Press Release

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As posted by User:Neteler . Once established please move this page to Press Release and delete this line.

Press release

Open Source Geospatial Foundation: An umbrella for community-led GIS and mapping projects

The Open Source Geospatial Foundation has been created to support and build high quality open source geospatial software. The foundation's goal is to encourage the use and collaborative development of community-led projects. During a meeting in Chicago structure and vision were defined.

During the meeting a interim Board of Directors was formed. Five project managers were elected from a longer list. They come from North America and Europe and represent various communities along with different technology (C, C++, Java, etc.):

Arnulf Christl - Mapbender/ CCGIS, Germany Chris Holmes - GeoServer, Open Plans, U.S. Gary Lang - MapGuide, Autodesk, U.S. Markus Neteler - GRASS, Istituto Trentino Di Cultura, Italy Frank Warmerdam - GDAL/OGR, Canada

The first set of board members with will be extended by another four members to be selected by the community subsequently.

OSGF membership will be on an individual which is inspired as also other structure elements by the Apache Foundation. For now, the five board members, and 16 other participants in the meeting are members. More are to be added soon to reach the goal of 45, nominations are ongoing. Each nominated person shall be recognized due to her/his contribution in terms of software, documentation, translation or other. From the list of nominations, 24 members will be elected by the current members.

The foundation will only accept projects released under Open Source licenses certified by the Open Source Initiative (OSI). The long term goal is to encourage licenses that allow the different projects to work better together and permit for code exchange among the foundation projects. Means of avoiding the inclusion of proprietary or patented code will be established.

While an initial set of projects was proposed as founding projects, several projects such as Mapserver are currently seeking for a decision within their communities weather to join. Initial OSGF projects are Mapbender, MapBuilder, MapGuide, GDAL/OGR, GRASS, and OSSIM.

The foundation will also be pursuing goals beyond software development, such as promoting more open access to government produced spatial data. Access under reasonable conditions to geospatial data is a major problem outside of Northern America.

Thanks to the use of Internet Relay Chat (IRC) during the meeting, discussions were open to peers outside of the meeting room. The consensus reached at the Chicago meeting paves the way to establish a powerful, inclusive foundation.