Contributing to Weboob without programming

There are often good-willed people around open-source software that while they do not know programming or the specific technologies used, can greatly help the project.

So, what are we looking for? We do not have any translation support for now, so that is out. However, there are a few things you can already do:

  • Provide new website support ideas. To be helpful, you can provide us with everything you know like available APIs and workarounds, existing tools (Python preferred), etc.
  • Provide better logos. Many logos have been hastily done and could be better; the only requirement is that it has to have a parodic or humorous aspect, for legal reasons. I would consider replacing logos that are vulgar a priority.
  • Write packages for your distribution of choice, or simply lobby them to package Weboob and keep it up to date. Since websites break all the time, old versions can become useless quickly.

The simplest way to do that is to create new issues on our tracker. Accepted contributions will get mentioned, unless of course you do not want to.

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Weboob, the Asshole Detector

We often get complaints around Weboob‘s name, and the various application names.

There’s no denying they’re childish. What they are not, however, is sexist.

There is “boob” in the main name, and “boob” is a friendly name referring to (mostly female) breasts. We would, for example, avoid using “tits” or “cunt”, because they are often demeaning1. Though it is a happy accident (our earlier ideas like “woob” and “webob” were taken), we certainly like playing with that.

The idea is the same with application names; it’s all about friendly jokes (like wetboobs the weather tool, which manages to be related to weather and boobs).

If you’re offended, just ask yourself “how is it sexist?”.

As it appears, Weboob is a formidable tool to detect people that are part of the “be offended first, think later” crowd. Interestingly, the crusaders2 are to date all male, and often assert that women can’t like jokes about breasts or sex in general3. How fucked up is that?

They will always make a scene4 on how they’re never going to use Weboob because of names. Guys, here’s the thing: we don’t need you and we certainly don’t want you. I for one am glad we created an Asshole Detector, albeit by accident.

  1. We however are mostly not native English speakers. Mistakes can happen. []
  2. This is not an euphemism. They act like they are fighting for a good cause, but it’s only pretend. []
  3. And who the hell are they to talk in place of others? That is actual sexism. []
  4. So that it is abundantly clear, this is purely about making a scene; I do not care about their opinions or how many penises they may have. All our contributors do not and do not have to like the branding. []
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Introducing xunitparser

I tend to think good software does not need much publicity; if it’s indexed people will find it, test it and adopt it. I am more than often proved wrong — however it seems like the less time people spend on quality, the more time they spend on publicity (or more exactly, building hype). At least I don’t think I should publicize software that I don’t consider ready for general use.

Anyway, I released xunitparser quietly a few months ago, and what happened was exactly what I usually dream of: many people started using it, sending me requests or bug reports. The weird thing is that it’s not a project I care about yet; actually I haven’t started using it myself! My goal is to analyze Weboob’s buildbot reports, and the first step was parsing the xUnit files. Since Python already has a test framework, I just use the same classes and seed them with the results.

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