Hey kids. You might have noticed I haven’t been as vocal as usual since we started 3.5, and I wanted to update you on why that is. I’m going to be taking a leave of absence from Automattic for a couple of months, and stepping back from core UI work in 3.5 at the same time. Though normally a leave would mean unplugging completely, I’m going to be continuing to work on bringing together the various contributor groups, and have an upper limit of 10 hours per week for this. (If I start edging into more time than that, my HR person will be severely disappointed in me!)
As core is also a contributor group (obviously), I’ll be available within that 10-hour limit to consult on ux/ui matters. What this means is that I won’t be doing wireframes, coming up with original designs, or project managing the dev group as I have in the past. What I will be doing is providing perspective and gut checks when asked on the designs and decisions that others come up with. I’ve talked with Koop about this, and I thought about making a flow chart for “Should we ping Jane?” but decided not to bother (even though it would have been funny).
Basically, if you want me to look and give an opinion (sometimes that opinion might come with a design suggestion, sometimes not) and/or a “Did you think about this?” check to be sure you haven’t overlooked any repercussions the new design may have, go ahead and ping me. I won’t be online as much as usual, so my response time likely won’t be immediate. Also, I will not be reading the firehose of Trac emails (gasp!) or checking the ux-feedback report or hanging out by default in the IRC channels while I’m on leave, so if there’s a ticket you want me to weigh in on, a ping would be good since I won’t catch it on my own.
Timing: the leave starts right after WCSF in early August, and ends October shortly before the community summit (of which the need to start planning is part of why I’m stepping back from core for a bit). So if you need to nab me during that time, email jane at wordpress.org or hit me on Skype if it says I’m online. Thanks, and have a great dev cycle!