Literate builds, WTF?

(This is a guest post by Stephen Connolly)

Every developer, at some stage, will be handed a project to maintain that somebody else was responsible for. If you are lucky, the developer will not have left the organization yet and you get a brief Knowledge Transfer as the developer packs up their desk before heading on to their new job. If you are unlucky, you don't even get given the details of where the source code is hiding.

Now begins the detective work, as you try to figure out how to build and release the project, set up Jenkins jobs to build the project and run the tests…

It doesn't have to be this way, you know!

What if I told you there was a file sitting at the top level that told you exactly how to build the project and do the important things? You'd be interested, wouldn't you?

When I tell you it's the README file? “But that's all lies. Nobody keeps that up to date. Argh!!!”

But what if Jenkins reads the README file and uses it for the build definition? Now you not only have a CI system ensuring that the build definition is correct, but you have less work to do setting up the job.

What if, because the build definition is now in Source Control, you can have Jenkins create jobs for each branch with ease?

Jenkins sessions at JavaOne

It's the JavaOne season again in San Francisco. This year, there are whopping 6 sessions that discuss Jenkins (including myself, which is the very first session in Monday!) Unfortunately some of them happen in the same time, but I for one am looking forward to seeing the mobile app test talk from Intuit.

CON6256 - Large-Scale Automation with Jenkins (Monday 8:30am, Hilton)
Jenkins is the most adopted open source continuous integration server today, and beyond the automated build and test, it is a platform for launching all kinds of automation tasks. As the use of Jenkins grows inside an organization, people are automating complex activities that need to be choreographed—such as deploying an application, running a load test, cleaning up the environment, and then handing over the build to the operation team. Such orchestration of activities is a very useful building block for continuous delivery, a practice promoted in recent years. This session looks at various patterns and plug-ins that deal with this kind of choreography. It also briefly discusses what’s new in recent versions of Jenkins.

Jenkins project meeting in the meat space / Call for agenda

As you may or may not know, the Jenkins project has a bi-weekly IRC meeting where we discuss and decide on things necessary to keep the project running.

Next Sunday, we'll bring this project meeting live to Jenkins User Conference San Francisco.

Since this is an unique opportunity to engage people who don't normally come to these meetings, I'd like to encourage everyone to propose agenda items and add it to the agenda page.

The Wiki page lists all the past meetings, so you can get a sense of what it is like. But this time, we hope to have a good number of users to the meeting, not just project insiders. So if you have things you'd like to get users feedback on, or if you like project insiders to update you on things, please don't hesitate to add them.

I still need to work on the logistics, but the plan is to do a cross-over with IRC --- I'd like to show the IRC client projected in the room, so that people in the room can see the conversation in IRC, and I'd like either real-time transcribing of voice conversations to IRC and/or live broadcasting of the room.

Come join the Jenkins User Conference San Francisco on September 30th!

Jenkins User Conference is back to San Francisco after a world tour. The conference is on the 30th of this month (Sunday), which makes it back to back with JavaOne, just like the last year. This schedule allows the community people from all over the world to attend and talk, so you see speakers from different part of the world!

Jenkins User Conference San Francisco: call for papers

Jenkins User Conference is touring around the world and coming back to San Francisco for this September, colocated with JavaOne.

And here is the call for papers — we'd love users and plugin developers to share their experience with others. Please tell us how you combine plugins in an interesting way, how some of the features in Jenkins did or did not work for you, tricks you use to effectively manage Jenkins instances, and so on.

I personally know many bay area tech companies that depend heavily on Jenkins. Really looking forward to hearing from you!