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From Andy Seaborne <>
Subject Re: [VOTE] Accept Marmotta into the incubator
Date Thu, 29 Nov 2012 12:04:43 GMT
+1 (binding)

On 29/11/12 12:00, Fabian Christ wrote:
> +1 (unbinding since I am not yet an IPMC member)
> 2012/11/29 Ross Gardler <>
>> +1 (binding)
>> On 29 November 2012 11:28, Andy Seaborne <> wrote:
>>> Hi there,
>>> Following the discussion thread, here is the formal vote on the Marmotta
>>> proposal:
>>> Please cast your votes on whether to accept the Apache Marmotta proposal:
>>> [ ] +1 Accept Marmotta into the Apache Incubator
>>> [ ] +0 Indifferent to the acceptance of Marmotta
>>> [ ] -1 Do not accept the Marmotta proposal because ...
>>> The vote will be open until at least 23:59 Sunday 2nd December UTC
>>> (which is three full days from midnight tonight)
>>>          Andy
>>> -----------------------
>>> == Abstract
>>> Marmotta is a Linked Data platform for industry-strength installations.
>>> == Proposal
>>> The goal of Apache Marmotta is to provide an open implementation of a
>>> Linked Data Platform that can be used, extended, and deployed easily by
>>> organizations who want to publish Linked Data or build custom
>> applications
>>> on Linked Data.
>>> The phrase "Linked Data" is used here idiosyncratically to refer to a
>> data
>>> integration paradigm across the Web. The term was coined by Tim
>> Berners-Lee
>>> in 2006, and it is based on four very simple principles which basically
>>> describe recommended best practices for exposing, sharing, and connecting
>>> pieces of data, information, and knowledge on the Semantic Web using URIs
>>> and the RDF technology stack. Therefore Linked Data is about using the
>> Web
>>> to connect related data that wasn't previously linked, or using the Web
>> to
>>> lower the barriers to linking data currently linked using other methods.
>>> Marmotta will follow the core recommendations of the W3C on RDF, SPARQL
>>> and Linked Data publishing, particularly the emerging Linked Data
>> Platform
>>> (LDP) recommendation. It will also offer extensions for frequently needed
>>> additional functionalities like Linked Data Querying, WebID, WebACL,
>>> Reasoning, and Versioning. Marmotta aims to cover both, Linked Open Data,
>>> as well as Enterprise Linked Data scenarios, providing facilities to deal
>>> with different data sources and requirements (small data/big data, open
>>> access/restricted access, etc).
>>> == Background
>>> The Semantic Web isn't just about putting data on the web. It is about
>>> making links, so that a person or machine can explore the web of data.
>>> Moreover, the Web has quickly evolved to a Read-Write paradigm, and
>> Linked
>>> Data technologies too. And Marmotta will address this challenge and
>> offer a
>>> common infrastructure for organizations working in this area.
>>> Marmotta comes as a continuation of the work in the Linked Media
>> Framework
>>> (aka LMF) project. LMF is an easy-to-setup server application that
>> bundles
>>> central Semantic Web technologies to offer some advanced services. The
>>> Linked Media Framework consists of LMF Core which provides a Read-Write
>>> Linked Data server, plus some modules that complement the server with
>> other
>>> added added capabilities, such as, SPARQL 1.1, LDPath, LDCache,
>> Reasoning,
>>> Versioning, etc. Besides, LMF also provides a Client Library, currently
>>> available in Java, PHP, and Javascript, as a convenient API abstraction
>>> around the LMF web services. Currently LMF integrates with other relevant
>>> tools (Apache Stanbol, Google Refine or Drupal) to cover a wider range of
>>> use cases and needs.
>>> == Rationale
>>> Linked Data technologies are now at a turning point from mostly research
>>> projects to industrial applications, and a lot of standardisation is
>>> currently in progress. Industrial applications require a reliable and
>>> scalable infrastructure that follows and helps defining a standard way of
>>> publishing and consuming Linked Data on the Web. The proposers have a
>>> strong background in building such applications and have invested
>>> considerable effort in the last years to building up an initial version
>> of
>>> such a platform (the “Linked Media Framework” or “LMF”). Starting from
>> this
>>> solid base, we strongly believe that Apache is the right environment to
>>> open the development of this project to a wider scope.
>>> Marmotta has the potential of being a reference implementation and Apache
>>> provides a better environment for a collaborative development effort.
>> With
>>> its well-established governance model based on meritocracy and handling
>>> IP/legal issues, people from different organizations can more easily
>>> contribute to the project. This will help unify the efforts of people
>>> implementing the Linked Data Platform specification and other Semantic
>> Web
>>> standards. In addition, it would considerably help organizations in
>>> adopting Linked Data technologies and would provide a solid base for
>>> further research activities in the community.
>>> == Initial Goals
>>> * Foster the use of Semantic Web Technologies in industry
>>> * Provide an open source and community-driven implementation of a Linked
>>> Data Platform and related Semantic Web standards, LDP 1.0 Draft and
>>> 1.1 mainly
>>> * Move the existing LMF source from the current Google Code page to the
>>> Apache infrastructure
>>> * Remove LMF extensions that are not relevant for a core Linked Data
>>> platform (e.g. semantic search and content enhancement)
>>> * Define a plugable architeture for providing a data governance framework
>>> for enterprise legacy sources
>>> * Revise the architecture, moving to a non-proprietary RDF API (Sesame or
>>> Jena) and deciding whether to move to OSGi/Felix or stay with CDI/JavaEE
>> as
>>> SOA framework
>>> * Identify and replace dependencies with a non-compatible license (e.g.
>>> replace XOM with JDOM)
>>> == Current Status
>>> The source for the current LMF is a stable software artifact that, having
>>> emerged from research circles, has already a relevant number of real
>> world
>>> installations i.e. Red Bull Media House, Salzburger Nachrichten,
>>>, etc.
>>> == Meritocracy
>>> LMF is the outcome of a number of research projects
>>> coordinated/participated by Salzburg Research during the last five years.
>>> The original developers are still part of the core development team,
>> while
>>> at the same time many new committers have joined the team. Taking this
>> step
>>> we have made it clear to our community that going forward, the community,
>>> rather than a single organization, will determine the future of Marmotta.
>>> Meritocracy is inherent in the research community we come from, and since
>>> Apache Marmotta aims to be a unifying project for this community it is
>> only
>>> natural to continue this approach.
>>> == Community
>>> Marmotta addresses two target communities: On the one hand,
>>> researchers/developers who are working with Semantic Web technologies. On
>>> the other hand, companies or organizations that require Semantic Web
>>> infrastructure. The initial committers are active participants in both
>>> communities.
>>> == Core Developers
>>> Sebastian Schaffert (sebastian dot schaffert at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Thomas Kurz (thomas dot kurz at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Jakob Frank (jakob dot frank at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Dietmar Glachs (dietmar dot glachs at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Sergio Fernández (sergio dot fernandez at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> == Alignment
>>> Marmotta complements and integrates well with the current landscape of
>>> Apache projects, especially with the emerging “semantic technologies”
>>> cluster within the ASF. Concretely, Marmotta will align with the
>> following
>>> projects:
>>> * Apache Commons (lang, loggging, http and so on) is extensively used in
>>> many part of the project
>>> * Apache Tomcat is currently the primary platform for deployment; with
>>> Marmotta, Tomcat can be turned into a Linked Data server
>>> * Apache Stanbol will very likely adopt parts of the Marmotta
>>> infrastructure, particularly for implementing the entity hub and for
>>> exposing the RDF data as Linked Data
>>> * Apache Jena could become the RDF API used throughout Marmotta; an
>>> architecural decision is yet to be taken
>>> * Apache Any23 could be integrated in the LMF as wrapper around non-RDF
>>> data sources to consume them as Linked Data; a similar approach has
>> already
>>> been taken by the LMF
>>> * Apache Tika could be use for metada extraction of content
>>> * Apache Karaf and Apache Felix could become the OSGi container for
>>> running and configuring the Marmotta components
>>> In addition to these more-or-less concrete proposals, there are some
>>> options that still require some strategic decisions. For example, it make
>>> make sense to build a storage backend based on Apache Hadoop for
>>> large-scale installations using HBase (e.g. jena grande, h2rdf, hdrs,
>>> hadoop rdf). Several extensions also build on existing Apache projects,
>>> most importantly the LMF Semantic Search component, which offers semantic
>>> search over Linked Data resources.
>>> == Known Risks
>>> Probably one of the major risks will not be able to engage the community
>>> for addressing the new challenges. Knowing this, we will do our best to
>>> provide the greater facilities to attract new developers and
>> organizations.
>>> In particular, we will try to actively engage developers from the Linked
>>> Data community through our networks.
>>> == Orphaned Products
>>> The current project is part of the business portfolio and a strategic
>>> project of the contributor organization, and will continue in that way.
>> So
>>> there is no risk of any of the usual warning signs of orphaned or
>> abandoned
>>> code.
>>> == Inexperience with Open Source
>>> The committers have large experience with open source development and
>>> communities. Several of the key committers have been actively involved in
>>> Open Source projects for more than 10-15 years. The initial code base of
>>> Marmotta has already been developed as Open Source project in the last 5
>>> years.
>>> == Homogenous Developers
>>> Because we are aware about the initial list of committers is not the best
>>> for a long, it exists a strong commitment to spread the project creating
>> a
>>> much more diverse development team. Part of the reason to enter the
>> Apache
>>> incubation process is to open up the development to more interested
>>> participants.
>>> == Reliance on Salaried Developers
>>> Right now most or all of that work is salaried, but the developers are
>>> identifying themselves very much with the project. When opening up the
>>> development using Apache as a platform, we expect that the future
>>> development will occur on both salaried and volunteer time, particularly
>> by
>>> participants from the Linked Data community.
>>> == Relationships with Other Apache Projects
>>> Although current RDF/SPARQL support in LMF is build on top of OpenRDF
>>> Sesame API, Marmotta is closely related to many Apache projects, such as
>>> Stanbol, Jena and Any23. See “Alignment” above.
>>> == An Excessive Fascination with the Apache Brand
>>> While we expect the Apache brand may help attract more contributors, our
>>> interests in starting this project is based on the factors mentioned in
>> the
>>> Rationale section.
>>> == Documentation
>>> Documentation for the current project can be found at:
>>> == Initial Source
>>> LMF (formerly KiWi) has been developed since 2008. It is important to say
>>> that the whole LMF will not be contributed to Marmotta, actually only
>> those
>>> parts that make up the "Linked Data Platform" functionality (Linked Data
>>> Server, RDF Store, SPARQL, LDCache, Versioning, Reasoner and LDPath) .
>> The
>>> idea is to focus Marmotta much more in the core needs, keeping all
>>> surrounding functionalities (Media-related modules and Semantic Search,
>>> basically) out of the initial scope. Although the community will be who
>>> ultimately decides what are the relevant modules. Since LMF is a very
>>> modular software artifact it will be pretty easy to make such
>> partitioning
>>> to kick-off Marmotta.
>>> The current source code can be found at Google Code:
>>> == Source and Intellectual Property Submission Plan
>>> Salzburg Research Forschungsgesellschaft mbH is the sole copyright owner
>>> of the initial code to be contributed, so should not be any problem with
>>> the standard IP clearance process. Current licence is already Apache
>>> Software License 2.0.
>>> == External Dependencies
>>> Most of current dependencies should have Apache compatible licenses,
>>> including BSD, CDDL, CPL, MPL and MIT licensed dependencies. We are aware
>>> of some incompatible licenses right now, but we will work to solve this
>>> issue. See Appendix A for a detailed list of dependencies.
>>> == Cryptography
>>> Does Not Apply.
>>> == Required Resources
>>> Mailing lists
>>>      marmotta-dev
>>>      marmotta-commits
>>>      marmotta-users
>>> Repository
>>>      git://**git<
>>> Issue Tracking
>>>      Jira: MARMOTTA (Kanban board enabled at GreenHopper)
>>> Other Resources
>>>      Jenkins/Hudson for builds and test running.
>>>      Wiki for internal documentation purposes
>>>      Blog to improve the project dissemination
>>> == Initial Committers
>>> Sebastian Schaffert
>>>     (sebastian dot schafftert at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Thomas Kurz
>>>     (thomas dot kurz at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Jakob Frank
>>>     (jakob dot frank at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Dietmar Glachs
>>>     (dietmar dot glachs at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Sergio Fernández
>>>     (sergio dot fernandez at salzburgresearch dot at)
>>> Rupert Westenthaler
>>>     (rwesten at apache dot org)
>>> == Affiliations
>>> All initial committers are currently affiliated to Salzburg Research
>>> Forschungsgesellschaft mbH.
>>> == Sponsors
>>> = Champion
>>>      Andy Seaborne (andy at apache dot org)
>>> = Nominated Mentors
>>>      Fabian Christ (fchrist at apache dot org)
>>>      Nandana Mihindukulasooriya (nandana at apache dot org)
>>>      Andy Seaborne (andy at apache dot org)
>>> = Sponsoring Entity
>>> Apache Incubator PMC
>>> ------------------------------**------------------------------**---------
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>> --
>> Ross Gardler (@rgardler)
>> Programme Leader (Open Development)
>> OpenDirective

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