Surprising Sponsor

You’ll never guess who’s bankrolling open source. In my column in InfoWorld this week, I look at an initiative to get some crucial software written for America’s schools. Wisely, the Council of Chief State School Officers is making the infrastructure, toolkit and client software all open source so that states can collaborate rather than each expensively creating their own systems.

What will come as a surprise to some is who’s bankrolling the creation of this new open source community. The Gates Foundation (along with Carnegie) are funding two $75,000 awards to seed the community. The winners of the awards stand to become the leaders in a rich new open source software market. An upcoming code camp in Boston offers the chance to get in at the start.

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