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A day at collective contribution to Free Software

Published on September 07, 2019

For some time now, we have been implementing a new routine in our SCOP: every two months, the whole team meets up for a whole day dedicated to contributing to the Free tools we use, we develop... or not!

This new initiative comes in addition to what was already allocated to some of our cooperators to maintain some of the projects that allow our structure (like so many others) to prosper. The problem of the sustainability and maintenance of Free Software - Although they are the foundation of the information society - is a complex and publicly useful subject to which few effective answers have yet been found.

By dedicating time to our developers to work on these projects, our cooperative is trying to improve the situation and to contribute in return to the public interest infrastructures created and maintained for free by developers from all over the world. It's also a good opportunity for our teams to learn new skills, to discover new technologies and to face advanced problems.

Despite the calm of August, we have again taken up this challenge: a few days ago, about twenty cooperators gathered to fix security issues, resolve bugs, review patches proposed by the community and add new features on various free projects that we like.

The day started with the constitution of the working groups: 

The API Platform working group was busy releasing API Platform 2.4.6 and preparing the imminent release of API Platform 2.5 beta ;

The team working on React Admin focused on finalizing a brand new version of the integration with API Platform (done in collaboration with Marmelab) which will greatly improve its ease of use and customization;

The team working on Symfony focused on fixing bugs affecting the tool.

Discover our contributions:

The team finalized the addition of a major new feature that will arrive in API Platform 2.5: the support of generated API formats (such as Hydra) in the auto-generated OpenAPI documentation, and the possibility to generate JSON Schema corresponding to a resource;

Using this new infrastructure, Jacques Lefebvre added a command to export a JSON Schema from a ressource;

Quentin Barloy solved a bug affecting API Platform when a data provider returns a generator, he also improved the documentation concerning this feature. Moreover he added unit tests covering the brand new JSON Schema generator;

Kévin Van Der Stracten did his first bug fix on API Platform, with the help of Antoine Bluchet;

Grégory Copin adapted the NextJS application generator provided with API Platform to use the new version of the popular JavaScript framework;

Mathieu Dewet, in collaboration with Robin Chalas, fixed the implementation of the refreshUser method of the LdapProvider, and fixed some other issues in Symfony ;

Vincent Chalamon drastically improved the security and usability of the access control mechanism provided with API Platform;

Grégoire Hébert added a new feature to API Platform allowing to choose which OpenAPI versions to activate;

Jean-François Thuillier and Morgan Auchedé finalized the new version of API Platform Admin and started writing documentation.

The outcome of this working day: 13 PRs have been merged, 2 issues are open and other topics are under consideration. 

At, we encourage and support our cooperators, even the beginners or the most shy, to contribute to the software they use. The Free Software community is based on knowledge sharing, collaboration and exchange. Every contribution, no matter how small, is beneficial and has a lasting effect on the ecosystem. Some reticence may arise, linked to the fear of not feeling legitimate to contribute, but we must keep in mind that we are lucky to have access to a large community of contributors acting for the continuous improvement and reliability of the software we use. Supporting them like this is the best way to thank them for all the time they have already undertaken in this process.

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