Sorting out the Ethical Licensing Mess

Software developers who give the world, for free, usage rights to the code they write often use open source licenses to make this gift legally explicit. These free usage rights (and then some) are encoded in all valid open source licenses, next to the obligations one has to fulfill to receive the rights grant. Recently, the desire of some developers has surged to tie their gift to causes they care about. Some want to protect Chinese workers from abusive working hours, some want to stop companies from working with US immigrations, and some want to ensure that users vaccinate their children and themselves according to current medical best practice.

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Managing the Open Source Dependency (Tomas Gustavsson, IEEE Computer Column)

I’m happy to report that the sixth article in the Open Source Expanded column of IEEE Computer has been published.

TitleManaging the open source dependency
KeywordsComputer Applications, Open Source Software
AuthorsTomas Gustavsson, PrimeKey
PublicationComputer vol. 53, no. 2 (February 2020), pp. 83-87

Abstract: Organizations use open source software in a majority of computer application programs. Here we describe some of the technical challenges and offer recommendations about how to manage open source software dependencies and avoid the most common pitfalls that might be encountered through decision-making, automated scanning, upgrading, and strategic contributions.

As always, the article is freely available (local copy).

Also, check out the full list of articles.

Summary of the Winter 2019/20 AMOS Projects

This winter semester, students of TU Berlin completed four AMOS projects. Each section below describes the final result of one of the projects:

  1. Logistics Dashboard (an app to provide easy communications between employees),
  2. App4UCU (an app which interacts with the core functions of UCU and shows internal signals),
  3. Configaroo (an app which enables the management of large distributed code bases), and
  4. Ne:xt HMI (an integration of a trip computer app, a podcast app and messaging app to create an integrated car operating system)

Upcoming Industry Talk on Continuous Integration / Delivery / Deployment by Bernard Ramon Ladenthin of IAV GmbH

We will be hosting an industry talk on Continuous Integration / Delivery / Deployment. The talk is free and open to the public.

  • by: Bernard Ramon Ladenthin of IAV GmbH
  • about: Continuous Integration / Delivery / Deployment
  • on: January 23rd, 2020, 08:30 Uhr
  • at: TU Berlin, HFT TA 441 (Lehrstuhl Schieferdecker, Einsteinufer 25)
  • as part of: AMOS speaker series
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How to Select Open Source Components (Diomidis Spinellis, IEEE Computer Column)

I’m happy to report that the fifth article in the new Open Source Expanded column of IEEE Computer has been published.

TitleHow to select open source components
KeywordsOpen Source Software, Licenses, Documentation, Computer Bugs, Software Project Management
AuthorsDiomidis Spinellis, Athens University of Economy and Business
PublicationComputer vol. 52, no. 12 (December 2019), pp. 103-106

Abstract: With millions of open source projects available on forges such as GitHub, it may be difficult to select those that best match your requirements. Examining each project’s product and development process can help you confidently select the open source projects required for your work.

As always, the article is freely available (local copy).

Also, check out the full list of articles.

Upcoming Industry Talk on Enabling Digital Transformation via Scaling Agile in the Financial Industry by Munir Mahrufi and Liang Que of Deloitte Consulting GmbH

We will host an industry talk on “Enabling Digital Transformation via Scaling Agile in the Financial Industry” in AMOS, our agile methods course. The talk is free and open to the public.

  • by: Munir Mahrufi and Liang Que, Deloitte Consulting GmbH
  • about: Enabling Digital Transformation in the Financial Industry
  • on: December 5th, 2019, 08:30 Uhr
  • at: TU Berlin, HFT TA 441 (Lehrstuhl Schieferdecker, Einsteinufer 25)
  • as part of: AMOS speaker series
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Enabling Open Innovation with Open Data using the JValue Open Data Service

Today I gave my JValue Open Data Service talk at USM (University of Sciences, Malaysia, at Penang). I am grateful for the opportunity and the recording.

Abstract: Open data has the potential to create significant practical value for its users through open innovation. Yet, to realize this value, we need an open ecosystem, next to open data, that allows app developers to create that value. In this talk I present my view of this open ecosystem of open data and how it should be structured. I then present the JValue Open Data Service (ODS), an open source software under development at my research group, that provides a key piece of this ecosystem. The goal of the JValue ODS project is to enable open innovation through app developers.

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Why Self-Enlightened Contribution to Open Source Projects is Difficult

Self-enlightened contributions to open source projects are (code) contributions that come about because a company chooses to contribute. The opposite is forced open sourcing, which typically happens when a reciprocal license like the GPLv2 forces a company to lay open some source code.

Self-enlightened contribution is hard!

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Do You Need a Macbook to Learn to Code? (Coding vs. Systems Building)

Someone on Twitter asked this question and people loved to weigh in. Most answered: “No, just get an old $200 laptop.” While not wrong, this answer misses the point. Coding, here, apparently means reading and writing code. For that, indeed, any cheap computer will do. However, being able to read and write code does not mean you will be able to build and ship systems, which is what customers pay for.

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