After some (more) days of being busy with other things (or being lazy) I would like put here the use-case I have in mind when thinking about forgefed.
Some days back I was a comparatively active contributor to projects hosted on github, lurking around in the issues and helping with them. (This model of contributing seems to be called “triager”.)
The projects I was contributing to I found via my search engine when searching for existing software that could solve a problem I was working on. For example Tabula for extracting tables as CSV or even JSON from PDF files.
Sometimes I found and fixed bugs. Sometimes I suggested and implemented new features.
Back then my workflow was fully centered on my GitHub notification (github.com/notifications). I regularly (much too often sometimes) checked those, where I then found new issues to help with, new responses to previous requests (could you please attach a log file), etc.
So far a prosaic description of my use-case.
It’s also the reason why I am often thinking about how to represent things in the UI - in the end I would like to have myforge.net/notifications where I can check for events that happend in the projects I follow, directly jump to the issues (preserving the look-and-feel of my instance), reply to them, etc.
Preserving the look-and-feel for me here is an important point. I don’t think it makes sense to somehow communicate my personal preferences to a remote instance when browsing issues. I rather think my local instance should allow me to browse remote projects and issues. I might need to expand on why exactly I don’t want to just follow hyperlinks to remote instances.
The only challenge now is to check where to build this into. I would prefer not to need to implement my own forge for that.
But so far I did not find a ready Free forge (except nonfree github) that supports my use-case. (esp not GitLab, which makes this extra sad.) I guess this is not to be blamed on the forges - in the end, right now, github has enough network effect and projects to make my use-case work there.
GitLab also is a DevOps tool, following other projects is out-of-scope.
Gitea and Gogs might be interesting. I did not yet look if there are notifications there as I want them.
Anyway, this then is the thing I am currently trying to wrap my head around.