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I have struggled somewhat to find the right voice for this piece as it is intimately tied to our experience with the open source project we lead—Bedework. Whereas one of the lessons of managing a fledgling open source project is “always be closing,” that is, trying to sell your project, bowdlerizing the content to remove all references to Bedework eclipsed my skill as writer.

The back story

Some years ago, our CIO tasked my unit to provide a public events calendar for our university. Although there were a number of calendaring/scheduling systems on campus, public events were announced and managed through e-mail, web pages, and print publications. There was no explicit budget for this project, so buying a commercial product was not a viable option. Our choices were to write it ourselves, use software already produced by someone else, or collaborate with other organizations to produce this software. We expressed the objective this way:

“The software should be used and developed by multiple universities. There are three dominant products in university calendaring today including homegrown. Many institutions of higher education have chosen to implement their own calendar systems, some of which are very fine. Unfortunately, as far as we know, no two schools use, or collaboratively develop, the same calendar software. Rensselaer is interested in contributing to a university-specific calendaring product but we already have too many projects chasing too few people. We would prefer to have circumscribed, intermittent calendar development projects rather than having continuous development and support duties. An open source project potentially allows us to meet these objectives.”

We continued to enumerate the following requirements:

  1. Implementation is consonant with our core competencies in Java/J2EE programming, XML, and web interface design and construction.
  2. Open source – no license or usage fees
  3. The ability to distribute administration and control to the event owners themselves is crucial in a university environment.
  4. The code must provide complete, well-defined APIs which are scrupulously honored, with no local dependencies (authentication, policies, etc.) The packaging must allow competent professionals to easily install the package and to get a demo version running with minimal confusion and frustration.

(With respect to the last point, it is clear, looking back, that high standards are not especially useful unless you can hold others to them.)

RPI took a look at the University of Washington’s UWCalendar, whose mission statement, says, in part,

“UW Calendar will be a total calendaring and events system for institutions of higher learning. …UW Calendar will be open source and platform independent. It will use existing open standards. It will support integration with other systems and middleware, … such as uPortal and Shibboleth. It will be modular… and extensible …”

As the University of Washington’s goals were consonant with RPI’s, RPI joined the UWCalendar development team in June 2003. RPI’s initial motivation was to deliver value locally to the RPI community while at the same time making UWCalendar attractive enough to other universities that they would adopt the software and contribute to its development. RPI had hoped that UWCalendar would eventually have a substantial user and developer community within higher education.

Questions & Answers

what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
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Source:  OpenStax, The impact of open source software on education. OpenStax CNX. Mar 30, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10431/1.7
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