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"Into Open Source" Booklet by Jordan Tynes

Online Communication Insights by Ecco Ditto Insights

Theory | Research | Collaboration | Production | Technology | Sustainability

Presented by Jordan Tynes

Click here to download Jordan's pamphlet "Into Open Source"

Getting into Open Source
a very brief introduction of just a few

compiled by
Jordan Tynes
for Artists in Context’s Connected and Consequential 2011

Just because a program is free and/or designed by “amateur programmers”, does not mean it is inferior to its costly alternatives.

The term “Open Source” suggests a method for developing, sharing, and employing technology.

This guide, composed specifically for Connected and Consequential, intends to give a brief overview of Open Source philosophies and offer a few examples of software that can be employed by artistic practitioners.

This guide also assumes the importance of technology in the increased availability of ideas generated by an infinite amount of creative practices.

Open Source software is usually:
free and supported by an online community of users/developers

What you usually need to use Open Source software:
a computer and an internet connection

What kind of programs can be Open Source:
ANY KIND... just a few examples that are mentioned in this guide: AUDIO, GRAPHIC (2d/3d), PHOTO/VIDEO EDITORS, WEB BLOGGING, WORD PROCESSING, and SYSTEM OPERATION

You DO NOT need to be a developer in order to use Open Source software... There are plenty of Open Source programs that are
specifically designed to be user friendly!

Some are even designed by artists, for artists!!!

More Benefits to Open Source software:
-24/7 community supports... ask questions and get involved right away
-developers are usually open to feedback
-tons of online tutorials... written and video

What makes Open Source programs different from other software?
Bruce Perens, of the Open Source Initiative, describes Open Source with these ten aspects of a definition (paraphrased in my own words):
1. Free Distribution: no royalties attached... anyone can give/sell/trade their version of the program
2. Source Code: the program must allow its users to see the way the programs works
3. Derived Works: any version of the program can be modified
4. Integrity of Author’s Source Code: unless explicitly stated otherwise, the original version will be
foundational in the development of all succeeding versions of the program
5. No Discrimination of Persons or Groups: EVERYONE is allowed access
6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor: programs can be used for ANY purpose
7. Distribution of the License: the same license follows the program wherever it goes
8. License Must Not be Specific to a Product: derivative programs share the same rights as the original
9. License Must Not Restrict Other Software: different programs can be packaged together
10. License Must be Technology Neutral: license must fit any style of hardware or technology interface

Here a is SHORT list of medium specific programs that are known to be Open Source by definition (most listed here will be available to use on multiple operating systems):
Blender (3D):
KToon (2D):
~Photo Editing~
~Video Editing~
~Video Playing~
VLC Media Player:
~Web Blogging~
~Word Processing~
Open Office:
Most of these websites will direct you to tutorials, instruction manuals, and/or guides. If not, a simple google search will generally yield vast amounts of support for each of these programs.

Help with google searches:

Feeling technologically adventurous?
You can even get into an entirely Open Source operating system: Linux!

There are plenty of artistically inclined derivatives of this Operating System... These will preinstall some of the software listed above:

Like I mentioned, this is a very short list. For more programs, SourceForge is an excellent resource:

Ecco Ditto

Co-founded by Nicco Mele, one of the keynote speakers for the Greater Boston Connected and Consequential Conference, Ecco Ditto is a company that builds digital communities and guides social change organizations in the use of emerging technologies.

From their website:
"Every healthy organization, for-profit or non-profit, needs to be able to maintain good, two-way online communications both internally and with its members, consumers, or constituents. We have compiled the following EchoInsights, or best practice guides, to help you learn to do this for yourself. Rather than just give you a can of tuna, we'd much rather teach you how to fish. Please browse the guides here, share them with others, and let us know what you think."