[OSGeo-Discuss] Certification commitee

Helton Uchoa uchoa at geolivre.org.br
Tue Mar 14 11:24:06 PST 2006

Hi Frank,

I think that we can start the work thinking in a issue like "MapServer 
Certified Professional". I believe that "OSGeo Certified Professional" 
is a more complex concern. Let's break the problem in simple (small) 
parts. :)

The "favoritism problem" exists in the best families, so I believe that 
in "OSGeo family" won't be different. There's only a way to minimize 
this problem: define points to a technnical process to choose the next 
software certification, maybe define some prerequisites too. To simplify 
the initial work of certification process we can start choose only one. 
Probably, the most members will choose MapServer.

I believe the creation of certification process is too hard and really 
It will need many months (maybe years :-\ ). But the construction of 
building starts with first floor (a engineer analogy, sorry ;-) ). The 
OpenGEO has worked with FOSS GIS training (MapServer, Geotools, 
GeoServer, JUMP, etc) in Brazil and It has a great interest in make a 
small team with (2 or 3 professionals) to work in certification process 
in OSGeo. Probability others companies will be interest in help this 
project or committee. But certification process is a new area to me, so 
the initial work will be a research about the others (open source) 

I agree that one mission of "certification committee" must be make a 
complete cost analysis to put the process on "road". Yeah, It's not a 
simple work, I know, but someone needs to start.

I'll organize the initial informations in the wiki to start the 



Frank Warmerdam wrote:

> Uchoa,
> I can see some reasons why certification would be desirable, but I'm not
> very clear on details of what would be covered.  I can understand how we
> might have a "MapServer Certified Professional" certification (for 
> instance),
> but could we really have an OSGeo Certified Professional?  That seems 
> awfully
> broad.
> And I'm concerned if we had a certification that was narrow, for instance
> to one or two projects, that it is showing a sort of "project favoritism"
> that we must avoid.  I suppose one approach is that any project that is
> willing to put in the work could have a certification designation.
> My understanding is that it would also take quite a bit of work (ie. 
> many man
> months) to prepare a respectible certification program with testing 
> mechanisms
> and so forth.  Do you have any thoughts on who or how this might be
> accomplished?  Is this something that OpenGEO might be able to take a 
> leading
> role on?
> I wouldn't like to see the foundation pursue certification as a money 
> making
> activity, but I would like to see certification income cover at least the
> hard costs of operating such a program.
> Could you perhaps outline a certification program in the wiki?
> I can see the value of certification in terms of giving companies and
> governments a level of comfort with available expertese and in general
> with raising the visible professionalism of our community.
> Best regards,

Helton UCHOA :: uchoa@{opengeo.com.br;geolivre.org.br;open3dgis.org}
Consultant in Free Software for Geomatics - 55 21 8272-4899
OpenGEO :: On-demand training and solutions :: www.opengeo.com.br
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