WordPress meta contributors have just logged an important milestone in their efforts to explore replacing Slack communication with Matrix, an open source federated chat system. The team hosted a meeting on the Meta Slack channel and the corresponding #meta:community.wordpress.org Matrix room simultaneously, enabled by the project’s new Slack/Matrix bridge.
The bridge allows users to follow the chat and participate from either Matrix or Slack, with messages showing up in real-time. It’s a tool that will make the transition easier as the WordPress project moves towards replacing Slack. The team is still in the process of importing the history for channels but the bridges are already in place for all public Slack channels/Matrix rooms.
DM’s do not work over the bridge, although they work between Matrix users. The bridge doesn’t have access to anything that is private, and the historic data import into Matrix will only apply to public Slack channels. DMs and private channel history will not be ported over.
The Matrix team has created a Gutenberg block that embeds a Matrix client called Chatrix, which can be added to any WordPress page/post or P2 blog, as shown in the screenshot above. This example can be accessed at https://make.wordpress.org/meta/chat/. WordPress.org users can sign in with SSO inside the block and authorize their accounts to connect:
Now that the Matrix server is live at community.wordpress.org, WordPress users who want to attend team meetings or join rooms via Matrix can now do so using their choice of Matrix clients that support SSO. Logging in uses the same credentials as the WordPress.org account.
“Compared to Slack this means a vastly simplified onboarding process,” Automattic-sponsored contributor Alex Kirk said. “Instead of waiting for an e-mail arriving at a special e-mail address, you set the server in your Matrix client to
community.wordpress.org and click ‘Login with WordPress.org’ (the name of that button might vary by client).”
As the channels’ history gets migrated over, Kirk said WordPress users will be automatically invited to rooms on Matrix that they have already joined from the Slack side. The team is planning to make more wide-scale public announcements after the Slack/Matrix bridge has demonstrated that it is running stable.