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From Andrea Pescetti <>
Subject Re: Short questionnaire about bachelor thesis
Date Sun, 30 Sep 2012 18:43:16 GMT
On 29/09/2012 15:56, Sebastian Tischer wrote:
> my name is Sebastian Tischer and I am student of business and economics
> at the university of technology in Dresden.

Hi Sebastian, you sent variations of your message multiple times to 
several OpenOffice lists and from different e-mail addresses. You've 
already been told that your questionnaire does not exactly apply to the 
Apache model, since this is a community and not a company (and all the 
information you need can thus be found on public sites). Nevertheless, 
I'm giving you some quick answers below.

> I am investigating and analyzing various open source companies about the
> way they handle external knowledge of users, contributors and developers.
> These information will be compared with the structure of the company,
> the used tools, techniques and documentations.

Apache OpenOffice is not a company but a community. Actually, the Apache 
Software Foundation is the main organization, and it develops a number 
of projects. OpenOffice is one of these projects (technically, it is 
still at "incubator" stadium so it is not listed among the projects, but 
it will be a standard project by the time you graduate).

> 1. Who is allowed to contribute to the source code?


> 2. Which criteria need to be fulfilled to contribute?

License: Apache License, version 2. For significant contributions, we 
require the contributor to sign an ICLA, i.e., a written statement used 
mainly to be sure that the contributor is legally entitled to give us 
his code.

> 3. What control mechanisms exist to check which code gets into the
> productive system?

People attach code patches to our bug tracking system, and privileged 
volunteers ("committers") approve them and check them in.

> 4. How is the approval process going on to let people contribute?

We welcome patches by anybody and in the (rare) case of controversial 
contributions, we discuss them publicly on our main discussion list, 
ooo-dev. Contributors who show demonstrable merit are voted in as 

> 5. What can be contributed by developers or users? Where is the cut
> within the development process (untouched parts of the application)?

OpenOffice is a broad project, and the contributions are incredibly 
varied (code, translations, but also tests, marketing, usability 
studies, user support, website). No parts of the application are 
excluded from community contributions, even though usually the core code 
is modified by experienced developers only, due to its complexity.

> 6. What system is used to contribute? Git?

The repository is a public SVN repository. Contributors often use SVN or 
git (through the git-svn interface).

> 7. Is it possible to develop within the core sourcecode? Change core
> functionalities or just fix bugs and create extensions?

As stated above, it is possible and encouraged to work on the core, it's 
just harder.

> If you don't like to get mentioned as source within these paper, then
> this is no problem!

This is not an official answer but ooo-dev reaches hundreds of people, 
including the most active volunteers, so others may step in and refine 
my answers. Should you need further clarifications, please ask them on 
ooo-dev by replying to this message.


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