Seth Godin’s excellent post about procrastination and email reminded me of Fedora and my own resistance.
Have you ever used the Fedora email lists to avoid what you really should be doing? I certainly have.
It’s much easier to discuss, critique, and criticize another point of view instead of creating a formal proposal to solve the problem. What if our list discussions were thoughtful brainstorming exercises in search of new and better ideas towards a formal proposal instead of “point, counter-point” debates? What if those proposals were easy to access and not buried in the list archives?
That is what I loved about Stephen Smoogen’s post about Fedora and its many audiences. It expanded my thinking and said a lot of what I already knew, but hadn’t articulated. It moved things forward for me.
It is easy to focus on the easy problems–the ones that are someone else’s problem to solve, particularly when you expect someone else to write the proposal. Written proposals on the Fedora wiki have been one of the more constructive paths forward in Fedora’s evolution.
I talk a lot about Fedora needing more of a strategic direction so I proposed and now facilitate the Strategic Working Group. I saw an ongoing pattern of confusion around our release processes and scheduling so I created wiki pages and requested input from others.
The release criteria, important release milestones, No Frozen Rawhide announcement plan, and release engineering tickets project all came out of a desire to be part of the solution. Most of these did not happen over night and they were not always fun to work on.