I was asked in email to elaborate on the need for project managers, so I'll write up my thoughts here...
We need people to "own" various cross-cut topics. That is, to monitor the project, advocate for needs, and remind people of those needs during meetings (those are mostly online), in the mailing lists, etc.
In my own sphere of interest there are a few cross-cutting topics that leap to mind:
* documentation -- API and development documentation, someone to push for regular updates and production of the documentation, someone to review the documentation that exists, collate requests, and flag the various tidbits that show up in discussions and add them to a queue somewhere to get added to the official documentation
* emulation -- someone to ride herd on the "quick start" developer's environments, ensuring that they are always available, work with the current versions of the packages, and allow for running all the various hardware
* accessibility -- someone to advocate for the various accessibility projects, keep people abreast of developments, coordinate testing for accessibility, feed back problems into the developer communities, arrange for documentation and check that we're actually on track (there may be someone tasked with this, but the accessibility list has been very quiet despite that)
* volunteer direction -- someone (this person likely needs to be at 1CC) to direct new offers of assistance to the people who own the related area of endeavour, the person would need to have, effectively, a rolodex of the people in the project and what they are working on. I think Mel was beginning to do some of this, but he's probably going back to school soon.
* IDE development -- needs someone to coordinate and communicate
* scientific platform -- needs someone to make sure that the documentation is there for the various instruments (e.g. blueprints, plans, usage notes, that kind of thing), coordinate effort among the various hardware projects (and the software people), look for "missing elements" in the science-chest and get them started, and generally make sure that the science-chest is ready-to-go
For most of those, all that's really required is good organisational skills, interest and focus, time and lots and lots of emails and discussions as you try to herd the developers. Communicating status and availability of resources to the community is a key requirement for all of these people.
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