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OCS 2020 Breakout: Joshua McKenty

jj profile image JJ ・2 min read

Joshua McKenty is now working on workplace anti-discrimination as CEO of EQ Labs. Josh co-founded OpenStack while Chief Cloud Architect at NASA, then launched Piston Cloud to commercialize it (acq by Cisco). After leading the first open-source launch of OpenQuake for the UN-sponsored Global Earthquake Model, Josh was a pioneer of Digital Transformation while Global Field CTO at Pivotal (IPO, 2018). A sought-after international speaker, he once defended Silicon Valley’s soul on Intelligence Squared.

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Can we evolve past OSS's neoliberal mistakes and towards a values-based future, or are we doomed to hegemony?

Joshua’s introduction and presentation topic: Why I left OSS (and you should, too) - 0:00

Diving into Winston Churchill quote: “Democracy is the worst form of Government, except …”. Lesson: we got to democracy by trying and trying and trying again. - 0:35

Exciting trends/developments in open source, consolidation, CentOS - 1:00

Open Source is Politics - inspired by Ben Green’s paper on Data Science as Political Action. - 1:24

Who are the top contributors to GitHub? Who’s benefiting most from open source? - 2:45

Unintended Consequences of OSS - Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Google - 3:18

OSS is a Nuclear Fission… and we’re Feynman - 4:12

Intent matters less than you think. Joshua asks: is open source really antithetical to capitalism/neoliberalism? - 5:17

It’s not “source” that is flawed, it’s “open”. Joshua talks about being inspired by Sara Ahmed’s famous talk called Uses of Use. How are we using the word “open” instead of doing the work? - 6:03

Our quest for “easy” solutions to hard problems. - 7:37

The binary of open and closed binds for us all. Joshua talks about why he was wrong pursuing a “best of both worlds” tactics for years. - 8:53

Open is not a compass. Why CopyLeft licensing isn’t a moral position. Why we need post-meritocracy and values beyond “not closed”. - 9:33

What would something different look like? Joshua talks about unions, co-ops and different kinds of organizations available. - 10:42

One Big Tent is Just a Circus. Joshua explains why he believed the “One Big Tent” idea, and why he was wrong. There is more to the ecosystem than just code, there are values, data and message. - 13:02


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