Socio-Technical Congruence in the Ruby Ecosystem

Title: Socio-Technical Congruence in the Ruby Ecosystem

Authors: Mahbubul Syeed (Tampere University of Technology), Klaus Marius Hansen (University of Copenhagen Copenhagen, Denmark), Imed Hammouda (Chalmers and University of Gothenburg, Sweden), Konstantinos Manikas (University of Copenhagen Copenhagen, Denmark)

Abstract: Existing studies show that open source projects may enjoy high levels of socio-technical congruence despite their open and distributed character. Such observations are yet to be confirmed in the case of larger open source ecosystems in which developers contribute to different projects within the ecosystem. In this paper, we empirically study the relationships between the developer coordination activities and the project dependency structure in the Ruby ecosystem. Our motivation is to verify whether the ecosystem context maintains the high socio-technical congruence levels observed in many smaller scale FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) projects. Our study results show that the collaboration pattern among the developers in Ruby ecosystem is not necessarily shaped by the communication needs indicated by the dependencies among the ecosystem projects.

This contribution to OpenSym 2014 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2014 proceedings on or after August 27, 2014.

Preliminary OpenSym 2014 Program Published!

We just published the preliminary OpenSym 2014 program. For easy access, here is a link to an overview program spreadsheet. We are excited about the keynotes and invited talks, the research and practitioner contributions, and the open space track! Stay tuned in to this blog as we unveil the details of the program blog post by blog post, every day at 9am CET. See you in Berlin!

Strategies for Promoting OER in Course Development and Course Delivery in an ODL Environment

Title: Strategies for Promoting OER in Course Development and Course Delivery in an ODL Environment

Authors: Sheng Hung Chung (Wawasan Open University)

Abstract: This study discusses the phases involved for the development of  OER-based course materials namely the OER course integration using Wikibooks; evaluation of Quality Assurance (QA) in OER learning content; promoting and exploring OER repositories; CC licensing discussions and establishment of collective feedback sessions at Wawasan Open University (WOU), Penang, Malaysia. The learning design for the computing courses with engagement of learning experiences and feedbacks from different stakeholders in Open Distance Learning (ODL) environment are taken into consideration as one of the major components in the OER-based course development and revision phases. The OER-based computing course comprises of course units, self-test, unit practice exercises, assessments, mini project and activities are delivered in ODL mode in three consecutive semesters span from 2013 till 2014. Evaluations and studies are being carried out at end of each semesters for the by the course team members on the primary aspects focusing on learners’ participation rate of OER resources; LMS learners’ activities and assessments evaluation. The OER development engagement involved multiple stakeholders (i.e. learners, instructors, course coordinators and External Course Assessors) from different levels aiming to promote the use and understanding of OER in ODL environment.

This contribution to OpenSym 2014 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2014 proceedings on or after August 27, 2014.

Strata: Typed Semi-Structured Data in DokuWiki

Title: Strata: Typed Semi-Structured Data in DokuWiki

Authors: Brend Wanders (University of Twente), Steven Te Brinke (University of Twente)

Abstract: A semantic wiki is a wiki that has a model of the knowledge contained in its pages. Currently, semantic wikis are not adopted by a large user base, because most implementations are research prototypes that implement their own wiki engine. To increase familiarity with semantic wikis and quick adoption of semantic technologies we present Strata, a plugin for the well known wiki DokuWiki. Strata allows the use of semi-structured data in any DokuWiki installation, normalizes values based on their types, and allows extensive data modeling and querying on complex data structures.

This contribution to OpenSym 2014 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2014 proceedings on or after August 27, 2014.

The Impact of Automatic Crash Reports on Bug Triaging and Development in Mozilla

Title: The Impact of Automatic Crash Reports on Bug Triaging and Development in Mozilla

Authors: Iftekhar Ahmed (Oregon State University), Nitin Mohan (Oregon State University), Carlos Jensen (Oregon State University)

Abstract: Free/Open Source Software projects often rely on users submitting bug reports. However, reports submitted by novice users may lack information critical to developers, and the process may be intimidating and difficult. To gather more and better data, projects deploy automatic crash reporting tools, which capture stack traces and memory dumps when a crash occurs. These systems potentially generate large volumes of data, which may overwhelm developers, and their presence may discourage users from submitting traditional bug reports. In this paper, we examine Mozilla’s automatic crash reporting system and how it affects their bug triaging process. We find that fewer than 0.00009% of crash reports end up in a bug report, but as many as 2.33% of bug reports have data from crash reports added. Feedback from developers shows that despite some problems, these systems are valuable. We conclude with a discussion of the pros and cons of automatic crash reporting systems.

This contribution to OpenSym 2014 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2014 proceedings on or after August 27, 2014.

Let’s Build the Road Network of Civic Tech

OpenSym 2014 is proud to announce the conference’s opening keynote!

Title: Let’s Build the Road Network of Civic Tech

Speaker: Stef van Grieken of Google Inc.

Abstract: Your awesome petition app is like a sports car without a freeway to drive on. Over the past several years we’ve built amazing civic apps that are improving public service delivery, engaging more citizens in the political process, and making governments more accountable around the world. But we’re rapidly approaching a point common to all new public technologies: the need for common infrastructure to enable massive scale. This talk will discuss three tenets of civic technology that will take us towards a common framework, and present research and examples of work doing this today. It’s time for developers, governments, corporations, academics, funders and citizens to come together and lay the groundwork for what’s next.

Biography: Stef van Grieken studied Industrial Engineering and Philosophy and describes himself as “a tech-entrepreneur and a bit of a geek.” He currently works as a Technical Program Manager at Google. His goal is to promote civic innovation through technology. Before joining Google Stef founded the Dutch civic technology organization Open State Foundation. With projects such as Public, Hack the Government, and Apps for the Nederland he worked on increasing public accountability and transparency. Some of these projects were awarded with ‘Time Magazine Top Website of 2012’ and a ‘European Public Sector Award’.

Registration, Location, and Travel

OpenSym 2014 opened registration! Please go here to register. Also, more information is available about the conference location as well as travel and accommodation. The program will be announced over the next few weeks but look forward to four fantastic keynotes/invited talks and a wonderful open collaboration research as well as community program!


Wikimedia UK Sponsors OpenSym 2014 Participation

As a part of Wikimedia UK’s continued efforts to support the Wikimedia community in the UK, Wikimedia UK regularly offer scholarships to enable attendance at international conferences and meetings. Past scholarships have enabled members to attend previous years’ events such as Wikimania or WikiSym. We are happy to announce that Wikimedia UK is offering two scholarships for OpenSym 2014 again, just like they have done in previous years. To learn more, please turn to their website.

Update 2014-05-15: At present the Wikimedia UK link is locked; we hope it will open up again soon.

Research Paper Submission Doors Closed, DocSym and Community Track Submissions Still Open

OpenSym 2014 closed its research paper submission doors on May 4th with a record number of submissions. We are very happy about this and are looking forward to a strong technical program in Berlin on August 27-29, 2014.

The Doctoral Symposium is still accepting submissions, and we also have left some room for a second round of Community Track paper submissions. Please see the respective pages for submission information.