Doing documentation in open source is often hard, doing it well is even harder. All projects have to struggle with this in some way and, in true open source community spirit, why don’t we get together and help each other? I’m excited to spread the word that the open source world is going to get its very own documentation conference. I’ve been in on a new conference/unconference/sprint being planned for this June up in the great province of Ontario, Canada, called Writing Open Source. The idea was born last fall between a few conversations that Emma Jane Hogbin had with myself and Belinda Lopez. Emma was all crazy-talking about a whole conference just focusing on documentation and I couldn’t resist such an awesome idea. Then the talking turned into planning, we got a space (in a library, no less!), some totally awesomely delicious catering, a domain name and now registration is open!
The conference is three days of open source geeks getting their docs on. There will be one day one planned sessions, one day of unconference sharing and then we’ll wrap up with a free-for-all sprint day. I know that I have a lot of ideas about what the Drupal community has been doing, along with a lot of questions to see how others have tackled some perennial problems. The great thing about mixing with a lot of people that come from different projects and backgrounds, and even with different goals, is that the new perspectives can open opportunities that I wouldn’t have even imagined. My motto this year for Drupal docs has been “Throw it on the wall and see if it sticks.” I’d like to find some new things to throw on the wall that we haven’t thought of yet – and learn from other experiences where we may be knocking our heads into a wall instead. I’m looking forward to having a relaxed atmosphere to discuss some of our craziness with others and then stop the theorizing and actually get some real work hammered out.
We only have room for 50 people, which is small enough to really work together and big enough to get a great variety of experience and perspective. So, come join lots of cool people busting with ideas and knowledge to share, as well as some combined brain-power for tackling issues. If you work with open source and care at all about helping the rest of world use it, this is the place to be. Also, have I mentioned how fricking excited I am about this?!