ReadingRecord Open Source Release Announcement

December 16, 2012:

After a great deal of work by library & city staff, plus cooperation by the Free Software Foundation, I am pleased to announce that ReadingRecord is finally open source software! This means that libraries everywhere will soon be able to use ReadingRecord. It also means that the source code to ReadingRecord will be freely available, so libraries can modify & improve ReadingRecord to suit their needs. Those changes can also be contributed back to the main ReadingRecord code, so everyone benefits.

What does this mean on a practical level for those libraries that are using (or would like to use) ReadingRecord? There are a number of options available:

  • Special exception for Colorado libraries WITHOUT dedicated IT staff: Library management has agreed to continue hosting ReadingRecord free of charge. Note: “Dedicated IT staff” means library staff who officially provide IT support. Not IT support from a parent organization or “we have a Reference staff member who does support occasionally”. Unsure if your library meets this criteria? Please contact me to determine eligibility.
  • Download & run ReadingRecord for yourself. Note: This is not a task to be undertaken lightly. ReadingRecord was designed to be a hosted solution, meaning that a single site could host many libraries - like the Westminster Public Library has done for years. As such, it requires some expertise to get up & running. In particular, familiarity with the LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL & PHP) is essential. I am working on documentation, but it will take time to produce something usable.
  • Join an organization already hosting ReadingRecord. My hope (and vision) is that some larger libraries will elect to host ReadingRecord for their state/region, as the Westminster Public Library has done for Colorado since 2008. Depending on the situation, I may donate my time or charge a modest fee to help these hosting sites get ReadingRecord up and running. If your organization is interested in hosting ReadingRecord for your state/region, please contact me.
  • Contract with me to host ReadingRecord for your library. I charge a yearly fee of $150 to cover the cost of setup, hosting, Internet connectivity and to (hopefully) inspire me to develop new features. If your library cannot afford this modest fee, contact me & we'll haggle. ;-)

So, when will ReadingRecord be available for download?

Soon! I am in the process of adding copyright information to the code, packaging it for download and putting additional documentation on the Wiki.

Lastly, a personal note:

Thank you all for your continued interest in ReadingRecord and for being patient during the long process of getting ReadingRecord released as open source software. I had no idea how long it would take or how many unexpected hurdles there would be. There were certainly times when I wanted to give up or choose a different route, but I wanted to make sure it got done the right way to avoid any problems later on.

I began talking with Library & City management about the possibility of releasing RR as open source software in 2009. After being reviewed by City IT staff, the City Attorney's Office and the City Manager, my request went before City Council in February of 2012. Once approved by City Council, there were some unanticipated snags & delays with the Free Software Foundation. Back to the City Attorney's Office for additional discussion of what options were available, short of starting the whole process over - something I wanted to avoid if at all possible. Finally in November of 2012 the City Manager was able to sign off on the Free Software Foundation's standard copyright assignment form. The last signature from the Executive Director of the Free Software Foundation was obtained in December of 2012, finally ReadingRecord is open source software!

Eric Sisler 2012/12/16 20:16

info/readingrecord_open_source_release_announcement.txt (2182 views) · Last modified: 2012/12/16 21:51 by esisler