@mona Fair enough. I'd really appreciate it if you wouldn't default to "this must suck because it's FOSS" every time I bring up something I'm testing, though.

Ok, I'm done with code for the moment. Time to make some zines.

@mona It is simultaneously the case that free software culture is bad and that it is far more urgent to produce non-hostile group messaging software than to fix that culture.

The two are not entirely orthogonal, but they are not entirely parallel either, and one is certainly not dependent on the other.

We can do both at the same time.

@mona I'm certainly not making such a distinction here; rather, I'm saying that setting up a homeserver has to be performed a lot less often than logging into one, so it makes far more sense to spend resources making the second easy than the first.

It is only _secondarily_ that the fact that "admins" are the ones who will be doing the first, by the definition of the term.
Once the homeserver hits 1.0, I imagine it will have a nice UI and installer, like Riot.im 1.0 does.

@charlag While technically that's true, I do think @mona is right that free software projects tend to be developed by volunteers, and projects developed by volunteers have 1) fewer resources and 2) a different idea of how to apply those resources.

Specifically, if they make a distinction between "admins" and "users", they tend to focus on the experience for users before the experience for admins. Whether this is justified or not is another discussion.

@danny I'm using a 3GB/1CPU DO instance, and performance seems OK so far. We'll see how it scales.

@mona I absolutely agree. However, this part of the system - setting up a homeserver - doesn't need to be usable to the average person yet.

In contrast, the Riot.im client is trivial to install and essentially the same process to set up as the Discord client, plus one or two extra required fields.

@mona The point of all that being, it's really not that difficult to install even a Matrix homeserver, and approaching a new and unproven technology which is focusing on functionality rather than improving a one-time process few users ever have to touch, is not very productive.

It took me about an hour to go from "I would like to have a homeserver" to having it fully set up on a newly provisioned host with a new hostname and newly provisioned SSL certs, and that includes taking some time out to clean.

@mona I'm sorry that's been your experience. My experience has not been similar and, to be honest, I'm not sure that it's realistic for a single project (as opposed to a distribution or large organization) to attempt to change that workflow.

To do so would require breaking compatibility with the fundamental UNIX interfaces and would make it impossible to carry forward existing services.

While I do think one-click GUI installers with web- or GUI-based config are great, they are not scalable.

I'm @nora@matrix.nora.codes on if anyone wants to connect with me, to test federation (or just for fun).

@mona It's no more difficult than setting up any other piece of software that provides a network service on a single port using SSL.

For users of the service it requires only entering login credentials and the URL of the homeserver, once you have an account.

I'm not sure what you mean by "the usual free software nightmare".

With all this Discord nonsense going on, I finally set up a Matrix home-server at matrix.nora.codes

I'm going to evaluate how its federation works for a little while and then hand out registrations to my Patrons. After a week or so, I'll let anyone ask for an account.

@vy I've been using Thunderbird and Enigmail for about 4 years and it hasn't let me down yet.

@alice I should say I'm also very interested in what your current workflows are re: source code given that you don't use version control, and what your coding style is like

obviously it works for you and I think The Industry ™ could stand to learn a deal more from people who just write software that serves them for themselves

@alice I'd love to try! Perhaps in the future I could hit you up with some drafts of short intros to some of the topics you've listed above?

@a_cat Big agree. The largest problem is the network effect, which Discord currently has very much on their side. One reason I maintain a presence on so very many crappy OSS chat apps; I really hope one or two become un-crappy via continued use and bug reporting, and my friends find me there.

@dmoonfire Well, a new Riot app just came out, version 1.0, and I haven't tried it.

[6:55 PM] NoraCodes:
> your suggestion is the first one I've seen about this

Discord is a web application and should consider WCAG guidelines when building at least its web software; in Canada, Britain, and Australia, this is a legal requirement. (see eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-conten and ccdonline.ca/en/blog/jodhan)

[6:55 PM] Blastoise186: Thanks, hopefully it happens someday


Ahahahahaha me too! And I bet your lawyers hope it happens before some Brit gets mad and sues your ass!

@alice I personally am very immersed in all the abstract stuff and would _love_ to work toward an extramanospheric way to teach this kind of stuff.

I really like Julia Evans's zines as a prototype for a more compassionate way to teach computer science and engineering concepts

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