What is OSFlash?

Every now and then I get a question on the nature of OSFlash and I thought I'd briefly explain what OSFlash -- the resource site that I host and coordinate -- is (or isn't).

Most of this information here is actually from the OSFlash Wiki and I suggest you bookmark it as it is a very valuable resource indeed (I frequently refer to it as a box of free toys! Of course, Open Source means much more than that but it does communicate the general feeling I get everytime I browse the list of tasty goodies found there!) :)

What is OSFlash?

OSFlash is a watering hole for developers and users to meet, talk about and contribute to new and existing open source projects for the Flash Platform.

OSFlash supports the Flash community by providing open source projects with free source code hosting and project management tools as well as a web presence on the OSFlash wiki.

As such, we provide a service that is similar to other sites such as SourceForge but perhaps in a smaller, more intimate setting that is focused on open source projects for the Flash Platform.

There is a common misconception that OSFlash is a project to create an Open Source Flash IDE alternative. OSFlash is not an open-source development project itself but hosts a collection of open source projects, tools and resources created by developers who love the Flash Platform and want to expand its horizons!

OSFlash Philosophy

Open Source is good for the Flash Platform.

"Open Source" software is software that you're free to use, modify, and redistribute. More specifically, see the definition of Open Source as championed by the Open Source Initiative.

The OSFlash community is comprised of members of the Flash Community who use and develop open source on the Flash Platform and who use the OSFlash mailing list, wiki and source control repositories.

A vibrant, healthy and productive open source community is an essential barometer of the health and success of the Flash Platform. Healthy platforms require a full ecosystem of tools, both closed-source and open-source. Open Source tools and projects also bring new developers into the Flash Platform and lead to increased competition and choice for developers.

To ease the creation of open source tools, the community also documents features of the Flash Platform such as protocols and file formats. It is essential for the core protocols and file formats of the Flash Platform to be open if the platform is to see widespread adoption.

The OSFlash website, mailing lists and source control accounts are free tools and services provided for use by the Flash community. They are designed in order to enable community members to easily share knowledge and collaborate on open source Flash projects.

In conclusion

I hope this provides a clear explanation of what OSFlash is (and isn't). Personally, I find it a wonderful resource that has a great community of users and I look forward to continuing to host it and improve it as a small way of saying "thank you" to the Flash community -- by far the most amazing online community I've had the pleasure of being a part of.