Courant News: How to Contribute

Courant News was finally open sourced this past weekend while I was attending BCNI Philly. That included the code, documentation, and the opening of the project wiki and mailing list. While we’ve had a healthy number of people look at the site according to our analytics and logs, we’ve not really had any contributions from outside the original team yet. Granted, it’s only been four days, but I thought I’d help streamline the process of finding a way to contribute.

The first and easiest way is to sign up on our Google Groups mailing list and join in the discussions there. We’re going to try to cultivate both technical and conceptual discussions there, so please join in. If you have ideas or feature requests or just need help setting it up, please post on the list.

Another easy thing to do is to read through the Project Ideas page on our wiki, which is where we are layout out a long list of features that we’d like to see added to Courant News in the near and long term. If you have more ideas, register a site account and post them. If you don’t want to go through that hassle, you can just post to the mailing list.

If you’d like to take it to the next level, you can help write specifications and flesh out some of the ideas on that page. You can create a wiki page for that feature/idea, and write a more detailed guide to what the feature/idea will do and how it might work. It is recommended that design decisions be discussed on the mailing list, but often it helps to just make a first pass at a spec before having people look at it.

Perhaps you have some coding skills and want to help with the actual project code. We are currently restricting svn commit access to the original team members (myself, Rob, and Paul), but are more than willing to expand that grouping once people show that they are trustworthy and competent. So to get your code into the project, we ask that you create a ticket about what you are adding/changing/fixing and attach a patch to it. One of us will review the patch, perhaps give some feedback, and then it can make its way into the repository.

We’ve tried to make the inclusive across the full range of technical ability and skillsets of those in college news, so we hope that many of you will get involved in some capacity. Please don’t be shy!

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