Group: FSF:Tech Team Volunteers

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This page is linked from the FSF volunteer page.

The FSF tech team could really use some help from some skilled hackers!

What makes a good volunteer

  • You run GNU/Linux on your personal computer.
  • You are reasonably familiar with using the command line.
  • You know some basics of GNU/Linux server administration.
  • You can create a virtual machine on a computer you own with virt-manager or virsh and expose a port to the internet.
  • You are reasonably familiar with using git.
  • You can write technical documentation.
  • You are comfortable communicating on mumble, IRC, and email (we also have room in our Boston office).
  • You have at least a few hours to spend.

How to volunteer

  • Possibly just dive into different work listed below.
  • Join IRC: https://libera.chat, channel #fsfsys and say hi and that you are interested in helping out.
  • Catch up on IRC history. Get 1-2 days of chat history by saying "fsysbot catch me up" in #fsfsys. NOTE: This not a public log. We assume you know that anyone can join and request the last 24-48 hours of logs which are shared only to that person and that sharing does not imply permission to reshare the log. More info on logging is on Libera.Chat.
  • Apply to a tech team internship by following the FSF internship documentation.

It it also helpful to email sysadmin@fsf.org and tell us:

  • Things you are interested in working on (see project ideas below).
  • Overview of skills you have or a resume.
  • How much time you estimate you have.

The tech team or other volunteers will reply.

Examples of ways to contribute

There are many more possibilities, this is just some of the more obvious things.

Core FSF work that needs lots of collaboration with the tech team

  • Upgrading the operating system and software on one of our virtual machines. Document and fix various issues that come up.
  • Help creating the new FSF forge.

Work that can be done more independently

  • Write public documentation on FSF & GNU run services, software, machines, network, etc.
  • Help make an FSF-run web site available as a Tor hidden service.
    • Helping to convert an existing site to use relative links instead of absolute links is also helpful towards this goal.
  • Improve Email Self-Defense's edward GPG bot.
    • Upgrade to support newer ciphers.
    • Improve general usability and use cases (e.g. autocrypt).
  • Improve our web extensions JShelter and LibreJS.
  • Improve H-Node.
  • Improve the FSF History page.
    • The page is just HTML and CSS, but we would love help creating a custom static site generator to create the page from markdown.
    • Add translation support.
  • Improve our debbugs instance.
    • Upgrading to the latest Trisquel release.
    • Updating to the latest upstream version along with our changes if possible.
  • Send us a patch for the LibrePlanet conference website repository.
    • Removing validation errors and warnings.
    • Improving accessibility.
    • Adding translation support.
    • Adding optional dark or light mode support.
  • If you have significant security experience, there might be some specific work to help secure FSF run systems. In that case, please send a detailed resume to sysadmin@fsf.org and we can probably find you a project to work on.

About the FSF tech team

The FSF tech team is currently just Michael and Ian. We (the tech team) are able to give roughly daily assistance to volunteers, but we have to be careful that the time helping a volunteer leads to more work being done than doing the work ourselves. In the past few years, two big projects we have announced plans for, the FSF forge and the FSF website remake have slipped as other work has taken priority. In 2022, we started to work on more general volunteer on-boarding and outreach. We want your help!

We publish some technical documentation on the Savannah wiki.

We store various things in the repositories at vcs.fsf.org. We have documentation on how to submit email patches which would work to submit changes.

FAQ

Nothing here yet. You can edit this page!

Ideas for things to add to this page:

  • Tips for handling when it feels like you have taken on too much or cannot keep up.
  • Tips for communicating with the tech team and the rest of the FSF.
  • FSF infrastructure overview.