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Real-life step functions: learning to play the
guitar; many software applications; learning
a new language.

Psychological danger here: when an internal
team takes a project out into the open, and
decides that newcomers will need to “prove”
themselves by learning lots of details before
they are allowed to be real participants.

The solution is twofold: fewer barriers, and
more levels and varieties of participation
(e.g., patch manager, translator, documentation
coordinator, etc).