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The project looks pretty nice, but I'm a bit wary of using rockspecs
as the file format for uploading information. The purposes are
different, in that rockspecs are mostly intended just to provide
instructions on creating and installing rocks. Because of this, (a)
they don't offer fields for things like categories, SCM or bug
tracking location, alternative downloads, etc., and (b) the build
instructions are present in the rockspec, and I'm not sure those
really belong on an index (or even a forge).

(a) and they shouldn't be -- in my view, rockspecs should only contain cohesive information, with the objective of gluing the pieces of a project together; it should not contain any information that puts the project in relation to other projects -- so no tags, categories etc. another reason for this is that the rockspecs should belong to the project authors only, luaforge should not modify (add sections to) the rockspec in any way -- otherwise rockspec polling (a one way process) wouldn't make sense.

(b) I don't see no reason why rockspec shouldn't be an open format, into which you have different sections used by different tools/purposes. so luaforge would just ignore the "build" section, in the same way luarocks ignores fields like "project homepage".