[development] Patch Spotlight 2.0

Angela Byron drupal-devel at webchick.net
Sat Sep 27 04:43:52 UTC 2008

Back during the Drupal 6.x release, a bunch of us in #drupal pioneered 
an idea called "Patch Spotlight" (http://drupal.org/patch/spotlight). 
The idea was to pick the single most critical issue in the queue, put it 
"bubble it up" to give it more attention, so we could hammer *all* 
development efforts at it until it was resolved. The page includes 
information for those new to patch reviewing on how to get started, as 
well as an overview of what the patch does to help save people from 
reading 100+ replies.

This actually worked pretty well towards the end of 6.x release, and 
helped us hammer through some critical bugs pretty quickly.

However, it does have some drawbacks:
1. Only one patch is featured at a time. There might be many highly 
critical issues at any given time, but we can only pick one. Since there 
are over 5,000 issues in the queue, this mechanism is unsustainable for 
plowing through the patch queue.

2. Said issue might be very complex (such as the current one) or only be 
reviewable by only a very small number of people with a particular area 
of expertise (such as the current one) and as such, may stagnate for 
months on end (such as the current one ;)). This causes the spotlight to 
be less effective, because people start to ignore it.

3. People have domain expertise in different areas, and it's been 
challenging finding enough themers, people with JS knowledge, 
translators, etc. to test relevant patches in the queue. Patch spotlight 
doesn't reach those people; only the active core developer community.

So, here comes... Patch Spotlight 2.0!


This is a collection of wiki pages in the "Improvements to Core" group 
(http://groups.drupal.org/improvements-core), cross-posted to the 
relevant working groups, that contains a "short-list" of core issues in 
a variety of areas that need code written, or patches reviewed. The 
issues are categorized in the following way, each with its own wiki 
page, editable by any members of the group:

* Killer feature-enablers: Issues in the critical path for enabling us 
to meet Dries's Drupal 7 hit list.
* OMG WTF BBQ: *Seriously* critical bugs that *need* to get fixed.
* DX patches: API tweaks and such that help improve the developer 

Also, patches that affect:
* Performance: Cross-posted to the High Performance group.
* Usability: Cross-posted to Usability group.
* Theme system: Cross-posted to the Theme Development group.
* Documentation: Cross-posted to the Documentation Team group.
* JavaScript: Cross-posted to the JavaScript working group.
* Translations: Cross-posted to the Translations group.
* Quality Assurance: Cross-posted to the Testing/QA group

This list is a result of brainstorming tonight on #drupal, so might have 
some glaring holes. I've added a couple of starter issues to each, but 
feel free to take over and add additional ones to self-organize. 
Obviously, the fewer issues in each page, the quicker they can be moved 
through, so avoid using this as a personal soapbox for all your pet 
patches unless they really are of wider interest to folks in a 
particular area.

So now we have:

1. A way to "spotlight" several dozen patches rather than just one.
2. A way to alert people in working groups of core issues that affect 
them, so that they can give input on them well before Drupal 7 is released.
3. A way for working groups to self-select important patches in their 
area, and prioritize and focus on them.
4. Panels! With curvy borders, even! ;)

Downside is this list needs to be maintained manually, which is kind of 
a pain, but if enough people help out, it should go pretty slick.

Looking forward to reviewing and committing your RTBC patches! :)


More information about the development mailing list