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27 October 2011

How To Join

Contact Paul Biondich for more information on how to join the call.

In Attendance

Hamish Fraser
Darius Jazayeri
Andy Kanter
Burke Mamlin
Chris Seebregts
Ben Wolfe
Dawn Smith



Topic Leader(s)



NGO Updates

Dawn Seymour



Assigning copyright to OpenMRS / external code contributions

Darius Jazayeri

10 min


OpenMRS Distribution

Darius Jazayeri




NGO Updates

  • Dawn: finalise the board in the next two weeks and be reading to file Form 1023 in the next 4-6wks

Assigning Copyrights to OpenMRS / External Code Contributions

  • Darius: some code would be copyright and assigned to OpenMRS for open use
    • Burke: 1) What responsibility is on OpenMRS to take a copyright? 2) There's concern in taking ownership.
    • Ben: What's the process to actually assign copyright material over to OpenMRS?
    • Chris: There's an obligation to protect the copyright if you become the owner of it, yes?
  • Dawn: 2 questions: 1) What liability does OpenMRS have for taking copyright material? 2) Is there a formal process to assigning this over?

OpenMRS Distribution

  • Darius: paths forward
    • 1) Spinning off a new organisation that would not be all the same people (leadership group). It's its own org with its own mission to build that type of software with the first goal of building a distribution for something like small clinics. Long-term trajectory is for it to be its own org/social enterprise on a different mission that would support OpenMRS but not doing its work because of OpenMRS.
  • Darius: Do we significantly reconfigure the organization around building distributions or do we not want to make that change to OpenMRS (in which case this org would be a spinoff)
  • Andy: Thought it would be better to incubate this entity in the new OpenMRS org rather than spinning off b/c it needs its own funding, user group meetings, and need to define itself separately from OpenMRS
    • Andy: better to create internal semi-autonomous structure that can take this on under a separate board. In the future it could be moved out when it's fully developed.
    • Burke: Can we take the ppl we're trying to enable (i.e. community start-ups) and empower them with resources to create a reference application/distribution/implementation
      • Burke: Do this in a way that encourages capacity building
    • Hamish: Most important thing is to get the job done. There's a clear commitment from the OpenMRS leadership we need to get this done. We recognize that lots of areas are successful, but this is one thing that's lacking (workflows, making something ppl want to use).
    • Burke: Issue is how this gets done. There's a different in saying to prioritize this and having a team to get this done, but it's not a sustaining organization that's doing services that's continuing to build reference applications.
    • Burke: What concerns me is that this new org will compete with indigenous groups building up to support OpenMRS
  • Hamish: The biggest problem at the moment is we don't have all the UI tools
    • Andy: If you do this as a spinoff it has to be sustainable. If we do this as an incubator, we still have our support for everything else and we can do the support internally. That way there isn't a separate board, user meetings, etc.
  • Andy: The question is: Can we get the reference case finished? Can this be done in a way that is sustainable and meaningful for the community?
    • Hamish: The question is: Why haven't we gotten all the UI tools in place yet?
      • Andy: More funding always helps to get human capacity.
      • Burke: The work takes a lot of effort, both to do and through collaboration.
      • Andy: This hasn't yet been a priority, so we need clear consent from everyone in the leadership group (esp Paul) to get this started. This will allow that reference piece to be completed. It seems we have that consent, but we need to find the methodology how to do this and what the goal is.
  • Andy: Another question is: Are we going to take ppl from the core team and move them over to this spinoff?
    • Darius: If we could build a product for a clinic that's open source...proof of concept and demo...we can approach groups like USAID to provide funding for larger distributions. Idea is not to commit to that until we actually see how it works.
    • Darius: I would want to commit some time to
  • Chris S: Social enterprise is different from the NGO in terms of the mission, etc. What Darius describes is more of a software focus. It should be a separate entity in my mind.
    • Andy: I can agree with that. If the goal is just to get something out there to the community for private companies to go run with this, or something like what Joaquin and those in Nigeria are trying to do, we need to figure out what our relationship is to them. They could bring in private funding and say we want their help in doing this piece of the platform, and we'll take care of everything else (road map, training, documentation, etc.). If we have to do that, it's a different story.
      • Darius: I think that's right.
  • Chris S: It's clear that the focus has been to share a large platform, but we haven't done a lot of work on distros. This would satisfy the need to put distros in quick production. The idea isn't to be competitive, but give clinics what they truly need at the level of functionality that is expected.
    • Hamish: There's a lot of work to build good UI and workflows.
  • Andy: Sounds like we propose that
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