Open Technology Fund - F3 - (July 2022)

Sent today to OTF:


Do you have clarity on when a decision will be made by the external reviewer(s)? I’m kind of excited that this is the last step and curious about when to expect the final concusion.


Sent today to OTF:

Gentle ping?

Reply from OTF:

Hi Loïc,

Thank you again for your patience. The external reviewers have just finished evaluating your proposal and are generally supportive, but raised the same concerns around the budget that you and I discussed on our call. If you are still comfortable with your original budget, we can proceed with that figure. However, we want to give you one more chance to review it to make sure you are covered in terms of your expenses in the course of doing this work.

Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

Best regards,

My reply

Hi [redacted],

My initial estimate was made a year ago and inflation in France where I reside was significant and probably calls for a 10% increase to be conservative. That being said I confirm that my estimate takes into account the taxes that are due by law to cover social security, unemployment, retirement, etc.

If a total amount reevaluated to 70000 (seventy thousand) is agreeable to you, that would cover my expenses in the course of doing this work.

Thanks again for your consideration and I hope for a favorable decision.


Reply from OTF:

Upon evaluation of your proposal, we have decided to solicit more information from you before making a determination. We have been reviewing many projects and appreciate your patience during the process.

At the end of this message, we have provided feedback from our determination for your review. Please provide your responses by updating your proposal no later than July 21, 2023.


The external reviewers very much appreciate the concept of F3 and providing FLOSS alternatives to commercial software. They recommend that you include some public facing way like a wiki for potential novice users to read about the project and ask questions.

They were also questions about how F3 would be integrated into the Gitea codebase. Do you have a relationship with Gitea that would make this process easier?

In addition please update the total budget amount in the proposal to reflect our earlier communication.

I replied the following:

Hi [redacted],

Thanks for your quick reply.

There has been one major development in the past year that creates a context more favorable to F3. I have reviewed and updated the initial proposal to factor in the newly created software forge It is derived from Gitea and I participate in its development since its inception in October 2022. It has a user base of a little over 50,000 and a few hundred instances have been installed. This is not very large but it is an excellent context to field test F3.

They were also questions about how F3 would be integrated into the Gitea codebase. Do you have a relationship with Gitea that would make this process easier?

The primary target for F3 changed from Gitea to Forgejo. There is a strong commitment from the Forgejo developer community to release F3 as part of Forgejo as soon as it is ready. Because Forgejo is fully compatible with Gitea, will be as simple as proposing a pull request to enable F3 in Gitea once it has matured.

The proposal was updated to clarify that.

They recommend that you include some public facing way like a wiki for potential novice users to read about the project and ask questions.

There will be an integrated wiki in the project as well as a discourse based forum for the community (experts or novices alike) to engage and communicate. I did not add that explicitly in the proposal, maybe I should have?

Thanks for your support,


01-project-objectives.txt (10.2 KB)
02-proposal-narrative.txt (18.2 KB)
03-technical-feasability.txt (1.8 KB)
04-usability-ux-accessibility.txt (3.7 KB)
05-alternative-analysis.txt (2.7 KB)
06-similar-efforts.txt (1.3 KB)
07-monitoring-and-evaluating.txt (3.6 KB)
08-strategy-beyond-otf.txt (3.6 KB)
09-why-you-and-your-team.txt (1.6 KB)

Received today

Dear Loïc Dachary,

Your application has been reviewed and the outcome is: Approved

Dear Loïc,

Congratulations, your proposal is now moving to compliance and I will email you soon to start the contracting process.
The reviewers were very happy that someone is finally trying to tackle this long, ongoing problem. They liked that you are an experienced, FLOSS developer who also has a lot of experience working on secure code and understands the issue. They encourage you to continue thinking about the broader communities and engaging with OASIS and W3C standards bodies. This will be crucial to the project’s long-term success.
Thanks and again, congrats!

Read the full determination here: [redacted]

Link to your application: [redacted]
If you have any questions, please submit them here: [redacted]

See our guide for more information: General Funding Guidelines - OTF Application Guidebook

If you have any issues accessing the submission system or other general inquiries, please email us at

Kind Regards,
The OTF Team



Hi [redacted],

Thanks for the good news! Very much looking forward to the next steps.


1 Like

Received today.

Hi Loïc,

We are ready to issue the contract but we need to know how you would like to be paid. We can either pay monthly by dividing the total budget amount by the 12 or we could pay based on completion of each deliverable. With the first option you would submit a monthly report detailing what was done that month. In the second option you would need to determine how much time each deliverable will take and how much of the budget should be paid to you for each deliverable. I am sending you a budget template via email so you can break down your costs. Let’s find a time early next week to review.


My Reply

Hi [redacted],

I will study the template and prepare a draft for you to review. I will prefer to be paid based on the completion of each deliverable. I just have one important question before I can proceed: how much flexibility is there regarding the starting date? Does it need to start on September? October? November?

Thanks for your help

The reply came shortly after

Hi Loic,

Great, we’ll work on setting up payments based on the deliverables. We also have a lot of flexibility with start dates. One last thing, based on your calculations on the number of days you need for the project, 130, at 8 hours per day. 70720 USD at 68 USD per hour. If you would like to change this in your budget please do so.


Budget Template - Deliverables.xlsx (506.6 KB)

Sent today

Hi [redacted],

I filled in the budget template and attach it below.

I assumed the “Project Objectives” of the proposal are “deliverables” in the context of the budget template. And what was called “deliverables” in the proposal are a list of concrete items (repositories, reports, code, releases) that will be verified to be as expected before an invoice can be issued.

This is still a draft and I have two more questions:

  • Is the wording used to describe each objective and their deliverable in the “Project Objectives” part of the proposal good enough? Or should it be reworded and/or expanded?
  • Would it be possible to change one of the project objectives (Python package reference implementation)? At the time of the submission it was chosen because it could be delivered with a reasonable level of certainty, but it is low impact. The better objective would be a “Ruby package reference implementation” because it could be used by GitLab which has a larger audience. Experiments conducted this year tend to confirm this can be accomplished within the allocated budget.

Thanks for your help

2023-08-budget-deliverable.xlsx (503.5 KB)

Sent today

Hi [redacted],

I sent you an email but maybe I should have replied here with the spreadsheet? Please let me know which communication channel is preferred to continue the discussion. Mail can easily be overlooked.


Here is the final budget deliverable spreadsheet, for a contract to be signed in the following days and a start time of 1 January 2024.

2023-12-budget-deliverable.xlsx (458.4 KB)

Here is the contract before signature.

B00276-1348-00 Easter Eggs Contract for Contractor Signature.pdf (327.9 KB)

Received 10 January 2024

Dear Loïc

Congratulations on becoming an Open Technology Fund project. Below is an overview of important information to help you get started. Please read carefully and let us know if you have any questions. I would like to schedule a call in the next few days to answer any questions you might have. Please let me know your

Best regards,

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OTF-Talk_Guidance.odt (23.0 KB)
OTF_Report_Guidance.odt (21.2 KB)

Sent the following reply today.


Please add to otf-talk. I have reviewed the OTF talk guidance document and the examples are very useful. I will have an immediate use of it for the purpose of user research, as it requires participation from people outside of the F3 project.

Here is a description of F3 for inclusion on the OTF website. The logo is attached. It would be more accurate to describe F3 as “F3 will be” rather than “F3 is” because there is barely more than scaffolding at this point. This will be revisited if a decision is made to advertise F3 so as to not confuse people. Right now, although the description is public, this did not confuse anyone AFAICT.


The Friendly Forge Format (abbreviated F3) is an Open File Format for storing the information from a forge such as issues, pull/merge requests, milestones, release assets, etc. as well as the associated VCS (Git, Mercurial, etc.).

The structure of the archive is a hierarchy of files that are:

  • JSON files with a normative JSON schema to describe what is usually stored in a forge database (issues, labels, etc.)
  • Content addressable files (avatars, release assets, attachments, software packages, etc.)
  • VCS directories (git, hg, etc.)

A reference implementation in Go is provided with drivers to mirror the forges to and from F3, with drivers for Forgejo, GitLab and Gitea.

I have noted the required date & format (again very useful to have an example) for the monthly report.

I’m available for a talk at your earliest convenience and my schedule is quite flexible. Let me know two dates / time that are good for you and odds are I’ll be available. I am in the UTC+1 timezone.