In various ways, shapes and forms, I’m a member of the XMPP community, which is the open standard for instant messaging.
Our community consists of many different groups of people, projects, and related initiatives - most of which suffer from a similar problem: a lack of knowledge of design and UX concepts. I feel that this is actively hurting us: although our technology is sound, many end-users are put off from a lack of usability. I’m looking for ways to improve in this area.
Given the open source / open standards nature of both of our communities, I’m hoping to find a way to mutually benefit from each-other. As I was browsing the opensourcedesign.net site, I noticed that the FAQ linked to a chatroom. Interested as I am in chat, I tried using it, but I found that the link was dead (pointing to a default Apache “it works” page). It struck me that this might offer an excellent opportunity to start collaboration between the OpenSourceDesign and XMPP communities.
My proposal would be for “us” (XMPP-world) to provide to “you” (OpenSourceDesign) a fully functional chat solution. My hope is that, from being used by design-oriented users (“you”), feedback and improvements on design and UX would flow back into our projects - we might even find a way to facilitate this.
To begin, I suggest we start small. We could restore the chat functionality on your site with one of our web-based chat solutions. If that becomes successful, I’m expecting that your users will naturally find their way deeper into the XMPP community (which, for example, also provides clients that allow them to join the same chat on their mobile phones, etc). It is a small step to world domination from there on.
What do you think?