Skip to main content


A celebration of open source

In honor of this week's Open Source Bridge conference, as well as in recognition of the role that open source software has played in the development of our business, we're pleased to announce that today, June 16, 2009, Code Sorcery Workshop is offering any open source contributor a free license to Meerkat, our SSH tunnel management application. We are also giving away a $250 gift certificate to the legendary Powell's Books. Read on for the details.

If you'd like a free copy of Meerkat, just leave a comment on this post linking to an open source project that you've worked on with a brief mention of what you did. It could be coding, but doesn't have to be -- it could also be documentation, helping new users, anything that contributes to the common good of the project. We'll collect all the info and send each contributor a full, unrestricted license to Meerkat, a $19.95 USD value.

However, if you'd like to instead try for the $250 USD gift certificate to Powell's Books, a purchase of Meerkat will make you eligible for this drawing. Just register Meerkat today and you will automatically be entered for the drawing. The winner will be announced in a followup post.

In both cases, you must take action by midnight Pacific Daylight Time tonight to qualify.

Meerkat is an application that adds a lot of Mac-specific value to SSH, an open source tool that ships with every Mac (as OpenSSH). And Macs themselves are built on a ton of open source software such as Apache, Postfix, CUPS, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby, sudo, unzip, zlib, and many others. You can read more about Apple's commitment to open source as well as open source releases pertaining to Mac OS X.

I began knowingly using open source software in the mid-90s and started contributing by releasing my own projects on freshmeat in late 1999. I've always looked for ways to contribute to open source projects when I can, whether it's by bug fixes, new feature patches, documentation, or just community help. Most recently, I've been involved with the Drupal content management system.

Open source is the lifeblood of the internet. So many of the tools that we take for granted everyday have been developed in this way, by generous folks giving their time for the greater good. I am extremely thankful for the many ways that open source has enabled me to teach myself a lot of what I know today about technology, to provide economical solutions for clients who need it, and to make software better and better by degrees.

So, here's to open source!

Open Source Bridge is this week

I'll be attending the Open Source Bridge conference later this week here in Portland. I'm very much looking forward to it, partly because I love to use and contribute to open source software, but also because the conference itself has been run in an open source manner -- by volunteers, building open source conference software, and with the overarching goal of trying to answer a question: "What are the rights and responsibilities of an open source citizen?"

Before I moved to Portland, and before I was more regularly attending conferences, I had always wanted to attend OSCON, which was held in Portland every summer from 2003 to 2008. Part of this was to visit Portland and to feel the conference vibe in this city. Now that OSCON is moving back to California, and Open Source Bridge is here (as am I), I'm ready to help make this conference an awesome reason to explore open source in Portland.

Hope to see you there -- there's still time to register!

BarCampPortland this Saturday

I wanted to get the word out about BarCampPortland this Saturday at CubeSpace here in Portland. BarCamp is an "unconference", an ad-hoc gathering of tech enthusiasts over the course of a day to jam on ideas, implementation, personal networking, and whatever else they want, all unplanned and take-it-as-it-comes.

Tonight was the kickoff, which involved some registration (which is free, by the way), some food, some meeting folks, and some proposing of sessions for tomorrow.

Inspired by an excellent session at this year's SXSW, plus the fact that I've now been working at my own business for two-and-a-half years, I proposed a session called Solo Shops (and how to stay that way). I hope to facilitate a discussion about how to get going, but more importantly, how to manage a business entirely on your own whilst staying sane, profitable, and engaged.

There are a whole host of awesome sessions up on the big board, so I can't wait for the events to begin.

Hope to see you there!

Hooking into Portland CocoaHeads

I had the opportunity to attend the October meeting of the Portland CocoaHeads club last night and had a great time! I especially liked the location, CubeSpace, and look forward to spending some more time there soon.

My friend Jon Wight of Toxic Software was able to be on this side of the country, too, to demo his, and others', recent work on the Obama iPhone application. Great job, guys! It's a really impressive piece of software, all the more so because it was a volunteer effort and was created in a mere three weeks!

I also did brief demo towards the end of the meeting of my dockless mode hack, just to share it and to get some eyes on the problems I've seen with it.

Lastly, just a note for the curious. When I introduced myself last night, a couple folks mentioned that they had heard of my blog or products, but had no idea I was based in Portland. Well, it's a recent thing, and I haven't tended to talk about travel or personal life much on this blog, but I'm now located just outside of Portland. This year has been a wild ride wherein my wife and I have attempted to live in a number of places, taking advantage of my mobile work ability and our shared wanderlust. Thus far, we've lived in DC, which we sadly left in March after three years, and then in Spain, Cape Cod, and now, the West Coast. I think we'll be staying here for some time, though, especially given a great Cocoa group like CocoaHeads and the vibrant tech (and not to mention, beer) scene in Portland.

Syndicate content