- Flathub has always been under the GNOME Foundation but it is planning to establish an independent company to operate in a way that reflects its independent interests of itself.
- According to Robert McQueen, Endless Network provided Flathub with a $100,000 grant to cover operational, legal, and infrastructure expenditures.
- Flathub expects to eventually cover costs through fees but for now, the team is looking for grant support and sponsorship.
CEO of Endless OS Foundation and GNOME Board President, Robert McQueen, shared plans for Flathub’s future in 2023 in a post. In the post, McQueen talks about current developments, future plans and ongoing progresses about Flathub.
What to expect from Flathub in 2023
Flathub was born from the GNOME Foundation, but they plan to establish an independent legal entity to own and operate Flathub, which better reflects its independent and cross-desktop interests of it. The main idea is to be able to be more “flexible”. McQueen says that they are currently viewing legal advice on how to go about this change.
McQueen gives an example of current projects by saying:
« James Westman has been working on app verification and the corresponding features in flat-manager to ensure app metadata accurately reflects verification and pricing, and to provide authentication for paying users for app downloads when the developer enables it. Only verified developers will be able to make direct uploads or access payment settings for their apps. »
McQueen also touches on the subject of governance by stating that a working group with representatives from the Flathub community, KDE, and GNOME has been formed to guarantee that the decision-making is transparent.
McQueen states that Endless Network granted Flathub a grant of $100,000 to be utilized for operational, legal, and infrastructure costs. This year, they plan to increase financing to $250K in order to pay for operations, software development, and for hiring purposes.
New web experience
The Flathub team plans to launch the new web experience and verification features and turn on the Flatpak repo subsets for selecting only verified and/or FLOSS apps in the Flatpak CLI or desktop’s app center UI.
Direct app uploads are nearly complete, but there is some worry about how to incentivize people to use them without jeopardizing transparency and reproducibility. The default Buildbot captures build logs and source versions for each app on Flathub, but direct uploads may result in unstructured uploads that are only visible on certain machines. To make sure this is done right, the Flathub team is looking for a “CI wizard.”
He ends the article by saying that Flathub is looking for financing to pay the costs of operating and improving the service. They expect to eventually cover costs through fees, but for the time being, they are looking for grant support and sponsorship. They welcome ideas for organizations that could benefit from and support Flathub.