Simon Willison’s Weblog


3 items tagged “filippo-valsorda”


Geomys, a blueprint for a sustainable open source maintenance firm (via) Filippo Valsorda has been working as a full-time professional open source maintainer for nearly two years now, accepting payments on retainer from companies that depend on his cryptography Go packages.

This has worked well enough that he's now expanding: Geomys (a genus of gophers) is a new company which adds two new "associate maintainers" and an administrative director, covering more projects and providing clients with access to more expertise.

Filipino describes the model like this:

If you’re betting your business on a critical open source technology, you

  1. want it to be sustainably and predictably maintained; and
  2. need occasional access to expertise that would be blisteringly expensive to acquire and retain.

Getting maintainers on retainer solves both problems for a fraction of the cost of a fully-loaded full-time engineer. From the maintainers’ point of view, it’s steady income to keep doing what they do best, and to join one more Slack Connect channel to answer high-leverage questions. It’s a great deal for both sides.

For more on this model, watch Filippo's FOSDEM talk from earlier this year.

# 8th July 2024, 3:40 pm / go, opensource, filippo-valsorda


I’m Now a Full-Time Professional Open Source Maintainer. Filippo Valsorda, previously a member of the Go team at Google, is now independent and making a full-time living as a maintainer of various open source projects relating to Go. He’s managing to pull in an amount “equivalent to my Google total compensation package”, which is a huge achievement: the greatest cost involved in independent open source is usually the opportunity cost of turning down a big tech salary. He’s doing this through a high touch retainer model, where six client companies pay him to keep working on his projects and also provide them with varying amounts of expert consulting.

# 3rd February 2023, 1:12 am / consulting, go, opensource, careers, filippo-valsorda


mkcert (via) Handy new tool from Filippo Valsorda (a cryptographer at Google) for easily generating TLS certificates for your local development environment. You can use this to get a certificate pair for a localhost web server created with a couple of simple commands.

# 26th June 2018, 6:55 pm / certificates, go, https, filippo-valsorda