SAN FRANCISCO, May 29, 2014 – The Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII), a project hosted by The Linux Foundation that enables technology companies, industry stakeholders and esteemed developers to collaboratively identify and fund open source projects that are in need of assistance, today announced five new backers, the first projects to receive funding from the Initiative and the Advisory Board members who will help identify critical infrastructure projects most in need of support.
CII provides funding for fellowships for key developers to work fulltime on open source projects, security audits, computing and test infrastructure, travel, face-to-face meeting coordination and other support. The Steering Committee, comprised of members of the Initiative, and the Advisory Board of industry stakeholders and esteemed developers, are tasked with identifying underfunded open source projects that support critical infrastructure, and administering the funds through The Linux Foundation.
The computing industry has increasingly come to rely upon shared source code to foster innovation. But as this shared code has become ever more critical to society and more complex to build and maintain, there are certain projects that have not received the level of support commensurate with their importance. CII changes funding requests from the reactive post-crisis asks of today to proactive reviews identifying the needs of the most important projects. By raising funds at a neutral organization like The Linux Foundation, the industry can effectively give these projects the support they need while ensuring that open source projects retain their independence and community-based dynamism.
“All software development requires support and funding. Open source software is no exception and warrants a level of support on par with the dominant role it plays supporting today’s global information infrastructure,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation. “CII implements the same collaborative approach that is used to build software to help fund the most critical projects. The aim of CII is to move from the reactive, crisis-driven responses to a measured, proactive way to identify and fund those projects that are in need. I am thrilled that we now have a forum to connect those in need with those with funds.”
Additional Backers Represent Overwhelming Support for Open Source Projects
Additional founding members of CII include Adobe, Bloomberg, HP, Huawei and salesforce.com. These companies represent the ongoing and overwhelming support for the open source software that provides the foundation for today’s global infrastructure. They join other members of CII who include Amazon Web Services, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Fujitsu, Google, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, NetApp, Rackspace and VMware. Comments from some of the newest members are included below.
Range of Projects Prioritized for First Round of Funding
Upon an initial review of critical open source software projects, the CII Steering Committee has prioritized Network Time Protocol, OpenSSH and OpenSSL for the first round of funding. OpenSSL will receive funds from CII for two, fulltime core developers. The OpenSSL project is accepting additional donations, which can be coordinated directly with the OpenSSL Foundation (contact at [email protected]).
The Open Crypto Audit Project (OCAP) will also receive funding in order to conduct a security audit of the OpenSSL code base. Other projects are under consideration and will be funded as assessments are completed and budget allows.
Esteemed Industry Experts Will Advise CII on Projects Most in Need
The CII Advisory Board will inform the CII Steering Committee about the open source projects most in need of support. With highly esteemed experts from the developer, security and legal communities, the CII Advisory Board plays an important role in prioritizing projects and individuals who are building the software that runs our lives.
Alan Cox is a longtime Linux kernel developer and has been recognized by the Free Software Foundation for advancing free software.
Matthew Green is a Research Professor of Computer Science at the Johns Hopkins University and a co-founder of the Open Crypto Audit Project. His research focuses on computer security and cryptography, and particularly the way that cryptography can be used to promote individual privacy.
“Whether we acknowledge it or not, the security of today's Internet depends on a small number of open source projects. This initiative puts the resources in place to ensure the long-term viability of those projects. It makes us all more secure,” said Green.
Dan Meredith is a director at Radio Free Asia’s Open Technology Fund. He has been an activist and technologist exploring emerging trends intersecting human rights, transparency, global communication policy, the Internet, and information security for over a decade.
Eben Moglen is a professor of law and legal history at Columbia University and is the founder, director-counsel and chairman of Software Freedom Law Center. He is considered the foremost expert on open source legal practices and represents a variety of open source projects and developers.
Bruce Schneier is a fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School and a well-recognized expert on computer security and privacy. He is also a fellow at New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute.
Schneier commented on the Core Infrastructure Initiative: “This is an important step towards improving the security of the Internet. I'm happy to see the technology companies that rely on the security of open source software investing in that security."
Eric Sears is a Program Officer for Human Rights for MacArthur Foundation. His grant-making portfolio includes efforts to strengthen digital free expression and privacy through advancing a more open and secure Internet.
Ted T’so has been recognized as the first Linux kernel developer in North America and today is a file system developer at Google who also works on Kerberos v5 and /dev/random. T’so is also a member of the Internet Engineering Task Force and serves on its Security Area Directorate.
"Adobe believes that open development and open source software are fundamental building blocks for software development," said Dave McAllister, director of open source at Adobe. “The Core Infrastructure Initiative allows us to extend our support through a neutral forum that can prioritize underfunded yet critical projects. We’re excited to be a part of this work.”
“Open source software provides a critical foundation for the technologies we build for our clients,” said Shawn Edwards, CTO, Bloomberg. “We are proud to support the Core Infrastructure Initiative so we can contribute to building the foundational technologies that make future innovation possible.”
“HP strongly believes in the quality of open source software, as evidenced by its use, participation in, and support of open source projects and software,” said Eileen Evans, vice president and deputy general counsel, cloud and open source, HP. “As a member of the Core Infrastructure Initiative, HP will lend its expertise and resources to further improve the technology of open source global information infrastructure, and in particular, work to reduce the likelihood of security-related incidents.”
“Open source software has fueled the advancements we’ve seen over the last decade in cloud and mobile computing,” said Parker Harris, co-founder, salesforce.com. “That is why supporting the Linux Foundation's Core Infrastructure Initiative is an absolute necessity in today’s software industry, and salesforce.com is delighted to contribute to this effort and foster the next generation of open source computing innovation.”
Anyone can donate to the Core Infrastructure Initiative fund. To join or donate or find out more information about the Core Infrastructure please visithttps://www.linuxfoundation.org/programs/core-infrastructure-initiative
About The Linux Foundation
The Linux Foundation is a nonprofit consortium dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux and collaborative software development. Founded in 2000, the organization sponsors the work of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and promotes, protects and advances the Linux operating system and collaborative software development by marshaling the resources of its members and the open source community. The Linux Foundation provides a neutral forum for collaboration and education by hosting Collaborative Projects, Linux conferences, including LinuxCon and generating original research and content that advances the understanding of Linux and collaborative software development. More information can be found at http://www.linuxfoundation.org.
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