Subject: Making a CASE for Open Source
From: Rich Morin <>
Date: Tue, 22 Sep 1998 11:24:52 -0700

>>>  This note is being sent to several lists where Open Source types
>>>  hang out.  Please direct any responses to me (,
>>>  NOT to a particular list where you may have seen the note!

I have a 90-minute slot at LINC ( to tackle the
topic of automating the distribution and porting of Open Source packages.
I would like to pull together a panel on this, named:

		    Making a CASE for Open Source

My notion is that we have most of the resources we need to make things
a LOT easier for package developers, porters, and users.  Any proposal
should handle a variety of (UNIXish, at least) platforms and shouldn't
require significant changes in the packages or operating systems.  In
this spirit, here are some possibilities for subtopics:

  *  providing developers with Internet access to port/test machines

	Various institutions (e.g., system vendors) could easily make
	port/test machines available to Open Source developers.  How
	should developers and providers be coordinated, so that each
        will feel safe in sharing machines?

  *  creating multi-port (CVS?) repositories for each package

	If no "Alpha/FreeBSD" port of foobaz is available, having the
	"Intel/FreeBSD" and "Alpha/Linux" versions readily available
        would be a useful starting point!  In addition, keeping track
        of variant ports should benefit the package developer(s).

  *  a "next-generation" build/install system

	The Ports Collection ( is really
	cool, but the underlying software is tied to *BSD.  In addition,
	the system is straining the capabilities of Berkeley make.  What
	features/design would we want in a new, multi-platform version?

  *  infrastructure: bug-reporting, release tracking, web pages, etc.

	If a developer could "register" a package, getting lots of auto-
	magical assistance, we might well see an improvement in the level
	of package support.  What services should be provided centrally?
	What current systems would provide the best starting point?

If these topics are of interest to you, feel free to respond DIRECTLY TO
ME ( with your thoughts.  Indicating interest is not
the same as volunteering to be on the panel, but you may get asked (:-).


Rich Morin, Canta Forda Computer Laboratory | Prime Time Freeware - quality
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