Discussion: Applying to NumFOCUS - Deadline: 15 October 2022

We are in the process of investigating whether Fortran-lang would be a good candidate for joining NumFOCUS. Part of that includes finding what information needs to be submitted for the application. Following up from this month’s Monthly Call and our previous dicsussion on funding options

I have looked through the NumFOCUS application form and I believe we should apply for a comprehensive, fiscal sponsorship.

In addition, there are a few sections in the application that would be a good idea if they were discussed in public with the community as a whole. Specifically sections 12.b, 12.d, 12.e, 12.i, 12.j

All Application Questions

1 Does your project have a contributor Code of Conduct?

2 What is the name of your project?

3 Please provide the url of your project’s (primary) repo:

4 Your project’s website:

5 Please provide a summary description of your project in a few sentences:

The organization for the Fortran programming language, responsible for all things Fortran; from scientific computing projects such as the Fortran stdlib, fftpack to build tools and editor extensions like the Fortran package manager fpm and Modern Fortran for Visual Studio Code

6 Does your project have a logo?

7 Please upload a .svg file of your project’s logo.

8 Your project’s Twitter handle or other social media handles/urls:

9 Why do you want your project to join NumFOCUS?

Firstly, because we have grown in size as an organization the need has arisen for us to be able to receive donations and funds, as well as hire individuals for contract work. The structure that NumFOCUS offers is extremely appealing to us since we are trying to avoid setting up an NGO ourselves and managing all the administrative and legal responsibilities. From our sister project LFortran we know that NumFOCUS offers excellent support in that respect.

Secondly, we are also interested in the legal counsel services that NumFOCUS offers in case something happens, such as infringement of our IP or DMCA takedowns.

10 Are you applying for Fiscal Sponsorship or Affiliation?

11 Is your project wanting to apply for the Comprehensive or the Grantor-Grantee fiscal sponsorship model?

12 Please provide us with the following information about your project:

12.a The publicly visible location of your governance document:

12.b The publicly visible location of your roadmap:

12.c URL to “how to get started as a contributor” documentation:

12.d The names and email addresses of five people willing to act as signatories for your project:

12.e The name of your project’s leadership body: It cannot contain the word “board” other than that it can be whatever you choose.

12.f A physical mailing address for your project: Nothing will be sent here and it wont be used for any other purpose.

12.h Please provide a short project description for developers/users: See example under “Technical Details” tab at the bottom of this page: pandas - NumFOCUS

12.i. Please provide us with a a few sentences describing the known applications of your project: See example under “Applications” tab at the bottom of this page: pandas - NumFOCUS

12.j Please provide us with project Industry, Languages, and Applications tags:

See example here: pandas - NumFOCUS

Industry: Higher Education Research & Academia, Business & Industrial Applications

Languages: Fortran, Python, TypeScript, Javascript and many others

Features: Numerical Modelling/Computing, Statistical Modelling/Computing, Text Processing, Build Tool, Package Manager, Computational Language, High Performance Computing, Code Editor Extension

12.k. Any upcoming or annual events held by your project: (if applicable)

12 l. Link to your project’s blog or newsletter: (if applicable)

13 How does your project relate to or integrate with the existing ecosystem of NumFOCUS tools?

14 Describe how your project furthers the NumFOCUS mission: Mission of NumFOCUS - NumFOCUS

15 How many active contributors does your project currently have?

16 Any comments you’d like to make on the number of your active contributors:

17 What is your project doing to attract and/or mentor new contributors and maintainers?

18 Where do you host conversations about project development and governance (e.g. mailing lists, forums, etc.), and how many participants do you have?

19 What license(s) does your project currently use?

20 Projects must adopt the NumFOCUS Code of Conduct or one similar in spirit. Please tell us how you plan to meet this requirement: Code of Conduct for the NumFOCUS Community - NumFOCUS

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FYI There is a NumFOCUS submission deadline for October 15. I would be eager to try and aim for that (the next one is in January) so it would be great if people with thoughts on this did not wait too long.

Are we looking for applications of Fortran or rather stdlib, fpm, etc. here? For the former our package index is a good measure, for the latter, we should find at least >200 repositories on GitHub using fpm. I don’t know whether there is already a serious application of stdlib outside of Fortran-lang (Who is using stdlib?).

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That is a great question. My opinion is that it would be best to apply as Fortran the Language i.e. the former, which happens to control the standard library, the package manager and a bunch of other repos. Does anyone know if that would be problematic for any reason?

The standard is driven by the committee, so it might be a bit disingenuous to imply that we are the Fortran language. Not to say we don’t have influence, just we don’t control it.

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My personal characterization of Fortran-Lang is the grassroots movement launched by Milan Curcic & Ondrej Certik (BDFL’s) with selfless contributions from many others, which happens to control the Fortran stdlib library, the package manager, and other Fortran-lang repositories. At least that’s how I interpreted it from the start.

Nowadays it has grown to become a large community of open-source enthusiasts & professionals interested in using and improving the Fortran language ecosystem, by means of tools, Fortran modules, learning materials, mentoring, and knowledge/information sharing.

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Ivan, thank you, I really appreciate the recognition. But I’d like to dispell the idea of BDFLs in Fortran-lang–IMO it only got this far because we all discussed openly every big decision and only went forward with solutions that mostly worked for most of the people. In other words, the long-term vision is collective rather that of few individuals.

I agree with your characterization of the applicant. The applying Org is the Fortran-lang Org on GitHub and everything it encompasses, and it can’t be the language itself. It’s possible that this is what @gnikit meant as well.

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Upon further reflection I think the honest thing to do would be to separate ourselves from the Standards committee. Explicitly mentioning that in every answer of the application might be difficult and take focus away from what we actually do as an Organisation.

I believe the solution to this would be to add a final comment in the application, that states something along the following lines:

The Fortran Programming Language (Fortran-Lang) is a community driven organisation that develops various tools and libraries for the Fortran language but is not responsible for authoring the Fortran Standard. The authors of the Standard are the Fortran Standard Committee (https://j3-fortran.org/). Many members of Fortran Standard Committee are also active or admin members in Fortran-Lang and exploratory discussions about proposal ideas for the Standard are known to happen in our Discourse channel and/or our mailing lists.

We can then have a conversation with NumFOCUS as to how we could convey that message in our NumFOCUS page. Does that sound good?

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Is there a task force that’s working on this? Let me know if you’d like my help.

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6 posts were split to a new topic: Comp.lang.fortran and Fortran-lang relation

I moved the discussion about the relation of comp.lang.fortran and Fortran-lang to a new thread to keep this one on topic. I think this is an interesting and important discussion and I’m personally very open to hear different opinions and feedback on this in the new thread.

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In our application we have portaired Fortran-lang as an organisation for

All things Fortran; from scientific computing projects such as the Fortran Standard Library stdlib, minipack and fftpack, to build tools, code editor extensions and an online interactive playground.

but is that really the case? It appears that currently we are focused more around tooling rather than scientific software. Should we consider expanding our scientific software collection to include widely used projects like graph partitioning tools METIS and ParMETIS repackaged to be using our tools (fpm, stdlib) while also providing Fortran APIs?

P.S. I chose METIS and ParMETIS as examples because I successfully compiled their C codebase with fpm, I am half-way through adding explicit Fortran APIs and I would be happy to move these repos to Fortran-lang. I suspect that there are others like me that they would like to see their repos from very popular scientific computing libraries like VTK, HDF5, NetCDF, PETSc, etc. join Fortran-lang if Fortran-lang would have them.

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Indeed “All things Fortran” is an egregiously tall claim for a primary task - the language standard development - currently has to be outside the ambit of Fortran-lang.org.

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The language Standard is explicitly excluded in the application, see discussion above. We will coordinate with NumFOCUS on how to communicate this. ‘All things Fortran’ is not meant to be: “we are the end all be all of Fortran, we control every and all aspect of the Fortran tools, compilers and libraries”, but rather that we hold (and are capable of developing) projects of multiple types, from tooling, to packaging to scientific computing.

This is the short description of the organisation so it cannot be overly technical. Can you think of a better way to phrase it?

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Here’s a suggested gist: the Community can edit and enhance as it sees fit while trying to remain accurate -

Fortran-lang organization serves the Fortran Community with their needs in the learning and the tooling with the use of Fortran in computing.

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How about

Making modern Fortran better; from scientific computing projects such as the Fortran Standard Library (stdlib), minipack and fftpack, to build tools (fpm), code editor extensions and an online interactive playground.

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While they’re good efforts, I haven’t quite liked any of the proposed Fortran-lang descriptions so far. The question asks for a few sentences, so we don’t need to be overly concise. What do you think about this?

Fortran-lang is an open-source community that builds and maintains a set of modern tools and libraries for Fortran developers. Its main projects include the Fortran Standard Library, the Fortran Package Manager, and the Fortran website. Fortran-lang also maintains a growing ecosystem of canonical numerical and scientific libraries, editor plugins, and other tools. Finally, Fortran-lang provides an inclusive and welcoming online space for Fortran developers to collaborate and help each other.

I think it’s clear, to the point, and covers all bases.

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Milan seems to have covered all the bases well except one. I suggest adding after ‘developers’ in both the first and last sentences ‘and users’ because Fortran developers are trying to improve the language and users are trying to improve their understanding of it and the way they use it. Fortran-lang caters to both groups, and not all users are developers.

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By Fortran developer I mean Fortran user, so we can replace developer with user.

The description is good. It’s missing compilers. I think it doesn’t matter as much for the NumFOCUS application, but I am posting here to make sure we don’t forget. Fortran-lang needs a community compiler that has lots of developers and that works and eventually fixes all the issues that people have raised on this forum.

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