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Al Gore's Source Code Volunteer Project

By rongen in News
Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 08:10:33 PM EST
Tags: etc (all tags)

Al Gore seems to have a Source Code Volunteer Project on his website. It's in the spirit of "the Open Source movement".

I found this site as a result of a story submission I was checking out (the PresidentMatch link, awsome!). They seem to be asking people to submit source code to the web-site project to improve the site. I think Al Gore hears "free" and thinks "beer" but it's interesting to see this. The link I followed was on the get involved page where they say:
Since we launched in April, over 100 different suggestions from individual source code volunteers have been implemented on the site, improving the quality of the experience for all who visit it.
No mention of a specific license under which the code will be used but there are numerous suggestion that you contact them for more info. I doubt it's the GPL! :)


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Al Gore's Source Code Volunteer Project | 8 comments (8 topical, editorial, 0 hidden)
Argh. This was (none / 0) (#1)
by rusty on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 06:06:01 PM EST

rusty voted 1 on this story.

Argh. This was on slashdot in April of last year. I thought it was a steaming pile then, and I still do. It'll be interesting to have an update, though, and see what you guys think of this *cough* "Open Source" website.

Not the real rusty

I'd like to hear what others think ... (none / 0) (#2)
by ramses0 on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 06:33:47 PM EST

ramses0 voted 1 on this story.

I'd like to hear what others think about this. I think it's "yet more from the man who invented the internet". Personally, if I supported Gore, I'd ~work~ for him (ie- volunteer). But I *will not* just give my code away because people ask me to. This touches on many issues related to open source: the more purely volunteer projects, the less programmers to spread around.
[ rate all comments , for great justice | sell.com ]

Re: I'd like to hear what others think ... (none / 0) (#6)
by Demona on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 09:48:20 PM EST

Most definitely. This is the sort of "open source" that gives the term a bad name, more akin to free riding. That it comes from an administration that openly advocated mandatory "volunteerism" before students were allowed to receive their otherwise properly earned high school diploma leaves an even worse taste in my mouth. Granted, there is no "right to a high school diploma", and the government that pays for the schools can set whatever rules it likes on them, but such blatant Humpty-Dumptyisms make Orwell look like a piker. ("War is peace; freedom is slavery; ignorance is strength"? Been a while since I've read 1984...)


[ Parent ]

Re: I'd like to hear what others think ... (none / 0) (#7)
by Anonymous Hero on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 10:35:11 PM EST

the more purely volunteer projects, the less programmers to spread around. Well, yes, of course. Then again, most free software projects are actually 1-man things, or even 0.25 man things (like my own). Even in large projects, like the linux kernel, it's rare to see an area with more than 4 or 5 people working in it. Why does this make a difference? Well, because if projects are one-man efforts, and it takes at least one man to start a project, the increase in the number of projects only means there is an increase in the number of people :-)

[ Parent ]
satisfying a need (none / 0) (#8)
by ramses0 on Sun Feb 27, 2000 at 01:29:09 AM EST

You're absolutely right...

Most open source projects are started by one person because they have a -need- to fulfill. It is my opinion (with no basis in experience) that other people join on because

  1. they have that same need, and want to use that software
  2. they are using that software, and want to extend the functionality
  3. the software has become massively popular, and they want their name in the credits. :^)=

I've got my little proggie that I'm working on. 'been plugging away at it for a couple of months now, and I'm still making progress, and will continue until the project reaches completion, but I'm still waiting for people to join on.

Not many seem to be terribly interested in working for free, and I will not ask them to do that. But if they're looking for an outlet for their creative energy, I'm more than willing to provide one.

In Gore's case, I don't feel the -need- for him to be elected, which kindof invalidates the two following reasons right away. :^)=

When corporations suddenly open-source steaming piles of code, it seems like they drown anyone who might be interested, and then they get a bad-tast for open-source, as well as the volunteer hackers, who had a 'bad experience' with ??? company who didn't plan a proper release.

I really don't think that there is an infrastructure for Gore to be targeting here.

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[ Parent ]
Re: satisfying a need (5.00 / 1) (#9)
by rusty on Sun Feb 27, 2000 at 02:26:50 PM EST

Yes. I started scoop because I was unhappy with slash 0.3, and it would be as much work to make slash into something I'd use as it would be to write my own system. I don't really expect, nor have I gotten, any help from anyone else, really. But I do find that when the users (in this case, you) can contact the developers, they always find bugs that I never would have found.

But how far would I have gotten if I had just said "Hey, I need a weblog system which does this, this and this. Please send your code to..." Nowhere. And that seems to be what some people think open-source is all about (*cough* Sun, Al Gore). That just ain't how it works. I think the most important thing about the GPL is that it enforces "share and share alike." I'm not going to say that you must use the GPL, or you're Evil, but for free software I think it has exactly the right spirit. I release my code GPL'ed because I know that everyone can use it, and do what they want with it, but no one can try to get a free ride on the back of my work.

I have a feeling this is totally incoherent. Long night last night. Hopefully I got the point across... :-)

Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]

LOL... (none / 0) (#4)
by Imperator on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 06:39:27 PM EST

Imperator voted 1 on this story.


UGH. Sorry, but the last thing Gore... (none / 0) (#3)
by Demona on Sat Feb 26, 2000 at 06:43:33 PM EST

Demona voted 0 on this story.

UGH. Sorry, but the last thing Gore needs is more free riding on the backs of others.

Al Gore's Source Code Volunteer Project | 8 comments (8 topical, 0 editorial, 0 hidden)
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