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Fedora Repository Futures: Towards an Evolutionary Development Roadmap

From Jonathan Markow, Chief Strategy Officer, DuraSpace

Winchester, MA  In recent months, many members of the Fedora community–both developers and stakeholders–have expressed a desire to refresh the product's vision, and to produce an evolutionary short- and mid-term development roadmap for the repository. The idea here is that while Fedora's conceptual architecture is proven and still sound, the underlying technology needs to become more responsive to a wide range of current and emerging requirements, more performant and scalable, and capable of advancing in a more agile development framework. The feeling is that this work would require considerably more effort and a different approach than is possible using our current model of volunteer developer contributions led and coordinated by the DuraSpace organization.

At the 2012 Open Repostitories Conference a group of Fedora stakeholders self-organized to plan some post-conference, informal discussions about "Fedora Futures". That group, encompassing representation from some large institutions, major projects like Hydra, Islandora, APTrust, and eSciDoc, plus DuraSpace, met last week for an initial conversation to explore these topics.  The outcome was very positive. The group found a lot of common ground and interest on possible approaches to improving Fedora.  Most importantly, a commitment was expressed to mobilize resources in the short term to organize a sustained effort to scale up the development of Fedora.

As this work takes shape, the group will reach out to the wider Fedora community of developers and other institutional stakeholders for feedback, recommendations, and support. We will provide an update on the initiative in the near future.