The OWF initiative to Help the State of Colorado Move Water Resources Software to Open Source Licensing is a foundational initiative that illustrates the challenges and opportunities that many State governments and organizations face. Software tools are developed with State tax funds to meet the government’s need, but after the development project ends, the tools often do not have a home and cannot be maintained. The solution recommended by the OWF is to manage software projects as open source projects and utilize stewards in the software development community to ensure long-term support of the software. Below are ways that OWF is working with the State of Colorado to demonstrate this approach as an example that can be scaled to many software tools.
Moving Colorado’s Decision Support System (CDSS) Software to Open Source Software Licensing
OWF staff have extensive experience developing and supporting CDSS software tools. In recent years, budget cuts and staff changes have heightened awareness that maintenance of CDSS software tools by the State is challenging. Consequently, OWF and others have recommended moving the software to open source licensing and engaging the developer community to support the software. The OWF was founded in part to meet this need and continues to provide software development and support services to the State of Colorado. Stay tuned for progress on this initiative.
Supporting Organizations in the Use of CDSS Software Tools
Many organizations in Colorado and other states now use CDSS software tools to support the work of their organizations. OWF provides support to these organizations as follows:
- Enhance software to meet new requirements
- Provide training and assistance in using CDSS software
- Integrate the use of CDSS with business processes, customer computer environments, and implementing automated processes
- Supporting consulting teams that use CDSS tools
The OWF has an interest in collaborating with and supporting all organizations that use CDSS tools. We recognize that others have expertise in application of tools and we want to ensure that the investment in software tools is leveraged to meet the needs of as many organizations as possible. Contact OWF if your organization has a need for CDSS software training, support, or enhancement.