Hi I’m Rob Winikates, WH new media, here to share how the White House has started down the path of operating in an open source environment. Quick poll to start us off:
These are not all open source tools, but they are all things that we needed to work together
The core of our online program is wh.gov, runs drupal, uses some other open source projects too: Solr for search, MapBox for mapping, JW player that we’ve extended for our 508 compliance requirements. We’ve used the same code base to run other sites like fiscalcommission.gov and realitycheck.govGreat to have these as starting points, they’ve drastically reduced the amount of work needed to get to where we are today
Two sets of releases of drupal modules, plus some sponsoring of community projects thus far. Node embed is for accessibility, helps maintain meta data from different nodes, especially images, our most popular drupal moduleAkamai and context http headers connects drupal to the Akamai CDNGovDelivery takes out the Drupal mailer and uses the Gov Delivery service to send all the mail, very useful to offload that work.IMCE tools is a suite of tools that extends the popular file manager (directory manager, search, file path)We also partnered with DevSeed to help sponsor the beta round of the modules used for the OpenAtrium suite (Features, Spaces, Boxes, Context, StrongArm, Admin)We also worked with Phase2 on the OpenCalais and short URL modules. Calais helps with content auto-tagging, and the shortURL module powers the wh.gov domain as well as the go.usa.govurlshortener mentioned earlier.
A few examples here:Akamai module was part of first code release, but we’ve learned more now and so we’re working with the maintainers of the ESI module now to make it more widely useful. Open Atrium development a better example. We wanted collaboration tools, saw Atrium, and were able to help
Once had a vendor quote us a higher price for the releasable version of a piece of software. Be wary. Gets the approval process rolling sooner rather than later
Dept. of Education did a great job with this with their ideation feature for Open Atrium, used Kit specification Going back to generalize modules after they are built wastes resources Standards exist for a reason Avoid groupthink, get other’s input. Do user testing, you have friends and we all have mothers.
If code is released on the internet and nobody retweets it, does it count as a contribution? As the government, releasing it is the best thing you can do. Citizens paid for it, may as well give it back.
Be a good steward of your contribution. Have it released by someone who will own it. This is a good reason to use a partnerships model, you get resources from them
Shipping code from the White House: First steps into open source collaboration
Shipping code from the White House: First steps into open source collaboration<br />Rob Winikates — @rob_w<br />White House Office of Digital Strategy <br />(aka New Media)<br />
Recap<br />Try to work with the community.<br />Preparing to release from the beginning is just better.<br />You don’t always know best. Make your code reusableand applicable. Validate your work early and often.<br />Promote your work.<br />Be a good steward of your release.<br />