CORVALLIS, Ore. - The School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Oregon State University is partnering with Intel to expand experiences for undergraduate students in open-source programming.

Open source is a type of software development in which programmers collaborate and freely share source code, with applications ranging from smartphones to netbook computers and internet-connected TV. It's gaining rapid acceptance in the technology industry.

"The feedback from companies like Intel and IBM is that there are not enough people trained in developing open-source software, which requires both technical programming skills and experience with how these communities work together," said Carlos Jensen, an OSU assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at OSU who is overseeing the project.

With $210,000 in support from Intel, students will interact with clients and work with leaders in the field to solve real-world problems, using Intel's version of Linux, called MeeGo, and next generation Intel hardware. Improvements will be shared with MeeGo's open-source community, creating direct benefits for future consumers.

The program builds on other work to create more open-source opportunities at OSU, including use of Beaversource, a platform for open-source development, and OSWALD, a handheld device to develop smartphone programs or other applications.

In a pilot program this year, 14 incoming computer science students in OSU's Intel Open Source Learning Company worked hands-on with instructors and mentors to develop new learning materials and programs. These will become part of the computer science curriculum next year and contribute to open-source projects and research.

"The information gained this year will feed in to next year's courses, and at the end of the two-year period we will have transformed the freshman experience to be more hands-on, more exciting in terms of technology, and more personally meaningful to the students," Jensen said.


Carlos Jensen, 541-737-2555

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