The next stage in OpenSim community growth – OpenSim Forge

The OpenSim community is one of the most vibrant open source communities that I’ve had the pleasure to be a part of. We’ve got an active set of core committers, an active set of more casual developers constantly providing bugs and patches to the project, and an incredible active set of users that are testing nearly every checkin out there. This kind of community is really too big for one project. Many of things things the community is interested in doing around OpenSim, like alternative grid servers, or admin web interfaces for opensim, are great things, but don’t really make sense in the scope of the main OpenSim source tree. Many of these early efforts set up sourceforge projects, but it was sometimes difficult to find they existed.

Welcome OpenSim Forge!

brought up the idea of setting up a gforge instance for OpenSim a few weeks ago, and things started rolling from there. Adam did all the leg work on this one, so many props to him and his team.

OpenSim Forge is a site for hosting OpenSim related open source projects. All projects must be under an OSI approved license. BSD license is encouraged, as that’s the license of OpenSim, but it isn’t required. The point is really to just be a one stop shopping for opensim related code, and to make it very easy for anyone that is interested in adding to this community to have a place to stick their project and get visibility.

In the 10 days since the site went live, we’ve got 10 public projects already registered, plus a few more in the queue. Now, I don’t think the 1 new project a day pace is going to keep coming, but as can clearly been seen the OpenSim community is bigger than just the OpenSim project. Here’s what we’ve gotten already up on OpenSim Forge:

  • 3 administration tools for OpenSim (2 web and 1 console)
  • 2 alternate grid servers (ASP.NET & Perl)
  • 1 project for patches to OpenSim (the Open Grid Protocol enablement patches)
  • 1 experimental viewer for OpenSim (not based on the SecondLife client)
  • 1 opensim based application (done via Application modules) which is astro physics simulation
  • 1 opensim test suite
  • 1 tray launcher for OpenSim

It’s a very powerful thing once a community grows beyond it’s initial boundaries, when it truly takes on a life of it’s own. I think the quick uptake on OpenSim Forge shows we are definitely at that point. I see this as a new stage of growth in both the community and the project, and what an exciting stage that is.