Archive for the 'open source' Category

London WikiWednesday

July 5, 2007

Under David Terrar’s excellent stewardship London’s Wiki Wednesday goes from strength to strength. I was late (cars, money, train, keys)… but was pleased to discover that Bearing Point were serving champaign and giving away mugs! No wonder 50 people signed up to come along!

The highlight of the evening had to be Steve Coast’s presentation of OpenStreetMap – good to catch up with him and to meet Nick Black. Julie, Angela, Tim S, Martin, Mark, Alek and Lars were all there – and I met Harry Wood who has written a presentation on wiki gardening (that I want to see). I wanted to connect with Guy and lots of other people… looking forward to next month’s meeting.

It was late and I was last up  – but I did manage to mention that people should download and start playing with SocialCalc… and how easy it was to install!

Got home very late and caught up with the latest Germanic rages against Mappam on OSM… whatisitwiththesepeople?

Firefox as OS

June 28, 2007

firefox3Sam Sethi‘s post on the new features being released in Firefox3 made me realise that the Mozilla foundation is well on it’s way to do a “reverse takeover” of the desktop and/or operating system. All they need to do is bundle Damn Small Linux or Debian Live in the download and bish-bash-bosh you are running a Firefox computer!

THERE IS NO VALUE IN BITS!

June 24, 2007

Michael Tiemann at the OSI has an interesting blog post on why open source should make good business sense. The last part is particularly interesting:

As for three “ideas” to avoid when building an open source business:

1) Believing that you need venture capital to start an open source business. In the same way that “Breast is Best” for rearing healthy babies, I believe that 95% of all venture capitalists will do more harm than good when it comes to investing in open source companies. I believe they will pick the wrong ideas, fund them for the wrong reasons, and then complain bitterly when their investments fail. Instead of trying to educate an industry that doesn’t understand open source (yet), look for ways to create your company organically. I would estimate that today there is 10x more money being knowingly wasted on poor proprietary solutions than is available for all software VC, and this suggests a remarkable opportunity to do well by customers who have already demonstrated a need and a willingness to pay. Convince them that you can staunch their losses with open source, and then spin out to success!

2) Per-incident support models.

3) The cynicism that making money in open source makes it proprietary. This is a toxic view for several reasons:

  • It leads one to justify creating proprietary software
  • It leads one to mingle, layer, hybridize, or otherwise infect open source with proprietary software
  • It confuses the fact that open source is a development model and making money is based on a value proposition. THERE IS NO VALUE IN BITS!

SocialCalc 1.1.0 released

June 23, 2007

Announced yesterday by Liz Henry on the Socialtext blog.

STOSS now Socialtext Open

May 12, 2007

STAZI logoI am so pleased that Socialtext Open Source Software (STOSS) has been renamed simply Socialtext Open. STOSS always sounded so sinister – I once told Liz Henry that it reminded me of STAZI and BOSS – two happily defunct secret police organisations. Maybe living in the DDR for a year made me too sensitive to this kind of thing… anyway – Long live Socialtext Open!!!