Quick Hit: A Blog Post about Blog Posts

I have two blog posts that were published on the Wikimedia Blog.

The first is ‘How to create a good first Bug Report‘ and was published this Monday. It gives an overview of what we look for in a bug report, why, and what to expect if you want to file a bug report.

The second, ‘Help Wikimedia squash software bugs‘, talks about the bug days we’ve been running, how to find out about upcoming bug days, and how the bug days help Wikimedia.

Check them out and leave a comment here or on those posts!

( I guess this counts as my fourth blog post this week, ha ha. :) )

Valerie Juarez: Bug wrangler in-training

Valerie Juarez: Bug wrangler in-training

As Juarez sees it, her internship is a win-win for both her and the Foundation. “I think internships like this allow women like me opportunities to grow, gain knowledge, and connect with a community. Organizations benefit by the contributions women provide to the projects themselves and the community.”

Click here for full post

Alice Roberts profiled me and my work as an OPW Intern for the Wikimedia Foundation. She did a great job!

Bug Days and Blog Posts

Our first bugday on January 29th over reports that had not been changed in over a year went well. There was a small turnout, but it was fun and a good learning experience. I sent out a summary to wikitech-l. We addressed about 30 of the original 250 reports (summary of bug reports acted on). This included retesting reports to see if they were still valid for newer versions that have been released. If we could not reproduce the issue or needed more information, we left comments to that effect on the reports. Since these are older reports, we planned to close them after 3 weeks of non response. I spent some time yesterday closing some of those reports. A number of the reports were closed before I checked yesterday. And all of the closed reports can be reopened if it is discovered this issue still exists.

As mentioned in the summary sent to wikitech-l, we wanted to have a clearer landing page. For the first bug day, the only source of information for the bug day was the bug management Triage page. I was able to address this with the last bugday, which was last Tuesday (2-19). We focused on open bugs in the Git/Gerrit component. I coordinated with Chad, who lead the recent update of Gerrit, and he established the focus for this bug day would be on upstream reports. I created a page listing the ‘Who,’ ‘What,’ ‘When,’ and ‘Where.’ I liked that we had a dedicated page for this bugday, because we had a number of upstream links, like release notes and the Gerrit bug tracker, that would have cluttered up the triage page. The dedicated page allows us to post more information, and after the bug day we can archive the list of reports that we acted on and associated comments.

During the bugday, we addressed about 25 of 70 reports. We didn’t close as many reports as the first bugday, but we posted status updates and linked to upstream bugs. I spent a lot of time looking for upstream bugs reports that match the problems described in our reports. I’m not very familiar with Gerrit, so I was learning as I triaged. I have not had the opportunity to submit a change, but I am looking for one.

File:Bug Life Cycle Diagram.png

I’m working on a couple of blog posts to submit to the Wikimedia blog. While drafting the posts I created a flowchart that illustrates the life cycle of a bug report. Andre helped me improve it, and I’ll be using it in my post. I welcome feedback or questions regarding the image. You can see the evolution of the image at this page of the original .svg file. There are some rendering bugs with .svg files on commons, however, so the image I’ll be using in the report and the one above is the .png version.

As for my proposal, I’ve talked with the fabulous Liz from Mozilla about their feedback channels. She  gave me a lot to think about and look over. Andre also contacted a friend at Ubuntu to learn more about their feedback channels. I’ll be creating a high level diagram of their channels, and also looking at other open source projects that were recently suggested.

I’m thoroughly enjoying the range of work I get to to do, but I think I need to be careful not to get pulled too far off-track. This post has helped center me, though.

As a side note, I just wanted to point more people to Elodieunderglass’ [GIRLS IN SCIENCE] posts. It’s not technology focused but has interesting points.

New Internship and Finishing Up with Partners

I’m so excited to be accepted as an intern in Gnome’s Outreach Program for Women! I will be working with the Wikimedia Foundation! I’ll be keeping up with my project on this blog.

With my acceptance into the program comes the end of my current job. For the past year, I have been a Technology Specialist in Partners Resource Network (PRN). PRN helps parents of children with disabilities advocate for themselves and their children within the education system through education and trainings. One project I ended up being assigned was the creation of an Annual Report video put on our website. Now, I had no experience with video editing, but I was willing to learn, so I took on the assignment.

I looked at a few videos other projects have done, and I began by reading information on what equipment was needed for recording interviews. Our project has a camera, but it is an SD camera. After taking a few test videos, I knew the quality would not be good enough to upload. Thankfully, I have a Flip camera. It’s an HD camera, but it has its drawbacks. One is that video taken in poor lighting conditions can turn out grainy. Another drawback is that an external microphone cannot be connected to the camera. However, it was better than the other option.

I was working with a project director within Partners, and she wanted parent testimonials in the video, so we attempted to set up a time in the Houston office to interview parents. Later she decided interviewing parents at a conference they were having would be better.

The conference was at a hotel. They didn’t book a separate space for recording, so I had to set up on the far side of the break/lunch area. This presented a couple of problems related to the Flip camera’s drawbacks — lighting and sound. Thankfully, the hotel staff brought me a couple of lamps to help with the lighting. Cue me moving chairs and lamps and recording myself multiple times to make sure the video turned out alright. I felt silly, but everyone was attending sessions, so I was by myself most of the time.

How I conducted the parent interviews.

How I conducted the parent interviews.

I could not do anything about the sound, however. You can hear people talking during breaks or dishes being moved in some of the videos. It doesn’t ruin the videos, but they could definitely do without it.

Using Adobe Premiere 10, I ended up cutting each interview into its own video. You can view them here (I’ve only uploaded a few as of 12-17-2012, but as I upload more, I’ll add them to this playlist):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQ4RO-cGDt4&list=PLUDsqwcCwooV8Bbj_Qgz5gFTGIKwfY1JE

Anyway, this is one of the projects I’m finishing up before I leave Partners. It’s nice to see how the organization that I worked for helped these parents and their children.