Open collaboration

Open collaboration is "any system of innovation or production that relies on goal-oriented yet loosely coordinated participants who interact to create a product (or service) of economic value, which they make available to contributors and noncontributors alike."[1] It is prominently observed in open source software, but can also be found in many other instances, such as in Internet forums,[2] mailing lists[3] and online communities.[4] Open collaboration is also thought to be the operating principle underlining a gamut of diverse ventures, including bitcoin, TEDx, and Wikipedia.[5]

Open collaboration is the principle underlying peer production, mass collaboration, and wikinomics.[1] It was observed initially in open source software, but can also be found in many other instances, such as in Internet forums,[2] mailing lists,[3] Internet communities,[4] and many instances of open content, such as creative commons. It also explains some instances of crowdsourcing, collaborative consumption, and open innovation.[6]

Riehle et al. define open collaboration as collaboration based on three principles of egalitarianism, meritocracy, and self-organization.[7] Levine and Prietula define open collaboration as "any system of innovation or production that relies on goal-oriented yet loosely coordinated participants who interact to create a product (or service) of economic value, which they make available to contributors and noncontributors alike." [1] This definition captures multiple instances, all joined by similar principles. For example, all of the elements — goods of economic value, open access to contribute and consume, interaction and exchange, purposeful yet loosely coordinated work — are present in an open source software project, in Wikipedia, or in a user forum or community. They can also be present in a commercial website that is based on user-generated content. In all of these instances of open collaboration, anyone can contribute and anyone can freely partake in the fruits of sharing, which are produced by interacting participants who are loosely coordinated.

An annual conference dedicated to the research and practice of open collaboration is the International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration (OpenSym, formerly WikiSym).[8] As per its website, the group defines open collaboration as "collaboration that is egalitarian (everyone can join, no principled or artificial barriers to participation exist), meritocratic (decisions and status are merit-based rather than imposed) and self-organizing (processes adapt to people rather than people adapt to pre-defined processes)."[9]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Levine, Sheen S., & Prietula, M. J. (2013). Open Collaboration for Innovation: Principles and Performance. Organization Science, doi:10.1287/orsc.2013.0872
  2. ^ a b Lakhani, Karim R., & von Hippel, Eric (2003). How Open Source Software Works: Free User to User Assistance. Research Policy, 32, 923–943 doi:10.2139/ssrn.290305
  3. ^ a b Jarvenpaa, S. L., & Majchrzak, Ann (2008). Knowledge Collaboration Among Professionals Protecting National Security: Role of Transactive Memories in Ego-Centered Knowledge Networks. Organization Science, 19(2), 260-276 doi:10.1287/orsc.1070.0315
  4. ^ a b Faraj, S., Jarvenpaa, S. L., & Majchrzak, Ann (2011). Knowledge Collaboration in Online Communities. Organization Science, 22(5), 1224-1239, doi:10.1287/orsc.1100.0614
  5. ^ "Open collaboration leading to novel organizations - KurzweilAI".
  6. ^ Levine, Sheen S.; Michael J. Prietula (2013-12-30). "Open Collaboration for Innovation: Principles and Performance". Organization Science: 131230050407004. arXiv:1406.7541. doi:10.1287/orsc.2013.0872. ISSN 1047-7039. Retrieved 2014-08-31.
  7. ^ Riehle, D.; Ellenberger, J.; Menahem, T.; Mikhailovski, B.; Natchetoi, Y.; Naveh, B.; Odenwald, T. (March 2009). "Open Collaboration within Corporations Using Software Forges" (PDF). IEEE Software. 26 (2): 52–58. doi:10.1109/MS.2009.44. ISSN 0740-7459.
  8. ^ "About". The International Symposium on Open Collaboration.
  9. ^ ". Dirk Riehle. "Definition of Open Collaboration". The Joint International Symposium on Open Collaboration. Retrieved 2013-03-26. Open collaboration is collaboration that is egalitarian (everyone can join, no principled or artificial barriers to participation exist), meritocratic (decisions and status are merit-based rather than imposed) and self-organizing (processes adapt to people rather than people adapt to pre-defined processes).

AppStream is an agreement between major Linux vendors (i.e. Red Hat, Canonical, SUSE, Debian, Mandriva, etc.) to create an infrastructure for application installers on Linux and sharing of metadata.The project describes itself as: "an initiative of cross-distro collaboration, which aims at creating an unified software metadata database, and also a centralized OCS (Open Collaboration Services) user-contributed content database, thus providing the best user experience."

With the 0.6 release, the scope of the project was expanded to include more metadata for other software components, such as fonts, codecs, input-methods and generic libraries, which will allow applications to query information about software which is available in a distribution in a distribution-independent way. This enhances the quality of data displayed in software-centers, but also makes it possible for 3rd-party application installers like Listaller to find the components a new application needs to run in the distribution's package database. Additionally, the new metadata allows easier installation of prerequisites needed to build software in the first place, as well as matching upstream applications with distribution packages and matching packages across distributions, which might improve the process of exchanging patches.

Apple Open Collaboration Environment

Apple Open Collaboration Environment, or AOCE (sometimes OCE), was a collection of messaging-related technologies introduced for the classic Mac OS in the early 1990s. It included the PowerTalk mail engine, which was the primary client-side interface to the system; the PowerShare mail server for workgroup installations; and a number of additional technologies such as Open Directory, encryption and digital signature support.

AOCE/PowerTalk was heavily marketed between 1993 and 1995, but the hardware requirements meant that most users couldn't even install it, let alone use it. Developers were likewise stymied by the complex system, and since the installed base was so small their potential sales were even smaller. In 1996 Apple Computer quietly dropped their efforts to market AOCE, and the project quickly disappeared.

Dariusz Jemielniak

Dariusz Jemielniak (born March 17, 1975, Warsaw, Poland) is a full professor of management, the head of the Center for Research on Organizations and Workplaces (CROW), and a founder of New Research on Digital Societies (NeRDS) group at Kozminski University. His interests revolve about critical management studies, open collaboration projects (such as Wikipedia or F/LOSS), narrativity, storytelling, knowledge-intensive organizations, virtual communities, organizational archetypes, all studied by interpretive and qualitative methods. In 2015, he was elected to the Wikimedia Foundation board of trustees.

Frank Karlitschek

Frank Karlitschek (born 25 July 1973) is a German open source software developer living in Stuttgart, Germany.

Karlitschek argues on his blog that "Privacy is the foundation of democracy." He says that people should have a basic right "to control their own data in the Internet age."

GroupLens Research

GroupLens Research is a human–computer interaction research lab in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities specializing in recommender systems and online communities. GroupLens also works with mobile and ubiquitous technologies, digital libraries, and local geographic information systems.

The GroupLens lab was one of the first to study automated recommender systems with the construction of the "GroupLens" recommender, a Usenet article recommendation engine, and MovieLens, a popular movie recommendation site used to study recommendation engines, tagging systems, and user interfaces. The lab has also gained notability for its members' work studying open content communities such as Cyclopath, a computational "geo-wiki" currently being used in the Twin Cities to help plan the regional cycling system.

Inner source

Inner source is the use of open source software development best practices and the establishment of an open source-like culture within organizations. The organization may still develop proprietary software, but internally opens up its development. The term was coined by Tim O'Reilly in 2000.

Living document

A living document, also known as an evergreen document or dynamic document, is a document that is continually edited and updated. An example of a living document is an article in Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia that permits anyone to freely edit its articles, in contrast to "dead" or "static" documents, such as an article in a single edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica.

A living document may or may not have a framework for updates, changes, or adjustments. This type of document without proper context can change away from its original purpose through multiple uncontrolled edits. This can encourage open collaboration within the network, but in some cases there can also be stagnation if no one takes on the initiative of updating the work. One reason why initiative is not taken to update the document could come from a sense of ambiguity.

However, a living document may evolve through successive updates, be expanded as needed, and serve a different purpose over time. Living documents are changed through revisions that may or may not reference previous iterative changes. The rate of document drift depends on the structure of the original document, or original intent of such document, or guidelines for modifying such document.

Open-source-software movement

The open-source-software movement is a movement that supports the use of open-source licenses for some or all software, a part of the broader notion of open collaboration. The open-source movement was started to spread the concept/idea of open-source software.

Programmers who support the open-source-movement philosophy contribute to the open-source community by voluntarily writing and exchanging programming code for software development. The term "open source" requires that no one can discriminate against a group in not sharing the edited code or hinder others from editing their already-edited work. This approach to software development allows anyone to obtain and modify open-source code. These modifications are distributed back to the developers within the open-source community of people who are working with the software. In this way, the identities of all individuals participating in code modification are disclosed and the transformation of the code is documented over time. This method makes it difficult to establish ownership of a particular bit of code but is in keeping with the open-source-movement philosophy. These goals promote the production of high-quality programs as well as working cooperatively with other similarly-minded people to improve open-source technology. This led to software such as MediaWiki, the software with which the Wikipedia website is built.

Open-source economics

Open-source economics is an economic platform based on open collaboration for the production of software, services, or other products.

First applied to the open-source software industry, this economic model may be applied to a wide range of enterprises.

Some characteristics of open-source economics may include: work or investment carried out without express expectation of return; products or services produced through collaboration between users and developers; and no direct individual ownership of the enterprise itself.

As of recently there were no known commercial organizations outside of software that employ open-source economics as a structural base. Today there are organizations that provide services and products, or at least instructions for building such services or products, that use an open-source economic model.The structure of open-source is based on user participation. "Networked environment makes possible a new modality of organizing production: radically decentralized, collaborative, and non-proprietary; based on sharing resources and outputs among widely distributed, loosely connected individuals who cooperate with each other without relying on either market signals or managerial commands."

Open-source record label

Open-source record labels are record labels that release music under copyleft licenses, that is, licenses that allow free redistribution and may allow free modification of the tracks.

They hold that the fight over free, libre, and open content and media is a struggle over the freedoms of expression and speech, with the goal of opening up the possibilities of media through open collaboration. This is a reaction against what some musicians see as corporate control of music via means of copyright. They believe that creativity requires that musicians reappropriate and reinterpret music and sounds to enable them to create truly innovative music. Additionally, copyleft enables musicians to develop music collaboratively and equitably.

Open-source software

Open-source software (OSS) is a type of computer software in which source code is released under a license in which the copyright holder grants users the rights to study, change, and distribute the software to anyone and for any purpose. Open-source software may be developed in a collaborative public manner. Open-source software is a prominent example of open collaboration.Open-source software development generates an increasingly more diverse scope of design perspective than any company is capable of developing and sustaining long term. A 2008 report by the Standish Group stated that adoption of open-source software models have resulted in savings of about $60 billion (£48 billion) per year for consumers.


OpenSym is a shorthand for International Symposium on Open Collaboration, formerly International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration, also formerly WikiSym or the Wiki Symposium, a conference dedicated to wiki research and practice. In 2014, the name of the conference was changed from WikiSym to OpenSym to reflect a broadening of scope from wiki and Wikipedia research and practice to open collaboration research, including wikis and Wikipedia research, but also free/libre/open source, open data, etc. research. Its proceedings are published in the ACM Digital Library.

Open Collaboration Services

The Open Collaboration Services (OCS) is an open and vendor-independent modern REST-based API for integration of web communities and web-based services into desktop and mobile applications. It allows the exchange of relevant data from a social network between the site and clients such as other websites and applications or widgets running locally on the user's machine or mobile device. The protocol was designed so that all applications can access multiple services providing OCS APIs.

The API was designed by as part of the Social Desktop especially as a cross-desktop backend provider. The API was standardised by so that third-party providers are able to implement OCS API.

Non-KDE environments using the API in the past included the Maemo Downloads application store and Apps for MeeGo.

Open admissions

Open admissions, or open enrollment, is a type of unselective and noncompetitive college admissions process in the United States in which the only criterion for entrance is a high school diploma or a certificate of attendance or General Educational Development (GED) certificate.

Open music

Open music is music that is shareable, available in "source code" form, allows derivative works and is free of cost for non-commercial use. It is the concept of "open source" computer software applied to music. However, the non-commercial stipulation associated with Open Music is incompatible with the first section of the Open Source Definition as well as the first freedom put forth in The Free Software Definition (freedom 0). Open Music is one of the general responses to the RIAA's and governmental actions against the music industry and its consumers.

"Open music" can be considered a subset of "free music" (referring to freedom). The differences of philosophy between advocates of "open source software" and "free software" have not surfaced in the community of musicians contributing music to the copyleft commons. This may be due to the relatively recent emergence of copyleft music, as well as to the fact that software development generally involves much more collaboration and derivatization than does music production. It is not clear that open collaboration using copyleft licenses provides any significant advantages in music production, as open source advocates commonly argue is the case for software development.

Several websites have surfaced to provide musicians with the platform and tools necessary for online music collaboration. Most of these sites promote one or more of the Creative Commons licenses, allowing derivative works and sharing of the finished songs. Early implementations of these collaboration sites relied on threaded discussion forum software and FTP to provide a means for musicians to initiate and discuss projects, and to share multi-track files. More recent and modern sites provide robust project-management features, automatic encoding and compression, online playback streaming, web-based upload and download options, chat, and project-based discussion forums.

There are plenty of artists that use Creative Commons Licenses. One the most open licence is "Creative Commons Attribution" License.

Open source

Open source is a term denoting that a product includes permission to use its source code, design documents, or content. It most commonly refers to the open-source model, in which open-source software or other products are released under an open-source license as part of the open-source-software movement. Use of the term originated with software, but has expanded beyond the software sector to cover other open content and forms of open collaboration.

Open university

An open university is a university with an open-door academic policy, with minimal or no entry requirements. Open universities may employ specific teaching methods, such as open supported learning or distance education. However, not all open universities focus on distance education, nor do distance-education universities necessarily have open admission policies.

Qt Project

The Qt Project is an open collaboration effort to coordinate the development of the Qt software framework. Initially founded by Nokia in 2011, the project is now led by The Qt Company, a subsidiary of Digia since it acquired Qt software technologies, trademarks and personnel from Nokia.


Smarthistory is a free resource for the study of art history created by art historians Beth Harris and Steven Zucker. Smarthistory is an independent not-for-profit organization and the official partner to Khan Academy for art history.Smarthistory started in 2005 as an audio guide series for use at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art in New York City, and as a resource for students taking introductory art history courses at the college level. In addition to its focus on college-level courses in art history, Smarthistory supports the art history Advanced Placement course and examination developed by The College Board. Smarthistory provides essays, video, photographs, and links to additional resources for each of the 250 works of art and architecture that comprise the new AP art history curriculum.Smarthistory has published 1500 videos and essays on art and cultural history from the Paleolithic era to the 21st century that include the art of Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. Smarthistory's essays have been contributed by more than 200 art historians, curators, and archaeologists writing in their areas of focus. Videos are unscripted conversations between experts recorded on location in front of the original work of art or architecture.According to the Smarthistory about page:

We are interested in delivering the narratives of art history using the read-write web's interactivity and capacity for authoring and remixing. Publishers are adding multimedia to their textbooks, but unfortunately they are doing so in proprietary, password-protected adjunct websites. These are weak because they maintain an old model of closed and protected content, eliminating Web 2.0 possibilities for the open collaboration and open communities that our students now use and expect. Smarthistory won the Webby Award for Education in 2009. The Samuel H. Kress Foundation gave them a $25,000 grant for development in 2008 and a $38,000 partnership development grant with the Portland Art Museum in 2009.In an article in the Brooklyn New York Daily News, staff writer Elizabeth Lazarowitz quotes Steven Zucker, "Art can be really intimidating for people", said Zucker. "If we can make art feel exciting and interesting and very much relevant to a historical can have real meaning." Unlike reading about art in a book, "the idea of the audio was to keep a student's eyes on the image", he explained. "It helped students to learn the material a lot better."In a collaborative article by Beth Harris and Steven Zucker, the founders explain the value of the resource for teachers, students, and informal learners: "Smarthistory is helping teachers who are not specialists in art history find strategies to make the subject accessible and meaningful to students who might otherwise not have cultural resources available to them. And for college students, the site is fast becoming an attractive alternative to the commercial textbook whose short life cycle and $100+ price tag has increasingly become a barrier."In a Chronicle for Higher Education article, Beth Harris is quoted on the ambitions and goals of Smarthistory: "We really just wanted to re-embed the objects in our world", says Harris, who is the founder and executive editor of Smarthistory as well as the director of digital learning at a New York City museum. "We thought that that would make them more relevant and more engaging for students."

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