Missing Trouble: In Memoriam

This week we are marking the sudden passing of our Operations Manager, Nóirín “Trouble” Plunkett, who introduced themselves here just a few short months ago. We are heartbroken, and it has been hard to come to terms with this unexpected loss. Ame and I attended a memorial service in their honor this week in Boston, and we have been reading the multitude of memorials that have been posted online (including this one by Kaia Dekker, which deeply resonated with us).

While we did not know Trouble for very long – our organization is new, and they started with us in March – their impact was immeasurable. They were a force of organization (of financials and file systems) and a source of productive rhythm (for newsletters, blog posts, and social media). They proofread our writing, cheered us on in our outreach, and lightened our work with wit and good humor. They wrangled our HTML, managed our Git repo, and had a talent for finding beautiful open-licensed images (Ame often joked that Trouble seemed to be using a better internet than she was).

Trouble was also a vocal advocate of openness, and one of its greatest champions as we work to integrate the open-source ethos into our collaborative design efforts. In their short time with our new organization, they helped us create a foundation of honesty, precision, and compassion for the work we do. We will honor their memory by building on their contributions, maintaining a rigorous commitment to openness, and methodically trying to make the world a better place, one project at a time.

There are no words that can adequately express our sadness or our appreciation for the short time we shared with Trouble. They were an irreplaceable treasure, and we miss them sorely.


What We Do

You learned at our launch that we’re setting out to improve the experience users have with secure-communication tools. We told you that we want to work with the open source community, and that we’re committed to documenting our activities transparently. But what does this mean in practice – how will Ame, Trouble and I be spending our days? It’s much easier to show than to tell, so I expect you’ll get a better feel for our work as we describe it here over time.

What We Look For in a Software Partner

As we gear up to start collaborating with open-source software projects, there are a bunch of things we have been pondering. There are a lot of compelling projects out there that we’d love to work with, but we need some criteria to choose which ones to focus on first. So, we’ve drafted a set of questions to ask about a software project and the team that develops it. As the document notes, these questions are not a quiz to judge the worthiness of projects or the people who work on them.

Creating Patterns for Decentralized Systems

Working in decentralization? Help us map out the common user patterns and challenges.