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Jacopo Capellato, Olivier Heintz, Nicolas Malin, Gil Portenseigne, Youssef Khaye, Julien Nicolas, Sharan Foga, Leila Mekika, Catherine Heintz, Bilgin Ibryam, Anahita Goljahani, Taher Alkhateeb, Gaurav Saini


Melia Hotel, Seville

Time: 18.30 - 20.15 ???

Workshop Objectives

  • No fixed agenda
  • General brainstorming

Encouraging people in the community to participate and give their feedback

Sometimes when a thread is posted or proposal made on the mailing list, there is no community feedback at all. Lack of feedback makes it very difficult for the person making the proposal or starting the discussion because they don't know whether the community are not interested, think it's a bad idea or silent because they agree. Over the last few months with all the work that has been done, lots of ideas and proposals have been made.

One response was that perhaps people are not responding because they don't think that they have the technical knowledge or expertise to respond or give an opinion.

Another response was that all communities have a 'silent group' (i.e a group of people who monitor the mailing lists but don't actively participate on the list or the discussions). There are more people subscribed to our lists than participate on a regular basis in the mailing list discussions.

What can we do as a community to encourage people to participate more on the mailing lists and in the discussions?

  • Make sure that the tone of the discussions is friendly, open and welcoming of other opinions.
  • Be more patient.
  • Take the time to explain things in a friendly way to others that don't understand.
  • Use social media more  (blogs, twitter) - some people prefer other communication methods to mailing lists.

OFBiz Meetups

Meeting up at Apachecon is a great way to strengthen relationships and also collaborate. Could we make use of meetups (real and virtual) to bring the community together?

Many other ASF projects have meetups but OFBiz doesn't - we tend to meetup at Apachecon and that's it. Could we look at organising some meetups, hackathons, training etc?  We have a lot of work so the meetups could be a way for a group of people to work together on a specific topic. It could also be used to do some outreach (recruit new members) as well as providing some valuable information / training etc for existing community members.

Find out if there is community interest in doing a specific OFBiz related event in India and /or Europe. (ACTION: Start mailing list thread)

Project Work

There is a lot of work happening on the project at the moment and there is work at every level. We need to highlight that we accept all types and levels of contributions. You don't need to be an expert - there are tasks ranging from beginner / newcomer to experienced expert. If we could break down the tasks into the levels then it would be easier for people to pick up.

The original refactor list had easy / intermediate  / expert ratings. We could use JIRA labels to flag certain JIRAs as newcomer / beginner. (We would need to communicate to the existing community to make sure that the experienced developers don't pick these up so there is nothing left for a real newcomer....)

Project Strategy and Roadmap

The project desperately needs at clear strategy and roadmap. Attempts have been made to draft one in the past but we need to formalise this in a better way. We also need to have people willing to drive it (or a specific area of it) forward.


  • A strategy will provide a clear path for people to follow
  • A strategy will allow us to set goals / milestones and metrics about progress

In past maybe we have tried to do too much (tried to do it all at once - which is why we find it hard to focus).

  • One suggestion was to set a maximum of 3 goals and then work only on these. To define these goals we need to look at what is the most important thing that we want to achieve - and base them on that.
  • Another suggestion was that the most important thing for the project is driving adoption. If this is true then what are the key blockers that stop user adoption of OFBiz? (the UI!) 
  • Suggestion to organise / setup teams from the community that focus on specific areas (e.g. workgroups) - this could really help progress

Strategy Ideas

If the UI was the main focus - what could the strategy look like

  • User Interface - have 2 versions of the UI, one very clean and simple, the other more advanced. (Our current UI could be the advanced one....?
  • Separate the web part from the widgets
  • We have too many fields on one screen (many of them are not mandatory and are just included as optional). What if we slimmed down all the screens to have a sensible default UI for users. The UI could also be modifiable by service providers. Simplify the screens with defaults
  • Use Bootstrap / CSS / Angular
  • Isolate web related
  • Define a graphics charter to be used for the screens
  • Have a CSS convention
  • Remove web from the framework - it shouldn't be there!


Role of PMC

Discussion - re misconception of the role of PMC. Many people talk about 'the PMC should do something about....' or ' why hasn't the PMC put together a roadmap etc..' but it is the community that controls the direction of the project. Main role of PMC is to manage the release process, vote for committers / PMC members, handle security issues and manage the project brand. All other areas are community driven.

The community don't always realise or understand that PMC members mainly participate on the mailing lists as individuals and OFBiz contributors (and not as PMC members). The main area where being a PMC role is used or acknowledged is a formal vote. Individual PMC members (wearing the hat of an OFBiz contributor / committer and not as a PMC member) can and are encouraged to work / support other areas.

Multiple Projects

OFBiz could deliver more than one product. We could have more than one project active at the same time e.g

  • Framework with applications
  • Advanced UI but without all features
  • Advanced features but with the poor UI

If this is the way we want to go - do we have to start from scratch?  

  • No, we can create new components
  • We can use the existing services in the new components, and while incorporating these services we could clean and refactor it. / Could also move it to a common place where it could be re-used?

Make new theme for this new start

  • move the theme material from framework to theme
  • User new web technologies (AngularJS, etc)
  • Additional note from Nicolas Malin


apachecon for the imperious to create a common theme that will be 
receive all standard technical rendering and common screen to offer more 
powerful on theme.

I started with success a POC on my github and we will open 
a issue about this.
The works isn't finish but I'm sure we are on a good way :)


Write specifications to get consensus



Start mailing list discussions on the following:

  • Project Strategy and Roadmap: Discuss what the most important thing for the project is at the moment, setting goals, organisation of work teams and breakdown / allocation of work, setup of any guidelines / charters / policies
  • User Interface: Having two versions of UI, a simple default one for users and a more advanced one (eg what we have now) as a reference for developers and service providers.)
  • OFBiz Meetups: Is there any interest in organising an OFBIz meetup in India and/or Europe for 2017?



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