It’s always hard to get back to your usual-life-routine after spending some days hacking or at great conferences with such wonderful people and in a lovely location. Well, at least it’s always for me. There was a commercial running here in Italy of a famous Italian cruise company, where people after the cruise experience find themselves crying or in group-therapy remembering the great moment: I’m always a little bit like that.

The Writing Open Source conference (DENT:woscon,woscon09 TWIT:woscon,woscon09) has been really interesting, professionally and humanely. I have a lot of information over some big Tomboy notes that I will be reading and re-reading in the days coming, they will be always open on my desktop when I have to deal with docs.

But it has not been only a conference: Writing Open Source is now a “community” (DENT:wosdocs TWIT:wosdocs), a central point for open source tech writer and for all the tech writer out there that would like to get involved in open source or that would like to share their experiences with us (we need them and we need you!!).

So, come on in, jump on the docs writing bandwagon, we are as crazy as woolly mammoths can be!

I already blogged a little bit about the first two days of the conference, I didn’t cover yet the last one: the sprint one. We formed two working groups: GNOME and Drupal. The Drupal one worked on the Writing Open Source community website, while we have been working for laying the foundations of what will be the new GNOME 3.0 Documentation: Mallard is among us!

We have been working with Lynda Chiotti and Janet Swisher on how we can and should work, how to organize and plan the doc writing activities, brainstorming on the topics we should cover in the documentation and how to create “personas” for documentation. All the day we have been working on closing some GNOME-docs bugs (Paul) and we started to port Empathy documentation to the new topic-based approach using Mallard (me and Phil, the repository is on gitorious) while Shaun was dealing with the Mallard spec and supervising our work. We also brainstormed about how to plan the work for the 3.0 release.

The plan for the 2.28 release of GNOME is to have the Mallard spec done (well, at least almost done), Yelp ready to use Mallard and Empathy documentation written topic-based with Mallard. There are some works to be done with regards to i18n/l10n and Mallard XML files and the build structure, but we would like to have everything at least ready for the 2.28. The big goal, at least for me, would be to have Empathy ships Mallard doc on release day, will see…

A big hug goes to Emma and her mother for the organization and for feeding us with wonderful breakfasts, lunches and suppers (or dinners, or teas? whatever…) and to all the people that there were with us: Paul, Phil, Shaun, Janet, Lynda, Addi, Dru, Jim, Richard, Dinda, Jeffrey, DB… (I know I forgot someone, but I’m not a sound-learner, I’m visual. So please apologize!).

PS: the DENT|TWIT:tag[,tag] notation is my new social-exchange notation 🙂