The Arena Community Developer Board

Friday, July 02, 2010 8:37 AM by nairdo
the Board - NOTIn February 2007 the guys at Arena ChMS established what was loosely called the Community Developer Board (or CDB). This little known group was comprised of the Arena team (Jeff M, Steve, Mark, Alfred, etc), Jon and David from CCV, and Phil and myself from Central. Since that time a few more churches were invited to the team (Joel & Daniel: High Desert Church, Jeremy Hoff: Shepherd of the Hills, Tom Powers: Southeast Christian Church) but our charter has been roughly the same as summarized here:
The CDB’s role is to foster and grow structured development for the Arena community. To achieve this, the CDB should, among other things, create and maintain documentation that illustrates how to properly design, develop and package Arena modules for use by the community.  Additionally it should ... fulfill other needs that are essential to more efficient module development.

A few of the things the board has done:

  • help establish the.Community site
  • establish the original wiki which later moved to the official wiki
  • establish the namespace/naming standards
  • create the Arena Custom Module Developer guide (ACMD)
  • establish the monthly and yearly Arena Developer Roundtables
  • establish the module export/import feature (and applying constant pressure to make it more complete)
  • establish our original shared source repository on CVS Dude
  • establish the "My Portal" framework enabling developers to write personalization modules
  • establish consistency on various things like using the MS Ajax CDN

Although we haven't always agreed on things, we've made good progress in areas where there was consensus. (Establishing the RefreshCache tribe has been instrumental in relieving pressure in areas where we have not agreed -- more below.)

With the arrival of Mike Gold at Arena and onto the CDB, he's been reshaping how things are done at Arena and as result the CDB will be undergoing a reboot or reinvention. Regardless of the direction the CDB takes, the RefreshCache team will continue to grow in importance. On that team Arena has no responsibility -- which means they are not on the hook for anything.  This has been a real blessing for everyone. Having that kind of clarity has freed up the community to take responsibility and ownership for things that they feel are critical or important (our Manifesto).

For the most part, everyone who attended last year's event is part of the RefreshCache team. Over the past year this team has:

  • established and manage the #ArenaChMS IRC channel (Brian Slezak)
  • established the Arena Sample Server - a place where developers can setup their custom modules and try out other live modules in action
  • established our Redmine project server - the new repository (replacing CSV Dude) for hosting your code, issue tracking, wiki, etc. more... (Daniel Hazelbaker)
  • created an amazing Arena module installer (Jon Edmiston, David Turner) 
  • really beta tested each major release of Arena before its available to everyone (Austin Spooner) 
  • created the Arena Sandbox - a place where developers can test installing their modules in a clean sandbox environment (Daniel Hazelbaker)
  • taught developers essential tips and tricks for developing Arena modules (David Turner, Jeff Schinella, Jason Offutt)
  • shared vital ideas and concepts about ChMS (Jon Edmiston)

We're only about about 3 months away from RefreshCache 101010 so it's not too late to get involved on this team by signing up to attend the free event. As you can see on our Speakers page, this year we're planning on having the guys from Integrum (creators of Gangplank) stop by and chat with us about stuff they think is important. There are a few other surprises we're hoping to unload on everyone there too but it's too soon to spill the details.

Lastly, I'm serious about this:  if anyone else is out there and can't attend RefreshCache because of cost please let me know. You can stay at my house (last year we had a few people at my place -- it was great!) or I'll help find independent sponsors to help with travel costs, etc.

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