Why is the GitHub Community using Lithium, not an open-source platform?

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

15 Likes

Well, GitHub itself isn’t even open source. So why should their forums be?

10 Likes

The thing is that GitHub isn’t open-source for a number of reasons: they’re a for-profit business, it would ruin the community aspect (people would just run their own GitHub instance) and it would expose any existing security vulnerabilities, whereas using an open-source forum doesn’t present such problems since the major open-source forums are (I assume) confirmed to not have any security vulnerabilities :slight_smile:

3 Likes

@nadiajoyce - Would we be able to get a reply from you (or any other Hubber) on behalf of GitHub regarding this? 

@timrossback wrote:
The thing is that GitHub isn’t open-source for a number of reasons: they’re a for-profit business, it would ruin the community aspect (people would just run their own GitHub instance) and it would expose any existing security vulnerabilities , whereas using an open-source forum doesn’t present such problems since the major open-source forums are (I assume) confirmed to not have any security vulnerabilities :slight_smile:

that is a non-issue. linux is open source…

3 Likes

¯_(ツ)_/¯

@timrossback In creating the Community Forum, we needed a platform that gave us tools for posting articles, creating contests and polls, and other ways to interact with the community that extends beyond just a forum. We are absolutely committed to open source and did investigate open source tools, but they didn’t provide the feature set that we needed for this forum.

11 Likes

Thanks for the reply, @nadiajoyce! It’s good to know that you & your team looked into some of the Open Source options :) 

@nadiajoyce wrote:

@timrossback In creating the Community Forum, we needed a platform that gave us tools for posting articles, creating contests and polls, and other ways to interact with the community that extends beyond just a forum. We are absolutely committed to open source and did investigate open source tools, but they didn’t provide the feature set that we needed for this forum.

I think it is absolutely fair to pick a competing product over Discourse, it is Githubs choice. But… I do not really buy the “polls”, “articles”, “contests” thing, Discourse is extremely extensible, polls exist out of the box and plugins for pretty much anything you want either exist or can be built. We already support Markdown and even Math which can be relevant for technical discussions.

Pasting code here is difficult and not syntax highlighted, you can not embed Github Issues or repos or Gists which is a huge need on a site like this: 

For example, this snippet:

https://github.com/discourse/discourse

https://github.com/discourse/discourse/commit/d07ebf9d4c5d8935abf2f4ded60b2a35f154ccb3

https://gist.github.com/SamSaffron/88512ff1ede0e438da395800c79cbb08#file-method_profiler-rb-L7-L21

```ruby
def hello
   put "world"
end
```

Will generate this post on Discourse.

I personally migrated a giant Lithium community (Western Digital) to Discourse a couple of years ago and we had complete feature parity at the time, with a few gaps filled using plugins. 

We already host 3 existing Github communities at Discourse (Atom, platform, education) all seemed to be doing fine and are linked at the footer of this very site. 

I think the truth here is that Lithium are just SUPER kick-ass in sales, they are just way better than us. They know how to influance and win with the people who are in charge of the wallet. They keep calling, they offer deals, they have a very strong pre-sales team. This win of Lithium here is a huge testament to how successful thier sales team is, so huge hats off to them. They are so good we were not even in consideration once the “picking of the product” started happening. 

I am disappointed, cause I wish we would have been consulted and I strongly think we have a product that would work better in many ways to what was deployed.  I have personally contributed fixes to Ruby and Gems that are used in Github production code, so I feel kind of cheated. 

But, hey, you can’t win them all.  

Sam Saffron

Co-Founder, Discourse

17 Likes

I never heard of Lithium but this forum looks great. Some buttons aren’t in the GitHub style but this is **bleep** close.

Don’t be too disappointed. 

As yourself has apointed out the differences between Lithium and discourse in business behavior, you can adjust.

By the way, I don’t like the style of Lithium at all.  I don’t think I will spend too much time on this forum.

And It doesn’t support spell check. Too bad for the person whose first language is not English. 

1 Like

Sometimes, it’s difficult to find a match between requirements and budget, and an open-source product. I tried to get a firm that I work with to use Bonita and Alfresco as a BPM tool, but both were really expensive to implement. The community editions offer a stripped down version which would need a lot of customization to make them usable within our setting, and it just wasn’t practical with a one-person IT department.

We opted for a commercial solution built with PHP (Symfony), MySQL, and Tesseract that was well within our budget. Most of the commercial offerings we evaluated were built upon open-source technologies (jQuery, Wild Fly, the LAMP stack, MySQL or PostgreSQL).

If anything, it is more secure. More eyeballs on your code mean more chances to catch the vulnerablilities. 

Nah, their sales team is bad. 
I work in the marketing dept for Huawei (Enterprise Division). 
And I’m in charge of the forum. 
I tried contacting them to organize a demo, they had some Indian boy call me ( he didn’t know anything, worse than Jon Snow) and never contacted me after. 
Lost me forever. 
Thanks to your comment I’ll contact Discourse next. 
We wanted their unified support solution. Forum+CMS+Support+ticketing, etc. 
Crapload of money, honestly.