Feeds

Perens, Prentice deliver Open Source books

Calling authors...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

"I'm either the anti-Tim, or the Peter Norton of Linux," says Bruce Perens, who's convinced a major book publisher to go open source for the first time, applying an open software license to their publications.

The first of Prentice Hall's initial series of seven Open Content-licensed books are already in the stores with the first two titles covering eCos, Linux development and a third on intrusion detection slated for March. All will be open and extensible electronic books: it's good manners, but not mandatory to inform the author of the changes under the terms of the license.

It's another triumph for the backroom diplomacy of Perens, who with Eben Moglen and Larry Rosen helped negotiate a workable royalty-free patent policy for the World Wide Web Consortium. Perens was wryly noting his own prominence on the books' jackets, which give him top billing, and the name - "Bruce Perens' Open Source Series" - and he added that he doesn't have a bone to pick with Tim O'Reilly.

These aren't the first books to be published under the OPL, both O'Reilly and Prentice have using this before, but it is the first series the set sail under the flag, and Perens hopes that the extensibility granted under the license - to allow a teacher to annotate and add to the book - will make the series a classroom staple. In time, each publication could become a mini-Wikipedia entry.

"In contrast to the recent DMCA stuff, here's a major publisher who's publishing an open eBook, a full price work, and we definitely intend to make money off it," he said.

It works like this. Prentice sells the paper version for several months until an electronic version is released. What happens next is entirely up to the community. The author retains the copyright and in the standard license, his name must be appear on the book's cover. Citations must be acknowledged, modifications must be identified, and derivative works must identify the original unmodified source document.

Perens is looking for authors for the next series. "I'd love to hear from open source developers themselves," he told us. "Prentice Hall has power to get the books into bookstore near you, not just on Amazon."

If you're tempted, mail Perens here.

Related Stories

A kinder, gentler Perens is going Global now
W3C rejects net patent tax, avoids web schism
Perens asks SPI to own Sincere Choice

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Bose says today IS F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.