Engine Yard Launches Open-Source Grant Program

In a move to share some of the wealth it has gained from using and promoting open-source software, Engine Yard, Ruby on Rails cloud services provider, has launched a new grant program for developers.

Engine Yard, a cloud computing platform-as-a-service provider for Ruby on Rails, has announced a new effort to support innovative open source developers, called the Engine Yard Open Source Software Community Grant program.

This new program aims to help key projects and OSS contributors gain traction while growing their user base and contributor base, and helping to ensure that these projects have a longterm success with the broader community.

"Engine Yard believes passionately in the value of open-source software and this program is an example of our commitment to the community," said Nic Williams, vice president of technology at Engine Yard, in a statement. "We want to ensure critical open-source projects have longterm, healthy lives and OSS contributors can successfully grow their user and contributor bases."

The Engine Yard OSS Community Grant program will help developers evangelize their projects to the community by funding attendance and speaking engagements at conferences, marketing and documentation assistance, and more, Engine Yard officials said.

Mitchell Hashimoto and Yehuda Katz are the first two recipients of the program.

Yehuda Katz is a member of the Ruby on Rails core team, and lead developer of the Merb project. He is a member of the jQuery Core Team, and a core contributor to DataMapper. He contributes to many open-source projects, such as Rubinius and Johnson, and works on some he created himself, such as Thor. He also is working on the SproutCore open-source JavaScript framework as an employee of Strobe.

Mitchell Hashimoto is the creator of Vagrant, which is a tool for building and distributing virtualized development environments. Vagrant uses Oracle's VirtualBox to build configurable, lightweight and portable virtual machines dynamically.

"Vagrant automates the creation and provisioning of virtual machines using Oracle's VirtualBox," Hashimoto said in a statement. "By providing easy-to-configure, lightweight, reproducible and portable virtual machines targeted at development environments, Vagrant helps developers maximize productivity and flexibility."

For a full description of Vagrant and how to get started, developers are invited to download the quick-start guide at: http://vagrantup.com/. And to learn more and apply for the Open Source Software Community Grant Program, go to: http://www.engineyard.com/blog/2010/mitchell-hashimoto-joins-engine-yard-oss-community-grant-program/.