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It should go without saying that there is no substitute for face to face collaboration. And what is open source if not the ultimate example of collaboration? Open source events provide a wide range of opportunities for the community to connect, and the end result of all of this is good for the community and good for business.

Over the years, and across more than a hundred events, we’ve learned quite a bit of just what it is that makes events specifically so important to the community. Here are some of those reasons:

1. To advance technology. The world has come to understand that open source collaboration moves technology forward. A lot of work can be accomplished over mailing lists and conference calls, but it still slows the process. Time and time again, we hear from all types of technologists – kernel maintainers to architects, that there is absolutely no substitute for the face time they get at events.

2. To learn how the community works. Not everyone in tech starts in open source, and the open source community is unique. Attending events gives developers, sysadmins, operators, users, executives and other open source players and firsthand look at how the community operates. There is no better way to immerse yourself.

3. To get motivated. Programmers are often portrayed as people who work very independently, coding for long hours at their computers into the wee hours of the night. While the long coding hours part is probably true, programmers aren’t the lone wolfs they are sometimes portrayed as. Everyone wants to feel like they are a part of something bigger, part of a community. This is what drives open source. Attendees frequently tell us that the ability to meet in person with like-minded folks to discuss the projects and technologies they are working on is a huge motivation.

4. To connect directly with the maintainers, committers and key members of projects. One of the biggest benefits of our events that we often hear about is the ability to connect directly with these folks to ask questions and gain knowledge. For example, if a developer wants to start submitting patches to the kernel but wants some information on best practices to be successful at this, what better way to find out than to speak directly to one of the kernel maintainers? There is huge benefit to the growth of the community by being able to engage in person with these people.

5. To cross-pollinate. Some of our events gather together the developers who are building technologies, with the operators that are implementing them, the users that are benefiting from them, and the business leaders making the decisions. It is incredibly important for these groups to be able to connect and events provide that opportunity. For a developer to be able to explain value directly to a business leader? For a user to be able to ask questions or propose a new feature direct to a developer? Only the open source community truly allows this level of collaboration and events are the best place to offer it.

6. To learn about the Latest and Greatest. Technology moves fast. Every time you turn around there are new open source projects, new technologies and new advancements. Events provide an unprecedented ability to learn a ton of new information in a short amount of time, with the added benefit of being able to ask questions real time to the speakers presenting new information and to engage with others to discuss the material, ask questions and brainstorm right away.

7. To have fun. The open source community works hard and sometimes events can be a bit of an information overload, so attendees appreciate the ability to ‘take 5’ while onsite and have a little fun. 5k fun runs, games, evening events with good beer and company; these elements are appreciated by attendees and contribute to a productive experience.

The list of reasons could go on and on. The fact is, events provide different benefits for different attendees. The overarching point, though, remains the same: Events help further collaboration and the advancement of open source technology. If you’re thinking of attending an event, or contemplating sending some of your team to an event, and weighing all the pros and cons of whether you should go, the answer is: go. The knowledge gained, the relationships made, the questions answered – there is no substitute and everyone benefits.

 

You can celebrate the 25th anniversary of Linux with Linus Torvalds and other open source innovators and leaders at LinuxCon North America and ContainerCon this year.

Torvalds, Linux and Git creator and Linux Foundation fellow, will keynote at the event, to be held in Toronto, Canada Aug. 22-24. He’ll be one among many open source innovators and influencers who will gather to discuss and demonstrate the latest in open source technologies beyond Linux.

The keynote speakers will focus on the technologies and trends having the biggest impact on open source development today, including containers, networking and IoT, as well as hardware, cloud applications, and the Linux kernel. See the full schedule, which is now available from The Linux Foundation.

Brian Behlendorf, founder of The Apache Software Foundation will give a keynote this year  in his new role as executive director at the Hyperledger Project. As a primary developer of the Apache Web server, the most popular web server software on the Internet, Behlendorf “changed the web,” says Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin. Now he’s contributing to the next generation of the Internet technology stack, creating a shared, distributed ledger at the Hyperledger Project.  

Joe Beda, entrepreneur in residence at venture capital firm Accel Partners, will also give a LinuxCon keynote this year. Beda, the lead architect of Google Compute Engine who also helped launch Kubernetes, has carte blanche from Accel to come up with new business ideas and will eventually launch his own startup (possibly around Kubernetes.)  

Other keynote speakers include:

  • Abhishek Chauhan, vice president and CTO at Citrix

  • Cory Doctorow, science fiction author, activist, journalist and blogger

  • Dr. Margaret Heffernan, entrepreneur, management expert and author of five books including “BEYOND MEASURE: The Big Impact of Small Changes”

  • Dr. Ainissa Ramirez, science and STEM education evangelist and author of “Save our Science”

  • Jim Whitehurst, president and CEO of Red Hat

  • Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation

LinuxCon will feature more than 150 sessions, ranging from tutorials to deep technical sessions, with new content on the latest kernel updates, DevOps, Professional Open Source Management, networking, hypervisors/virtualization, storage technologies and interfaces, security, Internet of Things and talks related to open source collaboration and best practices.

ContainerCon is a technical conference co-located with LinuxCon to expand the event and bring together leaders in the development and deployment of containers and the Linux kernel to innovate on the delivery of open source infrastructure.

“This year, (LinuxCon) is more than a meeting of the minds,” Zemlin said. “It’s also a celebration of open source software as we mark the 25th anniversary of Linux.”

Those who register by June 5 will save up to $300. This year, LinuxCon and ContainerCon will also feature a Hall Pass option, providing access to the exhibit hall, lounge spaces, evening booth crawl and more for $100.

See the full schedule of speakers or register now to attend LinuxCon North America and ContainerCon.

 

Can’t make it to MesosCon North America this week? The Linux Foundation is pleased to offer free live video streaming of all keynote sessions on June 1-2, 2016.

The Apache Mesos conference going on in Denver is a veritable who’s who from across the industry of those using Mesos as a framework to develop cloud native applications. MesosCon is a great place to learn about how to design application clusters running on Apache Mesos from engineers who have done it.

Tune in at 9 a.m. Mountain Time today, June 1, to watch Benjamin Hindman (@benh), the co-creator of Apache Mesos, give the welcome address. And, at 10:15 MT, Craig Neth (@cneth), distinguished member of the technical staff at Verizon, will walk attendees through how they got a 600-node Mesos cluster powered up and running tasks in 14 days.

On June 2, the event features a special keynote from Matei Zaharia, VP of Apache Spark, and keynotes from Twitter, Mesosphere, and EMC. See the full agenda of keynotes here, and sign up for the livestream. While you watch, we encourage you to join the conversation on Twitter using #mesoscon.

By signing up, you’ll also be the first to get notified when the recordings of the keynotes and more than 50 sessions, become available.

Once you sign up, you’ll be able to view the livestream on this page. If you sign up prior to the livestream day/time, simply return to this page and you’ll be able to view.

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When people talk about cloud native applications you almost inevitably hear a reference to a success story using Apache Mesos as an application delivery framework at tremendous scale. With adoption at Twitter, Uber, Netflix, and other companies looking for scale and flexibility Mesos provides a way to abstract resources (CPU, memory, storage, etc.) in a way that enables distributed applications to be run in fault-tolerant and elastic environments. The Mesos kernel provides access to these abstractions via APIs and scheduling capabilities in much the same way that the Linux kernel does but geared towards consumption at the application layer rather than the systems layer.

Benjamin Hindman (@benh), the co-creator of Apache Mesos, developed the open source powerhouse as a Ph.D. student at UC Berkeley before bringing it to Twitter.  The software now runs on tens of thousands of machines powering Twitter’s data centers and is often credited for killing the fail whale and providing the scale Twitter needed to serve its growing base of over 300 million users. It’s also causing a huge ground swell in companies developing cloud native applications.

Ben, now founder of Mesosphere, will give the welcome address at MesosCon North America, the Apache Mesos conference going on in Denver on June 1-2. This event is a veritable who’s who from across the industry of those using Mesos as a framework to develop cloud native applications.

MesosCon is a great place to learn about how to design application clusters running on Apache Mesos from engineers who have done it like Craig Neth (@cneth), distinguished member of the technical staff at Verizon, who will walk attendees through how they got a 600 node Mesos cluster powered up and running tasks in 14 days.

Your Uber has arrived, thanks to Open Source Software

Traditionally, machines were statically partitioned across the different services at Uber. In an effort to increase the machine utilization, Uber has recently started transitioning most of its services, including the storage services, to run on top of Apache Mesos.

At MesosCon, Uber engineers will describe the initial experience building and operating a framework for running Cassandra on top of Mesos across multiple data centers at Uber. This framework automates several Cassandra operations such as node repairs, the addition of new nodes, and backup/restore. It improves efficiency by co-locating CPU-intensive services as well as multiple Cassandra nodes on the same Mesos agent. And it handles failure and restart of Mesos agents by using persistent volumes and dynamic reservations.

Running Cassandra on Apache Mesos Across Multiple Datacenters at Uber at MesosCon

Microservices, Allowing us to binge watch House of Cards on Netflix

Netflix customers worldwide streamed more than forty-two billion hours of content last year. Service-style applications, batch jobs, and stream processing alike, from a variety of use cases across Netflix, rely on executing container-based applications in multi-tenant clusters powered by Apache Mesos and Fenzo, a scheduler Java library for Apache Mesos frameworks. These applications are consuming microservices that allows Netflix to build composable applications at massive scale.  

Based on the experiences from Netflix projects Mantis and Titus, Netflix Software Engineer Sharma Podila (@podila) will share his experiences running Docker and Cgroups based containers in a cloud native environment.

Lessons from Netflix Mesos Clusters at Mesoscon.

How Microservices are being Implemented at Adobe

Dragos Sccalita Haut is a solutions architect at Adobe’s API Platform, adobe.io, building a high scale distributed API Gateway running in the cloud. He realized that as the number of microservices increase and the communication between them becomes more complicated. This brings new questions to light:

How do microservices authenticate?
How do we monitor who’s using the APIs they expose?
How do we protect them from attacks?
How do we set throttling and rate limiting rules across a cluster of microservices?
How do we control which services allow public access and which ones we want to keep private?
How about Mesos APIs and frameworks, can they benefit from these features as well?

The answer to these questions was using the Mesos API management layer to expose microservices in a secure, managed and highly available way.

Let Dragos teach you to Be a Microservices Hero at MesosCon.

MesosCon in the Mile High City June 1-2

If you are interested in hearing how Apache Mesos is being developed and deployed by the world’s most interesting and progressive companies the place to see this is MesosCon on June 1-2, in Denver. The conference will feature two days of sessions to learn more about the Apache Mesos core, an ecosystem developed around the project, and related technologies. The program will include workshops to get started with Apache Mesos, keynote speakers from industry leaders, and sessions led by adopters and contributors.

 

Starting an open source program office is a growing trend among companies that leverage open source software in their business strategies.

Led by an open source program officer, open source offices can range in size from one or two advocates on an engineering team to an entirely separate R&D division. But the goal is the same: to strategically address common challenges companies face when adopting open source software.

“An open source office whether centralized or by division can bring multiple best practices on how a company can manage consumption, compliance and contribution to open source” says Nithya Ruff, the head of SanDisk’s Open Source Strategy office, in the Q&A below. “It can create a proactive plan for driving more strategic involvement in projects important to the company’s roadmap and drive clear and common messages.”

The TODO group, which became a Linux Foundation project in March, is a cross-industry effort that brings together open source program managers to help establish open source best practices, tools and programs and support corporate open source engagement.

Open source program managers from Twitter, Box, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and SanDisk will be on hand at OSCON May 18-19, 2016, in Austin, Texas, to discuss why they started open source offices at their companies and the lessons they learned along the way.

We caught up with Nithya Ruff for a preview of their panel discussion, “Open source lessons from the TODO Group.”

Be sure to attend the TODO Group talk from 1:50 p.m.–2:30pm on Wednesday, May 18 in Meeting Room 9C.

And visit The Linux Foundation booth #109-2 to collect a wooden Linus Torvalds token for the OSCON open source history game for attendees.

Linux.com: What are some of the common challenges companies face when they start adopting open source?

Nithya Ruff: Companies that have not grown up with open source in their DNA face a number of challenges when they first adopt open source or look at adopting an open source strategy.

a.       They don’t completely understand the licenses and legal obligations and often see it as a single license which would force them to open their intellectual property or trade secrets.  Once they start understanding it more deeply they realize that one can consume without creating obligations and that there are a number of different licenses each with their own obligations.   So legal education is the first challenge.

b.      The second is to create awareness of the need to engage with open source and the need to have a strategy around how the company needs to work with open source communities. This is a strategy and a business discussion with executives and business leaders so that they support the need to have a plan and investment in this effort.  These are the top 2 areas of challenge.

Linux.com: How does creating an in-house open source office help companies maximize their open source involvement?

Ruff: One can continue to engage with open source in an ad hoc and distributed manner but this often creates issues and challenges with messaging, unintended consequences, multiple processes and confusion in the market on company intent.  It could also inadvertently expose a company to compliance risks.  An open source office whether centralized or by division can bring multiple best practices on how a company can manage consumption, compliance and contribution to open source. It can create a proactive plan for driving more strategic involvement in projects important to the company’s roadmap and drive clear and common messages.

Linux.com: What is one of the key lessons SanDisk has learned about corporate open source participation since starting its open source office two years ago?

Ruff: The biggest lesson has been learning about how much open source activity there already was in the company and how we would not have any knowledge of this and support it without starting this initiative.  Knowing consumption and dependencies has allowed us to shape our compliance and community engagement plan.

Linux.com: How have you benefited from your involvement in the TODO Group?

Ruff: Just this week, I needed to know a simple and best practice way to manage contribution license agreements or CLAs.    I contacted my fellow open source officers in other companies via the TOoDOo group and within hours I had two very usable solutions.  This is huge, to be able to consult each other on the best way to do things.  I am a big believer in reuse and to not recreate.  And this was a great example of how we can share practices..   TOoDOo members have been generous in sharing their time and coming to SanDisk to share their practices like Guy Martin (Autodesk) and Cedric Williams (PayPal) did recently. It is impactful to hear from other companies and to learn from their initiatives in open source.  This is one area, where we don’t compete and are happy to share.

Linux.com: What will TODO Group members discuss in your panel at OSCON?

Ruff: Open Source officers in companies are still rare. There are less than 30 of us and we know there is a lot of pent-up need for information on how to set it up.  We will discuss what TOoDOo does, what each of us do at our companies and shed light on helping companies manage their open source efforts successfully.

Linux.com: What else are you looking forward to at OSCON this year? What do you hope to accomplish by attending?

Ruff: I always enjoy attending OSCON as it covers culture and community very well side by side with technical topics.  I look forward to connecting with friends in the community. I am also doing a talk on why it is important to market in open source.  We all need people on the project who can write clearly, tell stories and create awareness.   The business side of open source is a passion and I look forward to sharing this at OSCON this year.

ApacheCon North America and Apache Big Data are coming up in just a few weeks and it’s an event that Apache and open source community members won’t want to miss.

Apache products power half the Internet, manage exabytes of data, execute teraflops of operations, store billions of objects in virtually every industry, and enhance the lives of countless users and developers worldwide. And behind those projects is a thriving community of more than 4,500 committers from around the world.

ApacheCon, the annual conference of The Apache Software Foundation, is the place where all of those users and contributors can meet to collaborate on the next generation of cloud, Internet, and big data technologies.

Here, five attendees of last year’s ApacheCon and Apache Big Data, explain how they benefitted from the conference.  

1. Learn from experienced developers

“You meet the best people around the globe who share the same passion for software and sharing. It’s great listening to experienced senior programmers and the interesting use cases they have been solving.” – Yash Sharma, a contributor to Apache Drill, Apache Calcite, and a committer to Apache Lens.

2. Reach consensus faster

“You’re able to meet with some of the folks and talk about things that may take more time than on the (mailing) lists. You’re able to exchange ideas before bringing them to the community. Face to face can have a huge impact on attitude and interaction moving forward. Sometimes it’s tough to put tone in email, so it’s good to share in a personal manner.” – Jeff Genender, who is involved in several Apache projects including Camel, CXF, ServiceMix, Mina, TomEE, and ActiveMQ.

3. Meet your ecosystem partners

“I had the opportunity to talk with committers and PMC members of other projects that are built on top of Apache jclouds. At the time of ApacheCon we had to make some unpopular decisions such as dropping support for unmaintained providers, or rejecting some pull requests that had little hope to progress, and one of the objectives I had was to directly discuss with the jclouds ecosystem which impact that could have, how the projects could collaborate better, and how we could better align our roadmaps.” – Ignasi Barrera, Chair of Apache jclouds.

4. Explore other open source projects

“For me ApacheCon is all about community. I met so many great people, had a lot of thoughtful conversations, and heard about dozens of very interesting projects I had no idea existed.” – Andriy Redko, who participates in Apache CXF.

5. Meet your family

“Only after the ApacheCon did I understand the real power of Apache. For me, before ApacheCon it was just a group of geeks who try to write awesome code to make the world a better place, but now I feel like I’m a member of a huge family who cares very much for each other. It was like, what it seems to be a code base became home for me and now I’m not just trying to improve the code base but rather to make the family bigger in every aspect.” – Dammina Sahabandu, who’s involved in Apache Bloodhound.

ApacheCon North America and Apache Big Data take place May 11-13 in Vancouver, B.C.

 

Register Now for ApacheCon North America

Register Now for Apache: Big Data

 

Individuals start open source projects because it matters to them. Whether motivated by passion, interest, necessity, curiosity or fame, projects are often started by individuals who want to build better software. Do better work. Have an impact. See their code in the world’s best technology and products.

Because open source today makes up an ever increasing footprint in technology infrastructure and products, we have a responsibility to these individuals and the community and industry at large to support this work and build practices and processes that sustain the world’s greatest shared technologies for the long term.

Part of this work is a shift in thinking, moving away from old world open source questions to new world open source questions. From questions like: Is everything really free and what is an OSS license? To how does my employer integrate OSS into the product development process? Are adequate resources committed to maintaining this project? Open source projects today must meet the level of sophistication companies expect and on which they’re investing their futures.

We can together help ensure this through focusing on new world open source questions and creating a bigger tent — a bigger tent that includes everyone: business managers, users and developers across gender, race and economic class. One that brings open source strategy, tools, training, compliance and more to everyone. We must invest in the open source professional and focus on open source readiness that supports innovative research and development.

This focus is already resulting in big tent outcomes. Outcomes that together we are making possible. Here are just a few.

You can learn more about how The Linux Foundation is working to support open source for decades to come in Jim Zemlin’s complete keynote from The Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit video, below.

And view all 13 keynote videos from Collaboration Summit, held March 29-31 in Lake Tahoe, California.