On the Geographic Allocation of Open Source Software Activities
Open source software (OSS) is marked by free access to the software and its source code. OSS is developed by a 'community' consisting of thousands of contributors from all over the world. Some research was undertaken in order to analyze how global the OSS community actually is, i.e. analyze the geographic origin of OSS developers. But as members of the OSS community differ in their activity levels, information about the allocation of activities are of importance. Our paper contributes to this as we analyze not only the geographic origin of (active) developers but also the geographic allocation of OSS activities. The paper is based on data from the SourceForge research Data Archive, referring to 2006. We exploit information about the developers' IP address, email address and indicated time-zone. This enables us to properly assign 1.3 million OSS developers from SourceForge to their countries, that are 94% of all registered ones in 2006. In addition we have information about the number of posted messages which is a good proxy for activity of each developer. Thus we can provide a detailed picture of the world-wide allocation of open source activities. Such country data about the supply-side of OSS is a valuable stock for both, cross-country studies on OSS, as well as country-specific research and policy advice.
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