This book is an experiment to see if we can combine everyone’s best efforts to create something great.
You can find the contributors right before this introduction. They are listed in order of Karma Points, a system Launchpad.net uses to keep track of contributions from everyone working on an open-source project.
In my case, I will write new material, as well as rewriting other contributions to clarify and give voice, setting up the architecture and being the Benevolent Dictator for the book. But I definitely won’t be doing everything; my goal is that this is a team project and that everyone who wants to will have something useful to contribute.
We’ll be using Launchpad.net’s “Blueprints” facility to add “features” to the book, so that’s where you’ll find the main repository of things to do.
What can you contribute? Anything as small as spelling and grammatical correctons, and as large as a whole chapter. Research into new topics and creating examples is what takes me the most time, so if you know something already or are willing to figure it out, don’t worry if your writing or programming isn’t perfect – contribute it and I and the rest of the group will improve it.
You may also have talents in figuring things out. Sphinx formatting, for example, or how to produce camera-ready formatting. These are all very useful things which will not only benefit this book but also any future book built on this template (every bit of the build system for the book will be out in the open, so if you want to take what we’ve done here and start your own book, you can).
Of course, not everything can make it into the final print book, but things that don’t fit into the main book can be moved into an “appendix book” or a “volume 2” book or something like that.