FOSDEM: The Third Decade of Open Source

This weekend I spoke at FOSDEM in Brussels to deliver the opening conference keynote. My subject was “The Third Decade of Open Source” and as OSI President I summed up the main events of the last 20 years, some of the key facts behind them and then offered five trends that will shape the next decade.

 

FLOSS Weekly 467: Aragon

Simon co-hosted FLOSS Weekly 467, covering the Aragon project. It’s a blockchain-based system layered on Ethereum using smart contracts to support distributed ownership and operation of a company. The project is also implementing distributed political discourse, especially in support of LiquidDemocracy.

Simon mentions:

Luis mentions:

The Universal Donor

It’s not enough for you to have the rights you need; your community needs the same rights.

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A few people reacted negatively to my article on why Public Domain software is broadly unsuitable for inclusion in a community open source project. Most argued that because public domain gave them the rights they need where they live (mostly the USA), I should not say it was wrong to use it.  Continue reading

FLOSS Weekly 466: Open Mainframe Project

Simon co-hosted FLOSS Weekly episode 466 with Randal Schwartz, interviewing representatives of the Linux Foundation’s Open Mainframe Project.

The show is short because they spent over half an hour helping the guests with their video and audio setup. A hint to future guests: the instructions Randal sends out in advance really matter!

20 Years And Counting

The third decade of open source software starts in February 2018. How did it rise to dominance, and what’s next?

The Journey

20 years ago, in February 1998, the term “open source” was first applied to software, Soon afterwards, the Open Source Definition was created and the seeds that became the Open Source Initiative (OSI) were sown. As the OSD’s author Bruce Perens relates,

“Open Source” is the proper name of a campaign to promote the pre-existing concept of Free Software to business, and to certify licenses to a rule set.

Continue reading

Can PatentLeft Save Us?

Is it possible to hack the patent system to make patents unusable in the tech industry, like copyleft hacked patent law?

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The word “copyleft” arises from a clever hack by Richard Stallman who used the laws relating to copyright — a statutory device to incent creativity by granting limited monopolies to creators — to create a world where creators are incented to share instead of monopolise their work.  Continue reading