Boostnote – Open Source note-taking app for programmers

Boostnote is yet another alternative for taking notes.   This one is an Open Source and is built for developers.  Some of the features – Markdown support, search, cross-platform, works offline.

There is also Boostnote Team edition for, you know, teams.

Google Open Source Website

Google announced its new Open Source website:

Today, we’re launching opensource.google.com, a new website for Google Open Source that ties together all of our initiatives with information on how we use, release, and support open source.

This new site showcases the breadth and depth of our love for open source. It will contain the expected things: our programs, organizations we support, and a comprehensive list of open source projects we’ve released. But it also contains something unexpected: a look under the hood at how we “do” open source.

The site currently features over 2,000 open source projects that Google has released and contributes to.

Mautic: Open Source Marketing Automation Software

Mautic is an Open Source marketing automation software, which provides a whole bunch of functionality around contact tracking, campaign management, mass mailing, landing pages, and more.  It can be self-hosted or used as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).  The source code is on GitHub and licensed under GPLv3.

It provides an API, and is already integrated with a whole lot of services, varying from social networks and instant messengers, to CMSes and CRMs.  Scroll down the Tour page for a comparison table against such alternatives as Marketo, InfusionSoft, Hubspot, Pardot, and Eloqua.

 

Shields.io – quality metadata badges for open source projects

Shields.io provides a large collection of badges that you can use in your project documentation (like README.md over at GitHub or BitBucket), which shows a variety of metrics for the project – latest version, number of downloads, build status, and more.  Pretty much anything that you’ve seen used by any project on GitHub is supported (I couldn’t think of a badge that wasn’t).

Now, if only there was a way to insert these things automatically somehow …

GitHub adds Open Source license descriptions

GitHub added Open Source license descriptions.  This is a tiny, but very useful feature, especially for those people who are not very well versed in the differences between GPL, MIT, BSD, and other licenses.  I wish there was a way to have something like this proprietary applications.  Maybe then people would pay attention to the end user license agreements (EULAs).

GitHub starts the Open Source Guides

GitHub blog is “Announcing Open Source Guides“:

we’re launching the Open Source Guides, a collection of resources for individuals, communities, and companies who want to learn how to run and contribute to open source.

[…]

Open Source Guides are a series of short, approachable guides to help you participate more effectively in open source, whether it’s:

  • Finding users for your project
  • Making your first contribution
  • Managing large open source communities
  • Improving the workflow of your project

These guides aim to reflect the voice of the community and their years of wisdom and practice. We’ve focused on the topics we’ve heard about most, and curated stories from open source contributors across the web.

I think it’s a great idea and I really like the execution too.  Most of what I know about Open Source comes from years of participation, and from reading old books, manuals and licenses – not something that is easy to share with people who are just getting their feet wet.

GitHub’s Open Source Guides are very simple, concise and specific.  And they cover a variety of subjects, not just the legal or technical side of things, but also communications, support, marketing, etc.

Creative Commons beta tests new search

Creative Commons is beta testing a new search implementation.  It helps with finding creative work (mostly images for now) that one can use commercially, modify, adapt, and build upon.  For now, it brings the results from a few different sources that you’d have to search separately before – 500px, FlickrMetropolitan Museum of ArtNew York Public Library, and Rijksmuseum.

I’m sure once the functionality and performance are stabilized, more resources and types of creatives will be added.  After all, Creative Commons works with quite a few platforms.

Oh, and if you’ve spent the last few years in a cave and don’t know what Creative Commons is all about, here are a couple of links for you:

Via WordPress Tavern.

 

Maintainers Don’t Scale

Daniel Vetter, one of the Linux kernel maintainers, shares some thoughts on why maintainers don’t scale, what it takes to do the job, what has changed recently and what needs to change in the future.

This reminded me of this infographic, which depicts a year (even though back in 2012 – probably much busier these days) for another kernel maintainer – Greg Kroah-Hartman.  Note that the number of emails does not include the messages on the Linux kernel mailing list (LKML), which is in its own category of busy:

The Linux kernel mailing list (LKML) is the main electronic mailing list for Linux kernel development, where the majority of the announcements, discussions, debates, and flame wars over the kernel take place. Many other mailing lists exist to discuss the different subsystems and ports of the Linux kernel, but LKML is the principal communication channel among Linux kernel developers. It is a very high-volume list, usually receiving about 1,000 messages each day, most of which are kernel code patches.

Open Source Lawyer as a Career

OpenSource.com runs this article on “What to know before jumping into a career as an open source lawyer“.  Whether or not you are planning to take that path, the article has a few interesting links and quotes.

Recently, at work, we’ve been trying to get a hold of a lawyer with Open Source experience.  Just for the consultation or two.  I wasn’t very optimistic about it, as I had a feeling those are rare beasts.  My suspicion was confirmed to a degree.  But this article reaffirms it even further:

Only a few dozen new grads a year are hired to do anything even vaguely involving open source. Only a few dozen lawyers in the entire world dedicate more than a quarter of their time to open source. Only a lucky handful, like those at Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) and Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC), work primarily directly for communities and volunteer developers.

The article also links to a couple of books on the subject, which I’m pretty sure I’ll need to buy and read soon, unless we find somebody who is actually a lawyer and has done some work in Open Source space.

The first one is “The Tech Contracts Handbook: Cloud Computing Agreements, Software Licenses, and Other IT Contracts for Lawyers and Businesspeople“.

The Tech Contracts Handbook is a practical, user-friendly reference manual and training guide on cloud computing agreements, software licenses, and other IT contracts. It’s a clause-by-clause “how to” resource, covering the issues at stake and offering negotiation tips and sample contract language.

The Handbook is for both lawyers and businesspeople — including contract managers, procurement officers, in-house and outside counsel, salespeople, and anyone else responsible for getting IT deals done. Perhaps, most important, it uses clear, simple English, like a good contract.

Topics covered include:

  • Software-as-a-service (SaaS) subscriptions
  • Warranties and service level agreements (SLA’s)
  • Data security and privacy
  • Indemnities
  • Disaster recovery (DR)
  • Non-competes
  • Limitations of liability
  • Clickwraps
  • Open source software
  • Nondisclosure agreements (NDA’s) and confidentiality
  • Technology escrow
  • Copyright and other intellectual property (IP) licensing
  • Internet and e-commerce contracts
  • And much more …

The second one is “A Primer on Intellectual Property Licensing“.

A PRIMER ON INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LICENSING (Second Edition) is a compact, practical guide to one of the most dynamic and popular areas of legal practice today-intellectual property licensing. Developed by an attorney in private practice who specializes in Silicon Valley technology licensing, this guide presents the basic rules of law you need to know for a licensing practice, along with helpful examples of contractual language, practice tips, and insights on custom and practice in the industry. This textbook is appropriate for a law school or business school seminar, or for practicing attorneys who wish to expand their practice into this exciting field. Individual chapters from this text are also available for seminars and CLE presentations (in electronic format).

GPL defense issues

A friend sent me a link to this email from Linus Torvalds to the Kernel Summit Discussion mailing list.  The subject of the conversation is the General Public License (GPL) and whether or not it should be enforced in courts.  Read the whole thing – it’s quite interesting.  Here are a few snippets just to get you started:

Let’s be clear about this: lawsuits destroy. They don’t “protect”.

Lawsuits destroy community. They destroy trust. They would destroy all the goodwill we’ve built up over the years by being nice.

And then this:

Because lawsuits – and even threats of lawsuits – makes companies way less likely to see you as a good guy. Even when you’re threatening
somebody else, everybody else around the target starts getting really
really antsy.

I talked to an Oracle lawyer a few months ago, and told him their
lawsuit just makes Oracle look bad. The lawyer was dismissive, and
tried to explain how it’s silly how people take lawsuits personally,
and talked about how layers _understand_ that lawsuits aren’t
personal, and that they are still friends outside the court.

I’m sure a lawyer can “understand” how lawsuits aren’t actually
something personal at all, but lawyers really seem to be the *only*
people who “understand” that.

The fact is, lawsuits (and threats of lawsuits) do not make for
friends. You just look like a bully.