Servers by jDrones

Bugmaster for ArduPilot [Approved]

(Francisco Ferreira) #1

Topic: Bugmaster for ArduPilot

Proposal type: Hardware [ ] , Software [x] , Other [ ] : _________________

Description: ArduPilot has been growing consistently so the volume of pull requests and issues has also grown considerably. We are now coding, reviewing and committing to master over 5000 commits per year.
This load has stretched the resources of the volunteers that help to maintain PRs and issues. To enable future growth having someone paid to help with management of pull requests and issues is now worthwhile.
I have been the “bugmaster” for ArduPilot for quite some time (that name was attributed to me, not my own creation :slight_smile:). To ensure that I can continue to put the time needed into the project I would like to propose that I be paid. That will allow me to maintain the level of commitment to the project that I have been providing currently on a volunteer basis. I’ll continue reviewing pull requests, managing issues, looking out for our CI systems and helping in the forum.

Planned amount $$ (USD): $500/month

Estimated time for completion: My proposal is that this is a monthly part-time job, subject to review by the committee.


(tridge) #2

I think this is a great idea - Francisco puts an amazing amount of effort into ArduPilot and makes a huge difference to the project, but his work happens to be in areas that is under-appreciated by companies using ArduPilot. I think using some of our funds in this way is a really good idea.

(rmackay9) #3

I totally support this proposal as it stands.

… but in addition I support an additional role be added called “Copter Release Manager” and if both roles were handled we would likely need to increase the planned amount to perhaps $1000/month. This role would come with the additional responsibility of pushing out a Copter release 2 ~ 4 times per year. Francisco would not be required to handle all aspects and support of the release of course… that job is too big for any one person - others in the team including me would still contribute to the support and bug fixing of each release.

I think supporting these two roles would mean PRs would go in faster and Copter releases would be more frequent. Faster copter releases would greatly increase value to our users because they would be able to take advantage of new features much faster.

(Francisco Ferreira) #4

Thank you both for your support. I really love helping ArduPilot move forward and I hope that with this financial aid I can continue to do so.

Randy, regarding that additional role I would be glad to accept it, but, with transparency in mind, I would like to make the following points:

  • I’m good with logic, I can do high level features without a problem. But my physics knowledge is limited. For example, I can look at logic in the AC_AttitudeControl or the AP_Motors libraries but doing a fix wouldn’t be so easy for me.
  • I have limited flying time as I live in the city and I don’t have an easy way to get to flying spaces. I occasionally go to a farm where I have space to fly and I can increase the number of times I go there, but it’s not close to me, so, for example, any urgent testing of a fix I wouldn’t be able to do.
  • I still have a lot to learn in log analysis

If the role is more on the management side of things I think I’m a good person for it. If it involves a lot of the technical side I’ll need help in some specific domains.
I’m happy to support you more with Copter development and put more releases out there. I’m in the process of writing a couple of release rules that can help with that. I also think that we should have a maximum of 3 releases per year, because otherwise we won’t have time to do proper beta testing between them. Small releases that only need small periods of testing can be done more often, maybe one per month.

I think we also need to discuss how far back we continue to do support and bug fixing. I would love to support all versions but I think we only have man-power to do it for the last two major versions.

One final thing to clarify is if with the two roles it would still be a part-time job. A full-time job for $1000/month for a limited time would be fine, but not in the long-term.

(Rob_Lefebvre) #5

Hi Francisco,

I was going to point out some of the limitations with your ability to test, but I’m glad that you mentioned it already.

I think the situation is manageable. We just need to delegate responsibility for things, and not require the “manager” to be an expert in all areas. For example, if Leonard codes up some physics thing, and he is saying it works, but you don’t understand it, as long as there’s no code bugs, I think you can approve. Possibly with the additional requirement to show some evidence of flight testing, etc. Would be the same thing for me in the case of helicopters, for example.

(tridge) #6

This proposal has now been voted on and approved by both the funding committee and the ardupilot dev team. Congratulations to Francisco on the first successful funding application!
The approval is for 6 months at US$1k/month with renewal at the discretion of the funding committee.

(Luís Vale Gonçalves) #7

(Olivier Brousse) #8