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Engineering at Meta Icon Engineering at Meta

Meta is transferring Jest to the OpenJS Foundation

Good for them (and us)! But what does that mean in practice?

Over the next few months, we’ll be completing the OpenJS Foundation’s incubation program checklist, including transferring the Jest domain, repo, website, and other assets to OpenJS. We’ll also be updating the code of conduct and contributor license agreement.

Additionally, as part of this move, we will be publishing a project charter and creating new governance policies that will document the process for gaining commit access, as well as our leadership selection process.

Next up: React?! A guy can dream…

Startups supabase.com

Should I open source my company?

Supabase CTO Ant Wilson walks through the pros & cons of open sourcing your startup and why he believes the answer to the question in the headline is (probably) “yes”

Open-sourcing Supabase ended up surprising us in many ways. Many people imagine that maintaining your business in public might be burdensome - but the opposite is true. There are many unexpected upsides that have made building Supabase - the product and the company - easier.

While some of this advice comes from our lens as a Dev Tools or PaaS company, most of it will apply to any software company.

Max Howell Medium

Something new is brewing

Max Howell, creator of Homebrew, has gone back to his notes on brew2 to apply web3 concepts to help “distribute value to open source.” He’s calling this new brew tea.

Tools like Homebrew lie beneath all development tools, assisting developers to actually get development done. We know the graph of all open source, which means we’re uniquely placed to innovate in interesting and exciting ways. This is exactly what tea will do. We’re taking our knowledge of how to make development more efficient and throwing innovations nobody has ever really considered before.

With plans to move the package registry on-chain, Max lays out the numerous benefits due to “inherent benefits of blockchain technology”:

  • Packages will be immutable (no more left-pad incidents)
  • Packages will always be available (we’ll use decentralized storage)
  • Releases will be signed by the maintainers themselves (rather than a middleman you are told you can trust)
  • Tools can be built to fundamentally verify the integrity of your app’s open source constitution
  • Token can flow through the graph

Max says “token flowing is where things get really interesting,” and goes on to say “with our system people who care about the health of the open source ecosystem buy some token and stake it.”

(Thanks to Omri Gabay for sharing this first in our community Slack)

Tooling vermaden.wordpress.com

ZFS compatibility

ZFS has become very portable in recent years of its development, supporting six (6) operating systems: FreeBSD, Illumos, Linux, MacOS, NetBSD, and Windows. But what if you wanted to create a ZPool compatible with all of them? Which options and ZFS features should you choose?

If you haven’t yet, check out The Changelog #475 where I talk with Matt Ahrens (co-founder of the ZFS project) about making the ZFS file system.

Bhupesh Varshney buttondown.email

One secret tip for first-time OSS contributors 🤫

Bhupesh Varshney:

A lot of folks looking how to get started on open source are given very generic advice on how to approach their first contribution. In this newsletter issue I share one specific actionable item.

His secret tip? Solve static analyzer issues. There, I saved you a click. Unless you’re not sure what he means by that or want his advice on how to actually get that done…

Simon Willison simonwillison.net

Support open source that you use by paying the maintainers to talk to your team

I love this idea by Simon Willison:

I think I’ve come up with a novel hack for the challenge of getting your company to financially support the open source projects that it uses: reach out to the maintainers and offer them generous speaking fees for remote talks to your engineering team.

It won’t work for every person and situation, but we should add it to our arsenal of ways to return economic value back to the maintainers of our open source infrastructure.

Awesome Lists github.com

Open source startup alternatives to well-known SaaS products

The criteria for inclusion is as follows:

  1. Its product is strongly based on an open source repo
  2. It has a well-known closed-sourced competitor, solving a similar business problem
  3. It is a private for-profit company, founded in the last 10 years
  4. Its repo has 100+ stars on GitHub

I’m seeing lots of Changelog guests & friends in this awesome list. 😎

Daniel Stenberg daniel.haxx.se

Enforcing the pyramid of open source

Daniel Stenberg lays out how he thinks we can view the world of software and open source in light of supply chain security, maintainer sustainability, and the like:

Inside the pyramid there is a hierarchy where things using software are build on top of others, in layers. The higher up you go, the more you stand on the shoulders of open source components below you.

At the very bottom of the pyramid are the foundational components. Operating systems and libraries. The stuff virtually everything runs or depends upon. The components you really don’t want to have serious security vulnerabilities.

Enforcing the pyramid of open source

JavaScript fakerjs.dev

Faker.js is now a community maintained project

Eight people have stepped up to take over maintenance of the suddenly abandoned JS library that generates fake data. These transitions are tricky to make smoothly. Props to the new team on being very careful and thoughtful each step along the way, especially when it comes to funding the project. Here’s a nice note from the new team:

We’re excited to give new life to this idea and project.

This project can have a fresh start and it will become even cooler.

We felt we needed to do a public announcement because of all of the attention the project received in the media and from the community.

We believe that we have acted in the way that is best for the community.

YouTube Icon YouTube

What really happened to Faker.js?

Fireship with a brief (3:48) rundown of the most recent instance of a popular open source library maintainer removing their code from public repositories in response to corporate (ab)use of their free labor:

Yesterday, a popular open-source package, Faker.js, was abruptly taken down from GitHub. Its readme simply said “What really happened to Aaron Swartz?”. Let’s take a look at why Open Source Software can be a bad deal for many independent developers.

Kailash Nadh nadh.in

"Open source" is not broken

A rebuttal by Kailash Nadh to the aforelinked post.

large for-profit corporations started their widespread consumption of FOSS, ever since countless “unicorns” raised infinite amounts of funding on valuations built pretty much entirely on FOSS, ever since FOSS got co-opted into corporatisation and capitalisation. And yet, countless maintainers of critical and widely used FOSS struggle to make a living.

Whose fault is this? I do not believe that this is FOSS’ fault as a conceptual framework or a system. If FOSS was broken, the internet as we know it today wouldn’t exist; the countless marvels of technology that we take for granted and techno-economies that thrive on them wouldn’t exist; millions of software developers (like me) who learnt to write code with FOSS and learnt to make a living with that knowledge wouldn’t exist.

Xe christine.website

"Open source" is broken

The post-log4j-zero-day thinkpieces started rolling in over the weekend. I’m happy about that. We need to discuss this stuff. Here’s what Christine Dodrill’s TL;DR:

If you want me to make you useful software, pay me. If you use software made by others in their spare time and find it useful, pay them. This should not be a controversial opinion. This should not be a new thing. This should already be the state of the world and it is amazingly horrible for us to have the people that make the things that make our software work at all starve and beg for donations.

The entire article is worth considering.

Chris Manson chris.manson.ie

It's all gravy

This is a short post by long-time open source maintainer Chris Manson about commitment to tasks in the open source world and how life always takes priority over dev.

We always need to keep in mind that most open source contributions are given from people that are opting to give up their spare time (usually for free) and the level of expectation can never come anywhere close to the sort of relationship that an employer might have with an employee or contractor.

Pairs well with Every commit is a gift. 🍷

The New Stack Icon The New Stack

How to find a mentor and get started in open source

The New Stack’s Jennifer Riggins covering Kubecon+CloudNativeCon 2021:

The Cloud Native Computing Foundation has more than 138,000 contributors making over 7 million contributions to more than 100 open source projects. It’s reasonable that getting started in open source would feel overwhelming — to say the least. So how do you get started as a contributor to cloud native projects? How do you find a mentor or guide to help you along?

She draws many solid takeaways from a panel that discussed this exact topic at the event. This quote from Grafana’s Uchechukwu Obasi is spectacular:

“I think open source really changed my life,” Obasi said. “I’m African, I live in Africa, but having the opportunity to work on software that impacts millions of lives, it’s an opportunity that I never take for granted. If open source can change my life, it can change yours too.”

Nix blog.replit.com

Betting on Nix

Replit is donating $25k to the NixOS Foundation. Here’s why:

Replit has a history of betting on nascent technologies. The first version of Replit used WebAssembly long before WebAssembly found widespread adoption. We’re betting that the Nix project will improve performance across the board, sidestep a whole slew of bugs for our community, and let any Replit user build and publish programming environments.

For a primer convo on Nix, (re)visit our conversation with Domen Kozar on The Changelog.

Python lukasz.langa.pl

Where does all the effort go? Looking at Python core developer activity

Łukasz Langa was tasked by the PSF to look at the state of CPython as an active software development project.

What are people working on? Which standard libraries require most work? Who are the active experts behind which libraries? Those were just some of the questions asked by the Foundation. In this post I’m looking into our Git repository history and our Github PR data to find answers.

Follow along as Łukasz explains how they gathered the data, analyzed it, and got answers to the questions above.

Zach Leatherman zachleat.com

Who pays for web frameworks?

Zach Leatherman has been considering sustainability models for Eleventy, so he surveyed the field to see what everyone else in the web framework ecosystem are doing. Check out his post for the raw data and his analysis. Here’s where he stands as of today:

I don’t have the answers. I definitely wouldn’t agree that Eleventy has figured out our sustainable monetization strategy but I do really admire the success that Vue has had solving this exact problem. I do know that I have no interest in Trend 2 (raise investment money) but I’ll continue to keep a keen eye on what other indie-framework folks are doing.

Will McGugan github.com

Free code reviews for open source Python projects

Will McGugan is a full-stack developer and Python expert who is offering up free reviews for any/all qualifying open source projects.What a great idea/service to the community!

The reviews will focus on API design and general architection of your project with a view to making them a) more maintainable b) future proof and c) user friendly, but will avoid anything that a linter could do for you. Reviews are intended to be constructive and hopefully give advice you can act on, but are in no way a “grade”.

I won’t need to run your code to do a review and reviews aren’t intended to fix bugs.

All reviews will be public and will be published in the repo in a markdown file. An exception would be for any security issues, where I would notify you first.

Not everyone all at once, now. There’s already quite a few requests in the queue.

Raj Dutt grafana.com

Grafana Labs is officially a unicorn

Grafana Labs announced a $220 million Series C investment round yesterday at a $3 billion valuation. I had Raj Dutt, CEO of Grafana Labs, on Founders Talk late last year — should I get him back on?

Congrats on the “B” Raj and team.

As with our previous rounds in 2019 and 2020, this funding will enable us to focus on accelerating the development of our open source observability platform and supporting the success of our community and our customers.

Here’s one example of how we’re pushing toward those goals: Earlier this year, we launched an “actually useful,” forever-free tier of Grafana Cloud that provides the industry’s most generous no-cost, fully managed observability stack, with 50GB of Loki logs, 10,000 series of Prometheus metrics, and 3 Grafana dashboard users included. Now, we’re adding 50GB of traces to the free plan, leveraging our Grafana Tempo OSS project, which recently became generally available for production use.

Alex Ellis blog.alexellis.io

Building an open source marketplace for Kubernetes (2 years later)

It’s 22 months since I found myself frustrated with writing boilerplate instructions to install simple, but necessary software in every tutorial I wrote for clients and for my own open source work.

In this article post I’ll walk you through the journey of the past two years from the initial creation, through to growing the community, getting the first sponsored app and what’s next. There will be code snippets, and technical details, but there should be something for everyone as we celebrate the two year anniversary of the project.

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