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Stack Exchange has released an alpha version of a new WYSIWYG editor based on the open source project ProseMirror.

In addition to benefitting from this open source work, is SE giving back to it and helping the FOSS ecosystem? In particular:

  • Did SE just fork the editor, or are they contributing back to the main project the new features they add for their internal use? From the contributor graphs of the two projects, it seems that the answer is no, at least for now (still true as of July 2022). And I don't see any pull requests. Is this planned for the future?

  • Are they supporting ProseMirror's author? It is his explicit request on the project's page that business users do it:

If you are using ProseMirror to make profit, there is a social expectation that you help fund its maintenance. Start here.

(I am not affiliated in any way to ProseMirror, and I had never heard of the project before SE announced their editor.)

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    As far as I'm aware, our new editor doesn't currently support MathJax and isn't (as of yet) using Prosemirror. We're certainly discussing the concerns about how to support our sites that use MathJax but we haven't as of yet chosen a path forward in regards to the issue. While Prosemirror is an option, there are concerns about it, such as the fact it uses KaTeX instead of LaTeX. As such, this question is somewhat premature.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Mar 31, 2021 at 6:43
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    @Catija Maybe we interpret the imports wrong then shown here: github.com/StackExchange/Stacks-Editor/blob/main/src/… and here github.com/StackExchange/Stacks-Editor/tree/main/src/shared/… as it looks like bits from Prosemirror are used.
    – rene
    Mar 31, 2021 at 6:54
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    We're using Prosemirror as the backing for our new editor. The MathJax support is a separate (although related) issue - that's where prosemirror-math comes in. We've talked a bit about looking into KaTeX, but I believe the current intent is still to see how we can support MathJax better first. In terms of contributing back, I don't think we created anything for our editor yet that'd be more broadly reusable or found any bugs that would be useful to upstream, but I'm not super familiar with the implementation details.
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    Mar 31, 2021 at 6:58
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    @AdamLear I think thats a very narrow-minded way to look at contributing back. The easiest would ofcourse be funding the project, but if that's not how you would like to operate, as it is open-source after all, you could always contribute in "time", there are plenty of open issues
    – Luuklag
    Mar 31, 2021 at 7:03
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2 Answers 2

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Stack Exchange has now provided some financial support to ProseMirror as a part of Stack Gives Back to Open Source 2022:

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+500

We don't have any plans for contributing code back to the main ProseMirror repo, though there have been issues fixed in ProseMirror related to issues that have arisen on our sites (and if we have the opportunity to contribute directly upstream, we will try to do so).

As far as financial support for the project, we are planning on renewing financial support for open source projects this year, and while the actual donations are still to be made (and amounts determined), I can confirm that ProseMirror is at the top of our list for recipients. (Update: see Stack Gives Back to Open Source 2022 for more info: We gave ProseMirror $2,000).

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