One of the main motivations for moving from the bugtrack majordomo mailing list to the Bugzilla defect tracking system was that the volume of traffic on bugtrack could no longer be managed by election services associates. Bugzilla succeeds in this goal, however we are now faced with the opposite problem. Associates are not notified of new bugs as they are found and fixed like they used to be. From the looks of things, not everyone is rushing onto staff site to take a look at the latest bugs.
Starting at this Sunday, each of you will receive a weekly bug activity summary report. You can get the report for any period at any time from the new Period Activity Report page on the staff site. Here is this Sunday’s report1. You will receive this email from a new majordomo mailing list called email@example.com. You’ll probably want to set up a folder and sort rule in your mailer for this address.
The report summarizes all bugs that were fixed during the week, and all bugs that were assigned to engineers but have not yet been fixed during the week. The core idea behind the report is to show you the information you need to know, while omitting that which you don’t. You can of course still get full disclosure from bugzilla directly. The Period Activity Report does not show:
This results in a very short weekly report, which is the whole idea. With this convenience comes an important responsibility however. You must make sure you have read and understood all bugs in the report, and their impact on your users. The bugs are in the report because they can have a real effect on your election. Take them seriously. Major and Critical bugs will appear in red on the report.
We are assigning severities to all bugs moving forward, and will try to get some assigned retroactively as well. Here is the key:
If the bug is ignored, affected jurisdictions will either violate a major electoral statute, will have the real possibility of reporting incorrect election results, or will fail to report results at all. There is no solution to the problem other than a software upgrade.
The bug will disrupt the election process in a visible way. Steps will need to be taken by election services and/or election officials to work around or mitigate the problem. It is however possible to conduct an election with the software as it is.
The bug represents a serious malfunction of the software. The problem may require steps to be taken by election services and/or election officials to work around or mitigate the problem, but failing to do so will not have major repercussions.
The problem is technically a bug, but can be trivially ignored or has an obvious workaround. At worst, the bug may cause confusion to users.
The problem is technically a bug, but one would have to take deliberate steps to reproduce the problem that would not occur in normal election operations. The problem is not even confusing, just pedantic.
(Blocker is not used)
If you feel that your bug has been assigned the incorrect severity, get with Ravina and she will get it sorted out.
As always, questions and suggestions are welcome.
1The report may change a bit between when you read this email and Sunday as work continues.