Create a community-based QA team in Ubuntu whose focus is on developing tools, policies, and practices for ensuring Ubuntu's quality as a distribution as well as providing general advice, oversight, and leadership of QA activities within the Ubuntu project. It is not a club or a status symbol, but rather a collaborative forum and working team of individuals focused on driving, enhancing, and supporting Ubuntu QA efforts. This team is basically the entry-level team for people serious about Ubuntu QA.
In general my view of QA is broken down into the following areas:
- Defect Management (Bug Triage)
- Quality Control (Update, Applicatino, and Pre-Release Testing)
- Quality Assurance (Verification of Changes)
- Product Improvement (Development)
QA (broadly defined) is currently being done by various, usually fairly independent teams, such as bugsquad, ubuntu-testing, sru-verification, ubuntu-dev, ubuntu-qa-website-devel, and various independent community members and Canonical employees. However, a comprehensive and cohesive community QA effort is lacking and current QA is primarily driven by Canonical. It is both unfair to Canonical and unhealthy for a community-based project such as Ubuntu to rely so heavily on Canonical for QA coordination. We want to bootstrap the Ubuntu QA community and provide it the support/mission/resources it needs.
~ubuntu-qa Launchpad team provides bzr branch hosting, PPA hosting, and a bug subscriber/assignee.
ubuntu-qa mailing list provides a common forum for discussion of project QA needs and development.
#ubuntu-quality IRC channel provides a real-time collaboration space and a good place for people to get involved.
- qa.ubuntu.com and qa.ubuntuwire.com provide hosting for QA-related services
- Individuals, not teams may be members. This is a working group and people come on their own merit.
- The "bar" for entry is low. Expectations are that members have already been doing some QA work in the community, show a commitment to QA, and have some sort of plan for work they want to do. Ubuntu Membership and membership in a relevant QA team is generally what we are looking for.
- Memberships expire annually and can be renewed by members themselves.
People from all areas of QA are encouraged to join.
What kinds of things would Ubuntu QA do?
- Coordinate between the various QA-related teams
- Build communities around QA work and help them run smoothly
Provide lead-from-the-front leadership to Ubuntu's QA projects
- Assess and communicate Ubuntu's QA needs
- Develop tools and services needed in Ubuntu QA work
- Work on creating consistent and efficient QA-related policies
- whatever else comes up or people want to contribute
Q: Shouldn't all the teams doing QA work be included in Ubuntu QA?
A: While there surely needs to be a place to overview all the various teams/people doing QA-related work, an umbrella Launchpad team is probably not the best way to do it. Here are some reasons:
- You can't see what the various teams do from an umbrella LP team page. You have to click on each team's link to read their description.
- A complete Ubuntu QA umbrella team would have hundreds of members, making it essentially useless as a working team.
- A wiki page outlining all the QA-related teams, what the do, and contact information would do the job much better.
Q: Isn't this being a bit exclusive?
A: Yes and no. Virtually all working teams around open-source software (and in general) have some set of criteria for joining. The key is to have transparency and a "bar" to entry that matches the work being done.
Q: Why call use ~ubuntu-qa, why not ~ubuntu-qa-core or ~ubuntu-qa-dev ?
A: Basically because of future planning and connotation. Ubuntu QA is meant to be pretty much entry level for "serious" QA work. If it was called ubuntu-qa-core then when the team expanded to a size where a core team was needed we'd call it ubuntu-qa-core-core or similar which is confusing. Naming the team ubuntu-qa-dev gives the impression that it is either only for developers or that it's focus is on coding. ~ubuntu-qa is much broader than either of those.
Q: How does Ubuntu QA relate to existing teams working on QA?
A(1): Ubuntu QA works with bugsquad leadership to help identify troublesome areas and better coordinate with testing and development teams to help reduce bug churn.
A(2): Ubuntu QA works with testing coordinators to help ensure that the test cases accurately represent the product targets.
A(3): Ubuntu QA works with developers to help produce better views of work needing to be done.