New Rules, New Tools: Enabling Collaborative Software Development

Wednesday, November 13, 2002 - 17:30
TH 331
Larry Augustin VA Software

In early 1999, VA Software launched a project to understand how the Internet development community had been able to produce software faster and with higher quality than comparable commercially available alternatives. Our goal was simple: determine how to make more software development projects successful. We discovered that successful Internet community projects employed a number of practices that were not well characterized by traditional software engineering methodologies. We now refer to those practices as Collaborative Software Development or CSD. Late in 1999 we developed the SourceForge platform to make it easy for even small software development projects to employ those practices, and in November of 1999 launched the web site based on the SourceForge platform. The site was an overwhelming success, and now supports more than 50,000 software development projects and over a half million software developers worldwide. In this talk we will look at the trends in software engineering that have led to the need for employing new techniques such as CSD, and how CSD addresses some of the issues in software development now facing companies.


Larry Augustin, chairman of VA Software, founded the company in 1993 as a Ph.D. student in electrical engineering at Stanford University. A strong advocate of collaborative software development, Augustin was the visionary behind, the largest Open Source development site on the Internet. With 460,000 users worldwide, is also the largest reference implementation of VA Software's commercial SourceForge product.