As also indicated on my Board Election Platform page (http://en.opensuse.org/openSUSE:Board_election_2012_platform_rwooninck), one of the topics that I would like to change is the strategy plan/release goals for the upcoming openSUSE releases.

The issue as seen by me. 

Currently the strategy plan for the distribution is seen from the outside as handled only by developers or people working with the development version. Although this is not wrong, it ultimately leads to a lack of communication on why certain decisions were taken, or why defaults were changed, and so on. Of course the discussion appear in the open, like in mailing lists, but other forms of communication, like a wiki page describing the goals set for the next release, including the rationale for the changes, is missing. Ultimately this leads to confusions among end-users, and even among contributors, as endless discussions appear often on the mailing lists.

My proposal on how to improve the process
The strategy process can be improved in two areas. The first area is the simpler one, where we should utilize wiki pages to describe the goals set for the next release. Similar to what the KDE organization is doing. On the main wiki page, the teams can list their plans on what they want to achieve or improve in the next openSUSE release. The team could create detailed wiki pages behind those goals and track the progress on the main wiki page. Major changes within the distribution should always have a detailed page where the change is described in more detail and also indicating how it would impact other areas and/or the user.

The second area is how to get to the right strategy plan for the next openSUSE release. We have openFATE where users are registering their requests for changes, but I see no real official follow-up on this. There are quite some discussions per requests, but in the end it is not clear if a request is being implemented or not. Also the requester will never know exactly in which openSUSE release his request might get implemented. Especially in this area a bigger change is required. In a kind of strategy round the outstanding openFATE requests should be evaluated and classified. Classification could be consisting out of:  “Next Release”, “Future Release”, “Rejected”, “Info required”. Those classified as “Next Release” will be implemented in the upcoming openSUSE release. Those classified as “Future Release” have been accepted, but due to several reason, they can not be implemented in the upcoming release. Similar approached are also being followed by the other distributions.
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