Documentation Process

HOLY COW! This is a long (12 minutes) explanation of the new SUMO documentation process. Here’s the short version:

Six week schedule. The first four weeks, we’ll be drafting articles based on the Aurora release and localizing articles for the Beta release. During the last two weeks Aurora becomes Beta, Beta becomes the new release and we’ll finalize the docs we drafted in the first four weeks. Rinse and repeat. We’ll use the Article Tracking page to organize everything.

Long version

Example schedule: Weeks 1 – 4

Release = Fx 6, Beta = Fx 7, Aurora = Fx 8, Nightly = Fx 9

  • Localize Fx 7: Once the articles are finalized, there will be four weeks to localize before release. We’ll have marked revisions as ready for localization so they’ll show up on Localization dashboards. Also, Localizers can keep abreast of what changes are happening by following the Article Tracking page.
    • Note: In the two weeks previous to this we may have also made updates based on feedback from the Fx 6 release that will also be included in this batch of articles to localize.
  • Draft Fx 8: We’ll have four weeks to draft new articles and updates to existing articles. We’ll be working from the Article Tracking page which we’ll have been updating since the previous documentation cycle.
  • Track Fx 9: This release will be on the Nightly channel. We’ll follow the Release Tracking page to identify which changes and additions will need documentation. Articles that will need to be updated or proposals for new articles should be added to the Article Tracking page along with links to the appropriate feature page and general notes about what will need to be documented. The details of this should be discussed in the Article’s forum thread also linked from this page. The tracking of Firefox 9 features is an ongoing process that will continue through it’s Beta phase but after it moves to Aurora the main changes should only be the possible removal of a feature.
  • Archive: Since Firefox and our documentation will be changing as new versions are released, we’ll use this time to evaluate whether there are any articles that are:
    • Obsolete because Firefox has changed
    • Obsolete because they get so few views as to not be of concern to the vast majority of Firefox users.

Example schedule: Weeks 5 & 6

Release = Fx 7, Beta = Fx 8, Aurora = Fx 9, Nightly = Fx 10

  • Update Fx 7: Firefox 7 will have been released so, if necessary, we’ll be able to go back and make adjustments to our documentation based on feedback from the support forums and live chat.
  • Finalize Fx 8: Once the release moves to the Beta channel, we’ll have two weeks to finalize these articles that were drafted. During this time we’ll:
    • Add screenshots and screencasts if necessary
    • Review and approve the articles
    • Mark the final Fx8 revision as Ready for Localization
  • Begin Tracking Fx 10: This release will now be on the Nightly channel.

More details, including information about the Article Archive and Ready for Localization features are on the Mozilla wiki.