Weekly update for the week ending November 21th

What happened this week

  • There were important meetings this week with the Petra 2.x development team and the IT leadership of our organisation. The discussions were very good, with these results:
    • Development of OpenPetra is going into the right direction.
      The technology is still very similar to when the projects forked in March 2009, the only difference is that OpenPetra technology has been improved a lot, and some bugfixes have been added to the Petra branch (and a lot of work to cope with ancient dependancies of Petra 2.x which is not needed anymore with OpenPetra).
    • We discussed that the current OpenPetra website does not easily show interested developers or managers of other organisations
      what exactly OpenPetra will do when it is complete.
    • We acknowledged that the 1 year plan for OpenPetra being completed in Spring 2010 might result in a working solution for smaller charities, but it will not be sufficiently enhanced and capable for operations in our organisation yet.
      More developers are needed to implement and fine-tune OpenPetra for such a big and complex organisation.
    • The Petra 2.x team is busy with the support for our organisation, the rollout of Petra 2.3, and integration with other software packages. Only 1 or 2 developers could be available for ongoing development of Petra/OpenPetra.
    • The big question is if the two project teams can merge now and concentrate on the development of OpenPetra.
      The problem would be that during the development of OpenPetra, no new functionality could be added to the Petra 2.x branch.
      Another problem is that there are not enough developers on either team to achieve the big goal to make OpenPetra ready for use in our organisation.
    • A process has been started to evaluate the tasks that still need to be done on OpenPetra, and to get the commitment from our organisation to the use of Petra/OpenPetra; this commitment should result in assigning the urgently needed resources to the project to allow completion.
  • Work has been going on to allow the import of partner data (names and addresses), and the creation of randomly created sample partners.
  • Some coding was done to get the server to communicate with the client over an encrypted channel.
  • Some experiments on how to improve the website have been done, looking at websites like ubuntu.com etc.
  • Some thought was spent on whether to start a charity that would be promoting OpenPetra and provide financial support for development. On the other hand there is the thought of starting a company that would people to invest into OpenPetra.

What did not happen this week

  • This week was actually really good!

What should happen next week

  • Encrypted channels should be implemented, and a SaaS solution should be set up.
  • Gift import and matching, and some gift statements for donors and treasurers would be really nice. This could lead to version 0.1!
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