Stream: t-compiler/wg-meta

Topic: announcing updates


nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 18:01, on Zulip):

So I was talking to the person who runs readrust.net on discord. I feel like we need better visibility for the summaries and activities of the various compiler working groups. I was envisioning that it would be nice to have a central blog that just contains these sorts of updates and announcements -- basically, the activity of each of the working groups. In fact, I suspect that the blog should be project wide, with the ability to filter by team, by working group, or by other things.

The readrust.net author encouraged me to write-up an issue with more details. Before doing that, I thought I would open up some discussion here.

I've also been wondering about the structure of the weekly meetings -- I was thinking that maybe, instead of pulling from the groups, each group should push updates, content, and questions, and we can review them in the triage meeting.

Originally, I had in mind that we would go round robin because I thought it'd be useful to be able to see if working groups haven't been active with updates in a while. But we can do that separately just by having the updates organized by working group and checking for working groups that haven't posted any comments in a while (or, honestly, just monitoring Zulip). This could be a signal to go check-in and see how things are going and if we can do anything to help.

I'd also maybe like to cc some more folks to get more input, but I'll just start with posting a comment here I think. =)

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 18:02, on Zulip):

Well, cc @Aaron Turon, who I was talking to about this specifically -- and maybe @pnkfelix as person who is running the triage meeting. =)

davidtwco (Mar 06 2019 at 18:41, on Zulip):

I like this idea, if there's any way I can help, feel free to ping me.

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 19:31, on Zulip):

@Aaron Turon and I were chatting a bit more just now. We had a few thoughts. First off, that a key step in any successful WG is going to be forming a roadmap. I mean something semi-specific by this: basically, identifying "subprojects" of the working group (some WG may have just one) and figuring out, for each subproject, the next few steps. This roadmap can ideally be mapped out, but often will be "unrolled" just in time.

It's perhaps a good idea to think about some kind of "sprint-like" structure, aligned perhaps to Rust's 6 week cycle. Basically, every 6 weeks we have a "sprint meeting" where we try to plan out the next 6 weeks of work, and then in between we try to execute.

I think this sort of happened on NLL but not in an organized fashion. One thing I like about this is that, if you are going to e.g. spend a few days writing mentoring isntructions etc, it gives you a natural time to plan to do that (during the sprint planning week).

In between sprint meetings, you are mostly going to have 'smaller' updates.

I could see this aligning with the compiler meeting, particularly if sprint meetings are generally staggered. i.e., sprints are a great time to report up to the wider team (and community) what you are planning to do. There could also be room for smaller updates during a sprint but it's less important.

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 19:31, on Zulip):

I've probably lost some of the nuance but those were vaguely our thoughts.

pnkfelix (Mar 06 2019 at 20:10, on Zulip):

I certainly don't mind moving from a pull to a push model.

pnkfelix (Mar 06 2019 at 20:10, on Zulip):

Though of course we may need to manage the influx of information in some manner

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 20:22, on Zulip):

My sense is that going to a push model coudl be really good, but I think we also still need to be doing al ot of the work we are currently doing :)

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 20:22, on Zulip):

that is, I think we have to get the rhythm up and going

nikomatsakis (Mar 06 2019 at 20:22, on Zulip):

until people are naturally pushing updates

davidtwco (Mar 06 2019 at 20:53, on Zulip):

I think that a roadmap is definitely a good idea, something to get working groups working towards a goal could be helpful in keeping them active and attracting contributors to rally around that goal.

A sprint-like structure could work well. I'm wary of imposing too much structure but if working group leads are fine with it then I think it could work well.

nikomatsakis (Mar 07 2019 at 22:44, on Zulip):

So I was talking to @Santiago Pastorino just now and I want to repeat some of those comments here. In short, it's clear that as the set of WGs scale up, keeping up with Zulip will get more and more challenging. The good news is that we're doing more and we're producing more and more status reports. The bad news is that this heightens the importance of us thinking about how to distribute updates on what is going on without requiring everybody to read every Zulip msg

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:05, on Zulip):

Aaron Turon and I were chatting a bit more just now. We had a few thoughts. First off, that a key step in any successful WG is going to be forming a roadmap. I mean something semi-specific by this: basically, identifying "subprojects" of the working group (some WG may have just one) and figuring out, for each subproject, the next few steps. This roadmap can ideally be mapped out, but often will be "unrolled" just in time.

It's perhaps a good idea to think about some kind of "sprint-like" structure, aligned perhaps to Rust's 6 week cycle. Basically, every 6 weeks we have a "sprint meeting" where we try to plan out the next 6 weeks of work, and then in between we try to execute.

I think this sort of happened on NLL but not in an organized fashion. One thing I like about this is that, if you are going to e.g. spend a few days writing mentoring isntructions etc, it gives you a natural time to plan to do that (during the sprint planning week).

In between sprint meetings, you are mostly going to have 'smaller' updates.

I could see this aligning with the compiler meeting, particularly if sprint meetings are generally staggered. i.e., sprints are a great time to report up to the wider team (and community) what you are planning to do. There could also be room for smaller updates during a sprint but it's less important.

I applaud all this, can't agree more on everything :)

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:06, on Zulip):

in particular I think having sprints is a great idea

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:06, on Zulip):

I think that a roadmap is definitely a good idea, something to get working groups working towards a goal could be helpful in keeping them active and attracting contributors to rally around that goal.

A sprint-like structure could work well. I'm wary of imposing too much structure but if working group leads are fine with it then I think it could work well.

this could be really very little and soft structure

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:07, on Zulip):

planning is needed, syncing is needed too

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:07, on Zulip):

another thing that this sprints ala agile/scrum have which I think is really important are retros at the end of the sprint

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:08, on Zulip):

that's from my point of view very important because it is when all of us have the chance to talk about what to improve, propose ideas, and plan actions to make the process better and better

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:08, on Zulip):

retros are a way to improve the process per se

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 04:08, on Zulip):

I think I'd add that to the combo that @nikomatsakis mentioned

davidtwco (Mar 11 2019 at 10:52, on Zulip):

I'm happy for working groups to use whichever processes they find useful. I'm just cautious of being too prescriptive and getting caught up in the "we do this process" and that being something we then don't deviate from. I liked what @nikomatsakis had said in this topic and I think "let working groups figure it out and document what has worked for them" is a good approach.

nikomatsakis (Mar 11 2019 at 19:17, on Zulip):

@Santiago Pastorino I seem to recall you and I talked at some point about a friend of yours who was an agile expert etc etc.

nikomatsakis (Mar 11 2019 at 19:17, on Zulip):

I agree that I don't want to get too prescriptivist

nikomatsakis (Mar 11 2019 at 19:17, on Zulip):

nor do I want to do anything too complicated

nikomatsakis (Mar 11 2019 at 19:17, on Zulip):

but some lightweight "set goals, work towards them, evaluate" seems good

nikomatsakis (Mar 11 2019 at 19:18, on Zulip):

at minimum, in the traits WG, we've been kind of loosely following this, but without the overarching "sprint" -- it feels like it'd be good if we had the "sprint timeframe" overlaying it

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 19:24, on Zulip):

yes

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 19:24, on Zulip):

we can talk to him, he works at WyeWorks, we have been advocating about some of these things since a while with great success

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 19:25, on Zulip):

I understand some of the points explained and some concerns, I agree in the fact that I wouldn't impose things to nobody

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 19:25, on Zulip):

that'd be definitely a very bad idea, to try to impose things

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 11 2019 at 19:26, on Zulip):

but at the same time, using something very light as a way of helping us towards the things we want may be a very good idea

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 12 2019 at 16:27, on Zulip):

@nikomatsakis btw, if you want we can schedule a meeting with him to talk about this and see if we can in some way help

nikomatsakis (Mar 12 2019 at 21:16, on Zulip):

@Santiago Pastorino will he be at Rust LATAM?

Santiago Pastorino (Mar 14 2019 at 02:58, on Zulip):

@nikomatsakis yes, we can probably talk here

Last update: Nov 11 2019 at 22:50UTC