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Kevin Ngo: Books Got Back

Mozilla planet - do, 07/08/2014 - 02:00
A book I hand-crafted as a birthday gift for my girlfriend.

Books. A weird word if I start to think about it. Maybe because they've been becoming strangers to me over the last 16 years. I guess somewhere along the way, books became subconsciously tagged as boring. Though recently, I've been coming home with armfuls of books from Powell's. After a decade of school, the thought of reading on my own accord had left a bitter taste. But now I've phased out television to catch up with an old friend.

The Decline of Reading

As a child, I used to spend the whole of my summer days cooped inside the house. I mean, I still do. But I used to too. In elementary school, I'd borrow books by the dozens to complete my local library's summer reading program. You see, they gave free T-shirts. So I'd read in my room while the sun's gold creeped from outside. In middle school, I'd read articles about human anatomy and physiology (and no, my Asian parents did not force me) from an encyclopedia CD on my computer, paraphrasing the text and jotting down rough diagrams into my notebook of knowledge.

In late middle school, I started to care about what peers thought of me. I didn't want to be a nerd anymore, though any attempts to become cool were highly in vain. Reading became lame. I remember a parent-teacher conference at the very end of middle school with my homeroom teacher. He asked me something like whether I was going to read over the summer, and I responded "nah, I never read" as if it was a badge of pride.

What I thought was cool was putting as little effort into school as possible (though maintaining a four-point on the side). I see some of it in my brothers now. One would say "pfft, reading" as I bring home a bunch of books. They also maintain stellar grades, but maybe that's not so good. For those where school came easy to them, good grades became a false indicator that they did not need to try as hard. They need not pursue their own education as they excelled in the system's education.

Fast forward to college, and dry textbooks were being crammed down my neck, inflicting me with such a parched throat. Why spend the leisurely hours reading when that's what you do all day as work? A benefit of books is that they bring an escape, but the benefit is lost when the escape is from other books.

The Books Strike Back

So here I am. Reading books again. Much of the reason is for well-being. I wanted to phase out after-work TV habits. TV is a mind-numbing activity, and binge watching Orange is the New Black wasn't doing it for me. According to Happiness and Economics published by the Princeton University Press in 2002, the average American spends two months per year watching television.

Although it's intuitive, a study by the University of Maryland called What Do Happy People Do?, found a negative correlation between time spent watching TV and happiness. It sucks up time, and besides watching the occasional trendy show, it provides little emotional payoff.

Books naturally became an brilliant alternative. Like television, it provides a great way to wind down after work, taking my mind off of everything else to just focus on a story. But unlike television, it is intellectually stimulating . And because the medium of television is through a flashing screen, it makes a poor pre-sleep activity as it makes it difficult to fall asleep.

And honestly, books have better entertainment value. The experience of getting sucked into a page-turner is more gratifying than getting sucked into binge watching. In a TV show, all you know about a character is from what you see, but in a book, you live in a character's head for hundreds of pages, becoming much more attuned to their emotions. My intention from watching TV shows was to hear a good story, books do a better job at telling them.

What am I reading now? A lot of Hugo-y science fiction (Hyperion, Dune), photography, self-help entrepreneurial and finance, travel, and poker strategy. I feel sort of cheesy writing this whole perhaps pretentious post since everyone already knows how healthy books are. But walking through Powell's City of Books, getting lost in its aisles, I just think: "a whole life ahead of me, all of these books to read, these worlds to explore, I could get used to this". Besides, I like writing; it's only natural that I get back to reading.

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

William Reynolds: 2014 halfway point for Community Tools

Mozilla planet - do, 07/08/2014 - 01:56

As part of Mozilla’s 2014 goal to grow the number of active contributors by 10x, we have been adding new functionality to our tools. Community Tools are the foundation for all activities that our global contributors do to help us achieve our mission. At their best, they enable us to do more and do better.

We have a comprehensive roadmap to add more improvements and features, but stepping back, this post summarizes what the Community Tools team has accomplished so far this year. Tools are an org-wide, cross-functional effort with the Community Building team working on tools such as Baloo and the Mozilla Foundation building tools to enable and measure impact (see areweamillionyet.org). We’re in the process of trying to merge our efforts and work more closely. However, this post focuses on mozillians.org and the Mozilla Reps Portal.

mozillians.org

Our community directory, has over 6000 profiles of vouched Mozillians. This is a core way for volunteers and staff to contact each other and organize their programs, projects and interests through groups. Our efforts have a common theme of making it easier for Mozillians to get the information they need. Recently, we’ve worked on:

  • Improvements to vouching – making it much clearer who can access non-public information using Mozillians.org (people who have been vouched because they participate and contribute to Mozilla) and how that list of people can grow (through individual judgments by people who have themselves been vouched numerous times).
  • Real location information on profile – using geographical data for Country, Region and City information. No more duplicates or bad locations.
  • Curated groups – increasing the value of groups by having a curator and information for each new group. Group membership can also be used for authorization on other sites through the Mozillians API.
  • Democratize API access – making it easier for any vouched Mozillian to get an API key to access public information on mozillians.org (coming soon). For apps that want to use Mozillians-only information, developers can request a reviewed app API key.
  • New account fields on profiles – adding more ways to contact and learn about contributors. The new fields include Lanyrd, SlideShare, Discourse, phone numbers and more.
Reps Portal

The portal for Reps activities and events has over 400 Reps and documents over 21,000 of their activities since the Reps program started 3 years ago. It provides tools for Reps to carry out their activities as well as public-facing information about thousands of Reps-organized events and general information about the Reps program. So far this year, we have:

What’s next?

We’ve made great progress this year. There’s still a lot to do. For mozillians.org we want to focus on making contributor information more accessible, recognizing contributors in a meaningful way, and creating a suite of modules. On the Reps Portal we will work on scaling operations, measuring the impact of activities and events, and creating a community leadership platform.

The roadmap describes specific projects, and we’ll continue blogging about updates and announcements.

Want to help?

We’d love your help with making mozillians.org and the Reps Portal better. Check out how to get involved and say hi to the team on the #commtools and #remo-dev IRC channels.

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

David Boswell: People are the hook

Mozilla planet - do, 07/08/2014 - 00:27

One of Mozilla’s goals for 2014 is to grow the number of active contributors by 10x. As we’ve been working on this, we’ve been learning a lot of interesting things. I’m going to do a series of posts with some of those insights.

The recent launch of the contributor dashboard has provided a lot of interesting information. What stands out to me is the churn — we’re able to connect new people to opportunities, but growth is slower than it could be because many people are leaving at the same time.

areweamillion_coding

To really highlight this part of the data, Pierros made a chart that compares the number of new people who are joining with the number of people leaving. The results are dramatic — more people are joining, but the number of people leaving is significant.

churn_chart

This is understandable — the goal for this year is about connecting new people and we haven’t focused much effort on retention. As the year winds down and we look to next year, I encourage us to think about what a serious retention effort would look like.

I believe that the heart of a retention effort is to make it very easy for contributors to find new contribution opportunities as well as helping them make connections with other community members.

Stories we’ve collected from long time community members almost all share the thread of making a connection with another contributor and getting hooked. We have data from an audit that shows this too — a positive experience in the community keeps people sticking around.

kitherder_demo

There are many ways we could help create those connections. Just one example is the Kitherder mentor matching tool that the Security team is working on. They did a demo of it at the last Grow Mozilla meeting.

I don’t know what the answer is though, so I’d love to hear what other people think. What are some of the ways you would address contributor retention?


Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Mike Conley: Bugnotes

Mozilla planet - wo, 06/08/2014 - 19:33

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been experimenting with taking notes on the bugs I’ve been fixing in Evernote.

I’ve always taken notes on my bugs, but usually in some disposable text file that gets tossed away once the bug is completed.

Evernote gives me more powers, like embedded images, checkboxes, etc. It’s really quite nice, and it lets me export to HTML.

Now that I have these notes, I thought it might be interesting to share them. If I have notes on a bug, here’s what I’m going to aim to do when the bug is closed:

  • Publish my notes on my new Bugnotes site1
  • Comment in the bug linking to my notes
  • Add a “bugnotes” tag to my comment with the link

I’ve just posted my first bugnote. It’s raw, unedited, and probably a little hard to follow if you don’t know what I’m working on. I thought maybe it’d be interesting to see what’s going on in my head as I fix a bug. And who knows, if somebody needs to re-investigate a bug or a related bug down the line, these notes might save some people some time.

Anyhow, here are my bugnotes. And if you’re interested in doing something similar, you can fork it (I’m using Jekyll for static site construction).

  1. I didn’t want to pollute this blog with them (plus, dumping these files into WordPress seemed to be a bit heavy)  

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Mike Conley: Bugnotes

Thunderbird - wo, 06/08/2014 - 19:33

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been experimenting with taking notes on the bugs I’ve been fixing in Evernote.

I’ve always taken notes on my bugs, but usually in some disposable text file that gets tossed away once the bug is completed.

Evernote gives me more powers, like embedded images, checkboxes, etc. It’s really quite nice, and it lets me export to HTML.

Now that I have these notes, I thought it might be interesting to share them. If I have notes on a bug, here’s what I’m going to aim to do when the bug is closed:

  • Publish my notes on my new Bugnotes site1
  • Comment in the bug linking to my notes
  • Add a “bugnotes” tag to my comment with the link

I’ve just posted my first bugnote. It’s raw, unedited, and probably a little hard to follow if you don’t know what I’m working on. I thought maybe it’d be interesting to see what’s going on in my head as I fix a bug. And who knows, if somebody needs to re-investigate a bug or a related bug down the line, these notes might save some people some time.

Anyhow, here are my bugnotes. And if you’re interested in doing something similar, you can fork it (I’m using Jekyll for static site construction).

  1. I didn’t want to pollute this blog with them (plus, dumping these files into WordPress seemed to be a bit heavy)  

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Mozilla Release Management Team: Firefox 32 beta3 to beta4

Mozilla planet - wo, 06/08/2014 - 18:40

  • 17 changesets
  • 19 files changed
  • 135 insertions
  • 57 deletions

ExtensionOccurrences cpp8 h4 js2 xml1 py1 jsm1 in1 c1

ModuleOccurrences js6 mobile3 xpcom2 dom2 widget1 testing1 services1 media1 gfx1 browser1

List of changesets:

Ted MielczarekBug 1033938 - rm full symbols.zip during buildsymbols. r=glandium, a=NPOTB - 0ad2cb256eb8 Cosmin MalutanBug 990509 - Wait a second after tabs opening before finishing the sync operation. r=aeftimie, r=rnewman, a=test-only - 51f2c08f86ee Richard NewmanBug 1046369 - Add architecture to logged library load errors. r=blassey, a=sylvestre - 429123ab0700 Mark FinkleBug 1012677 - Investigate delayed initialization of nsILoginManager in Firefox for Android r=margaret a=sylvestre - c110771b033f Mark FinkleBug 1043920 - Reader mode (ambient light detection) prevents device from sleeping r=margaret a=sylvestre - a59d3af0c000 Tim TaubertBug 1041788 - Don't enter _beginRemoveTab() when a .permitUnload() call is pending r=dao a=sylvestre - faf3b10d4868 Mike HommeyBug 1044414 - Add a fallback for unknown platforms after Bug 945869. r=ted, a=NPOTB - 91dca763d0f5 Mike HommeyBug 901208 - Fix Skia for ARM v4t. r=derf, a=NPOTB - aa124023125a Gijs KruitboschBug 1042625 - High contrast mode detection broken on Windows <8. r=jimm, a=lmandel - 19d074395f1a Randell JesupBug 1035067 - Don't hint we expect a track if we're not going to receive it. r=ehugg, a=lmandel - b7316976ca8b Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Detach the XPCWrappedNativeScope from the CompartmentPrivate during forcible shutdown. r=billm, a=sledru - a979f156f8d1 Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Invoke XPCWrappedNativeScope::TraceSelf from TraceXPCGlobal. r=billm, a=sledru - 7fb3c0ed4417 Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Rename XPCWrappedNativeScope::TraceSelf to TraceInside. r=billm, a=sledru - 72c66ced503e Andrew McCreightBug 1037510 - Part 1: Add nursery size as a parameter of CycleCollectedJSRuntime. r=khuey, a=sledru - 84bf8e0aaecb Andrew McCreightBug 1037510 - Part 2: Reduce GGC nursery size to 1MB on workers. r=khuey, a=sledru - e61371be0f38 Ryan VanderMeulenBug 1044205 - Replace xpc::CompartmentPrivate::Get with GetCompartmentPrivate to fix bustage. a=bustage - 932afd80c5a0 Ryan VanderMeulenBug 1044205 - Fix up one other use of CompartmentPrivate::Get. a=bustage - 54fe10b3558d

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Frédéric Harper: Linux Meetup Montréal et son intérêt pour Mozilla

Mozilla planet - wo, 06/08/2014 - 17:25
Une partie du groupe d'hier (cliquez pour voir en pleine résolution)

Une partie du groupe d’hier (cliquez pour voir en pleine résolution)

Hier soir je présentais au groupe Linux Meetup Montréal non à propos de Linux, mais bien au sujet de Mozilla, Firefox OS, mais aussi Firefox. L’idée était de faire une présentation haut niveau, tout en gardant un aspect technique, car plusieurs développeurs étaient présent. Avec une salle comble, j’ai eu le plaisir de constater l’intérêt des utilisateurs de Linux envers Mozilla. Malheureusement, mon enregistrement n’a pas fonctionné, mais voici tout de même les diapositives.

Le web ouvert avec Firefox OS et Firefox – Linux Meetup Montréal – 2014-08-05 from Frédéric Harper


Ce fut une belle opportunité de présenter Firefox OS vu que bien des participants avait à peine entendu parlé du système d’exploitation. Je voulais tenter une approche différente pour la troisième partie, soit celle sur Firefox, mais celle-ci aura été vaine: presque la totalité des pros logiciels libres présents hier soir utilisait déjà Firefox comme navigateur par défaut. Ce fut donc une belle soirée pour ma première fois au Linux Meetup Montréal. De ce fait, je vous invite à vous joindre au groupe si vous avez un intérêt avec Linux: pas besoin d’être un pro avec cet OS, tous sont invités!


--
Linux Meetup Montréal et son intérêt pour Mozilla is a post on Out of Comfort Zone from Frédéric Harper

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Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Clint Talbert: Future’s so Bright, I gotta Wear Shades

Mozilla planet - wo, 06/08/2014 - 16:44

Last week, the Mozilla Quality Assurance team came together for the first time in years to plot out a new direction for themselves and for Quality at Mozilla. We have dedicated ourselves to making a transition to a Quality Engineering team. There is more to that change than a simple word. For starters, we identified three areas to massively change and every strategic team inside of QA (Firefox, Firefox OS, Web & Services, and Platform) committed to making their own road map to implement these three goals:

Technical Acumen – The nature of the work done at Mozilla has shifted from when the QA organization first grew up. Back then, it was mostly focused on the piece of software that is the browser. These days, much more of our innovation is in the web platform that the browser allows us to expose, and less on the client (though cool things are still happening there too). Mozilla has grown in technologies and products, and the QA team has historically not kept up with that rate of change. We aim to change this. But we’re going to be smart about it–it would be a waste of our energy and a disservice to Mozilla if we suddenly became developers. Instead, we will focus on the elements of technical quality–we will ask the right questions, ensure test-ability, investigate issues more deeply using the same tools developers use, understand the specifications of the technologies we are enabling on the web, be able to review patches to automated tests, etc.

Data & Metrics – In the days that the QA team grew up, it was possible to keep the entire state of the Mozilla project in your head. That is no longer the case–it’s not even possible to keep one product entirely in your head now. We need to gather data and metrics for quantifiable elements of quality on each project we undertake. We will use these both to publicize the level of quality in our products and to ensure areas that need attention get it. Additionally (and just as importantly) we will use these metrics to help us prioritize our work to ensure we operate as smartly and as proactively as possible. We want to make our priorities data driven rather than routine driven.

Community – The QA organization has traditionally been a gateway to further involvement for many Mozillians (myself included). We used community to scale when no other means availed us. It’s time to do more than scale with community. We will grow our contributor community by offering them more impactful opportunities and delivering greater value to them as well as doing some targeted outreach as part of the Mozilla Grow program. Each team has a means for our community to help further the transitions we are making with regard to Technical Acumen and Data & Metrics. Additionally, we are creating a unified community strategy across all teams to ensure contributors have the best experience and the most impact possible. In short: It’s a great time to get involved.

Mozilla has benefited from Mozilla QA being a cohesive, cross-cutting team. We work with every product line, every product group. This enables us to share tactics, metrics, dashboards, contributor strategies, tools, expertise, and people very easily. It also enables us to take advantage of the fact that not every product is “hot” at the same moment. While we always have dedicated staff to each product, we also have several cross-trained individuals that swing between products, allowing us to flexibly and seamlessly scale, making us more than the simple sum of our parts.

This work week has set the stage for a new era with Mozilla Quality. We are still just as dedicated to our mission and to our products. We are still going to work across product lines to ensure the quality needs are met, but we will do so with a new focus on our community, on improving our technical acumen and on re-invigorating our metrics and using them in new ways. Join me in congratulating the team on taking these first courageous steps, and I look forward to a very bright future as we move from reactive quality analysis to more proactive quality engineering. Join us as we put on our shades and step off into what’s next.

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

Mozilla Release Management Team: Firefox 32 beta3 to beta4

Mozilla planet - wo, 06/08/2014 - 16:41

  • 17 changesets
  • 19 files changed
  • 135 insertions
  • 57 deletions

ExtensionOccurrences cpp8 h4 js2 xml1 py1 jsm1 in1 c1

ModuleOccurrences js6 mobile3 xpcom2 dom2 widget1 testing1 services1 media1 gfx1 browser1

List of changesets:

Ted MielczarekBug 1033938 - rm full symbols.zip during buildsymbols. r=glandium, a=NPOTB - 0ad2cb256eb8 Cosmin MalutanBug 990509 - Wait a second after tabs opening before finishing the sync operation. r=aeftimie, r=rnewman, a=test-only - 51f2c08f86ee Richard NewmanBug 1046369 - Add architecture to logged library load errors. r=blassey, a=sylvestre - 429123ab0700 Mark FinkleBug 1012677 - Investigate delayed initialization of nsILoginManager in Firefox for Android r=margaret a=sylvestre - c110771b033f Mark FinkleBug 1043920 - Reader mode (ambient light detection) prevents device from sleeping r=margaret a=sylvestre - a59d3af0c000 Tim TaubertBug 1041788 - Don't enter _beginRemoveTab() when a .permitUnload() call is pending r=dao a=sylvestre - faf3b10d4868 Mike HommeyBug 1044414 - Add a fallback for unknown platforms after Bug 945869. r=ted, a=NPOTB - 91dca763d0f5 Mike HommeyBug 901208 - Fix Skia for ARM v4t. r=derf, a=NPOTB - aa124023125a Gijs KruitboschBug 1042625 - High contrast mode detection broken on Windows <8. r=jimm, a=lmandel - 19d074395f1a Randell JesupBug 1035067 - Don't hint we expect a track if we're not going to receive it. r=ehugg, a=lmandel - b7316976ca8b Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Detach the XPCWrappedNativeScope from the CompartmentPrivate during forcible shutdown. r=billm, a=sledru - a979f156f8d1 Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Invoke XPCWrappedNativeScope::TraceSelf from TraceXPCGlobal. r=billm, a=sledru - 7fb3c0ed4417 Bobby HolleyBug 1044205 - Rename XPCWrappedNativeScope::TraceSelf to TraceInside. r=billm, a=sledru - 72c66ced503e Andrew McCreightBug 1037510 - Part 1: Add nursery size as a parameter of CycleCollectedJSRuntime. r=khuey, a=sledru - 84bf8e0aaecb Andrew McCreightBug 1037510 - Part 2: Reduce GGC nursery size to 1MB on workers. r=khuey, a=sledru - e61371be0f38 Ryan VanderMeulenBug 1044205 - Replace xpc::CompartmentPrivate::Get with GetCompartmentPrivate to fix bustage. a=bustage - 932afd80c5a0 Ryan VanderMeulenBug 1044205 - Fix up one other use of CompartmentPrivate::Get. a=bustage - 54fe10b3558d

Categorieën: Mozilla-nl planet

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