In this week’s edition of the open source news roundup, we take a look at the European Commission funding a supercomputer, Google aiding refugees, Carnegie Mellon University printing arteries and hearts, and more.
Open source news roundup for October 24 – 30, 2015
European Commission funds supercomputer to run a billion billion (10^18) operations per second
The European Commission will fund an international project called ExaHyPE, coordinated at the Technische Universität München (Germany). The project’s aim is to develop novel software for simulations in geophysics and astrophysics. The software will then be published as open source for further use. The project seeks to establish the algorithmic foundations for exascale supercomputer, which in the next four years will run a billion billion (10^18) computer operations per second. Read more about the project in the official announcement.
Google aids European refugees
With the ongoing refugee crisis facing Europe, Google has been working with the International Rescue Committee and Mercy Corps to understand how it can put its technology expertise to work. “One issue identified was the lack of timely, hyperlocal information for refugees.” Google developed an open source project called Crisis Info Hub to provide refugees with information such as lodging, transportation, medical facilities, and more. Check the official blog for more details.
Mozilla launches Open Source Support Program
The Mozilla Foundation announced an award program by the name of Open Source Support Program (MOSS). This new program is focused on supporting open source and free software, and will “recognize and celebrate communities who are leading the way with open source projects that contribute to our work and the health of the Web.”
The Mozilla Foundation allocated one million US dollars for the award program. They invited Mozillians and their community to participate in the refinement of the program, suggesting improvements to its terms. They also invite Mozillians and friends to identify projects they rely on and are good candidates for the program. By December 12, the Foundation hopes to have found 10 projects which it can fund.
Researchers 3D print arteries, hearts
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University (CMS) in the U.S. modified a 3D printer and developed a technique to bioprint arteries and hearts. The challenges to overcome, when bioprinting with soft materials, is such structures can collapse under their own weight. The method the researchers developed is to print soft materials inside a support bath material. This new gel technique has been named FRESH: Freeform Reversible Embedding of Suspended Hydrogels. One of the big advantages of CMU’s technique is the low cost of their 3D printing hardware, also utilizing open source software and hardware.
White House commits to open access, education, and data
Coinciding with the Open Government Partnership Summit in Mexico City, the U.S. White House released its third Open Government National Action Plan. “As a member of the Open Government Partnership, the United States issues Open Government National Action Plans outlining ambitious commitments to advance open government every 2 years.” The plan announces 40 new or expanded initiatives.
Newly included in the plan are initiatives such as: promoting unemployment by unlocking workforce data, releasing public information from the electronically filed tax forms of nonprofit and charitable organizations, and more. As Nicole Allen writes for SPARC, the White House is also committing to open access, open education, and open data. “The OER commitment builds on momentum that has grown since the U.S. became the first Open Government Partnership (OGP) member country to introduce open education into its National Action Plan last fall.”
In other news
Thanks, as always, to Opensource.com staff members and moderators for their help this week. Make sure to check out our event calendar, to see what’s happening next week in open source.