There and Back Again

The phpDocumentor Plan

Another great PhpLondon meeting, made it home by 1am, and didn’t miss any trains.

Spent a lot of time talking about requirments, and saw a demo of an interesting project that implemented dynamic proxying in php (though the code seemed to be a lot more complex then it needed to be).

But i ended the evening on a topic that i’ve been working at for the last 5 years, phpDocumentor.

Now some might saw that phpDocumentor is a successful project, and in some ways it is (all time rank on source forge of 829, 50,000 sf downloads + another 40,000 from pear) but on the number that really drives an open source project were not doing so good.

That important # is active developers, at the moment its really 0. Yep thats right 0, I’m more or less in maintenance mode, put a patch in, respond to bugs queries. And while Greg will be back at some point for now he is working on the PEAR installer. So that leaves no one.

So this is my plan to change things a bit. It means i’ll get a bit more involved for the next few months, and will try to see what it takes to take “I want to help out phpDocumentor” to a new member of the phpDocumentor team.

I will do:

  1. Create a list of getting started bugs for new developers to work on
  2. Create test cases using simple test for each bug (Marcus promised to help)
  3. Create a new mailing list for the project at phpdoc.org (developer-list@phpdoc.org)
  4. Commit any back logged patches, and create a short howto how to make a patch
  5. Annouce a contest to the PhpLondon and AzPHP users groups where bug fixes will be rewared with prizes (pints of beer unless anyone has a better suggestion)
  6. Write up an overview of the phpDocumentor design, and show how to tackle just one part of it, instead of the whole huge code base
  7. Blog lots about phpDocumentor and try to get people excited about helping.

What im trying to get out of this is:

  1. 2 new developers who fix bugs/commit code on a regular basis
  2. Activity outside of some php user groups besides posting on a list or going to a meeting (ie giving back to the php community)
  3. A developer to take over the phpDocumentor release process, i’ll still be around but I just don’t have the time and energy to keep pushing in patches, keeping people organized and keeping up a regular release schedule

So if you want to help here’s what you do sign up on the new list (or comment right here). And post on how you think I can help people getted started working on phpDocumentor. If you have time and energy to help that would be even better, sign up and will get the process rolling.

Please remember, I don’t want to spend time setting up source forge and cvs accounts, I don’t need 10 more I want to helps that go no where. So these starter bug fixes will all be patch based, and once you’ve proven your ready to stay with things will set accounts up from there.

2 thoughts on “The phpDocumentor Plan

  1. Jason Sweat

    I have submitted a few ideas on the sf tracker that I always mean to get around to coding when I got enough time…perhap with renewed interest it will finally poke me into helping you out and submitting some patches 🙂