MDN (which is an abbreviation for Mozilla Developer Network) is more than a wiki: It's a community of developers working together to make MDN an outstanding resource for developers who use open Web technologies. The "work" happens on the MDN site, but the "community" also happens through (asynchronous) discussion and (synchronous) online chat.
We'd love it if you contribute to MDN, but we'd love it even more if you participate in the MDN community. Here's how to get connected, in three easy steps:
- Create an MDN account.
- Subscribe to dev-mdc discussions.
- Get into IRC.
Create an MDN account
To make any changes to content on MDN (either by editing a page or contributing a demo), you'll need an MDN profile. Don't worry, you don't need a profile if all you intend to do is read and search MDN! This simple guide will help you set up your MDN profile.
Your email address is used for account recovery, and if needed by MDN administrators to contact you about your account or your activity on the site.
In addition, you can optionally sign up for notifications (such as when specific pages are changed) and messages (for example, if you opt to join our beta testing team, you might receive email about new features that need testing).
Once you've decided you want to contribute to MDN, here's all you have to do to set up your profile:
- At the top of every page on MDN you'll find a button labeled "Sign in with". Point your mouse at this (or tap on it, if you're on a mobile device) to display a list of the authentication services we support for signing into MDN.
- Select a service to sign in with. Any service you choose here other than Persona will be listed on your public profile.
- Follow that service's prompts to connect your account to MDN.
- Once the authentication service returns you to MDN, you'll be prompted by MDN to enter a username and email address. Your username will be displayed publicly to credit you for the work you've done. Do not use your email address as your username.
- Click the "Create my MDN profile" button.
- If the email address you specified in step 4 isn't the same one you use with the authentication service, you'll need to check your email and click the link in the confirmation email we'll send you.
- That's it! You've got an MDN account, and you can immediately edit or tag pages, or submit demos!
You can click on your name at the top of any MDN page to see your public profile. From there, you can click the "Edit" button to make changes or additions to your profile so you can share more about your interests, add links to your Twitter account or blog, and so forth.
Note: New usernames can't contain spaces or the "@" character. Keep in mind that your username will be displayed publicly to identify the work you've done!
Join our mailing lists
To share information and have ongoing discussions, Mozilla has several useful mailing lists. Those that are particular to MDN are:
- This list is where we have ongoing discussions about documentation on MDN. We talk about process changes, improvements we've made, and we sort out who would like to work on which content. It's highly recommended that you join this list if you're interested in seriously diving into documentation on MDN! (Why "dev-mdc"? In the past, this site was known as "Mozilla Developer Center", or MDC. The mailing list dates back to that era, so it's dev-mdc.)
- This list is where we hold discussions about the development work on MDN's underlying Kuma platform. If you're curious about the development work going on behind the scenes, want to be involved in the process of making decsisions about the platform, or are working on patches to improve the platform, you should definitely get involved on this list.
- This mailing list is high-level planning and prioritization discussions, for the MDN website and other related initiatives.
There are also a few lists specific to MDN localization communities. If your community is very large and active, you can probably get a list created for your community; just ask us and we'll look into it. Currently, these languages have lists: Spanish, Japanese, and Portuguese.
Get into IRC
Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is our preferred method for day-to-day chat and real-time discussions among community members. We use a few channels on the server irc.mozilla.org for discussions related to MDN.
- This channel is our primary channel for discussing the content of MDN. We talk about writing, organization of content, and so on. We also have "water cooler" conversations here—it's a way our community can keep in touch and just hang out. This is also the place to talk about other aspects of MDN (other than development of the platform), such as Demo Studio, profiles, and so on.
- This channel is where our development team—the people that write the code that makes MDN work—hangs out and discusses their day-to-day work. You're welcome to join in and either participate in the development or simply ask questions about issues you see with the software.
These channels are most likely to be active during weekdays in North America.
If you're not familiar with IRC, the quickest way to join is using Scrollback - a web-based IRC client that is pre-configured with the mdn and mdndev channels. You may also want to learn more about IRC and use an installable IRC client such as ChatZilla. It is implemented as a Firefox add-on, which makes it quick and easy to install and use.
Join our biweekly meetings (and other events)
Every other week, the MDN community holds an IRC-based meeting to exchange notes, talk about what we've been doing, and sort out what we'd like to do for the next two weeks. We also talk about development plans for the MDN platform itself, and often get updates about new and upcoming features of the site. These are casual, fun meetings, and everyone's welcome to participate.
See the MDN Community Meetings page on the Mozilla wiki for details on the schedule as well as agendas and notes for past and upcoming meetings.
You can contact an MDN project administrator by email. If you wish to talk to the MDN documentation lead, his name is Eric Shepherd, and he's happy to try to answer your questions, or help you find the right person to do so.