Office Hours - EuroLLVM 2023 round table summary

We had a round table on office hours at the EuroLLVM meeting last week. This post shares some of the most important topics we discussed there.

  • Overall, the impression from the hosts present at the round table is that the number of people dialing in is somewhat variable.
  • The few people who have made use of office hours who were present at the round table shared that it was always very useful for them to have the chance to have an interactive conversation about any issues they had with working or contributing to LLVM.
  • We thought that the most important issue to improve continues to be making sure that people, especially new-comers, are aware of the existence of office hours.
    • @ljfitz shared the excellent idea that we all should mention office hours a lot when answering beginners questions on Discourse or Discord. For example, giving an answer to their question on Discourse or Discord and additionally mentioning in the answer that if they’d like to discuss this further interactively, they could make use of LLVM office hours. Liam shared that he has seen this working very well on some out-of-tree projects making use of MLIR.
    • Another way that could help a lot to spread the knowledge of the existence of office hours would be to mention them in most presentations. For example, if you have a presentation or tutorial on a specific topic, put on the conclusion slide which hosts’ office hours people can dial in to for further conversations on the topic.
    • A third suggestion was to make use of the official LLVM twitter, facebook and linkedin accounts to promote and spread the knowledge of office hours further.
  • A great suggestion to help people get over the anxiety to call in to a video chat with a host they haven’t spoken with before is for some of the office hours slots to highlight specific topics that are planned to be covered during the slot. Two such topics that were brought up were:

FWIW, while my office hour is not happening every time. I start to have people calling in asking questions about all parts of LLVM. I think it’s useful.

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