Zoom becomes clubhouse for OpenVMS open source

Volunteers for the next conference call about OpenVMS open source projects can join a Zoom meeting at 11 PM EDT on April 16. Bill Pedersen hosts these calls, but the open source efforts are in need of more development manpower.

“We are moving to Zoom,” Pedersen says in a note on the OpenVMS SIG message board, “as it is a conferencing system.” Call attendees will be working on a free version of Zoom, the software now taking a leading role in connecting us all during the COVID-19 pandemic. Meeting on Zoom over a free connection means the call can only run 40 minutes. Telephone-based audio has spotty availability for these free calls. Computer-based audio is working well.

Open source solutions are already serving on OpenVMS. For example, a version of Python is available at a special Python-focused wiki page. Python is a dynamic object-oriented programming language used for many kinds of software development. It integrates with other languages and tools, comes with extensive standard libraries, and can be learned in a few days.

Python is a barometer of the maturity of open source tools for a platform, especially a legacy environment. “Python programmers report substantial productivity gains,” the wiki page explains. “They feel the language encourages the development of higher quality, more maintainable code.

The wiki page includes links for a Python version that runs on OpenVMS 7.3-2 on Alpha and OpenVMS 8.3 on IA64. There’s also a forum for the Python OpenVMS user community.

Pedersen posted an open Zoom meeting number for the April 16 open source meeting. Installing the free Zoom lap on a laptop, or downloading a Zoom app for a mobile device, is a good way to prepare for the April 16 meeting.

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