Bazaar2 Monthly Report - September 2016

Added by hans over 1 year ago

In September, we completed the redesign of the user experience of the Android client app as well as most of the underlying architectural changes needed. We also worked on some new features in the client as well as more underlying architectural changes on the server side. We started intensive user testing of the new client app design, with more user testing slated for October.

Also, I presented our new, work in the NetCipher library on making Orbot integration easier at Droidcon Vienna, an Android developer conference:

Objective 1 Simple multi-pronged distribution

We have been discussing with developers at Twitter about integrating the F-Droid tools into Twitter’s fastlane, an open source automation suite for mobile developers. Fastlane managing many aspects of deployment including translations, screenshots, release builds, etc. It does not currently provide good signing key management, hardened build processes, or reproducible builds. Since the F-Droid tools do provide those, integrating F-Droid with fastlane makes a lot of sense.

The drozer automatic, dynamic exploit scanning is and running on infrastructure. The final dedicated hardware is in place as part of, and the production setup is almost complete.

We made more progress on generalizing the buildserver, which is a automated sandbox for running the app builds. The buildserver now runs on VirtualBox and KVM, with Docker support sketched out. This provides a key piece of both the reproducible builds, as well as a relatively easy way to run secure release builds. Once this work is complete, we will then be able to run verification builds of all apps on on in order to provide separate confirmation of the official releases on

We still need advice on how best to structure and manage all of the various virtualization approaches, so we’d love to talk to anyone who is an expert on this stuff to give us advice.

Objective 2 Curation Tools for Organizations

No notable progress on this.

Objective 3 Modern App Store with Built-in Circumvention

UX Overhaul

We finalized the client design for the first round, and prepared prototypes for user testing. One thing we’ve learned is that there is some confusion about what F-Droid is among novice users. When preparing the prototype for testing, we considered a simple onboarding experience that will help overcome this issue. As part of that, we also considered the first use of Nearby, and segmented the main view into 2 different views to help people understand what the feature does.

These design updates can be viewed in the prototype. The feedback will help determine what we implement.

F-Droid Tutorials

We’ve created concepts for the tutorial experience and an initial prototype.
- Initial concept:
- Prototype:

User Testing

We are doing user testing in two locations: Zimbabwe and Vienna. In Zimbabwe, the tests were a part of digital security trainings. In Vienna, we are aiming for a general audience for comparison.

Our partners in Zimbabwe did user testing at a trainer’s workshop with the design prototype. We hoped to test the comprehension of the new UI among this population. We are also preparing to do user testing with the same prototype in October in Vienna.

The preparation for these user tests has included:
- Determining a test method and plan
- Creating a survey to gather contextual information from the participants
- Creating and testing the prototype

Objective 4 Partner Deployments

No notable progress on this.

Objective 5 Usability Research on In-country Developers

We have hired Seamus Tuohy to work on the usability research on developers. He will be producing the final published report as well and leading up the research. That work will start at the OTF Summit, where we will be asking for discussions and interviews to help guide the direction of this research.