Power of the community -Improving Sync 2.0
In May we were writing about Open MRS Sync 2.0 as a challenging project we were taking part in. We have an update of this story for you!
As a reminder: OpenMRS is a patient-centric medical record application. It records the details of the interactions between health care providers and patients. The software gathers a patient’s treatment details into a single patient chart. The Sync 2.0 module improves the synchronization of data by providing a way for health workers to manually sync their data at a central office. As a long-time contributor to the OpenMRS community, SolDevelo saw the importance of these features. We began developing Sync 2.0 like a pro bono effort before pursuing funding through Digital Square. We were main codders and our team worked for months for this project. You can read more in our previous article.
There is a popular quote among the coders from the John Saddington: “Software is never finished, only abandoned”. Sync 2.0 even after releasing to the public still has a lot of work to do ahead of it. Nothing shows the need for the new features as testing the software by people in real-life situations. And of course, this also shows unexpected errors and bugs. But that is why you need a good community around the non-profit open-source projects. When some of the users detected some bugs, people from the most unexpected places around the world can offer help to fix some issues. Thanks to the community, we can assure that software not only will be not abandoned but also worked on constantly.
Some people came up with an idea to unite developers and repair problems and bugs. Which were discovered during using the Sync 2.0 release to the public. They created Sprint in which they’ve gathered problems from the community and created tasks which have an aim to repair it. 10 developers from Uganda are going to work for over 2 months with the mission of improving this project. They have already some tasks under review – the last step before publishing them to the public. All of the backlogs has more than a hundred issues. So there is still a lot to do. We can’t wait to see how their hard work will improve the Sync project.
OpenMRS, besides being the Electronical Medical Record system, is also a community. It gathered a group of developers, implementers, and users, that are working together towards one goal-saving lives and helping people that are living in developing countries. OpenMRS community is constantly growing, and everybody who wants to help can join them. You can help in development, testing, documentation, translation and support.
These codders unite together and try to fix a few the biggest problems in Sync 2.0. Everybody can join them because they are working on open-source tools. Their steps are described in an open forum (called “Talk”) and everyone can see it and give them a hand or engage in tasks. The community can help everyone see how important is their work. They know and see how important this tool is to their society, clinics in their country and all these people who need treatments and help.
You can help too!
Our company is trying to support them by our knowledge, skills and experience in this specific program. We are really impressed by their initiative. SolDevelo would like to help them by sharing this information outside the OpenMRS community, so it can grow even more.
If you are interested in this or other projects visit OpenMRS page. There get an ID and start a conversation with the community. I’m sure that you will love them and together you do many great things!