26th International Conference on Advanced Information Systems Engineering

16-20 June 2014, Thessaloniki, Greece

The Rise of Free and Open Source Software

Anthony I. (Tony) Wasserman

Carnegie Mellon University - Silicon Valley


This tutorial defines free and open source software (FOSS), describing the benefits of FOSS software for modern applications, the ways it can be most effectively used, and the likely future directions for it. Thousands of high quality software products and components have been developed and released under approved software licenses. This constantly growing body of high-quality software has driven the growth and acceptance of free and open source software (FOSS). Many FOSS projects have become the leading products in their field, surpassing similar proprietary software.

The tutorial covers the history and background of FOSS, how it is used in traditional, mobile, and cloud applications, and issues of evaluation, use, and adoption of FOSS by industry and government. It includes a survey of FOSS resources for Service-oriented, Mobile, and Cloud-based applications, an overview of leading applications and tools, and a description of FOSS development processes.

The rapid growth of FOSS has also transformed the software industry, and has led to new businesses that offer FOSS applications, for which they provide paid support services. At the same time, FOSS has continued to grow, playing a major role in such areas as cloud computing and management of large datasets.

Finally, the tutorial addresses the future of FOSS, and its important role in software infrastructure, sensor-based applications, and a wide range of application development and deployment tools.


Anthony I. (Tony) Wasserman is Professor of Software Management Practice at Carnegie Mellon University - Silicon Valley, and Executive Director of its Center for Open Source Investigation (COSI).

Tony was Founder and CEO of Interactive Development Environments (IDE), which built the innovative Software through Pictures (StP) multiuser modeling environment, one of the first commercial products to include open source software. In 2000, Tony became VP of Bluestone Software (later part of HP), where he led the creation of an open source toolkit for building mobile web apps. Previously, Tony was Professor of Medical Information Science at the University of California, San Francisco, and a Lecturer in the Computer Science Division at the University of California, Berkeley.

Tony is a Director of the Open Source Initiative, and a member of the Board of Advisors of Open Source for America. He is a Life Fellow of the IEEE and a Fellow of the ACM, and a member of IFIP WG 8.1 and WG 2.13. He was the 2012 recipient of the Distinguished Educator award from the IEEE Technical Council on Software Engineering, and the 2013 recipient of the Influential Educator Award from the ACM Special Interest Committee on Software Engineering (SIGSOFT).