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Summary:

Facebook is today joining the Apache Software Foundation as a “Gold” sponsor — only a $40,000-a-year commitment, but part of a broader effort to open source Facebook’s infrastructure and developer tools.

After contributing Thrift (scalable cross-language services development), Hive (data warehouse infrastructure built on top of Apache Hadoop) and Cassandra (inbox search, but now used more broadly) to the Apache Software Foundation, Facebook is today joining the foundation as a “Gold” sponsor.

That’s only a $40,000-a-year commitment, but it fits into a broader effort to open source Facebook’s infrastructure and developer tools, according to David Recordon, senior open programs manager at the social networking site (who also spends half his time on open standards efforts for the company).

Facebook owes a lot of its existence, from way back in Mark Zuckerberg’s dorm room development days, to open-source software such as Linux, Apache, memcached, MySQL and PHP, said Recordon. The company now has originated and contributed to more than 20 open-source projects, with companies such as CBS, Digg, hi5, last.fm, Rackspace and Twitter making use of them and/or continuing their development.

These technologies haven’t been cheap for Facebook to develop, and open sourcing them should make it easier for up-and-comers to scale up to the company’s size and compete with it. Recordon said Facebook asks itself when making the decision to open source, “Is it really core to business or something that really just helps Facebook scale, or helps us extend the site?”

Please see the disclosure about Facebook in my bio.

  1. [...] Facebook: We Heart Open Source So Much We Want to Sponsor It – GigaOM – Yeah, Facebook loves Open Source SO MUCH that they have donated $40000 dol­lars. How AMAZINGLY gen­er­ous. A multi-​​billion dol­lar can only pony up pocket money to help the Open Source source soft­ware that they used to BE a bil­lion dol­lar company. [...]

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  2. The International Peace Rally should be called the Facebook International Peace Rally.
    We are looking for sponsors at all levels ranging from US$100,000 to US$5 million.
    You have to study the web site to comprehend the enormity of this event and the unique international marketing opportunity that it presents.
    Hope to hear from you.

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  3. [...] Facebook: We Heart Open Source So Much We Want to Sponsor It Tech Insider [...]

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