Return of the Freedom Fridays: development status, release plans and ways to help.

Last week (on 12/08/17) we reinstated the Freedom Fridays, a tradition in which we hold periodic development meetings and post updates about the project at the end of each week. These updates were long overdue but since we can now consistently dedicate more time to the project, we hope to make fast progress on all fronts.

The main topic for this meeting was the status of the Trisquel 8 release, which is close to ready but still pending some important tasks. The most visible ones are the outdated Trisquel metapackages (essential for the netinstall and distro-upgrading processes to work) and the new artwork (current ISOs use placeholder art).

Ruben will work on providing soon newer ISO images with updated metapackages, and there's something that almost anybody can do to help speeding up the release: testing the upgrade procedure from Trisquel 7 to Trisquel 8. Jxself has provided an easy-to-replicate set of steps using virtualization to perform this test without complications.

There are also several package helpers in need of updating, like those listed by kpengboy here, even though some of them are not critical for release. Some other bugs are already being worked into at our gitlab instance by several community members which surely can use help from other experienced users.

After Trisquel 8 is ready we plan to start working soon in the next release, but revamping the build/development workflow is currently the second highest priority since we want to be able to make it easier and more straightforward to collaborate.

In the second half of the meeting we also talked about the plan to migrate our websites to an updated platform, where we'll adopt easier to maintain solutions for elements like forums and mailing lists. Moving to mailman 3 and its complete web interface will be simpler than the current solution and will also help us fix one of the more common grievances with the current solution: the unintended visibility of e-mail addresses at the forum.

We'll start working on the new site at the very generously donated domain (thanks, Salman!) as soon as we set up an updated environment. We'll use the second half of the development meetings and the trisquel-devel mailing list for updates and coordination of pending tasks.

For the following meetings we already have lots of items to discuss, and we'll try to send an agenda to the trisquel-devel mailing list with enough anticipation, making it easier for everybody to participate. Meeting schedule is not set in stone; we settled on Fridays at 11:00 am EST / 8:00 am PST / 16:00 UTC after some deliberation but we can review those times later.

We hope to see even greater participation on future meetings and we'll be happy to post new updates soon as development progresses. Thanks everyone for the patience and happy hacking!