This page is to loosely describe some ideas about how to grow the Chinese Fedora community into a self-organizing and healthy one. The page might serve as a basis to forming some firm targets to aim for over the coming months and years. The overarching goal is to enlarge the Fedora Community and to seek new talents to contribute to the mainstream development. The ideas here were compiled by Nik Lam (nlam) based on notes made by Gerard Braad and Mel Chua.
Increasing the number of mirrors is one way of improving accessibility to Fedora and increasing its profile. According to the mirror list, at the time of writing, there are six mirrors with a .cn domain (two with .edu.cn domains), two with .hk (both with .edu.hk domains) and seven with .tw (three with .edu.tw domains).
Hosting within universities is particularly desirable in terms of the potential for student involvement in managing the mirror.
MIPS port of Fedora
The effort to port Fedora to MIPS is an excellent opportunity for collaboration between the Chinese Fedora contributors and contributors from the rest of the world. Computer systems with hardware which is open enough to easily run 100% free software (including firmware) are rare. A Chinese company, Lemote, produces such systems, using MIPS-based Loongson CPUs.
There are currently several China-based contributors to this effort, including gbraad and LoneStar who lead the effort.
To help attract more contributors, improved build infrastructure is desired. Some progress has been made by individuals working on their own equipment. It would be ideal if members of the Chinese community could eventually work within the Fedora Infrastructure team to provide the needed resources.
Packaging is a fundamental part of producing Fedora, and getting more contributors from the Chinese community is a good way to transfer knowledge into the wider Chinese community.
The translation of the packaging guidelines into Chinese is a good first step in getting more Chinese-speaking contributors to this part of the project.
Organizing a Fedora event
Holding a Fedora Activity Day or a more general Fedora Users and Developers conference would help to establish a sense of community.
In the short term, a FAD would be easier to organise. Possible ideas include QA FAD in Beijing, or something for the MIPS porting effort.
Creating a better platform for the community
The community has recently migrated the mailing lists from Google to Fedora's own mailman server. How many list members are there? The Fedora Project's Zh wiki pages are also currently being refreshed after no changes being made in more than a year. The #fedora-zh IRC channel appears to be relatively well attended in the evenings (Beijing time) with 20 people present during the meeting on 2010-12-10.
In addition to these resources, there's a need to create a strong web presence with web-based forum capabilities. There are currently four sites support these things:
- http://www.fedorachina.org/ or http://bbs.fedora-zh.org/ - vBulletin forum
- http://news.fedora-zh.org/ - wordpress?
- http://www.fedorachina.cn/ - Simple-machines forum
- http://fedora.tw/ - drupal???
There has been a request and discussion on the Fedora Advisory Board mailing list (in 2010-June and 2010-August) to make use of a sub-domain of fedoracommunity.org. As yet, the sub-domain has not been established. The request was for zh.fedoracommunity.org, which would at the very least provide a link to the other sites.
There was also discussion about Fedora Infrastructure providing services for fedoracommunity sites, e.g. Drupal with the mailing list integration module installed to form a bridge between mailing lists and web forums. Drupal is the platform that has been chosen for the Fedora Insight site.
Fedora-ZH does currently not have any options to use marketing material. Materials such as flyers, banners, stickers, t-shirts etc would be a goal associated with any on-the-ground events.