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Symbian Operating System, Now Open Source and Free. With Symbian now open source, are there any widely used operating systems left (besides Windows) that don’t have an open source core? # 4th February 2010, 8:38 am

The Maximal Usage Doctrine for Open Source. Yehuda Katz shares my own philosophy on Open Source licensing—stick BSD or MIT on it to maximise the number of people who can use it. The projects I work on are small enough that I don’t care if someone makes big private improvements and refuses to share them. I can see how much larger projects like Linux would disagree though. # 6th January 2010, 5:23 pm

Semantic Versioning. Tom Preston-Werner provides a name, specification and URL describing the relatively widely used Major.Minor.Patch versioning system. This is really useful—by giving something a name and a spec, people can say “this project uses semantic versioning” and skip having to explain their backwards compatibility policy in full. # 15th December 2009, 9:53 pm

EtherPad is Back Online Until Open Sourced. Fantastic news. EtherPad just got acquired by Google and announced the team would be joining the Google Wave effort and the existing service would be shut down. Lots of people complained, so they’re going to keep it alive until they’ve open sourced the code! # 6th December 2009, 9:08 am

Opening Up Librelist.com Code, Looking For Volunteers. Zed Shaw’s Librelist is a new service for open source project mailing lists, aiming to be donation supported in a similar way to Freenode IRC. The code is all available, and is written in Lamson and Django. # 4th December 2009, 9:25 am

Announcing Kong: A server description and deployment testing tool. An ultra simple website monitoring tool written in Django which makes it easy to manage a list of Twill scripts for testing different sites. It was developed at the Lawrence Journal-World—Eric showed me a demo if this a year or so ago and I’ve been hoping they would open source it. # 18th November 2009, 12:47 pm

Introducing the YUI 3 Gallery. Write a plugin for YUI3, BSD license it and sign a CLA and Yahoo! will push your module out to their CDN and make it loadable using the YUI().use() statement. They’re coordinating the submissions using GitHub. # 4th November 2009, 11:14 pm

Introducing Resque. A new background worker management queue developed at GitHub, using Redis for the persistence layer. The blog post explains both the design and the shortcomings of previous solutions at length. Within 24 hours of the release code an external developer, Adam Cooke, has completely reskinned the UI. # 4th November 2009, 8:20 pm

Traffic Server. Mark Nottingham explains the release of Traffic Server, a new Apache Incubator open source project donated by Yahoo! using code originally developed at Inktomi around a decade ago. Traffic Server is a HTTP proxy/cache, similar to Squid and Varnish (though Traffic Server acts as both a forward and reverse proxy, whereas Varnish only handles reverse). # 1st November 2009, 12:15 pm

Why I like Redis

I’ve been getting a lot of useful work done with Redis recently.

[... 900 words]

Introducing Cloudera Desktop. It’s a GUI for Hadoop, and under the hood is a whole stack of open source software, including Python, Django, MooTools, Twisted, lxml, CherryPy, Mako, Java and AspectJ. # 21st October 2009, 6:48 pm

You count the “value” that is lost by people who would have made money selling rival goods, but can’t now because they can’t compete with free. But you don’t count the value that is created by people who build upon the freely given goods. [...] In other words, you only look at the first-order effects. It’s the same mistake a lot of people make when they accuse open source developers of “dumping” and ruining the market for competing software. That’s true, in a very narrow sense, but it ignores all the other people who took that software and used it to create something else of value.

Mark Pilgrim # 21st October 2009, 9:59 am

There was this clamour in the past to get companies to open source their products. This has stopped, because all the software that got open source sucked. It’s just not very interesting to have a closed source program get open sourced. It doesn’t help anyone, because the way closed source software is created in a very different way than open source software. The result is a software base that just does not engage people in a way to make it a valid piece of software for further development.

Ian Bicking # 21st September 2009, 6:22 pm

Kung Fu People (via) The first site to launch based on the open source Django code from djangopeople.net! # 19th August 2009, 11:37 am

Scriptlets—Quick web scripts (via) From the prolific Jeff Lindsay, a pastebin-style tool for short server-side scripts written in Python, JavaScript or PHP that executes them within a Google App Engine powered sandbox. The Java code that implements the service is available on GitHub. # 13th August 2009, 1:51 pm

Django 1.1 release notes (via) Django 1.1 is out! Congratulations everyone who worked on this, it’s a fantastic release. New features include aggregate support in the ORM, proxy models, deferred fields and some really nice admin improvements. Oh, and the testing framework is now up to 10 times thanks to smart use of transactions. # 29th July 2009, 9:34 am

NASA NEBULA Services (via) NASA’s new NEBULA cloud computing platform appears to be built entirely on open source infrastructure, including Python, Django, Fabric, Eucalyptus, RabbitMQ, Trac and Solr. # 28th July 2009, 12:10 pm

Popfly Shutting Down. Yet another reminder that building stuff on a closed-source platform (especially a hosted service) is risky business, even from a vendor as large as Microsoft. This certainly won’t help them make the case for Azure. # 17th July 2009, 9:32 am

Twenty questions about the GPL. Jacob kicks off a fascinating discussion about GPLv3. # 13th July 2009, 11:59 pm

BBC: Glow (via) The BBC have released Glow, their jQuery-like JavaScript library developed in house over the past few years. It’s open source under the Apache license. # 8th July 2009, 3:25 pm

Yahoo! proposal to open source “Traffic Server” via the ASF. Traffic Server is a “fast, scalable and extensible HTTP/1.1 compliant caching proxy server” (presumably equivalent to things like Squid and Varnish) originally acquired from Inktomi and developed internally at Yahoo! for the past three years, which has been benchmarked handling 35,000 req/s on a single box. No source code yet but it looks like the release will arrive pretty soon. # 7th July 2009, 12:37 pm

From Microsoft: C# and CLI under the Community Promise. Microsoft’s assurance that it won’t “assert its Necessary Claims” against alternative (including open source) implementations of the ECMA C# and CLR specifications. The promise doesn’t cover implementations of .NET, WinForms etc- so the Mono team have announced they will be splitting their project in to two packages—a safe, ECMA based package and a package containing everything else. # 7th July 2009, 11:15 am

Stellarium. Really lovely open source planetarium application, for Linux, OS X and Windows. # 7th July 2009, 12:37 am

EveryBlock source code released. EveryBlock’s Knight Foundation grant required them to release the source code after two years, under the GPL. Lots of neat Django / PostgreSQL / GIS tricks to be found within. # 1st July 2009, 8:01 pm

Software engineers today are about 200-400% more productive than software engineers were 10 years ago because of open source software, better programming tools, common libraries, easier access to information, better education, and other factors. This means that one engineer today can do what 3-5 people did in 1999!

Auren Hoffman # 24th June 2009, 11 am

Let’s try to imagine what a Google Silverlight would have been. It would have been a fully open source product from Google, with a very liberal open source license (BSD or Apache). It would have all the technical specifications published openly. They would pledge to have the Silverlight VM interoperate with Javascript and HTML5. And a company like Zoho would have a ton of developers working on Google Silverlight based applications by now—as opposed to having exactly ZERO developers working on Microsoft Silverlight.

Sridhar Vembu # 7th June 2009, 11:32 am

PostgreSQL Development Priorities. The top two for 8.4 are “Simple built-in replication” and “Upgrade-in-place”, Josh Berkus is seeking feedback on priorities for future work on 8.5. # 28th May 2009, 8:08 pm

djangopeople.net on GitHub. I’ve released the source code for Django People, the geographical community site developed last year by myself and Natalie Downe (it hasn’t otherwise been touched since April last year, so it needs porting to Django 1.1). If you want a new feature on the site, implement it and I’ll see about merging it in. # 4th May 2009, 6:12 pm

Reducing XSS by way of Automatic Context-Aware Escaping in Template Systems (via) The Google Online Security Blog reminds us that simply HTML-escaping everything isn’t enough—the type of escaping needed depends on the current markup context, for example variables inside JavaScript blocks should be escaped differently. Google’s open source Ctemplate library uses an HTML parser to keep track of the current context and apply the correct escaping function automatically. # 14th April 2009, 9:26 am

Ext Core 3.0 Beta Released. The Ext JavaScript team have just released the core library (similar to jQuery or Prototype) under an MIT license. The rich GUI elements that go on top are still under the GPL. # 5th April 2009, 8:17 pm