Fosdem 2018 – I was there

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Like every year, the first international conference of the year is FOSDEM, which is always in Brussels between January and February.


This year, the day before the Fosdem I attended this conference (the program with all the slides is available on

The name is Community Health Analytics Open Source Software conference. It is part of a larger community that deals with tools to analyse data about the life of communities living around software.

An example of this is (which is public), and you can see that it allows you to make analysis on the health of a community as well as interests and needs. Many communities use this software to track and study their projects and be able to do future analysis.

Personally I invite you to check the slides of the talk of Mozilla and Linux Foundation that provide examples of use of this data.

I leave you with numerical data on what Mozilla is analyzing for the moment:

I leave you some mine notes of regarding several points presented during the conference:

  • Metrics are tools that allow us to give numbers to what the community does over time. In any case, not everything is quantifiable in numbers, but allows you to make an argument on real data and not on the heard ones.
  • A metric must have the following characteristics
    • Objective: its value is objective for everyone
    • Consistent: does not change over time
    • Continuous: it is measured over time and not on a specific day
    • Repeatable: its measurement must be performed several times
    • Transparent: its usefulness is clear for everyone
    • Duration: may have a specific duration but is not a single data</ li>
  • A metric must answer the question: What do you want to measure and why?
  • The code comments are part of the contributions of the code but modern tools often do not trace this type of contributions that are at the same time important
  • Who contributes is the true hero

Participating in this conference as well as making me better understand the concept of metrics (which are very important in the community), allowed me to meet Stefano Zacchiroli personally. Those who do not know him can check with Wikipedia, but honestly I felt like a kid meeting a superstar. After all, I’m a nerd, what you want to do it.


4 years in a row at FOSDEM and 2 as a speaker and I thought that I understood now how this conference works. Instead this year more palaces were added with many more rooms but in any case there were too many people.

Often the rooms were full (now the app informs you about the state) and so it was almost impossible to go and follow a talk. In fact I have been able to follow very few but I’m recovering because they were broadcast live and many are already available with slides.

I gave a presentation WebExtension status API after Firefox 57, so I leave you some pictures and then some consideration.

  • An error in my slides was reported to me after the talk (already correct), about the manual review issue that occurs after the automatic approval of AMO
  • Others think like me that the Google portal for extensions is very bad and limited
  • Several people confirmed that it now is very easy to make an extension (even after the conference)
  • Porting from Chrome to Firefox often does not require any changes to the code
  • Interest in the 2018 Firefox’s API plan but there is not much information about it

Personally I did the talk too quickly even though during my tests I was on schedule. Fault of my italish ehm english probably.

So I leave you to the list of talks that were interesting for me:

They could not miss group photos:


I finally allowed myself a visit to the museum of cartoon action figure and then …

Thanks to the Belgian Mozilla community that allowed the community to participate in the event!

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