Looking into this old thread which compares YunoHost with FreedomBox, and this new thread which asks for support for Sandstorm within FreedomBox got me thinking on what this project could do to offer what users expect from it.
I think a big point of pain in the FreedomBox project is that it overvalues the Debian packaging on projects where it’s not needed for stability of the system. While YunoHost and Sandstorm work mostly as “easy web-based applications installers” FreedomBox historically has shined more on services that are not web-based, precisely because of the requirement of packaging… web services usually are manually installed (not packaged) on top of the Debian system. Being a FreedomBox user for a couple years, I’ve always found frustrating that there’s no way to easily install web applications that really don’t require a package for its installation. I’d love to be able to easily install Mastodon, PeerTube or other alternatives to “cloud services” on my FreedomBox, which I think is the whole (or at least a big) point of the project.
I’d love to see an initiative on FreedomBox that allows for easy installation of such services, specially if those don’t require much more than an interpreter (such as PHP, Python, Ruby or Node) and other packages already available on Debian. I could contribute with code for such project if you are interested.