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Governance

The Universe code repository at Fluid Attacks is a Free and Open Source Software project that depends entirely on contributions from the employees at Fluid Attacks. Anyone may contribute to the project at any time by participating in discussions, making suggestions, or any other contributions they see fit.

The summary of our current Governance model is:

  • The most recent Developer is responsible. That is to say, responsibility is transferred between Developers as they create and maintain code over time. In other words, the last Developer that maintained something is responsible for that something, and by default, when a Developer creates something, the Developer is responsible for that something. This mechanism facilitates the growth and empowerment of newer Developers and also prevents overburdening older Developers with excessive scope. At the same time, having a single responsible for something also defines an explicit boundary and sets an implicit expectation of who should answer questions, provide support, and pursue the quality attributes of the things inside that boundary.

  • Awareness of technical ideas and problems flow upwards through the organizational structure.

  • The current vision and the needs of the business flow downwards through the organizational structure.

  • There is a person that makes the last call on any aspect and is ultimately responsible for everything: the CTO.

You can think of it as a convection cell.

Below you'll find a breakdown of the organizational structure:

Governance

Roles and responsibilities

Some of the roles here may have a scope and responsibilities that go beyond this repository. However, this document only describes the relevant portion of those roles to the Universe code repository.

Chief Technology Officer (CTO)

Responsibilities:

  1. Be in frequent contact with other Chief Executives and areas of the company to reconcile the current vision of the products.

  2. Communicate the vision and requirements of the products to the Head of Product and the Head of Analytics.

  3. Decide on proposals that modify the status quo in any aspect (technical, financial, managerial, ...).

  4. Know what's happening everywhere, and be ultimately responsible for everything.

  5. Intervene and modify whatever is needed to further or protect the interests of Fluid Attacks as a business.

note

Our current CTO is Rafael Alvarez.

Head of Product

Responsibilities:

  1. Be in frequent contact with the CTO to reconcile the current vision of the products.

  2. Communicate the vision and requirements of the products to the Developers.

  3. Maintain the Backlog (Bug Tracker) synchronized with the vision.

  4. Verify that the business requirements have been met as Developers modify the products over time.

  5. Communicate the progress made by the Developers back to the CTO.

What decisions does the Head of Product take?

  1. The head of Product defines which Issues in the Bug Tracker will be implemented or ignored, in which order will they be solved by the Developers (by assigning a priority), and which Developers will work on them (by assigning/removing them to/from the Issue).
note

Our current Head of Product is Juan Restrepo.

This role is a combination of what the Software Industry recognizes as Business Analyst, Product Owner, and Scrum Master.

Developers

Responsibilities:

  1. Resolve the Issues assigned to them in the Bug Tracker, and do so according to the Contributing Guidelines.

  2. Communicate ideas or identified problems (for instance through an Issue in the Bug Tracker) to the Head of Product.

  3. Participate in technical discussions where their experience is applicable.

  4. Review what other people do, say or ask related to something they have personally created or maintained in the past, except when another Developer that still works at Fluid Attacks has maintained it more recently, in which case the most recent Developer will take responsibility for the Review.

What decisions do Developers take?

  1. Developers can decide on technical matters so long as they preserve the status quo and are homeomorphic and homogenous to the existing code base (same architecture, stack, programming language, paradigm, ...).

    When the status quo is to be modified, a public, all-developers-wide, constructive discussion is initiated, either through verbal or written communication, or a Request For Comments in the Bug Tracker. It doesn't suffice to ask the responsible Developer, or to seek approval from the perceived technical authorities of the moment. A thought process is mandatory.

    After some time has passed, and sufficient discussion has happened, the discussion is brought up to the CTO for a final decision, and the outcome is publicly communicated.

  2. Developers cannot decide on any non-technical matters, the Backlog, or the priority of Issues in the Bug Tracker. However, they can manifest their importance to the Head of Product, who makes the last call, or escalates to the CTO as needed.

note

The current list of Developers can be found here.

This role is a combination of what the Software Industry recognizes as Project Manager, Team Lead, Software Architect, QA, and Tester.