Openhatch IRC meet
On the Ubuntu-Women list we get a number of women introducing themselves, listing their coding skills, wanting to contribute, etc.. Right now we simply re-direct them to the specific communities within Ubuntu -- to find a project to contribute they have to use keywords to search Launchpad.net for bugs.... search for "perl" / "python" packages, or search for a specific project of choice and squash the bugs listed there -- this does not seem like a terribly efficient way to track participation or contribute, besides being confusing and/or intimidating for someone who is new to the community and is completely un-aware of how floss communities work.
Before anyone says IRC, I should chime in that the infrastructure issues (power outages, poor bandwidth, poor tech support, etc...) in India make it that much harder to contribute. This is not true for other nations with superior basic (power, water, roads, etc..) infrastructure.
So how do we know if a contributor actually searches and finds what she wants to work on or is even comfortable working with? Does she leave because the information she came looking for was not available and/or was simply intimidated by the sheer size and vast technical scope within Ubuntu? These are unanswered questions which I have wondered about -- not knowing if we managed to retain a contributor is a grey area.Existing members are volunteers themselves with responsibilities, making it harder to track if we are losing technical contributions because we dont know what happens after the initial guidance to a query on the list. I'd been wondering how we could narrow the scope and find technical areas where UW can collaborate with other Ubuntu teams needing help.
In essence that is the usecase: Suppose a woman lists "C/C++ and networking" or "python and AI" as her skillsets, how could we scrape information from LP and use it to channelize women to specific bugs that need squashing --the difficulty level, its upstream/downstream, etc... Could we use an API for data-mining LP for possible areas of interest and list these on our wiki-pages, or post mails to the mailing list or push them into an RSS/Atom news feed on planet.ubuntu-women.org, enabling interested folks to subscribe to the news feed.
After that I pinged Asheesh of openhatch which does something similar -- tags all the floss bug trackers for open bugs, small bite-sized bugs and the big ones too. The idea sounded interestin to him and he called for a meetup -- The meetup is on Monday, Oct11 at 9am IST on #openhatch (logged) on irc.freenode.net and its just meant to bounce off ideas iirc.