Strategic Planning for Hydra 2014/2015




The strategic plan 2014/15 for Hydra will address the following elements:

1. further development of a suite of solution bundles, to satisfy individual institutions' diversity of needs as well as convince new partners & vendors to join the community. 

  • develop strategy for developing, supporting, and directing solution bundle communities

2. foster further development of turnkey applications, and development of hosted Hydra solutions, to lower the barrier to entry for institutions that have the needs but not internal IT capacity to leverage a framework on their own.

  • Avalon are generating products that are close to turnkey, based on VMs, as well as sets of packages that are more suited to larger deployments
  • Track the Avalon communities thinking on a hosted Avalon service?
  • HAWG is gathering user stories around the development of a possible "ArchivesSpace" as a possible future solution bundle
  • Hydramata in development
  • The emergence of turnkey and hosted solutions has implications for communications about updates, release management etc
  • Identify solution bundles that could be hosted
    • Think about the business cases
    • Work with solution bundle owners to identify support providers and/or hosts
    • Get them on line?
    • DuraSpace have experience that they will be happy to discuss

3. growth and definition of the vendor ecosystem for implementation, integration, consulting, hosting, maintenance and other services, in a way that keeps the vendors active, aligned and healthy contributors to the whole project 

  • plug away at this; offer support (training?) to vendors who appear on the scene via partners

4. continued development of a training framework that scales, in order to facilitate bringing in new partners and sharing good practice, while inculcating development and participation in the "Hydra way" (participatory, of quality, use of OSS best practices)

  • Need to develop (further) training for 
    • not-developers, eg managers, analysts, subject matter expert etc.
    • developers
    • SysOps
  • Refine Hydra for Managers

5. development of a documentation framework. Accurate, comprehensive and useful documentation is essential for both new and existing partners, and is a challenge to develop and maintain in a distributed environment. 

  • look for opportunitites to leverage grant money to buy time/expertise to extend documentation

6. ongoing development and reaffirmation of centripetal strategies and the "core" of the technical framework. This means an architecture that allows interoperation and sharing of code, and sufficient investment to make sure Hydra is actually a coherent and robust technical framework, not simply a pattern of RoR apps on Fedora with little in common beyond that. 

  • need to gather and disseminate hard information about Hydra's commitment to Fedora 4/Hydra 8 and explain what this will mean for Hydra users
    • especially need to get information out about migrating from Fedora 3 based Hydra to F4/H8
    • develop Hydra+Fedora 4 FAQ page
  • develop guidelines for potential solution bundle creators as regards best working practices (based on Avalon, Spotlight, etc... experience)
  • Need to revisit the area of data modelling.  Needs a Working Group?

7. development / reaffirmation of centripetal strategies in the community framework, to keep the project's participants bound together even as it expands in scope and scale; this includes evolving the partner / administrative / steering framework, defining relationships with the solution bundle sub-communities; defining relationships with vendors/service providers; and keeping developers & contributors in 3 continents / timezones communicating, in alignment, and developing complementary solutions

  • Spotlight is an emerging solution bundle sub-community, as is Avalon
  • Work towards a process whereby projects are initiated by Interest Groups.  If these gain traction they become formal Working Groups with mandates and deliverables.  This reflects the W3C approach.  In this light, review RDFWG, HAWG, UXWG and DPWG?
  • Need to agree and announce a general pattern of meetings - urgent for the 2014/15 academic year - and publish a calendar; folks need to be able to plan the travel budget for themselves and their teams
    • Connect
    • Regional meetings
    • Project-based meetings
    • Interest Group meetings
    • Developer congresses
    • Power Steering
    • (LAMDevConX)
    • (OR2015)
    • ?
  • Need to better understand the utility of Partner calls as the community gets bigger and more geographically dispersed
  • Need to support release management and code issues in the absence of quarterly face-to-face meetings
  • Need to address the issues of Hydra as an organization
    • Do we need to be a legal entity.  How best to approach that?
      • Need to figure out more formal way of administering Hydra
    • We need a bank account of some description
    • Need to counter the suggestion that we "lack governance"
    • Need to demonstrate the commitments to Hydra: categorize and publish figures (and independent sources - Ohloh)
    • Investigate the RDA/W3C approach of using Interest groups -> Working Groups as the basis of organization
      • Expectation of partners that someone serves on a WG to be discussed on Partners call.
    • Continue annual Power Steering meetings but increase transparency

8. development of  community expansion plan. 

  • Need to develop our message on Hydra and digital preservation
    • Preservation friendly.  Technology for preservation purposes.  Part of a preservation workflow/solution
    • Need to drive the integration between Hydra and external tools for preservation purposes (need use cases to drive this)
    • Establish Digital Preservation Working Group to progress
  • Develop engagement with other communities (See list in Power Steering minutes)
    • Need an articulate way in which to engage
    • Ideally leverage people going to these communities already to engage
  • Develop a grants strategy setting out what people would get from Hydra's support and what our expectations would be in return
    • Continue to build and maintain the lists of Hydra-related projects and grants on the website and wiki
  • Develop engagement with conferences
    • OR already involved, list of others in Power Steering minutes to consider
  • Develop relationship with other projects
    • Interoperability/integration of software
    • Interoperability of data
    • Hydra needs better documented interfaces if others are to devlop against us
    • Look for collaboration possibilities
    • Offer Hydra involvement as a hook to help obtain grant funding
  • Articulate what criteria are necessary to meet to make a solution sharable for other Hydra institutions (e.g. architected where institution specific requirements are decoupled from common API connectors)
  • Develop a set of stock responses for dealing with RfPs in an agreed way

9. development of a marketing plan
  • develop a master plan for the period - who are we trying to reach (this year), with what message, when?
  • set up a Working Group to decide how to solicit engagement from partners in marketing area
  • make sure that Connect functions well as a marketing event for new adopters and the merely interested (as well as catering for the established community)
    • Ensure Connect #2 program committee take this on board
  • Develop marketing and training materials for
    • specific actors (people)
      • what will it do for my institution?
    • specific subjects (music v. research data)
  • Make website less "clubby" and education centric
    • Emphasise solution bundles more
  • create a plan for producing Hydra webinars and screencasts representing the project and various heads.
  • Need to generate
    • Feature List - Not a comparison to other products, but the set of features that can be adopted.  Solution Bundles as a convenient packaging of these features

    • Hydra Way- Is there a short list of candidate questions we can ask about institutional match to Hydra match

    • An answer for people who have Drupal / like Drupal as to how to do that in Hydra?  (use cases?)  Is it simply having Hydra widgets for plugging Hydra content and functionality into a Drupal page?
  • Need a kit of Hydra marketing collateral (glossies, tangibles) into a managed library for Partners' ready use
  • Consider the use of the term "Project Hydra" and whether there is a need to change