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Free Software Directory meeting recap for May 26th, 2017

by Donald Robertson III Contributions Published on May 31, 2017 02:55 PM
Check out the great work our volunteers accomplished at the last Free Software Directory meeting.

Every week free software activists from around the world come together in #fsf on to help improve the Free Software Directory. This recaps the work we accomplished at the Friday, May 26th, 2017 meeting.

Our most recent meeting was focused on adding new entries. A new feature of the recent update to the Directory played a big role. Occasionally when sorting through unapproved pages (new pages that haven't been reviewed), we would would come across a page that was actually just a redirect. Sometimes a package will change names, or a variation in naming would cause multiple entries to end up in the Directory. Having the old page redirect to the correct one helps to keep the Directory clean and easy to navigate. But it turns out these redirects were making for a messy log of unapproved pages, as they would end up generating a new page that required approval. With the recent update, these redirected pages are now highlighted, which enabled us to get through about thirty of them during the meeting on Friday.

In the spirit of adding more to the Directory, we also launched a volunteer project for importing large amounts of entries. The project enables us to import package information from free software repositories. Long ago a friend put together scripts that we used to import thousands of entries. But thousands upon thousands more could be added if we update the import scripts.

The project has been sitting idle for a while now at, just waiting for volunteers to jump in and refine it. The scripts are in Python, so if you're a seasoned Python hacker this would be a great way to contribute.

While it will take quite a bit of work, the effort will have a truly profound effect on the Directory. If we can get the project up and running, it will greatly expand the number of entries and in the future can help to keep them up to date.

If you are interested in lending a hand, please email with the subject "Directory Import Volunteer" and tell us a bit about yourself.

If you would like to help update the directory, meet with us every Friday in #fsf on from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT (16:00 to 19:00 UTC).

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