[OSGeo-Discuss] Supporting new projects

Paul Spencer pspencer at dmsolutions.ca
Sun Sep 30 14:10:22 PDT 2007

I'd like to open a discussion on how OSGeo is (or is not) supporting  
brand new projects.

While at the FOSS4G 2007 conference (awesome job Paul R. and gang), a  
number of new people (new to the conference and/or to me) approached  
me to demonstrate their particular projects and ask how to make them  
Open Source.  This got me thinking about OSGeo's role in fostering  
innovation and giving new projects a chance to get off the ground.

Our current incubation process favours established projects, ones  
that have an established code base, established community, etc.  It  
does not, and arguably should not, be a place to start new projects.

For folks already established in OS and OSGeo, we have established  
communities around ourselves that can be used to attract people to  
new projects that we are spawning - Fusion, for instance.  For  
others, though, there is no such place to launch a new project and to  
try to build the community of users and developers required to build  
a project.  They have no clue where to start.  And I don't feel that  
comfortable telling someone their project is a good idea or not - my  
view of the world is usually quite limited to the things I'm  
interested in and I have no clue if the rest of the community would  
be interested or not.

The FOSS4G conference can be a good place to publicize new projects,  
but I would argue that it is not generally convenient to get to for  
most people in the world and perhaps more difficult for new projects  
to get on the agenda if the presenters are relatively unknown.

It seems to me that there could be a role for OSGeo in providing a  
breeding ground for new projects by providing advice on how to create  
a brand new open source geospatial project, including a home, a  
presence, and some initial marketing to the existing OSGeo communities.

What do others think about this?  Should OSGeo be in the business of  
helping new OSGeo projects get off the ground?



|Paul Spencer                          pspencer at dmsolutions.ca    |
|Chief Technology Officer                                         |
|DM Solutions Group Inc                http://www.dmsolutions.ca/ |

More information about the Discuss mailing list