The Cathedral the Bazar and the Academy

By Mitch Capor

The original Chandler vision:
○ Open Source personal Information Manager.
○ Email, Calendar, contact tasks, free form items.
○ Easy sharing and collaboration.
○ Platform independent.
○ First conceved as PC client with peer-to-peer networking.
○ Westwood version of Chandler specifically for higher education.

Drivers:
○ Higher Education Calendar requirements not being met by commercial vendors.
○ High cost of existing solutions.
○ Desire to move from proprietary lock-in towards open standards based software.

Requirements:
○ Support large user base – 10K plus. Centralized storage requirements. Nomadic access requirements.
○ Security very important.
○ Integration: IMAP, LDAP, Blackberry…

Funding and Process:
○ Mellon Foundation, 1.5M
○ 25 Schools at $50K each.
○ Westwood Advisory council for all members.

Assessment:
○ Accomplishment is at least a year late. Stakeholders are cautiously optamistic.
○ Ambition has a price. Simultaneious effert to innovate in the front end and the back end is difficult.
○ Cross platform delivery is hard.
○ Dependence on other open source projects of different maturity is also difficult. They have had to do some work on other open source project they depend upon to make them work better for the Chandler project.
○ Major change in network architecture from P2P to WebDAV…

Sakai
○ A course management system for campuses, as well as a workflow engine.
○ Goals: cost savings, standardization, model for future.
○ 50 schools so far as partners.

EduCore
○ proposal by Ira Fuchs at Mellon Foundation
○ Coordination of development, distribution, and maintenance of key academic and administrative softrware functions.
○ 1000 universities of $5000 to $25000 per annum.
○ Why EduCore? Institutions scratching their own itches…

How is Open Source Special?
○ Means many different things to different people.
○ Decentralized & transparent means of producing software.
○ Over time the support costs should be a lot lower… but it is not pixie dust.

What Open Source Needs to Succeed:
○ Technical infrastructure.
○ Community infrastructre:
○ formal governance
○ licencing
○ clear values and principles
○ pratices which integrate principles by using tools
○ Where the rubber hits the road:
○ New participants and projects; how easy for new people to start to contribute.
○ Decision-making process perceived as being fair.

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Posted in Open Source, Work
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