Apache Software Foundation is the biggest open source foundation in the world. Research Vice President Mark Driver from Gartner explains it as:
“The Apache Software Foundation is a cornerstone of the modern Open Source software ecosystem — supporting some of the most widely used and important software solutions powering today’s Internet economy.”
The foundation was created in 1999 by a group of people, that called themselves the “Apache Group” and had come together several years earlier, to continue to support and maintain the HTTPD web server written by the NCSA. That server was freely available, came with source code and was licensed under a license that allowed very open modification and redistribution, but the original developers lost interest in that project and moved onto something else, leaving users with no support. The name ‘Apache’ was chosen from respect for the Native American Apache Nation, well-known for their superior skills in warfare strategy and their inexhaustible endurance. It also makes a cute pun on “a patchy web server” — a server made from a series of patches — but this was not its origin. The group of developers who released this new software soon started to call themselves the “Apache Group” The need for a more coherent and structured organization that would shield individuals from potential legal attacks felt more and more necessary and it revealed Apache Software Foundation .
Lauded among the most successful influencers in Open Source, The Apache Software Foundation’s commitment to collaborative development has long served as a model for producing consistently high-quality software that advances the future of open development. Apache projects power half the Internet, manage exabytes of data, execute teraflops of operations, and store billions of objects in virtually every industry. Apache software projects are an integral part of nearly every end-user computing device, from laptops to tablets to phones .
I have been involved in Apache Software Foundation (ASF) and many other open source projects for years. These projects are used by companies like Google, Facebook, Twitter, Nasa and many more. I am committer and PMC (Project Management Committee) of various ASF projects.
Today, I’ve received an invitation to be a member of ASF and I gratefully accepted it.
Membership in The Apache Software Foundation is a privilege and is by invitation only. Candidates for membership are proposed by existing members, and voted upon by the existing membership. Since the Foundation is a meritocracy, meaning that contributions and skills are the factors used to judge worthiness, candidates are expected to have proven themselves by contributing to one or more of the Foundation’s projects .
ASF has its own way of consensus-based, community-driven governance known as The Apache Way which gives insights other projects how to drive their internal processes. I will help the foundation itself which leads open source software in the world to improve open source communities.