[Incubator] RE: Is rasdaman suitable/ready for OSGeo incubation?

Baumann, Peter p.baumann at jacobs-university.de
Sat Dec 4 14:11:06 EST 2010

Hi Cameron,

it is true that I am the Principal Architect of rasdaman and also CEO of the company, and both appear side by side on fairs like Intergeo and FOSSGIS. But it appears that we are mixing two different things now.

First issue is provision and maintenance of the open-source rasdaman code. This is warranted by my research group at Jacobs University. I see no difference to any other university-led project here. The fact that there is a company _in addition_ does not at all deteriorate the above statement. 

Which gets me to the second facet of your argument: too few committers. Admitted: As we had discussed, this is the case currently as I am very careful in giving this right to other developers. They need to convince me about their skills, commitment, and ethics first. But we are actively trying to spot suitable candidates, and I hope we will have more committers soon. It is part of our community building, and any OSGeo decision certainly will have impact one or the other way.

So your argument seems to say, in the end, that further external committers need to be found. Totally agreed from my side. Would such a broadening of maintenance settle your concerns?


From: Cameron Shorter [cameron.shorter at gmail.com]
Sent: Saturday, December 04, 2010 4:30 AM
To: Baumann, Peter
Cc: Bruce Bannerman; OSGeo-incubator
Subject: Re: Is rasdaman suitable/ready for OSGeo incubation?

The (possibly incorrect) understanding I have is that you, being one
person, have been the central driver behind rasdaman, sometimes under
the banner of the university and sometimes under your company.

However, my key concern from OSGeo's point of view is that the current
link with a proprietary license will hinder growth of a robust community.
Other OSGeo Incubation members may suggest otherwise.

On 04/12/10 13:51, Baumann, Peter wrote:
> Cameron,
> thanks for all the effort and serious considerations put into your looking at rasdaman. I am very grateful about our discussion - among others, it has shown me that the description provided on www.rasdaman.org needs refinement and clarification. I have attempted to go into that immediately with the "feature matrix" as a start, but other places will have to undergo a check as well.
> About the licensing, let me correct some false impression. The open-source rasdaman code is _not_ maintained by a company, but by a university. So the conclusion that further development of rasdaman would depend on one company is wrong in two respects:
> - it is not one, but two entities supporting rasdaman
> - it is not a company which is the main promoter of open source rasdaman, but a university
> Hope that helps to clarify situation a bit. I feel it very fruitful that now we have come to a discussion, hope we can continue this fruitful exchange.
> Regards,
> Peter
> ________________________________________
> From: Cameron Shorter [cameron.shorter at gmail.com]
> Sent: Saturday, December 04, 2010 12:40 AM
> To: Baumann, Peter; Bruce Bannerman; OSGeo-incubator
> Subject: Is rasdaman suitable/ready for OSGeo incubation?
> I had the pleasure this week of meeting Peter Baumann, the primary
> author behind rasdaman [1], a dual licensed raster processing
> application. Along with Bruce Bannerman, we discussed rasdaman's
> application for OSGeo application (initiated 18 months ago).
> Understandably, Peter noted some frustration by the lack of progress
> moving toward OSGeo Incubation.
> Since talking to Peter, I've looked at rasdaman further, and think that
> rasdaman has some great functionality, but I'm concerned that the
> current dual license will hamper uptake from the open source community.
> Radaman is provided via an open source community edition, and then has
> extensions which are in a proprietary enterprise edition. [2] My concern
> is the dual license will substantially reduce the number of developers
> prepared to grow the rasdaman developer community, as there will be a
> feeling that the prime developer will only maintain and advance the
> enterprise version.
> One of the key goals for incubation is to build a robust developer
> community, with contributors from multiple organisations, and to have
> the project grow sustainably. As it stands, I think that rasdaman's
> licence model will make the project dependent upon the organisation
> offering the enterprise software, which is counter to some of OSGeo
> principles.
> Peter,
> I understand the challenge of finding a suitable business model and
> deciding whether to go down the proprietary or open source route. Yes,
> with Open Source you do get significant marketing reach and having
> others share development costs. Alternatively, with proprietary, you can
> charge for software. If you wish to try to achieve both, then you will
> likely end up having to write most/all software yourself, which doesn't
> align with OSGeo goals of building a robust developer community.
> This may be a reason why people on the incubation committee have not
> pushed rasdaman forward further.
> If you wish to continue with OSGeo incubation, I would suggest
> considering adjusting your licence model.
> [1] http://rasdaman.eecs.jacobs-university.de/trac/rasdaman
> [2] http://rasdaman.eecs.jacobs-university.de/trac/rasdaman/wiki/Features
> --
> Cameron Shorter
> Geospatial Director
> Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
> Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
> Think Globally, Fix Locally
> Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source
> http://www.lisasoft.com

Cameron Shorter
Geospatial Director
Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254

Think Globally, Fix Locally
Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source

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