Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Proclamation for the Apache Software Foundation [feedly]

A Proclamation for the Apache Software Foundation
// MS Open Tech

ASF City of Austin ProclomationLast week was ApacheCon, the official conference of the Apache Software Foundation. Here are my takeaways from the event.

First off, we should all sing happy birthday, twice. It is the 15th anniversary of the foundation itself and 20th anniversary of the Apache Web Server project, which started it all. In celebration of these anniversaries, the City of Austin Mayor Steve Adler proclaimed April 13-16 as Apache Software Days. I had the honor of reading this proclamation (pictured right) during my "State of the Feather" plenary.

The foundations longevity is evidence that the collaborative development model known as the Apache Way provides immense value to the IT industry as a whole. The Apache Way seeks to ensure that Apache projects are managed for the public good rather than any sub-set of the public. I am immensely proud of my small part in the Apache Software Foundation. More importantly, I applaud all those who have contributed to an Apache project over the last 20 years. Those contributors make the Apache Software Foundation and its projects successful.

ApacheCon US 2015 (Keynotes)It was wonderful to hear a keynote from one of the founders of the foundations, Brian Behlendorf. His talkwas titled "What's Still Awesome About The ASF And Where It Needs To Go From Here" and explored how the initial the Apache Group found their practical process of "rough consensus and running code" through a strong collaborative community resulted in the natural emergence of good code. This initial process became the Apache Way, which all Apache projects adopt today. You can watch a video on YouTube.

Other keynotes of note came from Gina Likins ("How to Thoroughly Insult and Offend People in Your Open Source Communities"), Jay Schmelzer ("20 Years of Valuable Lessons for the World") and Andy Terral ("The Communities of Data Science: An Outsider's Viewpoint"). All keynote videos are available on YouTube, each is just a 30 minute session and each is well worth your time.

It is worth highlighting the Jay Schmelzer keynote in particular since Jay is a Microsoft colleague. His session looked at the value the ASF has brought to the IT industry as a whole and, more specifically, how it has influenced the creation of the .Net Foundation. It was great to hear how the tried and tested Apache approach to open source community development is at the heart of the .Net Foundation.

There were a number of sessions from myself and my Microsoft colleagues. I discussed the idea of using Virtual Machines (or Containers) to help with community development in open source projects. I'll post on this topic later this week. A couple of my Microsoft colleagues also presented, Eric Mittelette discussed "Cordova: Are Universal Apps Enough?" which looked at how the Microsoft concept of a Universal App applies in in a Cordova environment. Ivan Judson covered "Innovating on Big Data Analytics with the Community, the Enterprise Cloud, and the User" which looked at HD Insight on Linux, a Microsoft Big Data solution built on the Apache Hadoop family of projects.

In total there were more than 120 in-depth sessions across sixteen tracks that included Big Data, Business, Cloud, Containers, Content, Integration, Mobile, OFBiz/Open Source ERP, Science, and Security. Presentation slides, images, and conference recap are available on the conference website.

ApacheCon Austin US (Social)Naturally, there were also plenty of community focussed events. These included BarCamp Apache, numerous Hackathons, MeetUps and Birds of a Feather sessions together with the ever-popular Lightning Talks. Not to mention the many social opportunities this excellent event presents.

As you might imagine it is very hard to cover all 200+ Apache Projects at the conference. As a result there are an increasing number of co-located events that use the same space but are hosted in the days following ApacheCon. These tend to focus on specific Apache projects. This time around these included CloudStack Days, Ignite Training Session, Spark Forum, and Traffic Server Summit.

As ever ApacheCon was a fantastic event. The range of technologies covered is amazing and the quality of talks is exceptionally high. I am already looking forward to the next one in Budapest, Sept 28 – Oct 1 (The CFP opens soon).


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