The origins of free software mean that resources for hackers abound, including those working in companies. But help for the other side of the equation – the managers of those coders and their code – is far thinner on the ground. That makes the creation of FOSSBazaar particularly welcome:
FOSSBazaar is a workgroup of the Linux Foundation, a 501c6 nonprofit organization. It is a community and knowledge-base that is provided to support open communication between FOSS users and experts. Best practices are discussed for topics such as: acquiring and deploying FOSS, defining policies for FOSS governance, developing and implementing processes to execute FOSS policy, and finding tools and other resources for process implementation. Current events that affect FOSS are also discussed. It is supported by FOSSBazaar.org, a collaborative environment site aiming at capturing the benefits and minimizing the risks of FOSS. FOSSBazaar provides a link to its sister site FOSSology.org, which is hosting FOSS Governance software and related documentation.
FOSSBazaar is spearheaded by HP and includes several industry leaders in open source service providers and projects. This is the first open community web site that is dedicated to FOSS governance and issues related to selection, acquisition, and deployment in organizations.
The purpose of FOSSBazaar is to serve as a resource for information related to FOSS governance. Managers in business, government, and education who want to assess the benefits and risks associated with using FOSS in their IT environments, can find useful information to get started or enhance FOSS governance practices.
One striking aspect of the site is the way that it is organised around practical issues. So, for example, there is a section called “FOSS Governance Fundamentals”, as well as a series of forums, topics and resources. It's still early days, but on the basis of what's there now, this site has the potential to become one of the main hubs offering help for those managing the introduction and oversight of enterprise open source.