Packt Publishing Supports Open Source by $300,000 (So far)

You’ve probably noticed that I’ve reviewed a couple of books for Packt before; they asked me and I was happy to (I got a free book for my time and learned some new stuff). Last year I felt rather honoured when asked to be a judge on their popular Open Source Awards – In the Open Source E-Commerce Applications category.

They’re a a modern Publishing business which. since last year, has a specialist brand Packt Open Source. It’s a business I’m quite happy to help promote and support as they reciprocate by supporting the communities and projects we all use everyday.

Today they announced a bit of a milestone.

Packt Publishing Believes in Open Source, Donates Over $300K to Projects

Birmingham, UK. 2nd March 2011

Packt today announced that its donations to open source projects have surpassed the $300,000 mark. Following its first donation to the phpMyAdmin project in April 2004, the company has gone on to provide sustained support for over 70 different open source projects.

Packt has introduced initiatives such as the annual Open Source Award and Open Source Project Royalty Scheme to provide sustained donations to projects over the last six years.

“Most of the money that we’ve used, donated from Packt has gone towards running jQuery conferences for the community and bringing together the jQuery team to do development work together.” said John Resig, the founder of the popular JavaScript library, jQuery. “The financial contributions have been very valuable and in that regard, have resulted in a team that’s able to operate much more efficiently and effectively.”

The Open Source Awards, now in its fifth year, has been adapted from the established Open Source Content Management System (CMS) Award with the wider aim of encouraging,
supporting, recognizing and rewarding all open source projects. “The support that Packt has shown, through its book royalties and awards, has contributed to that success and helped the Drupal project handle its growth”. Added Dries Buytaert, founder of the CMS Drupal, winner of the 2007 and 2008’s Overall CMS Award, and a project which also benefits from Packt’s Open Source Project Royalty Scheme.

The Open Source Project Royalty Scheme allows projects to benefit from the publication of a Packt book, as they are allocated a percentage of every copy sold. “This is a support system that we provide to every open source project that we publish on” said Julian Copes, a spokesperson for Packt Open Source. “Packt is proud to have reached this significant milestone and remains committed to keeping donations at the heart of its long-term publishing strategy.”

Open source software is freely available and free from restrictions. Open source projects survive largely on financial donations and support to cover the essential costs of running an
open source project. Therefore, regular donations are vital for their ongoing development and relevancy. “Moodle is grateful for the royalty donations that Packt have volunteered to send us as part of their Open Source Project Royalty Scheme.” said Martin Dougiamas, founder of Moodle the hugely popular open source course management system. “The money donated helps us fund a developer for a few months a year and thus contributes directly towards Moodle core development, support and improvements in the future.”

Are you an open source project that Packt has published a book on? Packt believes in Open Source and your project may be able to receive support through the Open Source Project Royalty Scheme. Simply contact Packt:

Interested in which projects receive support through the Open Source Project Royalty Scheme? Click here to view all projects involved.

I wonder how long it will be until they reach $500,000 in contributions…?

New: Public Domain Government IT Spending Dashboard!


Get this, there’s a new web site that looks to have been built using the Open Source Drupal CMS (At least the blog portion did when I looked at the XHTML) as the front-end which lets anyone see a “dashboard” of spending on Government IT projects:

It has been an exciting time since we launched the IT Dashboard. There have been more than 20 million hits so far…

20 Million hits? I hadn’t heard about this. Had you? It gets even better.

For anybody just joining us, the “IT Dashboard” is a new, one-stop clearing house of information that allows anyone with a web browser to track … IT initiatives and hold the government accountable for progress and results.

Bloody hell. That’s amazing!

Where’s the catch?

Ahh. You sussed it.

President Obama checks his performance.

Yep. It’s in the USA, at a site called USA Spending.

Come on Gordon. Let’s see how you are REALLY doing with spending on IT in Education, the NHS or Defence…