Focus On Developers: The 2011 Open Source Rookies

Steve O'Grady | Open Source Delivers | January 19, 2012

In years past, sifting winners from losers from the previous calendar year was an exercise in intuition, relying entirely on the experience of the individual and their personal recollections of twelve months’ worth of events. Unsurprisingly, then, the quality of these recollections showed a high degree of variance, as recall is an inconsistent skillset and even assuming a perfect memory, questions of personal bias arise.

Today, however, we increasingly live in a world that’s driven by data rather than intuition. Judgment still has its place, but it must be informed, if not governed, by facts, not opinions.

It was in this context that yesterday Black Duck announced its 2011 Open Source Rookies, a list of the year’s top new open source projects. Leveraging quantitative data from the Black Duck KnowledgeBase and, metrics included “commit activity (commits per day), size of the project team and the number of in-bound links to the project.” The value of these measurements cannot be overstated, reflecting as they do actual project and therefore developer behavior. Instead of relying on surveys or estimates developer engagement, it is directly observed and captured...