Virtualization is changing the IT landscape, and two news items last week drove home its impact. The first was Google’s release of Kubernetes under an open-source license. Kubernetes is basically a public version of Borg, the software that the company has used internally to harness computing power from across its data centers into a massive virtual machine.
Earth scientists, including remote sensing experts, climate modelers, practitioners, policy makers, and decision makers, have had a hand in furthering and monitoring the open source space. For example, the climate modeling community executes its daily operations of building, testing, and validating climate and Earth system models, many of which today are open source, released under Open Source Initiative (OSI) approved licenses, and software packages that involve community contributions from very diverse participants. Similarly, the remote sensing community leverages open source packages, including Python and R, as well as non-open source, but community oriented packages, such as MATLAB, ENVI/IDL, and other software to share code, disseminate it amongst the community of experts, and also to process remote sensing data.
There are many useful open-source technologies out there. With all of this competition, it's critical to make it clear why your particular open-source offering should be considered, and for which needs. That's the reality any builder of an open-source community needs to adopt right from the start: While participation by developers in an active, viable open-source community will undoubtedly improve their projects, as well as your product's evolution, getting a community up and running can be a challenge.
At Actuate, we've managed to establish value for developers in our open-source BIRT community, and in our commercial products built on BIRT. Today, our community is 3.5-million BIRT developers strong. So here are our thoughts on how to build your own.
If your phone can be connected to your computer with an USB cable you can do a lot more through this connection than just recharging it or transferring files to and from your phone's storage. For example, you can make phone calls, read and send text messages, and see a bunch of other information from your phone, right on your PC. There is a number of Free Open Source software applications that allow you to do this, and you don't even need to have a smartphone for this to work, just a phone that can connect to USB.
The German city of Leipzig is switching to using open source suites of office productivity tools: Apache OpenOffice and LibreOffice. It expects that in the first five years the anticipated savings will be swallowed by the exit costs associated with the proprietary software used by the city. Starting in 2017, however, the city expects to lower its IT costs by some 100,000 euro, says Lars Greifzu, responsible for marketing and sales at Lecos, the city-owned IT service provider.
Public administrations using open source software help make the country more competitive and lay a foundation for a creative economy. Consequently, the South Korean government wants its public administrations to consider free and open source software alternatives, according to its national open source competence centre, presented at a workshop in the capital Seoul, on 3 June.
How has operating in the Portland area worked to your advantage? Portland is a hotbed of technical innovation, and open source in particular. It’s also fast becoming a hub for Drupal, the open source framework we use for many of our projects. Finally, Portland is a magnet for people who care about more than just a paycheck. Our team is made up of folks who care as much, if not more, about the nonprofits we’re helping as the technology we use and user experiences we craft.
As the survey reported, 56 percent of corporations expect to contribute to more open source projects in 2014 -- something we’ve already seen firsthand. By working directly with software developers, we have been able to witness the next wave of open source. We’re seeing companies like Twitter, Netflix, and Ericsson actually willing to pay developers to participate in the OSS community, and both develop and use open source in their own frameworks. With 55 percent of this year’s respondents also indicating that OSS helped create new products and services, there has clearly been a change in the way enterprises look at open source; it has truly become a crucial element in the development of new, innovative technologies.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Indian Health Service (IHS) has contributed an open-source version of its Resource and Patient Management System (RPMS) to the Open Source Electronic Health Record Alliance (OSEHRA) Technical Journal. This will complement the current open-source EHR capabilities of the VistA code base now hosted by OSEHRA.
Closed-source software products, mostly Microsoft’s, have been dominating Vietnam’s software market, despite the government’s encouragement to develop and use open-source software.
Some background: Microsoft in Vietnam
If there is a "right way" to come in to open source, then surely this is it. So many people answered to say that their first brush with open source projects was that they spotted a problem somewhere in a tool they were using, and offered a fix. Open source is the combined effort of countless humans doing exactly this, and I was pleased and encouraged to find this as the biggest chunk of responders.
The desktop computer systems of government healthcare organisations in the Spanish region of Extremadura all rely on free and open source software solutions. Over the past year, close to 10,000 computer workstations in public health care organisations have migrated to a customised version of the Debian GNU/Linux distribution.
I've been following the Designate project, which provide OpenStack DesignateDNS-as-a-Service for OpenStack for some time. It's a project that seems painfully obvious to me, enabling DNS features within an OpenStack cloud deployment.
DNS is a critical network service and without it, I really don't understand how OpenStack service providers could possibly properly scale a business. If DNS isn't inside OpenStack it's outside of it, with a more manual and more painful, less 'cloudy' approach.
Ellis, who co-coordinated POSSE with Drexel professor Greg Hislop, told a crowd of nearly 20 faculty members from colleges and universities across the country that embedding their computer science students in open source communities could facilitate a kind of engagement traditional classroom experiences just can't offer. But, she said, students and professors alike should be prepared for a bit of culture shock if they aren't prepared to embrace the open source way.
So Ellis derived 16 maxims from free and open source culture—what she calls "FOSSisms"—to explain how open source values might transform computer science education.
Although it's good to see open standards in there, it's disappointing that the Policy Exchange did not go further and call for open source, which is the most effective way of implementing those open standards. Simply mandating open standards allows lock-in through inertia - the argument being that the re-training costs etc. etc. make moving to new implementations of open standards too expensive. That's a ridiculous way of looking at things, because it pretty much ensures that the status quo is maintained. What the Manifesto should have called for was a default use of open source software throughout government, unless there are compelling and clearly-articulable reasons not to take that route.
One problem is that the GitHub generation does not seem to care as much about code vetting as did coders in earlier years. In the time span from 2007 to 2010, open source became very popular. Enterprises tried to manage it, according to MongoDB's Assay.
"My sense is that developers do not really look at licenses any more. They are not even looking at which license is applied and does it comply. I think these are issues that attorneys look at, though. I do not think the developers are thinking a lot about the licenses anymore," he said.