Forum OpenACS Q&A: Response to OpenACS/Interbase - aD meeting 8/7/2000

Posted by Michael Feldstein on
I think it's important that we destroy another "all or nothing" false choice--namely, that a project needs to be either all aD's or all OpenACS's. Having an aD employee (like Sebastian) either lead a crew of OpenACSers on a project or simply participate as a team member will do more to break down communications barriers than anything else I can think of. This meeting on the 7th could be an ideal moment to extend an invitation to aD.

Also, as I mentioned on the ASJ board, I do believe it is possible for us to seek sources of funding for the ongoing porting efforts. There's no reason why OpenACS has to rely completely on donations, volunteers, and aD's fiscal largesse. We should be actively talking about a business model.

Even more importantly, perhaps, is talking about how the OpenACS project benefits aD's existing business model. Right now they see it mainly as a community service with a little PR thrown in. But if they can come to see OpenACS as an avenue to really evangelize ACS (and therefore aD, whose name, after all, is on the product), then perhaps the OpenACS needs will carry a bit more weight when aD is balancing a simple source tree vs. using all the Oracle stuff. I know Ben has made this argument to them before, but now we have a bit more data in the form of OpenACS community participation, number of OpenACS downloads, and so on. If GreatBridge and/or Borland could be actively enlisted in this conversation as well, then supporting OpenACS should become a no-brainer for aD. The faster we grow, the easier it will be to persuade aD that it's in their interest to actively support our efforts.

On this note, perhaps we need to start an "evangelism" board to support efforts to spread OpenACS.