ApacheCon NA 2011

Ross Gardler

I'm just starting a new chapter in my working life. By the time ApacheCon comes round it should be well underway. Looking forward to then next ten years of my personal involvement with the ASF. Ross Gardler is a Committer and PMC member on a number of Apache projects, a champion and mentor on incubating projects and a PMC member of the Community Development project. Ross is a consultant and advisor to a large number of open source software projects, companies and users. With a foot in both the academic research and commercial sector Ross specialises in identifying research outputs that are almost ready for commercial exploitation. Once identified he attempts to pair the academic team with appropriate commercial teams to bring the technologies to market.Ross is chair of the TransferSummit conference, which seeks to link the academic research sector with the commercial sector, and speaks at a great many open source related events.

Can I depend on Software built By Volunteers?
November 9 5:00PM
Apache projects are managed by volunteers, can you really build your products, infrastructure or services on software managed by volunteers? The answer to this commonly asked question is a definite yes, in this session Ross Gardler will explain why this is the case. At the core of the argument is the fact that whilst contributors are volunteers here at the ASF they will almost certainly be paid by |someone for the time they spend working on our projects. This prompts a second common concern, can you really build your products, infrastructure or services on Apache software if you haven't got an army of staff to ensure the project is not "hijacked" by a third party. Once again, the answer to this question is a definite yes, in |this session Ross will explain why this is the case. In this session we will examine the meritocratic governance model used in Apache projects and explain how it ensures that even the smallest of organizations can become an important, even critical, part of a project team whilst also ensuring that no single organization can take control of a project by throwing resources at it.

Breaking Down Widget Silos with a friendly Wookie
November 11 1:30PM
Widgets/gadgets are mini applications written in HTML + Javascript. They offer cool and dynamic content that can be placed on any page on the web and, in some cases, on your desktop or your mobile device. Unfortunatley, there is not just one way to create and package
widgets. we have Google Gadgets, W3C Widgets, OpenSocial Gadgets and
Wave Gadgets to name just a few. Whilst widgets are an important part
of web content delivery, particularly mobile web, the plethora of
available widget/gadget standards could limit innovation by creating
incompatible silos. This is where Apache Wookie (Incubating) comes
in. Using Wookie we can harmonize all of these widgets/gadget
standards behind the W3C Widget specification, thus freeing the user
from concerns about implementation details.

One Day -- Open Source Sustainability Maturity Model
November 7 10:00AM
Open source software projects need to ensure that people are willing
and able to engage with their software communities. Similarly,
businesses seeking to adopt open source solutions need to be sure they
can do so without exposing themselves to unmanageable risk. This one
day training session will provide you with the skills to evaluate the
maturity of the non-technical aspects of an open source software
solution. Using this evaluation project users and developers can
clearly see any weak points in their development and governance
processes. Once identified those weaknesses can be addressed or
avoided as appropriate.

Having completed this session participants will be able to answer the
question of "Can a business be built on project FooBar?"

This may seem like a simple question? Indeed, from a technical
evaluation point of view you are likely to be quite comfortable with
how to go about finding the answer. But dig a little deeper, there are
many non-technical questions buried underneath, such as:

* Will the project still be there in a year, five years, ten yeats,
* Can I influence the project to ensure it suite my needs?
* Can I buy support if I need it?
* What if the project leadership stop development tomorrow?
* Will the license restrict my business model?
* What are the main risks and how do I mitigate against them?
* If I do bet my business on it what aspects of the project must I
focus my attention on first?

Having completed this one day training session you will be able to
answer all the questions, and many more, with confidence. You will
understand how to evaluate the health of an open source project
community and plan for a sustianble engagement with that project.

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