Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Activist Status & Wiki Project

Posted by Gregg Pollack

So last week we were announced as activists, but what have we been doing? I’m sure there are some wondering, so here is our first report. Read on for news of our first big project, what each of us is working on, and how you can help today.

Firstly, we’ve been very pleased by the number of people who are actively interested in helping us improve the Rails ecosystem. Your input through UserVoice, the Activism Mailing List, Twitter, e-mail, and instant messages has been inspiring (and a bit overwhelming!). We listened, and one of the most popular requests revolved around the Wiki.

The Rails Wiki Reform

The Rails Wiki is in poor shape, for many reasons and it’s not one person’s fault. The good news is that our first major project is going to be revitalizing the wiki. To get our engines started, we’re forming a dedicated team to shape it into something the Rails community can be proud of.

If you’re interested in helping, simply join the Ruby on Rails Wiki Google Group. After you join, you’ll find a note on the group from Matt Aimonetti with more details.

What we’re doing

All of the Activists are busy with projects that fall under the general heading of “helping Rails.” Here’s a sampling of what we’re up to:

Gregg Pollack

Matt Aimonetti

  • Putting together Case Studies.
  • Investigating the current state of the Rails wiki and possibilities.
  • Working on the Merb book (yes, Merb projects help Rails too).

Ryan Bates

  • Doing Railscasts.com.
  • Creating a Screencast application for aggregating Rails screencasts all into one feed on the RubyOnRails.org website.

Mike Gunderloy

  • Covering This Week in Edge Rails on the official Rails blog.
  • Working with Chad Woolley to improve the Rails CI server, including builds across multiple versions of Ruby and JRuby.
  • Providing user support via #rubyonrails and #rails-activism on IRC freenode.
  • Posting daily link roundups pointing to things of interest to Rails developers.

Other Stuff You Can Do

If you’re asking “What can I do today to help Ruby on Rails?”, aside from joining one of our mailing lists and collaborating with us, here are a few items that come to mind:

  1. Contact Matt Aimonetti if you think you have a good Case Study on Rails.
  2. Go to RubyForum or IRC and help new Rails developers.
  3. Go to your local Ruby Users Group, or start one.
  4. Go to a Rails related conference.
  5. The next time you tackle a hard problem in your rails app, write a blog entry.
  6. Take one of your Rails Libraries/Modules, and turn it into a Gem or Plugin.
  7. If you’re surfing Rails blog articles and you find one that is outdated leave a comment or let the author know the content should be updated or marked as obsolete.

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