://twitter.com/twistedmatrix>) or Blogger (https://labs.twistedmatrix.com <https://labs.twistedmatrix.com/>) accounts - just let me know and I'd be happy to provide access.


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