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This document is an outline representing a generic "Introduction to OSGeo" sort of presentation. Our intention here is not to actually provide the presentation, but rather to provide fodder which can be mashed into a real slide deck -- obviously, different people will have different needs and styles of presenting. For example, we might have a house mix, a 12" dance mix, a spoken word version, etc.

Note: I have omitted the usual "Open Source is a Good Thing(tm)" slide from this set, as that topic deserves a whole presentation all its own...

Bold is used for content to be customized by the mixer.

Italics is used for content still tobe developed.


insert cutsie title here



Rationale for Existence

Why does the world need OSGeo? Let us count the ways...

  • promote the use of open source GIS software
  • promote and make available open/free GIS data
  • provide a "home" for inter-project collaboration
  • provide a legal framework for OS protection
  • provide a funding source for projects
  • provide branding -- community sense of quality assurance
  • promote and make available free/open GIS data
  • CC-based means for curriculum development and education
  • promote standards-based, interoperable sortware

need to break these down into categories better - maybe Developers, Users, Community, etc

Our Charter

Short Version:

"To support the development of open source geospatial software, and promote its widespread use."

Long Version:

"The Open Source Geospatial Foundation, or OSGeo, is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to support and promote the collaborative development of open geospatial technologies and data. The foundation provides financial, organizational and legal support to the broader open source geospatial community. It also serves as an independent legal entity to which community members can contribute code, funding and other resources, secure in the knowledge that their contributions will be maintained for public benefit. OSGeo also serves as an outreach and advocacy organization for the open source geospatial community, and provides a common forum and shared infrastructure for improving cross-project collaboration."

Origins / History


do we want to say anything about how we grew out of the MapServer group, etc? is that relevant at all?

Chicago Meeting

In February of 2006, Autodesk spnsored a meeting in Chicago to discuss forming an organization dedicated to open source and GIS.

  • 25 attendees, from all parts of the GIS world
  • big corporate, small corporate, non-profit, existing OS projects, education, ...

At the end of a long day, "The Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo)" was formed:

  • initial board
  • initial charter and goals
  • initial set of projects to participate


After only six months:

  • OSGeo is a formal non-profit organization
  • we have a functioning board and many active members
  • we have initial funding and a budget
  • we have several active, mature open source projects
    • GDAL/OGR
    • GeoTools
    • GRASS
    • Mapbender
    • MapBuilder
    • MapGuide Open Source
    • MapServer
    • OSSIM
  • we had a very successful "launch event" at Where 2.0 (June 2006)
  • we have already had a presence (speakers, booths) at several industry events

And, we're getting much attention and inquiries from other organizations, users, developers, etc.

The Organization


OSGeo has a board of nine members, which charters and oversees the activities of the various projects.

  • Frank Warmerdam, Chair (GDAL)
  • Arnulf Christl (CCGIS)
  • Chris Holmes (The Open Planning Project)
  • Gary Lang (Autodesk)
  • Mark Lucas (affiliation)
  • Dave McIllhagga (DM Solutions)
  • Markus Neteler (affiliation)
  • Venkatesh Raghavan (affiliation)
  • Jo Walsh (affiliation)


OSGeo has three catagories of membership:

  • "Participants" are those who contribute code to the various projects, subscribe to the mailing lists, etc. No sign-up requirements; not registered on the web site; everyone is welcome.
  • "Members" have same level of participation as "Participants", but have explicitly registered on the website. +1200 as of May 2006.
  • Charter Members have additional responsibility to elect the board, so as to maintain the integrity of the foundtion's charter. There are currently 45 charter members.


OSGeo operates as a federation of "projects", all under the supervision of the board.

Currently charted projects include:

  • "Foundtion" projects
    • Fundraising
    • Visibility/Promotion
    • Incubation
  • Development projects
    • (listed below)
  • Other projects (I don't like the classification "other" very much)
    • Public Geospatial Data
    • Education and Curriculum

(these are described in more detail below)

Code Projects

for each project: short description of project, year started, couple punchy points, screen shot











MapGuide Open Source






Incubation Process

OSGeo has an "incubation process" for new projects entering the foundation.

This process serves several goals:

  • does the project has a mature, stable organizational structure?
  • does (or will) the project have a viable development and/or community built around it?
  • can the provenance of the source code be verified?
  • verify a framework exists to ensure OSI-compliance of committed code

Public Geospatial Data Committee

  • Promote the use of open geospatial formats
  • Promote public access to state-collected geodata
  • Run a repository of open geodata
  • Present and explain licenses for public geodata

Education and Curriculum Committee

"The project aims at creating and promoting educational and curriculum material that supports the goals of the Foundation. The intent is to provide appropriately licensed material that is accessible by a broad audience including academia, professionals, and the general public. Material supported through this project should directly or indirectly build and strengthen the open source geospatial user and developer communities. This can be accomplished by integrating the use of OSGeo endorsed tools in curricula that teach geospatial concepts and applications as well as the creating curricula to teach skills necessary for people to actively participate in supported OSGeo software and data projects. The committee seeks strong cooperation with academic research projects."

Focus areas:

  • Educational Resources - materials for educators
  • OSGeo in Research - outreach to the research community
  • Core Curriculum Project - development of OSGeo-based training materials

Local Chapters and Interest Groups

OSGeo already has a number of affiliated groups and chapters, designed to foster community around a specific application domain, geographic region, language, etc.

Example: we have a active subset of members in Germany (and German-speaking locales), working together to support and promote open source GIS development, e.g. at German-language tradeshows.

Such local chapters can also aid in translation of materials. Example: a recent press release was quickly translated into seven different langauges, just based on a quick call for volunteers.

Outreach Efforts

Specific Things


Fundraising Efforts

Call to Action

membership, donations'


links here



Backup/Extra Material

Tyler's Brochures

one slide per each

Listing of 45 Charter Members

Page Showing All Project Logos

Picture Montage

picture of booth at Where, picture of members at Where, ???

Membership Map

do we have one yet?

FAQ / Mics

difference between OSGeo and OGC