Call for Grant Proposals

Maurice Ling mauriceling at acm.org
Tue Aug 3 01:53:53 CEST 2004


Anthony Baxter wrote:

>>I do agree that open source != hobbyist and I can hear screams already.
>>What I'm trying to say is that the wordings of this call for proposal on
>>the webpage is probably alright for hobbyist projects but can't face the
>>scrutiny of the corporate world.
>>    
>>
>
>I'm really not sure what you mean. Plenty of people in "the corporate world"
>do open source. Plenty of people in "the corporate world" make money from
>open source. 
>
No doubt that people are making money from open source but equivalently, 
the same people may be making money from closed source. I'm arguing that 
the wordings of this grant is not clear, to the point that we do not 
know if this grant is applicable to us.

>If the terms for the grants are that the project be open source,
>how is this a problem? 
>
Then it will means that some projects may not be able to apply for this 
grant if it is the requirement of the project to be proprietary due to 
business strategy. What you are saying is that all projects should be 
open sourced but that may not be the case. Either that or you are 
indiscriminately lobbying for the cause of open source irregards of 
whether companies are ready for it or not, and then discriminating 
against companies who are not ready for it yet. Although I support open 
source development and had personally donated my work to Sourceforge and 
Biopython project, I will think that it is tyrannic to assume all work 
must be open sourced.

>It simply means that the person or organisation who
>applies for the grants has to factor that element into their calculations. 
>  
>
Without knowing the elements, how am I going to convince anyone on that? 
I'm not omnipotent.

>Any company in 2004 who is still working in a mode that open source is 
>some strange thing that isn't used 'in the real world' is probably slow-moving
>roadkill.
>
>  
>
As mentioned above, parts of the work by my organization had been 
donated to public cause, including Biopython project and large public 
institutions like NCBI. Even the Online Mendelian Inheritance of Animals 
(OMIA) database was initially developed by people in my organization. As 
far as I know, some work precipitating to masters degrees had been made 
open sourced. So, please refrain from making harsh conclusions. Having 
said that, there is always a rubber-stamping process before an open 
sourced decision is made. But the wordings and inexactness of this call 
for grant proposal makes it hard for me even to get to convince my 
people that we should put in an application, not mentioning the 
rubber-stamping.

Cheers
Maurice
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