Forging Free Software

This topic is for elaboration of the vision of “Forging Free Software”. What does that entail?

(This first post is a placeholder to summarize things from the thread)

Transferring parts of a Matrix chat I had with @fr33domlover today…

(11 February 7:17am CET) I commented to @Gusted on Forgejo Development chatroom, related to considering Gitea Actions as a form of integrated CI:

Beware. I think calling Actions a “CI solution” may be the wrong way to look at. Here’s how the CTO of Github describes GH Actions:

Actions was never intended to be “CI” or any such vertical capability. It has always intended to be a platform that exposes capabilities like CI or packages etc out to the world, but the underlying serverless very flexible workflow platform is the bedrock upon which we want to build the future

This was in response to someone commenting:

Very interesting how Github comes with more and more interesting ‘actions’ to turn repos into ‘platforms’ and moves us closer to serverless future.

If you take that to an extreme, you see how different and disruptive this might be.
There will be FOSS code forges where devs will download code in their local git, take a lot of time to set up a development environment with the proper tech stack, make changes and upload them (commits, PR’s).

And then there will be fully contained project environments, quality controlled by project maintainers, all infra managed by GH and backend cloud (Azure). If there’s still a need to download stuff you get a pre-packaged thing that “just runs” and which you open in VSCode to see code, but where git is deeply embedded and you needn’t fiddle with it anymore.
Instructions for setting up a development machine to work on any project in any language: Install VSCode. Done.
Such future will blow Forgejo out of the water for most devs.
In terms of “liberating people from Github” this is the kind of world we are competing against.

Hate to bring it up, but you can blame MS for many things, but not for being not highly strategic. I think there is very smart product strategy behind Github. They make it such that each step into the direction of what I just depicted, feels like a logical one. A rather small step from where platform users already are. Meanwhile they are developing all the different components of such a serverless future in parallel, not yet integrating them fully, but creating dependency relations and subtle forms of vendor lock-in.

Later on we discussed the Block Protocol and Hash application platform in Forge Federation chatroom, and found out that there’s a planned integration of Block Protocol with Github (via Github Next product development), where apparently README’s get protocol support. Which is major.

See: Github Blocks project on Github Next.

We must put something against that as a counterweight. We cannot win, nor even catch up with all individual projects just doing their thing. I feel the Forgers Guild should focus on similar innovative themes. We may establish a copyleft ecosystem.

It is nasty how GH operate. There’s a kinda ‘openness’ to it, in the sense that the product development looks open. They divulge what they are going to offer in the future, and parts of it is open source already. Other parts (key parts undoubtedly) are not. This way they make people excited, who start to work on their vision, and when they launch a product the ecosystem is already there.

Their strategy decidedly is not open. This was my point about radical transparency as well… We should not be ‘readable’ to the corporates like that. I believe real-time transparent strategy in most cases is impossible. It is only possible if knowing the strategy does not give opportunity to annul it.

It means that The Forgers Guild will have to have areas that are member-only accessible.

Wrt to transparency the goal should be that all things become Eventually Transparent, and to do so - depending on the type of information - different Transparency strategies are chosen…

True. Thats why we moved out of it. Let me just direct you to my posts here and here