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Linux 2003
Conference and Tutorials
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Thurs 31st July - Sun 3rd August 2003
Edinburgh, Scotland

Sandro Zic - ZZ/OSS Information Networking

Software for Open Communities

Paper (PDF) and Paper (sxi) and Paper (HTML)

"Software for Open Communities" aka "oc4ware", is being developed to solve the shortcomings of currently available content management systems and will provide an open source infrastructure for distributed content creation and retrieval in collaborative online teams. The basic aim of oc4ware is to offer a free infrastructure to publish, discuss, acquire, combine, and assess the content available on the internet. The software is being developed mainly with PHP, Java, and XML/XSLT.

One motivation behind oc4ware is the same as for open source projects: free access and involvement of all interested participants. oc4ware provides the future means for knowledge workers e.g. scientists and educators, to use the internet like programmers already do. This way, society can profit from basic ideas and good practice of open source projects and a broader understanding and acceptance of open source can be generated.

The Open Communities Project (oc4 project) provides a free knowledge network on the Web and runs on oc4ware. The Open Communities Society located in Tübingen, Germany, maintains most portals for this network and is supported by IT companies, universities, Free and Open Source Software developers etc. This new kind of public/private partnership offers free knowledge Web sites to universities and schools to publish and discuss scientific or educational material. Currently the library of the University of Tübingen implements the Tübingen Open Publishing and Information Community (TOPIC) portal to allow new users to register for the oc4 project.


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