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Foundation for Public Code newsletter - summer 2020

This newsletter was originally emailed to subscribers on 31 August 2020. Subscribe to our newsletter to get the next one via email!


Welcome to our newsletter, bumper summer edition. Like last summer, many of the people we work with went on holiday, but that hasn’t slowed us down.

🏅 Perfectly timed to get us pumped for summer, we got an Encouragement Award from the Netherlands Internet Society (as part of their annual Innovation Award) in June. Read more on our blog.

What we’ve been up to 👩‍💻 🧑🏻‍🤝‍🧑🏽 🤙

Codebase stewardship

  • We currently have 2 codebases under stewardship: Signalen and OpenZaak. Both codebases are focused on growing their open source communities in 2020.
  • In June, we built a prototype product marketing website for OpenZaak:
  • In July, Felix blogged about his experiences with the OpenZaak market consultation. Read his blogpost.
  • Also in July, Alba developed a communications plan for Signalen, finished a 🎥 video introducing Signalen, and launched the Signalen communications steering group.
  • Throughout July and August, Eric and Jan worked with the Signalen and OpenZaak codebase communities to bring the codebases closer to Standard compliance (for example adding a licence header to each source code file in OpenZaak).
  • In August, we hosted the Signalen Community Day Online with the VNG (Dutch Association of Municipalities), attended by current Signalen users and contributors plus cities interested in using it in the future 🏙️🏙️. The workshop had 2 focuses: strengthening Signalen’s product management and integrating Signalen into existing IT infrastructure. The output was the creation of product steering group and a prioritized feature backlog.


  • We’re currently in active membership negotiations with 🌍 2 cities, 1 province and 1 national government (in 2 countries).
  • Despite the holidays, we had initial conversations with 2 cities and 1 national government (in 3 more countries).
  • People have started to reach out to us again after their holidays, and we are ready 💪💪.

Running the Foundation

  • We took advantage of the summer lull to focus on our own maintenance and administration.
  • We reorganized how the Board of Directors gets updates from the Foundation. Ben, Boris, Laura and Claus are now working on a logframe and roadmap so there’s more clarity and predictabilty about our goals and how we’ll get there. We’ll publish these when they’re ready.
  • In operations, Deborah has updated our financial forecasting model, upgraded our chat server, launched new tools to support our community (Mailman, Podbean and StreamYard), and has been experimenting with putting Jitsi on a more stable and scalable footing.
  • For communications, Floris is producing beautiful new illustrations and we’ve reorganised the illustrations repo so each illustration has better metadata. Elena and Ryan are working on a refresh of

Community and public recognition (spreading the word!) 🗣️💃🙌

Reading list 📖🕶️⛱️

We’re recently enjoyed reading:

We hope you’ve found some way to have a break this summer, and are entering the autumn recharged.

This is our first newsletter, so please get in touch 📨 with any feedback or questions - we’re always excited to hear from you.

Until next time,