Sam Ramji, senior director of platform strategy, made three announcements at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention in Portland, Oregon that support open source initiatives.

  • Microsoft has become a Platinum sponsor of the Apache Software Foundation.
  • Microsoft has put many of its protocols and formats into a perpetually royalty-free license including all the Office binary specifications. The royalty-free license is called the OSP (Open Specification Promise).
  • For the first time Microsoft is submitting a patch to a GPL V2 project. The patch is for a project known as ADOdb.

ADOdb is a database abstraction library for PHP and Python based on the same concept as Microsoft's ActiveX Data Objects. It allows developers to write applications in a fairly consistent way regardless of the underlying database storing the information. The advantage is that the database can be changed without re-writing every call to it in the application.

Ruby Announcements

In a separate announcement the conference, John Lam, head of the IronRuby effort, said Microsoft will ship all standard Ruby libraries that are implemented in the Ruby programming language as part of the IronRuby distribution, hosted on RubyForge.

Microsoft will participate in the RubySpec project. RubySpec is a standard test suite that will be used to define compliant Ruby implementations.

In addition, Microsoft will create IronRuby-Contrib, a separate open-source project under the MsPL (Microsoft Public License). This project will be a place for collaborative development of code that supports IronRuby, or the underlying platform, but isn’t part of the core IronRuby distribution.