If you are not familiar with Ohloh, it is "a free public directory of open source software and people." It boasts an active community of 110,000 developers and consumers of open source (or "people" as they call them). That is combined with a searchable database of open source projects with useful information about each. And that's all free.
Everyone's first question is about the name. It was actually our last question. On the day of the close, Scott Collison, one of the founders of Ohloh and an executive at Geeknet, told us that the name was inspired by the Hawaiian word Olo, a really long surfboard used by warriors of the highest rank. Holding developers in very high esteem and desiring to help them surf the open source wave, we have embraced the brand (as evidenced by the Hawaiian shirts we are all sporting today). Just to head off speculation: No, that is not Richard Stallman in the picture.
Black Duck's aspirations for Ohloh are very aligned with those of the founders. We want it to be the destination site for all things open source. If Facebook and IMDB (the comprehensive Hollywood database) had a child and raised it on Java manuals and Consumer Reports...that would be our vision for Ohloh.
You'll find elements of this big idea in other places too. Most forges make available pretty good data on their various projects. Apache.org provides a "committer index" with mini-profiles. But with hundreds of thousands of projects spread across thousands of sites, developers won't be constrained, so we think Ohloh has had the right idea staying neutral and expressly not being a forge, while positioning itself as the one place that pulls it all together.
The open source community has come to suffer an embarrassment of riches and it's only getting--I hate to say "worse"--more pronounced. These days it's not a matter of finding a component that does what you want, the challenge is narrowing down to the best choice among too many, optimizing along multiple dimensions such as function, quality, support, licensing, etc. Between Black Duck and Ohloh, we have an amazing baseline of data, but the only way to keep up is to rely on the community, and Ohloh comes with that solid critical mass of community from which to build.
Ohloh is free. Free like waves of beer. So what's in it for Black Duck? One, it's the right thing to do; and two, it helps our business in the long run. Think of it like the US government aiding people in third world nations: As those countries develop, they turn into great trading partners. We get paid for helping Enterprises manage their use of open source at scale. Ohloh makes it easy for individual developers to use open source, ergo more open source to manage. Ohloha!
Phil Odence Vice President of Business Development for Black Duck Software, makers of enterprise app development tools that address management, compliance and security challenges associated with open source. In that role Phil is responsible for expanding Black Duck’s reach, image and product breadth by developing partnerships in the multi-source development ecosystem. He came to Black Duck from Empirix (formerly RSW Software and Hammer Technologies) a leader in carrier VoIP, contact center and Web application testing and monitoring. He served there as Vice President of Business Development successfully developing the firm’s alliance program, creating strategic partnerships, starting up new businesses and supporting M&A activities. Prior to Empirix, Phil was a partner at High Performance Systems, a computer simulation modeling firm where he was responsible for consulting and partnerships with leading management consultancies, including McKinsey and A.T. Kearney.
He began his career with Teradyne’s digital logic simulation group in several sales and marketing management roles. He has an AB in Engineering Science and an MS in System Simulation from Dartmouth College.
Black Duck counts a long list of well-known technology companies as partners. These include IBM, Novell, Red Hat, HP, Intel and Microsoft.
When not at work, Phil can be found running barefoot, which he documents in his entertaining Barefoot? Phil blog.