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purpose: Will Kahn-Greene's blog of Miro, PyBlosxom, Python, GNU/Linux, random content, PyBlosxom, Miro, and other projects mixed in there ad hoc, half-baked, and with a twist of lemon
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Sun, 20 Jul 2014

Input status: July 20th, 2014


This is the status report for development on Input. I publish a status report to the input-dev mailing list every couple of weeks or so covering what was accomplished and by whom and also what I'm focusing on over the next couple of weeks. I sometimes ruminate on some of my concerns. I think one time I told a joke.

Last status report was at the end of June. This status report covers the last few things we landed in 2014q2 as well as everything we've done so far in 2014q3.


Landed and deployed:

  • 6ecd0ce [bug 1027108] Change default doc theme to mozilla sphinx (Anna Philips)
  • 070f992 [bug 1030526] Add cors; add api feedback get view
  • f6f5bc9 [bug 1030526] Explicitly declare publicly-visible fields
  • c243b5d [bug 1027280] Add GengoHumanTranslater.translate; cleanup
  • 3c9cdd1 [bug 1027280] Add human tests; overhaul Gengo tests
  • ff39543 [bug 1027280] Add support for the Gengo sandbox
  • 258c0b5 [bug 1027280] Add test for get_balance
  • 44dd8e5 [bug 1027280] Implement Gengo Human push_translations
  • 35ae6ec [bug 1027280] Clean up API code
  • a7bf90a [bug 1027280] Finish pull_translations and tests
  • c9db147 [bug 1027286] Gengo translation system status
  • f975f3f [bug 1027291] Implement spot Gengo human translation
  • f864b6b [bug 1027295] Add translation_sync cron job
  • c58fd44 [bug 1032226] en-GB should copyover, too
  • 7480f87 [bug 1032226] Tweak the code to be more defensive
  • 7ac1114 [bug 1032571] CSRF exempt the API
  • ac856eb [bug 1032571] Fix tests to catch csrf issues in the api
  • 74e8e09 [bug 1032967] Handle unsupported language pairs
  • 74a409e [bug 1026503] First pass at vagrantification
  • a7a440f Continued working on docs; ditched hacking howto
  • 44e702b [bug 1018727] Backfill translations
  • 69f9b5b Fix date_end issue
  • e59d4f6 [bug 1033852] Better handle unsupported src languages
  • cc3c4d7 Add list of unsupported languages to admin
  • 32e7434 [bug 1014874] Fix translate ux
  • 672abba [bug 1038774] Hide responses from hidden products
  • e23eca5 Fix a goof in the last commit
  • 6f78e2e [bug 947767] Nix authentication for API stuff
  • a9f2179 Fix response view re: non-existent products
  • e4c7c6c [Bug 1030905] fjord feedback api tests for dates (Ian Kronquist)
  • 0d8e024 [bug 935731] Add FactoryBoy
  • 646156f Minor fixes to the existing API docs
  • f69b58b [bug 1033419] Heartbeat backend prototype
  • f557433 [bug 1033419] Add docs for heartbeat posting

Landed, but not deployed:

  • 7c7009b [bug 935731] Switch all tests to use FactoryBoy
  • 2351fb5 Generate locales so ubuntu will quite whining (Ian Kronquist)

Current head: 7ea9fc3


At a high level, this is:

  1. Landed automated Gengo human translation and a bunch of minor fixes to make it work more smoothly.
  2. Reworked how we build development environments to use vagrant. This radically simplifies the instructions and should make it a lot easier for contributors to build a development environment. This in turn should lead to more people working on Input.
  3. Fixed a bug where products marked as "hidden" were still showing up in the dashboard.
  4. Implemented a GET API for Input responses. (https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/Input/Dashboards_for_Everyone)
  5. Implemented the backend for the Heartbeat prototype. (https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/Input/Heartbeat)
  6. Also, I'm fleshing out the Input section in the wiki complete with project plans. (https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/Input)

Over the next two weeks

  1. Continue fleshing out project plans for in-progress projects on the wiki.
  2. Gradient sentiment and product picker work.

What I need help with

  1. We have a new system for setting up development environments. I've tested it on Linux. Ian has, too (pretty sure he's using Linux). We could use some help testing it on Windows and Mac OSX.

Do the instructions work on Windows? Do the instructions work on Mac OSX? Are there important things the instructions don't cover? Is there anything confusing?


  1. I'm changing the way I'm managing Fjord development. All project plans will be codified in the wiki. A rough roadmap of which projects are on the drawing board, in-progress, completed, etc is also on the wiki. I threw together a structure for all of this that I think is good, but it could use some review.

Do these project plans provide useful information? Are there important questions that need answering that the plans do not answer?


If you're interested in helping, let me know! We hang out on #input on irc.mozilla.org and there's the input-dev mailing list.

I think that covers it!

Tue, 01 Jul 2014

Input: 2014q2 post-mortem

I'm going to start doing quarterly post-mortems for Input development. The goal is to be more communicative about what happened, why, what's in the works and what I need more help with.

NB: "Fjord" is the name of the codebase that runs Input.

Bug and git stats


Bugs created:        63
Bugs fixed:          54


Total commits: 151

      Will Kahn-Greene : 142  (+14758, -4599, files 438)
        ossreleasefeed : 3  (+197, -42, files 9)
          Anna Philips : 2  (+734, -6, files 24)
          Joshua Smith : 2  (+65, -31, files 5)
     Swarnava Sengupta : 1  (+2, -2, files 1)
         Ricky Rosario : 1  (+0, -0, files 0)

Total lines added: 15756
Total lines deleted: 4680
Total files changed: 477

We added a lot of lines of code this quarter:

  • April 1st, 2014: 15195 total, 6953 Python
  • July 1st, 2014: 20456 total, 9247 Python

That's a pretty big jump in LOC. I think a bunch of that is the translation-related changes.

Contributor stats

5 non-core people contributed to Fjord development.

I spent some time over the weekend finishing up Vagrant provisioning script and rewriting the docs. I'm planning to spend some more time in 2014q3 reducing the complexity and barriers for setting up a Fjord development environment to the point where someone can contribute.

Additionally, I'm planning to create more bugs that are contributor-friendly. I started doing that in the last week. I think a good goal for Input is to have around 20 contributor-y bugs hanging around at any given time.


Site health dashboard: I wrote a mediocre site health dashboard that's good enough to give me a feel for how the site is performing before and after a deployment. This still needs some work, but I'll schedule that for a rainy day.

Client side smoke tests: I wrote smoke tests for the client side. I based it on the defunct input-tests code that QA was maintaining up until we rewrote Input. There are still a bunch of tests that I want to write to have a better coverage of things, but having something is way better than nothing. I'm hoping the smoke tests will reduce the amount of manual testing I'm doing, too.

Vagrant: I took some inspiration from Erik Rose and DXR and wrote a Vagrant provisioning shell script. This includes a docs overhaul as well. This work is almost done, but needs some more testing and will probably land in the next week or two. This will make peoples' lives easier.

Automated translation system (human and machine): I wrote an automated translation system. It's generalized so that it isn't model/field specific. It's also generalized so that we can add plugins for other translation systems. It's currently got plugins for Dennis, Gengo machine translation and Gengo human translation. I turned the automated human translation on yesterday and it seems to be working well. That was a HUGE project. I'm glad it's done.

One thing it includes is a lot of auditing and metrics gathering. This will make it possible for me to go back in time and look at how the translation system worked on various Input feedback responses and hone the system going forward to reduce the number of human translations we're doing and also reduce the number of problems we have doing them.

Better query syntax: We were upgraded to Elasticsearch 0.90.10. I switched the query syntax for the dashboard search field to use Elasticsearch simple_query_string. That allows users to express search queries they weren't previously able to express.

utm_source and utm_campaign handling: I finished the support for handling utm_source and utm_campaign querystring parameters. This allows us to differentiate between organic feedback and non-organic feedback.

More like this: I added a "more like this" section to the response view. This makes it possible for UA analyzers to look at a response and see other responses that are similar.

Dashboards for you, dashboards for everyone!

I'm putting this in its own section because it's intriguing. I'll write another blog post about it later in July as things gel.

On Thursday, a couple of days after d3 training that Matt organizied, I threw together a better GET API for Input feedback responses. It's not documented, it probably has some bugs and it's probably going to change a bit, but the gist of it is that it lets you more easily build a dashboard that meets your needs against live Input data.

Here's a proof-of-concept:


That's looking at live Input data using the new GET API. The code is in a GitHub gist. It auto-updates every 2 minutes.

The problem is that I've got a ton of Input work to do and I just can't write dashboard code on Input fast enough. Further, of the people I've talked to that use the front page dashboard, they all have really different questions they're asking of the data. I'm hoping this alleviates that bottleneck by letting you and everyone else write dashboards that meet your needs.

I encourage you to take my proof-of-concept, fork the gist, tweak it, use bl.ocks.org or something to "host" the gist. Build the dashboard that answers your questions. Share it with other people. Plus, let me know about it. If you have issues with the API, submit a bug and tell me.

If this scratches the itch I think needs scratching, it should result in a bunch of interesting dashboards. If that happens, I'll write some code in Input to create a curated list of them so people can find them more easily.


This was a really crazy quarter and parts of it really sucked, but we got a lot accomplished and we laid some groundwork for some really interesting things for 2014q3.

Mon, 23 Jun 2014

Input status: June 23rd, 2014

I publish a status report to the input-dev mailing list every couple of weeks or so covering what was accomplished and by whom and also what I'm focusing on over the next couple of week. I sometimes ruminate on some of my concerns. I think one time I told a joke.

Since the last report:

Landed and deployed:

Landed, but not deployed:

HEAD: 1d9e67a

Mostly I spent the last couple of weeks working on automated Gengo human translation support. This involved some infrastructure rewriting plus some additional infrastructure so that when we push all this out, we can see what's going on as it is happening.

Additionally, I went through and updated the mentor metadata for mentored bugs, added a bunch of new mentored bugs and worked with two potential contributors on them.

Over the next week (last week in 2014q2):

  1. finish up automated Gengo human translation work

First thing in 2014q3, I'll spend some time "opening up" the development side of the project. This will make it easier/possible to follow and participate in development. I'm still figuring out some of the details and it's likely I'll continue to change how things work over the course of the quarter, but plan to follow advice from the Community Building team and Erik Rose who seems to be doing really super with DXR.

(Updated) Using the bug_mentor field with the Bugzilla REST API to get mentored bugs

In my previous post, I mentioned how Bugzilla grew a mentor field and had some code on how to query Bugzilla using the old and new APIs for the list of mentored bugs. This updates that information.

Gerv and Byron pointed out there's a isnotempty operator that's better to use than the way I cobbled together to query for bugs that have data in the bug_mentor field.

Thus, the code should look like this:

import requests

# Using the old BzAPI: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Bugzilla:REST_API
r = requests.get(
    'https://api-dev.bugzilla.mozilla.org/latest' +
data = r.json()
print len(data['bugs'])  # Prints 9

# Using the new BMO API. https://wiki.mozilla.org/BMO/REST
r = requests.get(
    'https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/rest' +
data = r.json()
print len(data['bugs'])  # Prints 9

Thu, 19 Jun 2014

Using the bug_mentor field with the Bugzilla REST API to get mentored bugs

Updated June 23rd, 2014:
There's a better way to query the data. See the update blog post

Bugzilla grew a mentor field recently. This is really fantastic as it solves some interesting problems and makes it easier to track various aspects of mentoring which have been previously difficult to track. Yay to everyone involved in making that happen!

Migrating from the old way (sticking [mentor=xxx] in the whiteboard field) to the new way caused a problem that I spent a while working on today. I heard reports of other people having the same problem, hence this blog post.

There are a bunch of Bugzilla-symbiotic systems which would show a list of mentored bugs by checking to see if the string mentor= was in the whiteboard field. That no longer works. Instead we have to check to see if the bug_mentor field is empty. However, this is difficult to express with the old Bugzilla REST API (BzAPI).

The bug_mentor field is unique in that it holds email addresses which have the @ in them. So we can (ab)use this property by seeing if the bug_mentor field contains the @ character.

I did this with the GetInvolved/input.mozilla.org page. Here is the diff in case that's helpful.

Here's some Python that shows this with the old BzAPI and the new BMO API which pulls mentored bugs for Input:

import requests

# Using the old BzAPI: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Bugzilla:REST_API
r = requests.get(
    'https://api-dev.bugzilla.mozilla.org/latest' +
data = r.json()
print len(data['bugs'])  # Prints 9

# Using the new BMO API. https://wiki.mozilla.org/BMO/REST
r = requests.get(
    'https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/rest' +
data = r.json()
print len(data['bugs'])  # Prints 9

Tue, 13 May 2014

Input: changed query syntax across the site

Better search syntax is here!

Yesterday I landed the changes for bug 986589 which affects all the search boxes and search feeds on Input. Now they use the Elasticsearch simple-query-search query instead of the hand-rolled query parser I wrote.

This was only made possible in the last month after we were updated from Elasticsearch 0.20.6 (or whatever it was) to 0.90.10.

Tell me more about this ... syntax.

I'm pretty psyched! It's pretty much the minimum required syntax for useful searching. It's kind of lame it took a year to get to this point, but so it goes.

To quote the Elasticsearch 0.90 documentation:

+  signifies AND operation
|  signifies OR operation
-  negates a single token
"  wraps a number of tokens to signify a phrase for searching
*  at the end of a term signifies a prefix query
( and )  signify precedence

Negation and prefix were the two operators my hand-rolled query parser didn't have.

What does this mean for you?

It means that you need to use the new syntax for searches on the dashboard and other parts of the site.

Further, this affects feeds, so if you're using the Atom feed, you'll probably need to update the search query there, too.

Also, we added a ? next to search boxes which links to a wiki page that documents the syntax with examples. It's a wiki page, so if the documentation is subpar or it's missing examples, feel free to let me know or fix it yourself.

Fri, 20 Dec 2013

SUMO: 2013 retrospective

It was a big year for SUMO. In 2012, we got a lot accomplished: new search, new information architecture,

One thing I didn't do was make my year-end script product better output.

Anyhow---on with stats!

Twas the year: 2013


Bugs created: 889

               a.topal : 156
              rrosario : 100
                willkg : 87
           scoobidiver : 85
                  ibai : 58
                mverdi : 54
               mcooper : 42
                feer56 : 35
          krystaiceman : 26
                rdalal : 19
            david.weir : 15
                shuhao : 13
      swarnavasengupta : 9
       andrei.hutusoru : 8
           me+bugzilla : 7
            tobbi.bugs : 6
                 mluna : 6
          joshua-smith : 6
               tdowner : 6
               leszekz : 6
        yoshi.yokotani : 5
        stephen.donner : 5
                 slurp : 5
                  mana : 5
             madperson : 4
              kbrosnan : 4
             tonnes.mb : 4
               rardila : 4
              pmcclard : 4
               dbialer : 4
             michaljev : 4
                   abc : 4
                  l10n : 4
               pcvrcek : 3
                 rdaub : 3
              fabricio : 2
             rmcguigan : 2
          sudheesh1995 : 2
          alex_mayorga : 2
          simone.lando : 2
            nishant_cs : 2
                  bram : 2
               smolejv : 2
        bob.silverberg : 2
              rtanglao : 2
        kdurant35rules : 2
            amit103065 : 2
         subedimahadev : 2
                lhenry : 2
          thomas.lendo : 2
             shawnsumo : 2
              mhammond : 1
        kdurant35rules : 1
                  djst : 1
               curtisk : 1
        chiorean.ioana : 1
                bermea : 1
               friedel : 1
        bputstudentweb : 1
     margaret.leibovic : 1
             rbillings : 1
       nikitan.dolmart : 1
       georgevidalakis : 1
            nsm.nikhil : 1
              satishb3 : 1
            bwbrowning : 1
              bugzilla : 1
                  coce : 1
              EddyCarr : 1
              gryllida : 1
        mohammed.samad : 1
                  6a68 : 1
         krupa.mozbugs : 1
           John99-bugs : 1
             wjohnston : 1
              barderne : 1
               jan0286 : 1
               fwenzel : 1
               rnewman : 1
           this4midhun : 1
              bjohnson : 1
  bugzilla-fromthedeep : 1
             iamjithin : 1
               bmo2010 : 1
    chrismore.bugzilla : 1
                 evold : 1
              jbertsch : 1
                yousef : 1
          pmjcreations : 1
               rhelmer : 1
              danishka : 1
                  mail : 1
             gphemsley : 1
              Rebeccah : 1
           ckreinbring : 1
               stephen : 1
         berker.peksag : 1
                jezdez : 1
                 nchen : 1
         iamjayakumars : 1
            netfuzzerr : 1
              benjamin : 1

Bugs resolved: 1116

              rrosario : 386 resolved, 273 fixed
                rdalal : 152 resolved, 150 fixed
               a.topal : 121 resolved, 41 fixed
               mcooper : 118 resolved, 105 fixed
                willkg : 72 resolved, 61 fixed
           scoobidiver : 31 resolved, 0 fixed
             michaljev : 20 resolved, 17 fixed
      swarnavasengupta : 18 resolved, 0 fixed
                shuhao : 16 resolved, 13 fixed
           me+bugzilla : 12 resolved, 5 fixed
         berker.peksag : 12 resolved, 12 fixed
                mverdi : 11 resolved, 5 fixed
                  erik : 9 resolved, 9 fixed
                lhenry : 8 resolved, 1 fixed
          krystaiceman : 7 resolved, 1 fixed
            tobbi.bugs : 7 resolved, 6 fixed
          joshua-smith : 6 resolved, 4 fixed
                 jfong : 5 resolved, 5 fixed
               tdowner : 5 resolved, 2 fixed
                feer56 : 5 resolved, 0 fixed
            david.weir : 5 resolved, 4 fixed
            bwbrowning : 5 resolved, 5 fixed
                  bram : 5 resolved, 4 fixed
                  ibai : 4 resolved, 1 fixed
   alastra.mariagrazia : 4 resolved, 2 fixed
                 laura : 4 resolved, 4 fixed
              williamr : 3 resolved, 1 fixed
         buchanae+bugs : 3 resolved, 3 fixed
           bharath_ves : 3 resolved, 3 fixed
              paul+moz : 3 resolved, 3 fixed
          chris.lonnen : 2 resolved, 2 fixed
               smolejv : 2 resolved, 1 fixed
             zcampbell : 2 resolved, 0 fixed
         iamjayakumars : 2 resolved, 0 fixed
               curtisk : 2 resolved, 0 fixed
               leszekz : 2 resolved, 0 fixed
                   abc : 2 resolved, 1 fixed
               pcvrcek : 2 resolved, 0 fixed
          taygunagiali : 2 resolved, 2 fixed
                  mail : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
               bmo2010 : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
               wymette : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                beaotx : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
                nelson : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
             madperson : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
                  coce : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
              pmcclard : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
             tgavankar : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
  bugzilla-fromthedeep : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
              rtanglao : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
        stephen.donner : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
       guillermo.movia : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
              lorchard : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
              nukeador : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
             rtucker11 : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
            nishant_cs : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                  stas : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
             mattbasta : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
              satishb3 : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
              ragsagar : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
             rmcguigan : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
                 nchen : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                kudrom : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
       andrei.hutusoru : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                  reed : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
           tiziana.sel : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
       chance.zibolski : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
             alice0775 : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                  ravi : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
            nsm.nikhil : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
              gryllida : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
    deletesoftware+moz : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
          pmjcreations : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
                boerni : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
               rforbes : 1 resolved, 0 fixed
               dbialer : 1 resolved, 1 fixed
                jgross : 1 resolved, 1 fixed

            INCOMPLETE : 43
               WONTFIX : 51
             DUPLICATE : 64
               INVALID : 73
            WORKSFORME : 121
                 FIXED : 764

Research bugs: 15

761582: [research] Add feature: Articles that link to this article
788104: [research] [ux] Support multiple products in the support forum
815089: [research] Investigate telling apart Firefox for Desktop and Firefox for Mobile tweets
816970: [research] SurveyGizmo API to be used in automated exit survey
823060: [research] Use datetime instead of ints in ES mappings
823891: [research] Adding KB revisions feature
825621: [research] Store the templates, article links and images in each article
825624: [research] Investigate how to update to Twitter API v1.1
841412: [research] Bad localization strings shouldn't break the site.
845290: [research] URL bar should fade away on SUMO
854554: [research] Youtube embeds don't work with templates
889884: [research] Open Badges!
889890: [research][discuss] figure out how to improve our l10n situation with search
906992: [research] Add support for multiple ES indexes by doc type
937889: [research] Login users via a URL in email

Tracker bugs: 20

433161: [Tracker] Support for forums in other languages
625891: [tracker] HTML email
721462: [tracker] Taxonomy IA improvements
758598: [Tracker] Search UX suggestions
783262: [tracker] Add rate limiting to protect us from spammers
790785: [Tracker] L10n tools editing part
790786: [Tracker] L10n tools organization part
800962: [Tracker] Add activity history page for KB
815625: [Tracker] Segment dashboards and other contributor pages by product
817540: [tracker] AJAXify the refine+focus panel
825606: [tracker] Switch everything from Webtrends to Google Analytics
827640: [tracker] Localize Questions
838584: [Tracker] Getting ready for Firefox OS launch
845286: [tracker] Use as little bandwidth as possible on mobile version of SUMO
845773: [Tracker] move to an OS charting solution
848520: [tracker] Make all traffic HTTPS
851730: [tracker] Close threads pro-actively
871559: [tracker] update codebase to django 1.4 layout
897057: [tracker] Open Badges -- stage 1
920530: [tracker] support Webmaker on SUMO


Total commits: 1138

         Ricky Rosario : 492  (+16258, -16435, files 2972)
      Will Kahn-Greene : 178  (+8311, -3748, files 438)
           Rehan Dalal : 168  (+13016, -5554, files 680)
           Mike Cooper : 145  (+46955, -22136, files 582)
           Kadir Topal : 39  (+352, -110, files 61)
      Michał Frontczak : 19  (+229, -182, files 78)
         Berker Peksag : 15  (+570, -717, files 73)
             Shuhao Wu : 15  (+1523, -127, files 51)
       Jen Fong-Adwent : 9  (+138, -18, files 17)
                 Tobbi : 8  (+338, -204, files 13)
              browning : 5  (+140, -16, files 12)
             davd Weir : 4  (+15, -1, files 4)
          Joshua Smith : 4  (+94, -87, files 13)
         Tobias Markus : 3  (+8, -8, files 4)
                 Anush : 3  (+4, -1, files 3)
       Gaurav Dadhania : 3  (+3, -3, files 3)
  Bharath Thiruveedula : 3  (+15, -14, files 3)
                  ibai : 3  (+30, -30, files 4)
                kudrom : 2  (+9, -9, files 5)
             Nghi Tran : 2  (+2, -1, files 2)
          Tanner Filip : 2  (+4, -4, files 2)
                Börni : 2  (+30, -15, files 4)
             madperson : 2  (+5, -4, files 2)
         Taygun AGIALI : 2  (+7, -6, files 3)
           TylerDowner : 2  (+3, -3, files 2)
           James Socol : 2  (+37, -27, files 3)
               david-w : 1  (+1, -1, files 1)
              ragsagar : 1  (+16, -1, files 2)
       Guillermo Movia : 1  (+1, -0, files 1)
              rosanaar : 1  (+9, -0, files 1)
              Gryllida : 1  (+26, -6, files 3)
       Beatriz Nombela : 1  (+9, -9, files 6)

Total lines added:   88158
Total lines deleted: 49477
Total files changed: 5048
  1. Ricky does a lot of work! Holy cow!

  2. In 2011, we had 19 people who contributed code changes.

    In 2012, we had 23 people.

    In 2013, we had 32 people.

  3. Like 2011 and 2012, we resolved more bugs than we created in 2013. That's three years in a row! I've never seen that happen on a project I work on.

  4. There are a lot of people braving Bugzilla to write up bugs. Skimming the list, I see developers, non-developers, Support contributors, localizers, support team and a lot of people I don't recognize.

Here's some number comparisons:

name 2011 2012 2013
Bugs created: 1357 938 889
Bugs resolved: 1637 1025 1116
Total commits: 1137 916 1138
Code contributors: 19 23 32

I spent a good chunk of 2013 working on Input, but here's what I remember from SUMO development in 2013:

  1. We rearranged the codebase for better Django 1.4 layout. That was a project. Oy.
  2. We added support for non-English languages to the support forums!
  3. We switched email to be HTML formatted. We also reworked email to be localized.
  4. We switched to Google Analytics.
  5. We implemented Open Badges---though there's still a few important pieces to finish there.
  6. We switched to YouTube for videos.
  7. We added support for Webmaker and Firefox OS. Thunderbird support will be added to SUMO in 2014.
  8. Mike took a lantern, a crust of bread and a big sword and spelunked into the darkest dungeons filled with stinky, squelchy muck and rewrote the showfor code.
  9. We reworked our search code to handle multiple indexes, though we haven't taken advantage of that, yet.
  10. We switched deployment to use Dennis to lint all translated strings before pushing them to production. This has almost assuredly saved us from production fires. I hated those kinds of fires. Hooray for Dennis!
  11. We wrote and switched to Ernest for sprint planning and coordination.
  12. We overhauled everything to add support for Persona authentication, but had to push off deployment indefinitely because of problems with Persona which are being ironed out by the Persona team.
  13. We added an escalation system for questions that haven't received a response in x hours for some positive value of x that is still in flux.
  14. We ditched Highcharts.
  15. We wrote a command-line deployer which tells us exactly what's going out and tells New Relic, too. This gives us a much better idea of what we're deploying and how it affected the site afterwards. This command-line deployer is named chief-james in honor of James who has moved on to greener and well measured pastures.
  16. We added a bunch of new metrics, dashboards, history pages, activity pages, icons, bicons, landing pages, take-off pages, topics, subtopics, toe picks and all kinds of stuff.

That's the gist of the year: it was a lot of work, but we accomplished a ton.

w00t for 2013!

Thu, 19 Dec 2013

Input: 2013 retrospective

It was a big year for Input. In 2012, we spent the last half rewriting Input. In 2013, it went through secreview, had a bunch of things fixed and then we migrated to the new system.

Since then, we've been fixing bugs, reimplementing features that were lost and writing the scaffolding for the new set of User Advocacy dashboards and tools.

Let's look at some Bugzilla and git stats for the year:

Twas the year: 2013


Bugs created: 150

                willkg : 100
            cwwmozilla : 5
                fbraun : 4
               mgrimes : 4
               tdowner : 3
        stephen.donner : 3
           me+bugzilla : 2
        gasell+mozilla : 2
               mcooper : 2
                 glind : 2
             mozaakash : 1
        kdurant35rules : 1
            hitmanarky : 1
              kbrosnan : 1
        bob.silverberg : 1
              splewako : 1
              rrosario : 1
             mattbasta : 1
              educmale : 1
                feer56 : 1
                326374 : 1
               anthony : 1
        shopov.bogomil : 1
               peterbe : 1
                  l10n : 1
    chrismore.bugzilla : 1
                landis : 1
          dron.rathore : 1
                    rq : 1
             MattN+bmo : 1
          joshua-smith : 1
                cturra : 1
        swagat.kanungo : 1

Bugs resolved: 268

                willkg : 157
                       :    WONTFIX 50
                       :      FIXED 89
                       : WORKSFORME 8
                       :  DUPLICATE 9
                       :    INVALID 1
            cwwmozilla : 57
                       :      FIXED 1
                       :    WONTFIX 7
                       : WORKSFORME 29
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
                       :    INVALID 19
               mgrimes : 10
                       :      FIXED 1
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
                       : WORKSFORME 5
                       :    INVALID 3
        shopov.bogomil : 7
                       :    WONTFIX 1
                       : WORKSFORME 2
                       :    INVALID 1
                       :      FIXED 2
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
               mcooper : 6
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
                       :      FIXED 5
               mozilla : 5
                       :      FIXED 5
           me+bugzilla : 4
                       :    WONTFIX 1
                       :      FIXED 1
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
                       :    INVALID 1
             mozaakash : 2
                       : WORKSFORME 1
                       :    INVALID 1
        trifandreialin : 2
                       : WORKSFORME 2
              rrosario : 2
                       :      FIXED 2
          joshua-smith : 2
                       :      FIXED 1
                       :    INVALID 1
           aaron.train : 2
                       :    WONTFIX 1
                       :  DUPLICATE 1
        stephen.donner : 1
                       : INCOMPLETE 1
               emorley : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
               curtisk : 1
                       :    INVALID 1
               unghost : 1
                       : WORKSFORME 1
          rajul.iitkgp : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
             jruderman : 1
                       : INCOMPLETE 1
          chris.lonnen : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
             nigelbabu : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
              tofumatt : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
                cturra : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
               fwenzel : 1
                       :      FIXED 1
               mbrandt : 1
                       :      FIXED 1

            INCOMPLETE : 2
             DUPLICATE : 15
               INVALID : 28
            WORKSFORME : 48
               WONTFIX : 60
                 FIXED : 115


Total commits: 277

      Will Kahn-Greene : 249  (+51602, -16851, files 1130)
           Mike Cooper : 11  (+38528, -236, files 217)
        Brandon Burton : 7  (+42, -215, files 9)
         Ricky Rosario : 4  (+36, -19, files 6)
        Bob Silverberg : 3  (+19, -9, files 3)
                 Rajul : 1  (+3, -0, files 1)
          Joshua Smith : 1  (+10, -5, files 1)
               bogomil : 1  (+1, -1, files 1)

Total lines added:   90241
Total lines deleted: 17336
Total files changed: 1368

I want to highlight some interesting bits:

  1. We resolved more bugs than we created. That's partially due to us going through and closing out old bugs for the old Input that aren't relevant anymore.

  2. According to the Bugzilla and git data, there were 47 contributors to Input this year: 326374, Bob Silverberg, Brandon Burton, Joshua Smith, MattN+bmo, Mike Cooper, Rajul, Ricky Rosario, Will Kahn-Greene, aaron.train, anthony, bogomil, chris.lonnen, chrismore.bugzilla, cturra, curtisk, cwwmozilla, dron.rathore, educmale, emorley, fbraun, feer56, fwenzel, gasell+mozilla, glind, hitmanarky, jruderman, kbrosnan, kdurant35rules, l10n, landis, mattbasta, mbrandt, me+bugzilla, mgrimes, mozaakash, nigelbabu, peterbe, rajul.iitkgp, rq, splewako, stephen.donner, swagat.kanungo, tdowner, tofumatt, trifandreialin, and unghost.

    That doesn't include localizers who do a ton of work translating the strings in the Input ui.

    That includes some of the folks who work on the input-tests repository, but possibly misses some.

  3. Most of the 47 contributors are not "core developers". That's cool, but I could be doing a better job here making it easier for non-core developers.

    We maintain a Get Involved page and we hang out on #input on irc.mozilla.org. We have a input-dev mailing list. If you want to work on Input, this is where it's at!

Those are the stats.

At a high-level, we accomplished the following:

  1. stood up a new Input code base
  2. the beginnings of spam identification and removal
  3. Input API for feedback submission
  4. Firefox OS feedback form
  5. infrastructure for an Analysts group with special privileges
  6. the beginnings of an Occurrence Comparison report dashboard

One thing I discovered in 2013q4 was that it's really hard to be the mostly-solo dev on a project like this. I'm lucky that I'm part of a larger team, so peer reviews for work I've done is possible and timely. However, I find I'm switching contexts between the technical details of what I'm working on now and the high-level details of a bunch of possible future tasks/projects. That's really hard to do day-to-day and still maintain development momentum. I have some thoughts on how to serialize my work so that I'm doing less context switching and I can focus on individual things more deeply which should produce better outcomes.

My goals for Input for 2014 are these:

  1. clean up the code base: there's still a bunch of weird stuff in there from the rapid development work we did in 2012
  2. reduce barriers to entry for new contributors: better documentation, fewer steps to get up and running, more bugs marked for mentoring, more outreach, ...
  3. build infrastructure that we can use for better User Advocacy tools: watched alerts, email notifications, dashboards, ...
  4. flesh out tests: we're really light on smoketests and regression-catching tests
  5. work with Matt and Cheng to figure out where Input fits into the grand scheme of things; how can we make it a general-purpose feedback system? how can we handle non Firefox products and initiatives?

Yay for 2013!

Update 7:08pm

My script only showed top tens which misses tons of people who did work. I redid the data and that increases the number of contributors from 16 to 47. Oops!

Sat, 18 May 2013

Proposal: LDAP password resets as a unit of measure


Every 3 months, we at Mozilla have to reset our LDAP passwords. The system helpfully sends the first reminder 2 weeks before your password expires, then the second reminder 1 week before your password expires and the last reminder 2 days before your password expires.

Sometimes time passes by faster than you know and you end up with a Locked out of LDAP account.

The 3 month LDAP password reset is such a large part of our lives that I propose it become a standard unit of measure for elapsed time.


Used in casual conversation:

Pat: Hi!

Jordan: Hi!

Pat: I haven't seen you before. How long have you been at Mozilla?

Jordan: I've been here for 6 LDAP password resets.

Pat: Oh, weird. I've been here for 7. Good to meet you! Would you like a banana?

Jordan: Would I ever!

Used in casual conversation on IRC:

<patbot> anyone use less?
<corycory> i only use sass. it's the best.
* riledupriley has quit (Quit: riledupriley)
<patbot> :(
<hugbot> (patbot)
* r1cky has joined #casualconversationexample
<r1cky> morning!
<nigelb> r1cky: hai!
<nigelb> Ah, it's nearly mfbt.
<mtjordan> sure. been using it for 3 ldap password resets.
<mtjordan> patbot: why do you ask?

Used in Bugzilla comments:

Jordan [:jordan]  1 day ago       Comment 0 [reply] [-]

Readonly mode causes the site to ISE.
Pat [:pat]  1 day ago             Comment 1 [reply] [-]

I looked into it. Turns out we haven't used readonly
mode in at least 4 LDAP password resets.

I think we just need to add a fake authentication
module. Easy peasy.

Used when joining a new group:

From: Pat
To: some-group@mozilla.org
Subject: Welcome Jordan to some-group!

Hi all!

I'd like to welcome Jordan to some-group! Jordan brings
expertise that is invaluable. I'm excited! Yay!

Jordan: Tell us about yourself!

From: Jordan
To: some-group@mozilla.org
Subject: Re: Welcome Jordan to some-group!


I'm excited to join some-group! Hopefully I bring something
useful to the table.

I've been at Mozilla for 7 LDAP password resets, I like
top-posting and I make a mean cold brew coffee.

Looking forward to my first meeting!


On Blah blah blah at blah blah blah, Pat wrote:
> Hi all!
> I'd like to welcome Jordan to some-group! Jordan brings
> expertise that is invaluable. I'm excited! Yay!
> Jordan: Tell us about yourself!
> Pat

Used in an email to everyone@ about departing:

Dear everyone!

It is with sadness that I tell you I'm leaving as of next
Friday. As you know, I've been with Mozilla for 32 LDAP
password resets and frankly, I'm totally out of usable
Sherlock Holmes story titles, so I'm off to new challenges.

I will miss you all.

Update: Potch suggested just using "LDAPs". Used in a sentence: "I've been here for 6 LDAPs." I like that.

Fri, 08 Feb 2013

SUMO: Now ... in pirate!

A while back, I wrote a post about poxx.py which talked about a script I based on Ned Batchelder's poxx.py script and overhauled to provide a faux "Swedish Chef" translation of Miro strings allowing me to test localizations of the application.

The transform from English to "Swedish Chef" had the following four impotant properties:

  1. the output is vaguely readable
  2. the output is longer than the input which helps us find ui issues
  3. the output is clearly distinguished from English which helps us find strings that aren't getting translated
  4. the output is mildly amusing which is sometimes important in dark times

Back in August, I made some changes and pulled it into fjord. This helped us suss out localization issues on a new site. However, I wasn't really happy with it. Amongst other things, I always wondered if "Swedish Chef" was kind of culturally insensitive.

A couple of weeks ago, I overhauled poxx.py again. This time, PIRATE! It continues to have the four properties I think are important for a test locale.

We're using it now for SUMO development. It's the grog to your Jolly Roger:

SUMO -- In Pirate!

SUMO -- In Pirate!

We're using this script on both SUMO and Fjord now. You can use it for your site, too! The code is at https://github.com/mozilla/kitsune/tree/master/scripts/.

If you see any problems with it, toss me a message in a bottle.


This localization is only available in development environments. Unlike Miro where we shipped the Swedish Chef translation (or used to---I'm not sure if they do anymore), you cannot see this on the -dev, -stage or -prod SUMO sites.