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Open Source Community and Tiki software

We will review the main aspects of an Open Source project including the Community management.
It is based on 20 years of consultancy as well as my work on the Tiki software project. This presentation in Hebrew estimated duration is one hour.

  • Open Source software
  • The Tiki project
  • Tiki features out-of-the-box
  • Tiki options and management tools
  • Tiki community
  • Pro and cons of Open Source model
  • Open Source community management
  • Questions from audience

Open Source software

The software created is distributed with its source code and is released under a license that allows anyone to use and modify it.

The idea of making source code freely available originated in 1983 while the official starting point is the creation of the Open Source Initiative in 1998. It is a 30 years effective model that has revolutionized the software development industry. It accelerate developers integration and formation and allow new technologies to be deployed fasters among users.

  • Unlimited group can create their own solution or software
  • It is not needed to recreate the wheel (open source recycle)
  • It allows using others Open Source project or individual components.
  • Open-source software is non-proprietary software that encourage collaboration
  • Code is readable and can be analysed to prevent security issues

The cost of open-source software is not zero but it is for a fraction of the cost and time of traditional software development and maintenance.
Open source is not anarchy, there are several type of licence to manage the usage of an open source code.

The Tiki project

This project is a web based software generator, a toolbox, to allow developers, configurators or users to create tailored micro applications. It is based on recognized technologies (PHP, MySQL, Javascript ElasticSearch, Smarty, Bootstrap, etc) as well as innovative and relatively new technologies (Rubix AI, VueJS, Manticore search, Cypth, etc).

The Tiki project and software initiative started in 2002 and they were more than 100 versions released.
Based on a Wiki model to manage unstructured data, it has evolved into a structured model data and many additional functionalities were added by different individuals or groups as anyone can contribute into the code.

The software has been designed for beginners and advanced users, should they be individual or a collectivity and all the editing tools focus on collaboration and teamwork with an additional control layer to manage submissions, staging and approval functions.

With zero programming skills, you can assemble your solution. The software allows fast and easy customisation through advanced tolls to allow fully designed solution making him a perfect companion to design prototypes or tailor made solution in short time.

Tiki features out-of-the-box

The software is an all-in-one solution (no 3rd party plugin) and the features and options are coded to allow mixing and interaction between them.
It can be deployed to a local intranet, both online or offline and allow quick publishing. Tiki comes with ready to use solutions for:

Tiki options and management tools

Running such powerful features together require options and components to control full and interoperability.
Tiki comes with a long list of System and Security tools but also with Users and Content management advanced tools as well as a complete Multilingual and Translation feature.

Tiki is a no-code/low-code web application framework able to interact directly with database values through a smart form generator feature, Trackers. Unlike usual forms generator, the values of the defined per type fields are available to most of the other Tiki features.
Dedicated plugins with templates editing capabilities, filters and paginations tools also allows to configure multilingual user interfaces.

Trackers can be used in combination with website pages for even more flexibility and visual enhancement. Import and Export advanced tools allows third party data acquisition and the process can be even automatised internally using the Scheduler functionality.
Combining Trackers and the wiki makes Tiki a Structured Wiki software.

Realestates Sample Kindergarten Sample Tracker Fields Article Sample2 Knowledge Sample2 Knowledge Sample1

Tiki community

Along side of this do-it-all software updated every 8 month lives a community of users and developers from all around the world

Tiki is one of the largest open-source teams in the world, and is in the top 2% of all project teams on Open Hub.
Code comments and quality rank Tiki Wiki CMS Groupware among the top 10% of all PHP projects on Open Hub.
Officially up to 1.3 millions copies were download from the main package sources (2020) but an unknown number of git version are cloned every day.

It required very dedicated people to reach for such achievements with a quite small community (compared to the project itself). This dedication is the combined result of a very open model where everyone can commit almost instantly and having no centralisation or gouvernance about the project direction. Everything is decided by online or in person discussions and consensus.

Wellcommented Commits Security

Pro and cons of Open Source model

What people say or think

  • It is Cost-Effective (pay per request)
  • Security and transparency (availability of Source Code)
  • You are in charge (full control is possible)
  • Improvements are easier to integrate
  • Quality of code (facts are here)
  • No vendor dependence
  • Reusability and sharing (feedback)
  • More brains bring more ideas and solutions
  • More attention to the software is required
  • Lacks of training and formation
  • Harder to use than proprietary software
  • There are compatibility issues
  • It is easier to do like others do (human risk potential)
  • Liabilities and warranties doesn't exist
  • Open source is good for developers not companies
  • No one is responsible

Discutable : There are hidden costs. Open source is good for developers not companies. Developers are uncontrollable geeks.

Open Source community management

Community style depend of the Open Source project nature and objectives. Project administrators have to understand and guide the community actions and engagements in a way it benefit to the project (and don't slow it down).

"Contained" Open Source project success lies in a few individuals and good QA management
A little number of core developers can do very well for a very specific solution deployed in controllable environment. By using existing components and with additional trained personal to provide internal or external support, organisations successfully provides services all around the world.

"Wide" Open Source project success lies in community management
Those dynamic project needs more developers and a large base of community members, "little-hands", in skilled in various area.

  • Encourage more developers to join the effort
  • Encourage more users to use (marketing like)
  • People to test and report correctly (bug fixes and QA)
  • Consultant to support and help others (deployment, configuration and Training)
  • Eventually individuals or companies to donate

You need to establish community rules, guidelines, contribute to have tools to discuss, meet and report issues and find how to feed them


Thank you