Django Fellowship Program: 2016 retrospective

Posted by Tim Graham on December 28, 2016

2016 concludes my second year working full-time to support the development of Django. Here are some highlights from my weekly summaries published on the django-developers mailing list.

On the infrastructure front, I keep Django's continuous integration servers running smoothly, including the pull request checks that help keep code quality high and allow reviewers to focus on less trivial concerns. I also upgraded the website to Django 1.10 and contributed several patches to third-party dependencies. I moved two under-maintained community sites, Django People and Django Snippets, to the djangoproject GitHub organization and upgraded them to supported versions of Django.

In Django's ticket tracker, I triage around 10-15 new tickets each week. A working knowledge of the 1000+ accepted tickets allows me to quickly identify duplicate and related issues and steer contributors in the right direction.

I coordinate security releases by preparing patches and backporting them to all supported versions of Django. In 2016, seven security issues were promptly fixed over five releases.

Django 1.10 marked the third consecutive on-time major release. As the release manager, I send regular email updates on the status of release blockers to django-developers, and I fix blockers when no one else has time or interest.

The Django 1.11 alpha is scheduled for mid-January with the final release scheduled for April 1. Following the 1.11 alpha release, the master development branch will target Django 2.0 and drop support for Python 2.7. I'm excited to see the simplifications and improvements we'll be able to make as a result.

Over the Python 3.6 prerelease period, I ensured compatibility with the Django master branch, including contributing several fixes and improvements for Python.

I co-mentored a Google Summer of Code project by Akshesh Doshi to add support for class-based indexes. This work is included in Django 1.11. I also made the final push to finish the template-based widget rendering patch that Preston Timmons started several years ago, and this is also included in 1.11.

While working toward the 1.11 feature release, we've had monthly bug fix releases for the 1.10 branch that have fixed over 40 regressions or bugs in new features.

On the code review front, I review an average of fifteen non-trivial patches a week from community members. Providing timely code reviews helps prevent would-be contributors from abandoning us.

I hope that gives you a good taste of what I've been doing. As always, please encourage your employer to become a corporate member of the Django Software Foundation and consider a gift to the Django Software Foundation to allow the fellowship to continue. I'm grateful for this opportunity and for the community's support. Thank you!

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