05 December 2007

Sun Gives Prizes to Teacher's Pet (Projects)

Sun has released some more details of its forthcoming Open Source Community Innovation Awards Program:

which will foster innovation and recognize some of the most interesting initiatives within Sun-sponsored open source communities worldwide. To participate in the program's first year, Sun has selected six communities: GlassFish, NetBeans, OpenJDK, OpenOffice.org, OpenSolaris and OpenSPARC. Prizes are expected to total at least $1 million (USD) a year.

Beginning in mid-January 2008, Sun and the six open source communities will announce details on how developers can participate in the individual programs. Each community will have its own contest rules and judging criteria. Prize winners will be announced in August 2008.

So, unlike Google's Summer of Code programme, which is basically to foster generic open source among young hackers, Sun's effort is targeted at its own projects. And nothing wrong with that, especially when one of them, OpenOffice.org, is a critical component of the free software stack. But Sun should't expect to get as many brownie points as Google, which, for all its faults, has been is playing the open source card very well (about which more later.)

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