Posts tagged "standards"

March 15, 2013

Open Source and the OpenStand Principles




Last week, March 9, I had the privilege of representing Adobe at the Open Futures reception and meet up at SXSW, hosted by IEEE, W3C, Cisco and Adobe. The event was fun, full of excitement and indicative of the importance standards play in our ever-changing interconnected world. The event was in support of OpenStand, a movement dedicated to promoting a set of principles that enable standards to keep pace with technology and provide access to all.




The OpenStand principles are five in number. They reflect common sense dedicated to the advancement of technology based on merit. In short, the principles are:

  1. Cooperation among standards organizations
  2. Adherence to due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in development
  3. Commitment to technical merit, interoperability, competition, innovation and benefit to humanity
  4. Availability of standards to all
  5. Voluntary adoption

These principles, the Modern Paradigm for Standards have empowered the rapid development of the Internet and the World Wide Web.

In 1993, when Adobe released the Portable Document Format, the decision was made that the specification would be free for all to use.  In 2008, Adobe worked to ensure that the newly published ISO 32000-1 standard for PDF would remain free for all to use.

The principles of OpenStand are embedded into Adobe culture and into the mindset of our decisions concerning standards and specifications.  Adobe has and will continue to contribute to the creation of innovative activities and standards, as evidenced in this blog from the Corporate Standards group.

So how does this apply to open source? Obviously open source software both exists and innovates on standards. Many standards, as they innovate, use open source implementations to power the definition of the emerging specification. Witness such work as WebKit, OSGi and work within CSS. Emerging efforts tying open source to standards development are showing up in an ever increasing number of standards development organizations such as ECMA. Particularly but not limited to web standards, Adobe is actively involved in innovation to standards as well as open source projects in support of emerging technology

It is in the best interest of open source developers, be they individuals or corporations, that the principles of OpenStand be accepted and promoted. Open source developers lose when access to standards is limited and/or costly. Open source implementations win when access to the specification is freely and readily available, to allow creation of the best possible implementation to adhere to standards adopted worldwide. Open source implementations in turn drive innovation and create new markets, emerging technologies, on a worldwide level.

Not only open source developers but also foundations based on open source should recognize and support these principles. It is important that Linux distributions be able to offer compliant communications standards. It is important that browsers such as WebKit, Chrome or Opera support the appropriate standards. It is in the best interest of foundations such as Apache Software Foundation, Linux Foundation and Eclipse Foundation support the transparency, voluntary adoption and availability of standards to all.

Likewise, it is in your best interest to go look over the Modern Paradigm for Standards and decide if you can support these five principles promoting market driven standards that are global and open, to drive innovation for the benefit of all.

Cat looking up at Blog (Nero, to be precise)

8:03 AM Permalink
September 1, 2011

“Open” What?

Has the meaning of how we use “open” become diluted? 

Way back in the day, when arguments about “Free Software” were around “free as in speech” or “free as in beer”., a new phrase was coined to avoid the issues around free. And thus Open Source was born.

Ever since then we’ve been seeing more activities attached to open. Off the top of my head I can think of:

  • Open Source
  • Open Standards
  • Open Specifications
  • Open Core
  • Open Ecosystem
  • Open API
  • Open Governance
  • Open Data
  • Open Code
  • Open Development
  • Free/Libre Open Source Software
  • Open Community
  • Open Roadmaps
  • Open Surface (my new personal pet peeve. Why would we need this?)
And I’m sure I missed many of them.  (Feel free to add to the list in the comments).
There’s a great cartoon floating around the net somewhere. Two guys (circa Mad Men (early 60’s for the televison impaired)are talking. One says, “Just put Open Source in front of it. Trust me, I’m in PR”.
So, is there a clear meaning for open? Do we need a meaning, definition or measurement of open? Is open of and for the “community” or is it related to license, a copyright?
In the past I’ve been adverse to the idea of defining open (in the context we are discussing here). More recently, when I thought about it, while listening to a keynote at OSCON, I decided that the term had become meaningless.
Now, I’m undecided.
If we have a meaning, then we can measure the way companies and communities approach openness. And that can aid in leveraging openness within those companies. Atfer all, no one likes to lose.
So, what do you assume when you see “Open [fill-in-the-blank]? Let me know.
1:06 PM Permalink