Forum .LRN Q&A: .LRN Web Site
We need a clear, documented path for these decisions. I'm all for discussions in the forums but if we want to get this project going we have a zillion of these decisions to make. Many, perhaps even most of them it won't matter which we decide as long as we decide and act. But for some of them it will matter.
We need clear, documented governance and decision making processes.
In my opinion power needs to rest with the paying .LRN members but authority to make decisions needs to be deligated in a transparent and legitimate manner.
Paying members (organizations) elect the board. The board elects/appoints by majority a technical team. The board has a voting procueedure like the OCT's. The board can ask for nonbindng advice from he technical committee. A certian number of paying members can veto a board decision. Maybe the board elects a webmaster or two for the .LRN site and they can make automous decisions like this one, and the board can veto if they don't like it.
Personally I like veto as a tool in these types of organizations. It gives people the abiltiy to make a decision and know if it really isn't what the elected goverance wants then they can stop them. It lets people act in a "ask forgiveness rather then seek permission/concenus" mode. That promotes action.
My advice to .LRN is write up some rules. Delegate down. Enforce transparency. Give the level above Veto. Create a clear terms of service and proceedures as to how new people are appointed/elected/hired to positions.
Then anyone can add suggestions to this and the paying members can then vote on whether they like the bylaws. And then you go from there.
There is currently a single forum in openACS.org for everything from LDAP to installation to development to how to teach. Now this makes it quite difficult to find past posts that may be of interest to people, this may also deter people from reqesting notification from the forum and as such we lose the valuable input of the users of the platform.
With regards to the decision making process I think the route we are discussing is viable and probably the 'fairest'. I do feel though that the decisions made by this group should then be advertised in a clear roadmap. - perhaps this could be something benefitial to the current discussions regards openACS quality for those following that thread. Bits of development here and there without a real indication of what is new in each release.... unless I'm missing something....
There must be a large dotLRN community out there yet they seem to be lurking in the shadows much of the time. I have been working with dotLRN for almost a year now and have definitely found it quite difficult to get the information/support I needed to make my life easier, this can be very offputting for people who maybe don't have the motivation to really search for things (ie organisations just starting off on the road and maybe doing comparitive studies). I definitely feel we need to bring everything dotLRN closer together, but not alienating or distancing dotLRN from openACS could be a challenge there.
I know that Carl recently was working on implementing a TIP process modeled upon the very successful one for OpenACS. That should definitely help improve .LRN governance.
Besides voting, is about doing, and resources investment on those things we plan to do (volunteering will not take us too far).
I would like to see what the members of .LRN community want to contribute or think that is a must to make this project successful.
Carl & company are working on the next release, what about future releases?
Who's gonna work on marketing material?
And what about making dotlrn.org open to users? (I can commit some work on this)
Who's looking at the many-many packages of .LRN?
And putting resources to interact with actual and possible users?
And what about Quality Assurance of .LRN suite? (i.e. automated testing)
Improvements for .LRN usability?
Anyone with priorities?
There are core task that will improve a lot .LRN as a whole project, and there might be neat new packages / functionalities that will sink among an unmaintained project, decide yourself in what you want to invest!