The KDE Promo team has just wrapped up a busy weekend at their sprint in Southampton, England. The group set out with an aggressive agenda and accomplished many of their goals throughout the weekend.
Some of the group arrived on Thursday evening, but it wasn't fully assembled until Friday evening. However that didn't stop us from diving straight into finalizing the agenda for the weekend. We also stumbled onto a sprint mascot for the weekend, the piglet squid, which was suggested by a local staff member on account of the university's involvement with the SERPENT Project.
Once the agenda was settled, we spent some time brainstorming ways to promote Join the Game, our membership campaign which encourages individuals to support KDE financially. This has been attractive to people who do not have the spare time or necessary skills required for development or other direct contributor activities. Keep an eye on Planet KDE to stay in the loop and help out KDE as we announce and discuss these ideas with the wider developer community in the coming weeks.
In preparation for this promotional push, we've centralized the existing artwork relating to Join the Game on the Community Wiki page. The page already contains several web banners in various sizes which community members can use to advertise the campaign on their blogs, including a newly created animated GIF that is quite cool. This is also the place to find the source files for flyers to hand out at conferences and trade shows.
Once the work for the day was done, we set out for some evening team building exercises. Stuart taught us about the wonders of warm, flat English beers called “real ale", and we had some lovely pub food before catching a nice evening shower thanks to mother nature. Most of the group had never actually met in person before, and a couple of people were new to the team. It was a great opportunity to get to know each other better, which is what KDE is all about!
The second day, the team dove into round 2 of the discussion on the Join the Game. There was a big push on the redesign of the official site to make it easier for potential supporters to understand. Much of the technical work was already in place; there was a debate over page content as we worked to describe the initiative clearly and concisely to site visitors.
Another major focus of the day was on planning for the Desktop Summit in Berlin. An IRC meeting was held with some of our GNOME colleagues to discuss the schedule of upcoming press releases and areas where we would need to coordinate with the event organizers. There will be a string of announcements coming in the following months so keep watching the Dot to hear more about this year's agenda, the winner of the t-shirt competition, and catch interviews with some of our keynote speakers.
In addition to these major themes for the day, we tackled some smaller topics which needed attention. These included revamping our own wiki pages to make it easier on new potential contributors to figure out what the Promo team does, and how they can get involved. We also held an IRC meeting of Dot editors to address ways we could further improve this site as a resource to the wider community. Finally, there were some discussions about how our team could do a better job helping out critical education initiatives such as the Season of KDE and our participation in the Google Summer of Code.
On the last morning, after we had completed at least five iterations of the Join the Game site contents, the team reached consensus on the home page text and layout. The fruits of our effort, along with much help from Emil Sedgh and Nuno Pinheiro on the design and artwork, was unveiled at this year's LinuxTag on the one year anniversary of the creation of this important campaign.
The remainder of the day became quite an adventure as the building fire alarm was set off, displacing us from the meeting room for the remainder of the day. However we refused to let this stop our progress and simply found our way to a nearby pub to continue working. Once there we wrote up a review of the Dot Editors meeting and spent some time creating the first draft of a "KDE Glossary of Terms". The goal of the glossary is to help define the various elements of KDE in a way that makes it easier for new users and contributors to understand the lingo of the KDE community. It is still a work in progress at this point but will hopefully become a valuable resource over time as we continue to refine and add to it.
Overall the weekend was quite productive and a lot of fun. Thank you to Southampton’s School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) for hosting the sprint, and for giving us nice lunches each day. In particular we'd like to thank Joyce Lewis of ECS for making all the arrangements.
KDE Promo Team - (left to right) Lukas Dzikaras, Agustín Benito Bethencourt, Claudia Rauch, Stuart Jarvis,
Pau Garcia i Quiles, Damien Tardy-Panis, Justin Kirby, Dan Leinir Turthra Jensen