Mu is not a solo effort. Many folks have contributed to Mu, and I will be eternally grateful for their work. With the spirit of recognising the voluntary contributions of others in mind, I’m going to write about some of our most prodigious programmers. This post, the second in this series, is about Tiago Montes.
I first met Tiago at EuroPython, when it was held in Bilbao. He was a volunteer at the beginners’ day and very kindly helped my wife and youngest son take their first steps in Python (both were tagging along at the conference while I attended talks). Since then Tiago and I have kept in touch and, over the course of the past year, Tiago has contributed to Mu in many different ways.
For instance, he is responsible for the Portuguese translation of the user interface, improved and refactored the language and locale detection Mu uses to display the user interface in the correct language, improved the configuration of continuous integration, ensured the UI works properly with non-ASCII characters, contributed a major rewrite of packaging setup and requirements management and has submitted many useful bug reports.
What makes Tiago stand out is his attention to detail, formidable technical skill, experience and knowledge and a wonderful openness to inclusive, helpful and mutually respectful collaboration. Often, when I read a bug report or pull request authored by Tiago, I am struck by how clear and accessible his writing is. Tiago very carefully describes a problem or solution in the simplest of terms and assumes no expert knowledge on the subject in hand. He has a knack of explaining his thought processes, suggested approaches to addressing technical issues and how he may have had to back out of a solution which turned out to be a cul-de-sac. This contributes a huge amount to making Mu an easy-to-collaborate-with project: new contributors feel their lack of knowledge is not a handicap.
His patience and willingness to hear an alternative point of view or reflect upon an alternative solution (and perhaps change his mind as such alternatives are explored and developed) is all done with a friendly attitude which projects a sense of bonhomie. Once more, this helps to make Mu a welcoming and friendly project with which folks can engage.
So, thank you Tiago for your efforts over the past year or so. Our project is improved by your presence, work and willingness to help out. Long may this last!