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Ultimately, Joey “The lips” Fagan, the trumpet player in Alan Parker’s “The Commitments,” talking about what the band meant after it broke up, said it best, “You’re missin’ the point. The success of the band was irrelevant - you raised their expectations of life, you lifted their horizons …”

That’s what this open softwareproject has done for us professionally - it raised our expectations and lifted our horizons.


1. ken udas - october 19th, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Gary, First, thank you for this great posting. I believe that it is the foundation tram’sfor a very nice case study. I have a very broad question, so feel free to take it where you want to. Has your team’s involvement and leadership in Bedework had any noticeable impact on RPI (any particular part of the institution)? Ken

2. patrick masson - october 20th, 2007 at 10:51 pm

Gary, What I think is most spectacular about the development of Bedework is the development of Bedework. Many projects seem to first, form as a group looking to build a project, Bedework seems to be a project that is building a group: two models undertaken in the development of Moodle and Sakai as applications and communities.

I can remember, in 2003 while at UCLA, listening to Sakai conference calls, sitting in Sakai Conference sessions on Governance, Communications, Visioning, Strategic Planning and Collaboration, yet not allowed into “Sakai Core.” Also in 2003, I simply installed Moodle at the UCLA School of Dentistry.

To me, Bedework’s approach of letting folks discover the application and use it as they may need (or abandon it) seems more aligned with Raymond’s example of scratching that personal itch. Rather than homogenizing or neutering functionality to make an application palatable to all of those who have invested fup front, before development began based on a shared (arguable perceived) need, Bedework, and other needs-based projects will have more committed users who have adopted based on existing functionality meeting understood needs, yielding more focused development and, overall, a better application.

I think this is an important distinction as Higher Ed begins to accept Open Source. One of the often raised issues rejecting open source is the argument that running OSS requires a local developer. This attitude can easily lead to an “organize-first” approach, where senior administrators feel they must find partners, allocate resources and define objectives before a prject can begin. This front loaded approach requires significant work to keep a project going, none of which is contributing to actual code development.

Consider successful OSS: how many of us that run Apache contribute code back, how about Linux? Imagine trying to get four major universities to define a server or operating system, then build it, versus slowly adapting one based on real-world needs by those who actually find it useful. This is the open source development model, this is how Apache, Linux and Moodle became successful: this is why Bedework will as well.

Questions & Answers

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
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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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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