I’ve come across the question of: I’m not a programmer, or use OpenOffice.org on my Mac as a normal course of business (though do use OpenOffice.org on other platforms); How can I help the OpenOffice.org Mac Porting Project?
As a non programmer, and someone who doesn’t use OpenOffice.org on the Mac as a normal course of work, there is still something that you can do to help.
The three main areas that come to mind and documentation, marketing, and donating processor time.
In terms of documentation, simply checking the documentation that is available, and making sure that it is easy to understand, and up to date. We don’t always get everything right, so need others, like you, to suggest improvements. This areas covers user support too.
In terms of marketing, writing blog posts, that comment on OpenOffice.org on the Mac, increases the awareness of the project, it doesn’t need to be done often. Every blog post or news article, that portrays accurate information increases the possibility of an extra user, and more importantly a developer too.
Now that we have a variety of screenshots out there of the current status, we have seen an increase in people coming to the project both as users and developers (or I’m just getting more involved with the project).
Even just using the OpenDocument file format can help, as it means that others need to install OpenOffice.org (or another application that supports the OpenDocument file format).
A third way of supporting the Mac project, especially if you have large chunks of time when your Mac isn’t being used, is to build OpenOffice.org. There is a special system that the OpenOffice.org project has that automates the whole procedure of building OpenOffice.org, but you need to manage to compile OpenOffice.org locally first. This is slowly becoming easier, though there is support all the way from the Mac Porters.
More information about the buildbot system is available:
- Setting up a Buildbot
- Summary mail message (some people are interesting in doing this to help the project)
- My buildbot blog posts
- Buildbot status page
If you don’t have a stable internet connection, you may be interested in the tinderbox setup.