Stories about creating, adopting, and sharing open source solutions. • 12 Stories
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Justin Dorfman

Umpires of open source licenses

Many developers have the misconception that “if a project is on GitHub or GitLab, it’s open source.” However, without a license, the source code is, by default, subject to copyright and not open source. Even if a project has a LICENSE file, it could still be an imposter if it doesn’t provide the rights outlined in the open source definition. This is why open source has established an umpire for open source licenses. If you don’t know the difference between “open source” software and “source available” software, it’s time to fix that.

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5 tips for choosing the right open source database

Choosing the right open source database is an important decision. Start by asking the right questions. All too often, people put the cart before the horse, making decisions before really understanding their needs. Solid tips by Barrett Chambers. Here’s another one courtesy of yours truly: Start your database selection journey by asking yourself, “Why not use PostgreSQL?” 😉

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This is how I coined the term "open source"

Corroborated here and here (kinda). This quote from Christine Peterson is like a mic drop. The introduction of the term “open source software” was a deliberate effort to make this field of endeavor more understandable to newcomers and to business, which was viewed as necessary to its spread to a broader community of users. The problem with the main earlier label, “free software,” was not its political connotations, but that—to newcomers—its seeming focus on price is distracting. A term was needed that focuses on the key issue of source code and that does not immediately confuse those new to the concept. The first term that came along at the right time and fulfilled these requirements was rapidly adopted: open source. Thank you Christine for sharing this much needed history of how we got here.

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What Is a Blockchain Smart Contract?

If you’re new to or learning more about blockchain, this is a great post that breaks down the semantics of what a blockchain smart contract is and is not. Mike Bursell: The first thing to know about blockchain smart contracts is that there isn’t a contract, they aren’t smart, nor are they necessarily on a blockchain. Smart contracts could, I suppose, be smart, but for me, that means complex and able to react to unexpected or unlikely situations. I think that people call them “smart” because they’re embodied in code.

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