Back when the GNU project was starting, among the first things they rewrote as Free Software were:
- text editor / IDE (Emacs)
- assembler, linker, and compiler
- make

IOW, they made tools that they needed to further develop Free Software without relying on proprietary tools.

They wanted their project to be self-hosting.

Nowadays, we have more free software than ever, but we develop it using github and Discord...

@Wolf480pl this is issue with people. People tend to stich with a single solution which everybody uses. There are lots of quailty source "forges" (i.e. Gitlab, Gitea, SourceHut), but people stick with GitHub for a reason that "everybody uses GitHub".

At the moment, when everybody will use open and free forge. Especially when the will be adopted.


But it is harder instant messagging systems. Every one of them has one issue that makes it harder to use.

IRC - lack of history *on server*. I don't see reason to chat if the history is not saved even for several minutes.

XMPP - it's high entrance point. Too much clients and servers supporting different featuresets.

Matrix - it's pretty young and suffers from it.

RocketChat - AFAIK it was buggy as hell, when last time I was using.

Gitter is very tight coupled with non-free software

@alexcleac yeah, network effect.

And you're right about the issues with current chat systems, but IMO that's a symptom, not a cause.

If eg. Mozilla was trying to build a Free chat solution, as hard as Stallman et al. were trying to build a free compiler, we'd already have something that can compete with the proprietary chat apps.

@Wolf480pl I think even if Mozilla started doing this, there is a non zero (and pretty high) that it wont make it, a least from the first try. Do you remember the Firefox OS? I am afraid that the user base would be pretty low.

However it would be a nice first step out of a FOSS info bubble towards other people. But it is the hard way. This could also be done the way guys at purism did with librem one 😉

@alexcleac But the goal would be to make a chat _for_ the FOSS bubble. Even if only Mozilla devs use it, that's already a success, if it means they don't depend on Discord.

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