Reflections on one year of |

Reflections on one year of

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A year ago today, we turned on the lights at

Our hope a year ago was to create a place where people could gather to learn about and contribute to the growing movement toward applying open source principles beyond the software industry.

You have shared your stories about how open source principles are changing your world and the world around us.

So I want to say thank you. Thanks to the community of readers and writers who have offered their time, comments, suggestions, articles, and tweets--all to make the site a success. You helped us share more than 500 stories that highlight places where the open source way impacts businesses, government, education, the law, and our lives.

Dozens of you contributed articles--from students leading open source in their schools to luminaries like Gary Hamel, Tim O’Reilly, and Simon Phipps. These articles were read a combined 1.3 million times by over 500,000 different people. Just a few of the stories we learned about:

  • How open source is having a positive impact on education. In the article series Introducing students to the world of open source," we learned how one group of college students spent two days immersed in the culture and code of the open source community.
  • How open source principles are being used to help organizations innovate. Henry Chesbrough, who quite literally wrote the book on open innovation in 1995, gave a fascinating webcast presentation led by Gary Hamel. Chesbrough spoke about how companies are changing how they innovate based on openness, collaboration, and meritocracy.
  • How openness begets more openness. Elphel is an open source camera used for NASA projects and for Google Street View. Fans used it to develop a high-definition, open, digital cinema camera that could be built affordably. "Apertus: The open source cinema project" tells the story behind that project, named based on the word for "openness" in Latin.

I’ve enjoyed following the organizations and initiatives I've discovered on the pages of You've taught one another, inspired ideas, and created new leaders who have emerged through their participation in the site.

This community has helped plant the seeds, yet there is much left to do. The door is open for the open source way to bring success to non-technology companies, as well as to schools, universities, governments—to the world. I eagerly await the day the open source way becomes the rule rather than the exception. Our hope will be to provide a place where we can shine a light on the progress along the way.


About the author

Jim Whitehurst - Jim Whitehurst is President and Chief Executive Officer of Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of open source enterprise IT products and services. With a background in business development, finance, and global operations, Whitehurst has proven expertise in helping companies flourish—even in the most challenging economic and business environments. Since joining Red Hat in 2008, Whitehurst has grown the company, and its influence on a variety of industries, by reaching key milestones—the most...