Open World Forum has been bringing together European decision makers to explore the impact and potential future impact of free and open source software since 2008. This year it’s grown again, is moving to a larger venue and will be taking place on October the 3rd, 4th and 5th in Paris, France.
Describing the overarching theme of the event as “demystifying practical innovation”, organisers are extending their call for participation. There’s a wide scope within that general theme for discussion on everything from massive open online courses to whether use of cloud technologies should be seen as a lock in or an opportunity. In the CODE section of the event topics range from big data to web accessibility to mobile technologies.
There are plenty more topics on their list, so take a look for yourself and if something catches your eye, run with it and get a proposal in now! We hope to run a track there on the subject of “Freedom To Innovate” and we’ll watch for submissions on this theme. Not only is it a great event, it’s also an opportunity for members of the open source community to get their voice heard by a large number of European decision makers.
It was only a couple of months ago that CERN celebrated 20 years of the open web. We pointed to the way that freedom had allowed the web to succeed in a way that the patented Gopher couldn’t compete with. Today brings the announcement of another big success for open software, as CERN move into a year long collaboration with Rackspace to create an a new cloud computing facility (in conjunction with their existing OpenStack clouds) to handle the massive quantity of data created by CERN’s experiments.
The move highlights one of the ways in which open source software can be of value to the scientific community. Speaking on that topic, CERN’s IT infrastructure manager Tim Bell said that open source technologies, “foster continuous technological improvements through community contributions, while also giving us the ability to quickly address challenges, such as massive scaling, by leveraging the work of others.”
What he’s highlighting here is the flexibility of the open source approach. Flexibility is the core value of open source software; allowing you to be free to innovate and problem-solve rather than becoming a vassal to your suppliers’ business models. CERN unleashed this change when they set the Web free; it’s good to see them still using the same approach to create new revolutions today.