I Am A User Too

A short break from the Producing OSS quotes to pick up a Quote of The Week from the excellent LWN:

We need t-shirts with “I am a user too!”

Frankly, and GNOME is by far not the only one suffering from this, a project like this SHOULD have “open source contributor” as one of their prime audiences (note that I say “contributor” not “developer”).

These contributors, like you and me, are the folks that will write bugreports in diff -u form. Heck we’re the folks that conquer your bugzilla and FILE the bug in the first place. We’re the folks that give you the translations you want. We’re the folks who very vocally tell you what is wrong (and sometimes we even tell you what is right) with your software. We’re the folks who advocate your software to our tech-noob friends. We’re the folks that look at your code sometimes, to find security issues and tell you nicely about it before we go public. We’re the folks who form the pool out of which you’re going to be fishing your next developer set. We are the 99%^Wone percent, I will grant you that. But we are the one percent you as project NEED to get better in the long term, we are the one percent that your project needs to survive.

Arjan van de Ven

2 thoughts on “I Am A User Too

  1. This is why it’s important to have a lot of user-settable options. Sure, most users never touch them. So what? That’s what defaults are for.

    The users who *do* want the options matter, disproportionately, because they’re technically-inclined folk, the sort of folk who fill the various roles listed in the quote (among other things).