August 2014 Newsletter

OSI Newsletter: August 2014

August 2014 OSI Newsletter

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Open Source Initiative

...formed to educate about and advocate for the benefits of open source and to build bridges among different constituencies in the open source community.

Collaborate, Contribute, Co-create


The Software Freedom Conservancy and the Open Source Initiative are pleased to announce that they are the founding members of a working group focused on tax exemption issues for organizations in the United States.

Recent activity by the Internal Revenue Service in response to applications for tax exempt status have sparked a lot of interest and discussion amongst free and open source software communities.

OSI and Conservancy recognize that the IRS's understanding and evaluation of free and open source software can impact both new organizations created to promote the public good as charities (known as 501(c)(3) organizations after the corresponding tax code provision), as well as new organizations formed to forward a common business interest (known as 501(c)(6) organizations).

The working group will be open to equal participation from all concerned parties, and the working group will seek to recruit legal experts to participate in its processes. Aaron Williamson, partner at Tor Ekeland, will chair the group.

"We've been watching this issue for some time and look forward to pooling our resources with other organizations and companies," said Karen Sandler, Executive Director of Software Freedom Conservancy. "Together we can come to a better understanding of the IRS's perspective and plan strategically to communicate the value and importance of the corporate forms we choose."

"Over the years, applying for 501(c)(3) or (c)(6) status has become the de facto standard for new FLOSS projects in the US," said Allison Randal, Director of the Open Source Initiative. "It's not clear yet whether recent responses from the IRS are isolated special cases or represent a more general trend, but it is worthwhile to look into the topic more deeply, and ensure we have a strong and diverse set of healthy growth patterns for FLOSS projects, to last decades into the future."

Those interested in getting involved with this working group should contact Allison Randal at [email protected].



The Open Source Initiative was thrilled to participate in a variety of ways at this year's OSCON.

OSI Board President, Simon Phipps, conducted a variety of interviews, including with Tim O'Reilly.

OSI Board Director Leslie Hawthorn delivered an
OSCON 2014 Keynote, Checking Your Privilege:
A How-To for Hard Things

OSI President Simon Phipps, GM Patrick Masson
and Board Director Mike Milinkovich
staff the OSI Booth at OSCON14.

Former OSI Board Director Karl Fogel
interview, "Question Copyright"

Congratulations to Katie Miller and Pernilla Lindh,
winners of the OSI Logo Neck Pillows at OSCON14.

Member Profile: Gabriele Ruffatti


In this edition of the OSI Newsletter, we spoke with Gabriele Ruffatti. Mr. Ruffatti is currently the Director of Engineering Group's Technical, Innovation & Research Division and Open Source Competency Center. In addition, he was the founder of SpagoWorld and currently serves as the Director of the OW2 Consortium as well as a member of Eclipse community.

Gabriele Ruffatti

Open Source Initiative: You've proven yourself to be quite committed to open source and the Open Source Initiative (OSI), currently active within all three of the OSI's support programs: originally as the Affiliate Member Representative for OW2; as an Individual Member, and now as our Corporate Liaison for The Engineering Group. What has inspired such a great commitment?

Gabriele Ruffatti: I have been following OSI’s recent governance revision process with great interest, through which the initiative opened its doors to organizations and individuals too. At that time I strongly encouraged OW2 - my reference open source community - to participate and offer its support. Also for Engineering Group -the company I’m working for- it’s now the right time to contribute and highlight its steady commitment to open source software and its growth. However, a personal involvement makes this approach even more valuable. Open source means getting something for free, but also giving something more in return. Giving to share: this is crucial. If you do what you love and believe in, everything will come naturally. This applies every time you embrace the spirit of the community and you try to give something.

OSI: Looking ahead, and considering the variety of roles you have across organizations, what are some of the open source projects/communities you, OW2 and the Engineering Group are particularly interested in?

Ruffatti: As an Engineering Group director, I’ve founded SpagoWorld - Engineering Group’s open source initiative, helped found OW2, joined the Eclipse Foundation, and helped my collaborators contribute to various projects. In short, I allow my company to be present wherever open source software is made. Moreover, SpagoWorld has created four projects in the context of OW2 and two in Eclipse, and has stimulated various initiatives, whose focus ranges from software architectures and services, to location intelligence and big data. The last one is the OW2 big data initiative.

One among many, today SpagoBI is a project that continues to help the evolution of the only suite for Business Intelligence and Big Data that is completely open source, with a high international reputation. I can proudly say that a piece of Engineering Group – SpagoBI Labs – today is on a par with the most popular American open source vendors.

OSI: What do you find most appealing about open source software and/or the open source community?

Ten years ago, I founded SpagoWorld because open source is not just about using it, but also developing code. Only by "doing things" do you really learn. If you want to learn about open source, you have to "get your hands dirty", develop, deploy, enter the international community, understand how to integrate, share and resolve conflicts, and also solve the complexity of licenses and related legal issues. Nowadays, acting in the social and technological innovation field, I do believe that the open production leads to knowledge gain where diversity is an opportunity. Sharing ideas and artefacts, collaborating, adopting an open and multidisciplinary approach, help to find and give value to people! This applies every time you decide to look beyond achieving immediate results, every time you embrace the spirit of the community and you try to give more than you can get. Active participation, collaboration and sharing are key factors. Quoting a well known sentence: “all of us are smarter than any one of us; good people working together can create big things”.

OSI: What do you hope the OSI can do to promote open source awareness and adoption?

Ruffatti: I think that over time OSI has done a lot moving from an “open source licences labelling” organization to an “open source advocating” organization. It’s very important because also in the era of corporate-led projects, communities still play an important role in open source. OSI has still a lot to do as far as community-building is concerned, in particular building bridges between open source communities and open organizations, despite their diverse roles and missions. Only a cohesive movement can effectively contribute to assert the importance of open source software and foster its adoption and, at the same time, the awareness about challenges, but also benefits that it can bring to the growth of the future knowledge society. I hope that OSI will enforce its role as the global “umbrella” for open source communities, as well as for individuals willing to take a stand for freedom of software.


OSI In The News...

Patent Trolls and Open Document Formats with Open Source Thought Leaders

By Gordon Haff,
August 24, 2014

A Tale of Heartbleed

By Danny Bradbury, Infosecurity
August 29, 2014

How to Overcome Hidden Barriers to Open Source Adoption

By Paul Rubens, CIO
August 12, 2014

Open Source Software – the Legal Perspective

By Ivan Waide, A&L Goodbody
August 19 2014

Zimbra CMO on Being a Great Guardian of Open Source's Three C's

By Brian Taylor
August 5, 2014,

How to think like open source pioneer Michael Tiemann

By Bryan Behrenshausen,
August 5, 2014

Schism over Data Lakes: Open Source Vet Challenges Gartner’s Dire Take

By Loraine Lawson, IT Business Edge
August 7, 2014

The Gentle Art of Muddying the Licensing Waters

By Glyn Moody, Computer World UK
August 14, 2014

Open Content & Data: eine Chance für Unternehmen

By Markus Henkel, TechTag
August 27, 2014

Fablab e cultura open source: così le città si riprenderanno la produzione

By Simon Cicero, Che Futuro
August 14, 2014

Deutsche Telekom unterstützt Eclipse bei Heimautomatisierung

heise Developer
August 18, 2014

New Affiliate Member

The OSI is excited to announced that the Puerto Rico Python Interest Group (prPIG) has joined the OSI as an Affiliate Member. prPIG’s support of open source software development and its advocacy for the adherence to the open source definition are supporting software innovation in Puerto Rico. prPIG’s affiliation with OSI will help build a sustainable software development community in Puerto Rico, that will drive technological and social innovation.

"prPIG offers free workshops and seminars to educate about and advocate for the benefits of Open Source. To grow our community and increase our reach we will continue to build bridges among different constituencies, focusing especially on high school and university students,” said Kevin Shockey, founder of prPIG. “Our belief is that by exposing students to the Open Source Definition, we can illustrate the promise of open source and provide a viable alternative to predatory vendor lock-in."

"We are pleased to have prPIG join our community,” said Patrick Masson, general manager of the OSI. “prPIG captures the very essence of the Open Source movement, where communities of practice self-organize around common goals to share and co-create. prPIG is helping set the standard for peer-driven development across Puerto Rico while also contributing to the larger Python community."

The prPIG was founded to provide an additional community beyond the limited options of the proprietary software industry in Puerto Rico. prPIG works to raise awareness and adoption of Open Source software and development practices throughout Puerto Rico's technology, government and private sectors where proprietary software development technologies have traditionally been dominant.


Our Newest Members...


The OSI is excited to welcome 20 new Individual Members since the publication of our last Newsletter in July, 2014. Thank you so much to our newest community members for your support, as well as all of our extended membership. Without such generous support the OSI simply could not continue our important work to educate the world about, and increase adoption of, open source software.

Jase Binkley, United StatesSteffen Krause, United States
James Byrne, CanadaFriedhelm Matten, Germany
Tom Elrod, United StatesPierre Ndongo, Cameroon
Francesco Giannoccaro, United KingdomDouglas Rae, United States
Eron Hennessey, United StatesFoo Jiun Soh, Malaysia
Paul Konkoly, United StatesShunjiro Yatsuzuka, United States

Our thanks also goes out to our anonymous donors in France (1), Italy (1), Switzerland (1), The U.S. (4) and one new member who asked that neither thier name nor location be shared... you wouldn't believe us even if we told you!

Membership Card
Don't forget, if you're an OSI Individual Member you can request a Membership Card. These cards provide a variety of benefits from our Affiliates and Corporate Sponsors. Email us today to get yours.


Updates & Events



The Open World Forum is the first European summit to gather political representatives, decision-makers and experts, in one place, in order to debate the technological, economic and social impacts that the Free and Open-Source technologies bring to market. The forum was first held in 2008, and is now organized annually in Paris, France, with more than 200 speakers coming from 40 countries, and a global audience that was 2200-people strong in 2013.

AFUL, as community partner and member of the Steering Committee, not only is proud to support and promote the Open World Forum but invites sponsors from across the Open Source community, including companies and organizations.

Apereo Fundation's

The Apereo Foundation announced the availability of Sakai 10 with two new tool contributions to Sakai core, better support for audio and video using HTML 5, infrastructure improvements, about 50 security fixes, performance improvements, and a number of new features. Extensive documentation is maintained and continuously updated. The community went to great lengths to guarantee the quality of the software through rigorous testing and the application of close to 2,000 fixes.

Make plans now to attend the Sakai Virtual Conference on Friday, November 7th! The conference will be held entirely online, and will have an emphasis on pedagogy and best practices. Join Apereo for a faculty-friendly day of learning, sharing and community building with your fellow Sakai users, all without the need to travel!

Black Duck

Black Duck is proud to sponsor several events: The AppSec Conference, Denver, CO USA, September 17, 2014; Legal Seminar with Bird & Bird Milan, Milan, Italy, September 25, 2014; Jax London, London, UK, October 13 - 15, 2014; UK video games industry, London, UK, October 16, 2014; Red Hat Rome, Rome Italy, November 6, 2014; FStech/Retail Systems Payments Conference London, UK, November 6, 2014

The Debian Project

Check out the 1024 Debian Developers per Country report.

The sixth update of the stable distribution of Debian (codename "Wheezy") was released on July 12.

Google Summer of Code updates include integration with apt-listbugs which warns users when installing packages with bugs. Ian S. Donnelly details his experience implementing a three-Way merge algorithm for Elektra KeySets in C++ towards the kdb merge tool. Andrew Schurman shares the latest on the Java Project Dependency Builder.

DebianEdu interview with Bernd Zeitzen (in English) who describes, among other things, how he got involved in Debian Edu and his views about it

If you are a user of the ejabberd package (an XMPP server), Philipp Huebner is looking for help testing the latest version.

Debian is moving (back) to GLIBC due to the demise of the EGLIBC project and the dissolution of the GLIBC steering committee.

Debian supported the Tails (The Amnesic Incognito Live System) HackFest bring together those interested in making Tails more usable and more secure.

The Document Foundation

The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.3.1, the first minor release of LibreOffice 4.3 “fresh” family, with over 100 fixes (including patches for two CVEs, backported to LibreOffice 4.2.6-secfix, which is also available for download now).

People interested in technical details about the release can access the change log.

LibreOffice 4.3.1 and LibreOffice 4.2.6 will be shown on stage at the LibreOffice Conference in Bern, from September 3 to September 5, with a large number of sessions about development, community, marketing and migrations.

Joomla! / Open Source Matters

Joomla! World Conference is planned for November 7-9, 2014.

The Joomla! organizes several JoomlaDays find a meeting new you!

Follow all of Joomla! and Open Source Matters' latest news on their announcements feed.


OW2 welcomes a new Strategic Member, Institut Mines-Telecom (IMT). IMT brings to OW2 its network of some of France's most prestigious engineering schools. The OW2 Management Office is looking forward to working with IMT on launching a new initiative in support of their ecosystem of innovative start-ups.

The OW2 programming contest is now officially underway. Check out more information here.

Preparations for OW2con'14 are gaining momentum. OW2 has initiated a call for presentations and we are now offering sponsorship opportunities. With the conjunction of Open World Forum, OpenStack Summit and OW2con all within one week, Paris will be right at the heart of the open source world.


Thank You To Our Corporate Sponsors & Partners

OSI Corporate Sponsors

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To promote and protect open source software and communities...

For over 20 years the Open Source Initiative (OSI) has worked to raise awareness and adoption of open source software, and build bridges between open source communities of practice. As a global non-profit, the OSI champions software freedom in society through education, collaboration, and infrastructure, stewarding the Open Source Definition (OSD), and preventing abuse of the ideals and ethos inherent to the open source movement.

Open source software is made by many people and distributed under an OSD-compliant license which grants all the rights to use, study, change, and share the software in modified and unmodified form. Software freedom is essential to enabling community development of open source software.