Cloud7 is gathering opinions of the important names in cloud computing, web hosting, cybersecurity, data center, Linux, and other industries for 2022 in the Cloud7 Expert Series. Alongside their evaluations of 2022, they will share their expectations for the next year, 2023.
Gianni co-founded the Radix Project alongside his friend & colleague Nate Sales, who currently serves as CTO. Gianni is a student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute & hopes to one day sell consumer electronics. When he’s not messing with multimedia codecs or wiping his latest Linux installation, he enjoys playing the bass guitar.
Evaluation of 2022 & 2023
As a whole, the niche industry of open source-focused hosting providers does not get much buzz in the news. However, this last year has been eventful when it comes to organizations such as Fosshost & our own Radix Project.
Fosshost had some internal troubles according to long-time volunteers, and the organization appeared to be slowly deteriorating. Recently, they announced that they would no longer be acting as a hosting provider and their interests were going to shift regarding the services they provide & their mission.
In 2021, Fosshost received a large donation from Korean-American entrepreneur Andrew Lee after ownership of Freenode was transferred to him. This flooded Fosshost & Freenode with controversy and Andrew Lee has become a rather controversial figure in FOSS communities because of this incident. Recently, it has been alleged that Lee was shot & robbed outside Koreatown, Los Angeles in his Rolls Royce Phantom. He was moved out to a hospital in critical condition. I wish Lee a speedy recovery, and I sincerely hope that his loved ones are alright during this trying period.
Attempt in free hosting mission
To shift gears a bit, amidst the fall of Fosshost I decided we should attempt to rejuvenate the free hosting mission on a new platform that can adapt the free hosting model to be more sustainable with a more concrete mission & a better organizational structure. From this, the Radix Project was born. The Radix Project is committed to providing free-of-charge, need-based hosting on request for FLOSS/open source endeavors. We are currently in talks with the CEO of Fosshost, Thomas Markey, regarding the transfer of infrastructure ownership to our organization. We are very grateful to him & the rest of the talented volunteers at Fosshost for their support of our mission.
Amidst Fosshost sunsetting its services, the Radix Project has been flooded with dozens of emails requesting we provide support to projects leaving Fosshost. Because of our status as a brand new organization and the relatively high demands that come with this many people moving away from Fosshost, we are trying to keep up with demand as best as possible by working with Fosshost to acquire infrastructure & communicating with their volunteers and tenants to establish a better future for free hosting. We are trying to do months of preparation work in a matter of weeks, so things are still moving more slowly than many would prefer to see; however, we are still moving as fast as we can, so that we may help as many FOSS projects & organizations as possible in the very near future.
Expectations for 2023
I predict that as we see Fosshost shift their operations away from hosting, many will see this as a failure of their purpose & demean our project’s goals because of our similarity to Fosshost. The news of their organization’s collapse rose to number two on Hacker News, and the response from the look of the comments was hardly positive.
I understand the sentiment behind many who are angry with Fosshost. Nobody wants to be abandoned, and nobody wants to see their favorite projects abandoned. Therefore, it is easy to become cynical about the organization’s purpose; another failure would be just as devastating as this one was for the open-source community. At the same time, I see the perseverant passion of the community that wishes to see a new effort succeed and provide the hosting services that the open-source world needs. I am humbled by the positive attitude & drive that these community members have shown me, and it has inspired me all the more to help guide the Radix Project to success. As we expand our team and work on our offerings, the path to sustainable success becomes ever clearer.
With that, I am able to say that I can see the Radix Project achieving the status of a large-scale free hosting provider in 2023. I would love to see this become a reality, and if you would too, you can check us out here. We are not for profit.
As for Fosshost, I am not entirely sure where they will go as things shift for them. I am sure they will experience success if their community is behind them, and I wish them well.
And, naturally, I wish Andrew Lee a speedy recovery. Despite his controversy, I think we as a community can shelve our concern in the hope that he makes a full recovery from his injuries.