Open Standards, Open Source Come Together With New Tech-World Partnership

The open-source-focused Linux Foundation is teaming with TM Forum, a communications technology industry group that has upped its open standards game in recent years.

With a new partnership, the world of telecom is jumping into the world of open source with both feet.

Last month, TM Forum, an association that represents communications service providers (CSPs) as they interact in the digital supply chain, announced it would team with the Linux Foundation, the nonprofit best known for shepherding its namesake, the open-source operating system on which the modern internet is largely built.

The foundation is also known as a key steward of major open-source projects, and with the partnership, TM Forum will boost its open-source game, a change advocated by the CSPs it represents.

Under the partnership, the Linux Foundation will adopt the application programming interfaces (APIs) that TM Forum maintains. TM Forum offers a suite of 50 Open APIs, which are used by more than 4,000 software developers, along with more than 700 companies worldwide.

The partnership will significantly increase the usage of the APIs in the open-source world. TM Forum has been planning for such a shift internally by launching its Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) project last September.

In a news release, Linux Foundation General Manager of Networking Arpit Joshipura characterized the move as a merger between two different types of “open” approaches—open source and open standards.

“Together with TM Forum, we can shift the global industry one step closer to harmonization of open source and open standards,” Joshipura said. “Our joint efforts will help accelerate deployment and adoption for end users. We look forward to this continued and intensified collaboration and how it will advance future networks.”

The Linux Foundation has not been afraid of getting in on partnerships in the past—far from it, in fact. In recent years, the organization has jumped into efforts supporting OpenSSL, the internet of things, software container platforms, and even the blockchain.

And now the foundation has the communications industry on its list, too.

“We’re delighted to be working with the Linux Foundation to bring together our joint expertise, and look forward to partnering with a range of open-source projects over the coming months,” TM Forum CEO Nik Willetts said.

(gremlin/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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