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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

OGC and OSGeo to Play

Here in the duldrums of August comes the news (press release) that OGC will be participating in the FOSS4G conference this fall in South Africa and the focus will be on a memorandum of understanding between the two bodies. The details of the MOU are not detailed.

Some (most? all?) OSGeo projects do indeed implement standards (OGC’s and other’s), though that’s not required to be an official OSGeo project. That said, per the release it’s pretty important.

The two organizations agree to expand collaboration and promote the synergy between open standards and open source software in the geospatial domain. The OGC, founded in 1994, is the world’s leading industry organization for geoprocessing standards used by the world’s providers of geoprocessing software. The OSGeo’s goal is to encourage the use and collaborative development of community-led open source geospatial software projects, most of which depend on open standards like those from the OGC.

OGC, per Carl Reed writing in GeoWorld in 2007 doesn’t endorse either open source or proprietary licensing.

The OGC doesn’t care if software are proprietary or open source. Our goal is that OGC standards help make geospatial or location-based content and services ubiquitous—to improve the ability of decision makers to address the many pressing social, environmental and economic issues they face.

What’s important, from the OGC’s point of view, isn’t the purchasing and licensing details of software products, but their adherence to a shared, open, non-proprietary system for communicating geographically.

OSGeo may need to update its FAQ which includes this statement about the relationship:

What is the relationship between OSGeo and OGC?
There is no relationship between OSGeo and OGC. OGC is a organization for creating GIS standards, while OSGeo is an organization for promoting open source GIS work. That said, a number of parties/individuals in OSGeo work with OGC standards, and vice versa. It is also an explicit goal of OSGeo to support and promote standards, including OGC standards.


by Adena Schutzberg on 08/27 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

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