Open source software isHow about some graphical check boxes?
I don’t want to get too bogged down in history here, but the roots of the open source movement have been around since the 1960’s in other iterations including the free software community.And I’d like to fill you in on a few of the key events which set the foundation of the OSS movement.
It all started in the mid-1960’s when Bell Labs found that they needed an operating system so they joined forces with MIT and General Electric to create one called Multics. (Multiplexed Information and Computing Service)Long story short, the project became very convoluted and complex and in 1969, Bell Labs decided to pull out of it.At the time, computers didn’t automatically come with operating systems, you had to write your own. So, having not finished Multics, Ken Thompson found that he had no way to play the video game “space travel” that he had written for it, so with the help of programmer Dennis Ritchie, he wrote an operating system in about four weeks which was inspired by Multics, and which they called Unics as a pun on the former (Uniplexed information and computing services)Unix was distributed at a very low cost and with minimal licensing terms by Bell Labs b/c a previous anti-trust case against them forbade them from profiting from anything other than the telephone business. So it was widely adopted by colleges and universities.UNIXwas distributed with the source code written in Ritchie’s new simpler programming language called “C”, and these two received the 1998 National Medal of Technology from President Bill Clinton for these groundbreaking achievements.Incidentally, an interesting fast fact that you may want to think about later is that 1969 the year that UNIX was beginning to be developed or was born is the same year that LinusTorvalds was born, and we’ll get to him in a minute.
One university which adopted UNIX and tinkered with the source code was UC, Berkeley.They actually got a copy from Ken Thompson who was there on a teaching sabbatical in 1975.Led by a grad student named Bill Joy who later went on to co-found Sun Microsystems, they released BSD UNIX in 1977.The Berkeley Software Distribution was chosen and funded by the Department of Defense to be the operating system to run all of the ARPAnet’s computers. The Computer systems Research Group (CSRG) developed the tcp/ip protocols which are the foundation of the modern internet, on these BSD installations.http://flickr.com/photos/isa_e/2262375100/sizes/l/
By 1983 there were at least 6 competing versions of UNIX.AT&T had became de-regulated and decided to close the source code on their version and went commercial with the product – raising their previous nominal fee to the astronomical sum of $200,000.Corporations had discovered the market value of software and were quickly making the software proprietary rather than open.A programmer/hacker at MIT’s artificial intelligence lab named Richard Stallman was frustrated by this state of affairs which he saw as a dangerous encroachment on the freedoms developers previously had.In Sept. of 1983, he decided to start a project to create an operating system which would be based on UNIX but would be completely free.The project was called GNU - a recursive acronym which stood for Gnu’s not unix.
Shortly after forming the GNU project, in 1985, Stallman created the Free Software Foundation which started the Free Software Movement.The Free Software Foundation promotes a definition of free software as that which is free to run, free to study, free to redistribute, and free to modify. And access to the source code of a software program is a pre-condition for meeting these terms.So it’s not necessarily free of charge, but free of licensing restrictions, so you’ll hear the phrase, “think free as in free speech, not free beer”.
Once the free software movement was going, Stallman needed a way to guarantee that all of this software which was being released freely would remain free. In other words, at this time, there was nothing to stop someone from taking a piece of this free software and creating a proprietary program with it and closing the source code.So he created the GNU General Public License, a type of copyleft license in 1989.This best-known license for open–source software specifies that the source code is made public, anyone can modify it, re-distribute it, including commercial enterprises, and demands that all future iterations be licensed under a GPL license so as to keep all versions in the Commons.Copyleft is a type of license which uses copyright to modify and remove restrictions on licensed works. – GNU GPL was the first copyleft license.
So Stallman’s GNU project to create an operating system was coming along nicely, but it was missing one key ingredient, a kernel to make it run.In 1991 a student at the U of Helsinki Finland named LinusTorvalds wrote the Linux kernel which was added to the GNU operating system in 1992 to create the Linux operating system.While this is impressive, what’s equally impressive was how he did it.He put out a call on the Web to users and asked them to help him with the development
So he accomplished this by forming a community to help him in his development. And by the way when the kernel was complete he licensed it with a GPL.
But it wasn’t until Eric Raymond published an essay called The Cathedral & the Bazaar in Sept. 1997 that the term open source software really took offThis was a seminal work on ‘hacker culture’ in which Raymond discussed a new method of engineering software that was faster, better quality, and less expensive than conventional methods.He was talking about LinusTorvalds’ new style of software development called the bazaar.
Up until the early ‘90’s the traditional way that software was developed was among a closed circle of people in a company who worked diligently to build this software program like crafting a cathedral. And the commonly held practice was to only release versions when they were nearly perfect, which could take quite a while since they had only a few eyeballs looking for bugs in the software.
And what made LinusTorvalds different was that he believed in rapid releases and he released versions of his software throughout his development process, sometimes even several times a day, cultivating his users as co-developers. So he had thousands of people looking at his code, helping to find bugs and contribute fixes, rather than the few as with closed software.
In the CatB, Raymond dubbed this Linus’s Law, the idea that the more people you have looking at your software and beta testing it, the faster bugs will be spotted.The ideas set down by Raymond about this open method of software development, inspired by Torvalds spread like wildfire in the software community.
One of those watching was the Netscape company. Inspired by Raymond’s essay and feeling pressure from the dominance of Microsoft, Netscape open sourced its Netscape Communicator Internet Suite which was a suite of applications including the Netscape Navigator browser a few months later.January of 1998.
In February of 1998, key figures in the tech community including Raymond and Torvalds formed the Open Source Software Initiative and locked in the new label of open source.This open source movement had appeal to businesses as it dealt with the pragmatics of the development methodology rather than a ethical obligations of a social movement as in the free software movement.However, the open source software definition is very much based on the Free Software Definition.So these are the 10 major criteria which a software must conform to in order to be considered open source, most of which are set up to keep people from attaching restrictive licenses to the software:
Over the past 10 years, a lot has happened in the open source world based on these historicalLeading to the use of many oss products today which we’re going to talk about.
As I’m sure most of you know, Firefox is a Web browser which a lot of you are probably using, but I’llbet that many of you didn’t know that it is an open source project from the Mozilla Foundation which was once a part of NetscapeIt is now the second most popular Web browser behind MS IE and holds 20% of the market share.You can install or write plugins yourself to add functionalityHow many people are using Firefox?Google Chrome
And of course the famous Wikipedia which s not only an open access encyclopedia wikipedia, with over 10 million entries contributed from its community of volunteers, it runs on opens source software called MediaWiki.How many people have used either Wikipedia or MediaWiki.
Many blogging platforms are open source as is Wordpress which is one of the biggestWith Over 1 million blogs on WP platformThe WordPress blogging platform as well as others such as LiveJournal, LifeType and Roller are available as open-source products.
Many libraries have begun to adopt the Drupal CMS for their library websites.There was actually a recent LTR put out on the topic.Other OS CMS’s out there include Joomla and Plone.
There are even open office suites availableOpen Office is a suite of software applications based on MS Office, with nearly identical funtionality. The Mac version of this is called NeoOfficeSo there’s a word processor, a spreadsheet program, a presentation software, and a database application.And it’s freeIt’s really amazing how many people don’t know about this though.I was visiting my Mom last month and she had just bought a new laptop which came with a free trial of MSOffice 2007, but it had run out and now she really didn’t want to spend the money on Office, especially after just parting with a lot of money for the laptop, but she was pretty upset as she didn’t have any way to open her documents or do any of the things she normally did with office.I had her install Open Office and she was absolutely amazed, and this is normally the response that I get – I also make my LIS students install it at the beginning of the course I teach on Open and Libraries. And they too are absolutely thrilled.You can get it at openoffice.org
This past fall I’ve been recording a series of interviews for my open classes and workshops such as this one and I have been using audacity to clean up the audio files, convert them to mp3s, attach metadata and tags…
Open Media PlayerPlay and organize your music collection.
Also from the Mozilla foundation which does FF, we get the email mgmt. system Thunderbird, a useful Outlook alternative.
Which stands for the GNU Image Manipulation Program.Graphics
There are currently a slew of open source learning management systems, or courseware programs which are similar to the commercial product Blackboard Others include .LRN, Sakai, and Bodington
An open source program which lets you create your own open access peer reviewed journal.This is actually something that I myself have installed and I’m using it in the course I’m teachingOver 2,000 OA journals currently using
Okay, now for some you may not know you’re using, but you probably are.There is an installation or environment made up of all open source software programs which is extremely popular – it’s referred to as LAMP, and it’s made up of the Linux OS which we talked a bit about, Apache – the most popular Web server in the world, MySQL, a very popular database, and Php an OS programming language.
These are actually just a few examples of OSS – there are actually over 134,000 OSS projects listed on Sourceforge, the main hub for OSS.
Koha ILSThe first open-source ILSBuilt on LAMPmodules for circulation, cataloging, acquisitions, serials, reserves, patron management, branch relationships, and more. Over 350 librariesFaceted navigation including limit to availableBrowse by Most PopularSort by Relevance, popularity and other filtersRSS feedsUser taggingEnriched content – images.
Koha back endMuch less clunky and confusing than a lot of ILS systems out there.
Public, private, and openly editable booklists
Created by the Georgia Public Library ServiceIn useby over 300 libraries.Consortia-level ILSRelevance ranking of subjects, , authors, series, etc.Format iconsEnriched contentBrowse Shelves
Developed by Media Flex In use by 40+ school librariesAimed at school librariesEnriched content – images.
Previously WPopacOPAC based on WordPress open-source blogging platform Created by Casey Bisson at Plymouth State University Next-Gen Catalog Tagged browsingFaceted SearchRSSRelated Items RecommendationsBook Descriptions from AmazonUser Reviews in CommentsSample Text
“Related Items" RecommendationsBook Descriptions from AmazonSample TextAuthor Bios
Created by Villanova University Runs on Solr Energy. Apache Solr, an open source search engine. Next-Gen Catalog Social FeaturesRelevance RankingFavorite ListsFaceted SearchRSS Feeds"More like this" RecommendationsCompatible with Zotero
Here’s an author bio which is automatically fed in from Wikipedia.
This one is brand new, just created by John Blyberg at Darien Library.It’s an application suite, surrounding a SOPAC Drupal module which will integrate your library catalog system with the Drupal content management system to offer patrons social features found in today’s leading online communities such as tagging, ratings, and reviews.Faceted Search Relevance ranking and sort top rated, hot this week and other choices
Possibility for much more b/c of the customizability of Drupal
Software program for digital asset management Originally developed by Hewlett Packard & MIT Most often used for Institutional Repositories (IR) Available under a BSD licenseOver 300 installations in 54 countries
Framework for building repository systems Not an out-of-the-box solution Many front-end interfaces available for download Created by Cornell University Information Science & University of Virginia Library APIs 127 installations
aka GNU EPrintsThe first OS IR software Developed at the University of Southampton in the UK 268 known archives running the software
Metasearch application creatd by Oregon State University Libraries Searches multiple databases using Z39.50 Built in OpenURL resolver
Federated search utility Created by Simon Fraser University
Metasearch search utility Created by Index Data
Browser Plugin for FirefoxAnd an open source framework for developing library plugins.461 academic and public libraries have created what are called LibX editions.They are add-ons which provide access to a library’s resources in some very unique ways including providing a toolbar and right-click menus for quick access to the library catalog and quick full-text access to journal articles via Google Scholar. The plugins also place library icons called “embedded cues” directly in webpages next to items the library has in its collection. For example you would see a tiny library icon next to books the library has on the Barnes & Noble and Amazon websites, or when reading a book review in the New York Times, etc. Click on these icons to check the availability of the item in the library catalog.
Many OSS project under development, listed here.They offer utilities for developing library-oriented software as well as components for library systems which are read-to use
LibLimeFounded in 2005Acquired original Koha developersProvides support services to libraries for KohaEquinoxFounded in 2007 by Evergreen developersProvides support services to libraries for EvergreenIndex DataFounded in 1994Creators of MasterKeySo signing onto one of these companies for support is one cost of OSS.
And that leads to the next slide, what are the real costs of OSS?
But when you’re done with these investments – you own the softwareOther Benefits of OSSMost Free of Charge Free as in speechLarge selectionAccess to the developerMeritocracyPeer ReviewCommunity bug fixingTranslationOpportunity to learn from communitySupport from forums, mailing lists, IRC channels, etc.
You need to be aware that there are many licenses and not all of them are compatible with one another while they’re all the same in principle.
Download open officeDownload FirefoxVisitsourceforgeDemo some more library Programs
“ Free as in speech…
not as in beer.
‐ Free Software Definition
•The freedom to use the software for any
•The freedom to change the software to suit
The freedom to change the software to suit
•The freedom to share the software with
your friends and neighbors,.
Th f d t h th h
•The freedom to share the changes you
Hello everybody out there using minix –
I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby,
won't be big and professional like gnu) for
386(486) AT clones. This has been brewing since
april and is starting to get ready I d like any
feedback on things people like/dislike in minix,
as my OS resembles it somewhat (same physical
layout of the file-system (due to practical
reasons) among other things) . . . Any suggestions
are welcome, but I won't promise I'll implement
Linus (torvalds@kruuna helsinki fi)
PS. Yes—it's free of any minix code, and it has a
multi-threaded fs. It is NOT protable[sic] (uses
386 task switching etc), and it probably never
will support anything other than AT-harddisks, as
that's all I have :-(.
Posted to the comp.os.minix newsgroup on August 25, 1991
“ I'm basically a very lazy
person who likes to get
credit for things other
people actually do.
Tux the Linux mascot
“ I think Linus's cleverest and most
consequential hack was not the
construction of the Linux kernel itself,
but rather his invention of the Linux
- Eric Raymond
“ I believed that the most
…needed to be built like
crafted by individual
f db d d l
wizards or small bands of
mages working in
splendid isolation, with
splendid isolation with
no beta to be released
before its time.
- Eric Raymond
“Release early and often,
delegate everything you
g y gy
can, be open to the point
- Eric Raymond
“Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow”
Netscape Goes Open
Netscape Goes Open
The Open Source Software Initiative
Open Source Software Definition
#1 Free Redistribution
#2 Source Code
#3 Derived Works
e ed o s
#4 Integrity of The Author's Source Code
#5 No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
#6 No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor
#7 Distribution of License
#8 License Must Not Be Specific to a Product
#9 License Must Not Restrict Other Software
#10 License Must Be Technology‐Neutral
•Limit to available books
•Limit to “available” books
•Browse by Most Popular
•Relevance Ranking and other filters
•User Reviews in Comments
•Virtual Shelves Booklists
•Virtual Shelves Booklists
•Enriched content – images
Commercial Support Services
•No license fee
•Flexibility & Customization
•Flexibility & Customization
•No vendor lock‐in
•Low risk of discontinued service
•Integration with other systems
•OSS community y
•Steep Learning Curve
•Risk of discontinued community involvement
•Risk of discontinued community involvement
•Fun stuff may get done before boring fixes
•Documentation written for techies
Documentation written for techies
•Disillusionment with proprietary
•Web 2.0 features
•Trend at library conferences
•Trend in library journals
•Increased adoption by libraries
•New easier to use technologies
•New easier‐to‐use technologies
•Commercial Support Services
How do you find OSS?
•Open Source Software Directory
•Open Source Alternatives
htt // lt
•Free Software Portal
•Free Software Directory
•Code4Lib OSS Directory
•The Open Source Initiative
htt // d 4lib
•The Linux Librarian
•Open Source Software and Libraries Bibliography
Open Source Software and Libraries Bibliography
An OSS Interview
An OSS Interview
• Nicole Engard
• Open Source Evangelist
http://www archive org/details/NicoleEngardInterview
An Open Source Kickstart
Activity #1: Download Open/Neo Office
Activity #2: Download Firefox
Activity #3: Visit SourceForge
Activity #4: Demo an OSS Library Solution