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.

1/2

@Wolf480pl
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 @Wolf480pl with messaging, compromises have to be made right now. It’s unfortunate. I’m enjoying Matrix.

IRC has always been a ghost town. That’s not going to change. XMPP has always been a skeleton when you need a body.

We need to get over clinging to ancient tech like those two.

@jack @alexcleac
I'm not sure what you mean by ghost town, but from my experience, IRC was very lively 10 years ago.

Either way, it's clear that these days we need something better than that.

My problem is that instead of being like "IRC is no longer sufficient for our project, let's make something better", many FOSS projects are like "IRC is no longer sufficient for our project, let's use some proprietary chat app instead".

Which is the opposite of what GNU was doing back then.

@Wolf480pl @alexcleac I’d love it if there were a great open source chat app that was accessible, fast, and not entirely pointless.

Matrix is the closest thing to that I’ve ever used.

@Wolf480pl @jack well, nobody can stop you from developing your own server. In fact, I want to try making a matrix server in scala when I have a bit more of free time :)

@alexcleac @jack I've heard it's unscalable at protocol level...

@Wolf480pl @alexcleac I’m not as savvy as I once was with this stuff, so that is quite possibly the case.

It’s just kind of awful to need so many apps for messaging just to stay in touch with an average number of friends and family.

@jack @alexcleac
IMO, this is better than "one IM to rule them all".
Diversity and healthy competition are good things.

Where I live, there's an expectation that "everyone is on facebook", and when you're that one guy who is not on facebook, you're basically a second-class citizen.

That sucks.

Please don't teach your friends to expect that everyone uses the same communication medium.

@Wolf480pl @alexcleac

what I’d like to see is something like Federation. Where interaction isn’t server/client dependent.

@jack @alexcleac @Wolf480pl I keep toying with the idea of a lightweight general-purpose messaging network. My problem, as always, is one of time.

Making a system that is decentralized, secure, and lightweight (in terms of network usage) is an extremely difficult thing to accomplish; most projects or protocols only place value on two of the three as a result.

@SuperFloppies @jack @Wolf480pl isn’t there a theorem telling that you cannot get fast, reliable and easy to support system whatever you do?

@alexcleac @jack @Wolf480pl It’s a general principle. Reliability costs performance, and security requires trust analysis which incurs overhead. I can process half a billion transactions a second in a system written in assembler that doesn’t care about networking or security. That doesn’t make it good.

But how much you want to bet that it’d still sell well? “Half a billion txns/sec on a four year old system! Buy now! Be faster than everyone else!”

@alexcleac @jack @Wolf480pl Furthermore, consistency is always eventual between multiple systems, just on a timescale small enough that we often do not really see it.

@jack @alexcleac @Wolf480pl Makes me want to try to get a bunch of people together to create the “Sane Software Alliance,” promising to make high-quality, high-performance, secure systems without bloat.

Someone pass the pipe... I’m clearly in enough discomfort that I’m spewing BS...

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