What's our WAG on a timeframe for MVP?

We can’t really estimate work until we have a better understanding of what’s in the MVP and nail down some core architecture and design questions. I get that. I’m not asking for early commitments.

But do we have a rough sense, a wild-a**-guess if you will, of when we might be able to have an MVP up and running for early adopters or beta testers? If existing SE communities start talking about their options, what could we reasonably say to them about timeframe for Codidact?

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I’m sad to say that my current estimate is never. But the project is still young and there is a lot of potential for things to improve.

The reason I’m pessimistic is that I’m not seeing constructive priorities. There is a core of people who are highly motivated to build something. But build what? Some people have already decided on a programming language and a database architecture, but that’s not important at this stage. What’s important at this stage is to have a sufficiently consensual goal, then to figure out what it takes to reach the first step towards this goal.

I’m pessimistic because there’s no consensual goal in sight. But maybe the goal of rebuilding Stack Exchange exactly (which I personally won’t hinder, but I have no enthusiasm for) has enough followers to achieve something usable.

I’m pessimistic because coding seems to have priority over building. There is a near-consensus to start coding even though nobody has shared any reason why we couldn’t build on what already exists.

Nonetheless, turnaround is definitely possible. The tech lead and team lead have just been chosen and some leadership can help focus efforts. Please don’t read this as “we are doomed”, that’s not what I mean at all. I mean “we need to shape up”.

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My scientific wild-ass guess, as of current, is: up to two months for getting the requirements and specs, then about 9 months for a first (beta) release of the platform. That puts us in position to launch in about a year from now.

The goal I had in mind when joining this project (since I first made myself available for SE members that would be willing to kickstart the required efforts) was to rebuild a platform that works as well as SE (and my experience is that it works damn well), just without belonging to SE but rather to the community. In that light, I expect us to be deviating as little as possible in terms of software. We’ll do better where it can be done, but as I mentioned in What are we trying to build?, I (for one) don’t expect the final product to be wildly different from current SE.

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