FOSSDA Launch Announcement!

FOSSDA Project to Record Open Source History

Not-for-Profit launches project to engage OSS pioneers and make stories accessible via digital video archives

The FOSSDA Project aims to:

“Open source brought the power of collaboration to innovation, created the backbone of the Internet, and revolutionized computing,” said Brian Proffitt, FOSSDA Project contributor. “I’m excited to help FOSSDA tell the story of the free and open source software movement and highlight the pioneers who are making the critical software we all rely upon.”

Early supporters and participants of FOSSDA include The Apache Software Foundation, Mozilla, Rochester Institute of Technology, the Permanent Legacy Foundation, and


Free and Open Source Stories Digital Archive Foundation (FOSSDA) is a not-for-profit foundation to engage open source software pioneers, preserve their legacies, and make their stories accessible to open source creators, educators, students, and scholars around the world— now and for generations to come. To achieve this, FOSSDA partners with organizations such as The Apache Software Foundation, Mozilla, and Rochester Institute of Technology, and uses state-of-the-art digital tools and methodologies such as,, and Aviary to collect, preserve, and make accessible audiovisual interviews, images, and documents. To learn more or join the effort, visit

Additional Resources
Quotes from Supporters and Participants

“At Permanent, we believe all people leave a legacy that deserves to be preserved and that individual stories can change how we understand our world. Open source software is essential to digital preservation and that is how we build Permanent. We are proud to support FOSSDA as one of our Byte4Byte grantees to inspire future generations of contributors.”

Robert Friedman, Executive Director, The Permanent Legacy Foundation

“As a leading FOSS educator and proponent of role diversity within FOSS, Open@RIT’s participation in FOSSDA is an incredible opportunity for our students – across engineering, media, and the humanities disciplines– to build their professional skills and networks by doing Open Work. They will be able to learn from, and directly connect with, the founding members of the free and open source software movements. The work with FOSSDA will provide them the opportunity to build greater strengths in critical thinking, teamwork, project management, empathy, interviewing, storytelling, video production, and more. We know that this can be a catalyst for our students to learn more about and contribute to the Free and Open Source community.”

Stephen Jacobs, Director, Open@RIT

“As long time contributors and users of free and open source software, Aviary is honored to be part of having the stories of the people behind this revolutionary movement heard.”

Chris Lacinak, CEO AVP, creators of Aviary

“It is an honor to be FOSSDA’s oral history platform of choice, and we are excited at the opportunity to connect the open source community intergenerationally. We believe the FOSSDA oral history project will create engaging primary records that people, institutions, and society will learn and benefit from for generations to come, and that it will create and reinforce deep connections in the open source community today.”

Zack Ellis, CEO, TheirStory