I’m Sebastian, most people here probably know me under the handle awvwgk, I usually go with. I’ve been active in the Fortran-lang community for almost a year now, mainly at stdlib, the web page and of course our package manager, fpm. Ondřej, Milan and Laurence invited me to take up more responsibility in our community and I happily agreed to help out. Given that I have been hanging around here for a while now, this is a good point to properly introduce myself to all of you.
First, I’ve been using Fortran since 2017 when I started working on a programming project for my Bachelor thesis. Parallel to the Master studies I stayed involved with the research and programming work done in the group of S. Grimme, where I’m now in the third year of my PhD. While I have been programming a bit in Ruby and Python before, I consider Fortran my first proper programming language.
I’m an avid open source developer, I deeply value open minded communities and transparent organization structures. My experience with open source development started when I put up one of my research software on GitHub early 2019, dftd4 turned out to be quite a success and is today integrated in several computational chemistry software packages. Currently, I’m an active developer of several computational chemistry related open source projects, like dftb+, xtb or dftd4.
One thing I learned pretty quickly was that building and distributing is as important as writing good software. My build system of choice is meson because it provides enough flexibility to create a painless experience for users, developers and packagers, but I also accumulated enough knowledge about CMake due to necessity. I’m a package maintainer for more than a dozen feedstocks at conda-forge with most packages written in Fortran or related to Fortran.
My journey with Fortran-lang began in July 2020, as Ondřej opened an issue at a holiday project of mine, TOML Fortran. The Fortran package manager really caught my attention, since I just finished teaching my second Fortran course at this time. A recurring issue students were running into was building their projects with make, instead of teaching them a more involved build system, helping to develop a beginner-friendly one seemed more feasible to me and I decided to commit some time to help out with fpm. From there on I got involved with the package index of our web page and the CMake build system at stdlib and later pretty much everything in Fortran-lang, except for the Fortran standard itself.
What does change?
Nothing much really, I’ll continue to involve myself with most Fortran-lang matters. I’m getting access at administrator level to the GitHub organization, this means I can invite new members, create or migrate repositories or edit teams. Please feel free to address such requests with me and I’ll help to make them happen. Also, I’m now a moderator in this discourse, I’ll try my best to keep this a friendly place for everyone. It’s my first moderation involvement, therefore please don’t hesitate to correct me if you think I made a mistake.
What comes next?
Our Fortran-lang community has been growing steadily and our projects like stdlib and fpm are attracting more and more contributors. The next step I want to take together with our community is to establish project maintainer teams and formalize our rules for getting involved in Fortran-lang. For one this should help to keep our project running and enable the maintainers to define long-term goals for their projects. Another important aspect is to help new contributors with the on-boarding process into our community by setting clear expectations and providing mentors that can guide them in their first contact with our community.
Let me know if you have any questions. I’m happy to answer.
Finally, some controversial points for discussion, if the above doesn’t give enough material:
- 3 space indentation
- neovim is all I need to write software
- it’s impolite to ask (L)GPL projects to relicense
- code is bad slang for program