We hope that you've found your groove again after summer. Here at the FINOS Foundation, we've been pushing hard to get our programs and events ready for our members and prospective members. This newsletter is just a sampling of what's on the horizon for the foundation, and our members.
Message from Rob, FINOS Director of Programs
I wanted to say hello to all of the FINOS members, contributors, and wider community. For those of you who I’ve not met, I’m Rob Underwood. I lead programs for the foundation. Outside of FINOS, I live in Park Slope, Brooklyn with my wife and 3 kids. Along with my family, my passions include functional fitness (CrossFit; competitive powerlifting), functional programming (try OCaml -- you’ll love it!), expanding computer science education in NYC public schools, my home state of Maine, and the band Phish. I am based in NYC, alternatively working in Brooklyn or Manhattan depending on the day.
In my first months with FINOS, initially as a consultant and now as the Director of Programs since July, I’ve been picking up much of the operational program work that Peter Monks had been doing (thank you Peter). I have also been working with our members and the wider financial services community on program development to identify new contributions and engage new contributors.
A top priority for the foundation during the remainder of 2018 is to further strengthen our programs and program portfolio. One goal is to identify and add new programs - we expect to have added 2 new programs during the second half of 2018. Another goal is to work with each program and its respective community to establish milestones, particularly around product management, and create the plans to reach them. Together with Tosha, our Director of Member Success, I will also be working to better align the concrete, tangible benefits FINOS programs bring to members in particular - ideally, when possible, measurable in EBITDA terms - with members’ own OKRs and corporate goals. I share Gab’s vision that we lead with programs; vibrant programs, both new and existing, is how we attract new contributors while continuing to improve the ROI on membership for existing members.
An important part of our program strategy is to build more industry awareness of FINOS programs. One way we will do this is through calls for contribution to programs, projects, and working groups. We will also be doing more press releases and overall product launches when projects and working groups have produced new software (or standards, best practices, “cookbooks”, etc. in the case of WGs) ready to be used and consumed by the financial services industry. In addition to the technical, legal, and governance framework of the foundation an important function of the foundation is ongoing product marketing efforts about the good stuff being produced by the FINOS community; keep an eye out for more focus on this within each of our programs.
We recently added our ninth FINOS program, Data Technologies, approved by the board in July. The program’s purpose is “to support open collaboration around technology and tools supporting the common lifecycle of data in financial services. The common data lifecycle is defined as any activity required to extract value from data, including but not limited to acquisition, storage, governance, processing, and distribution.” The first working group within the program is focused on open source projects related to the Kx/Kdb time series database used in many financial services firms; the working group is chaired by Alvin Shih of Morgan Stanley and meets the first Wednesday of the month at 11am. Especially if your firm uses Kdb, I encourage use to join the working group’s mailing list and get engaged with this work.
I’m excited about what’s been a noticeable increase in new inquiries from buy side firms interested in getting involved in FINOS and our programs. Programs that seem to be resonating in the buy side include FDC3 and Financial Objects. That these firms see value in our programs is great validation of the work we’re doing and I expect we’ll have more to share on that in the coming weeks and months.
As some of you know the foundation team has been joining more working group, project, and program meetings in order to hear first hand how we’re doing and identify what we can do better. Expect to see us getting even more engaged in the core day to day work of our foundation programs.
Along these lines, PMC leads, project leads, and WG chairs should keep an eye out for a note from us around some tips, tricks, and best practices related to good program/project/WG operations coming later this month. In the meantime please don’t hesitate to email me with any questions or thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Around the Foundation
As Rob mentioned in his introduction we continue to focus on promoting and growing our programs and are pleased to share news of another new contribution. GreenKey is proud to bring their second offering to the FINOS Voice program: the GreenKey Discovery SDK. This toolkit allows developers to create their own voice 'skills', discover user intent and drive new voice workflows. Take a look at the project and consider getting involved in the Voice Program by emailing email@example.com.
In the next month we are also promoting our Financial Objects Program with a call for contributions and associated media advisory going out next week as well as our next Open Source in Fintech event focused on the topic. The Financial Objects program drives adoption of both new and existing financial objects standards. It brings together both creators and users of these objects to help organizations across the industry realize the benefits of standardization such as reduced integration and transactions costs, simplified processing, improved data discoverability and mutualization of commodity software.
Join us on Thursday, October 4th at 6:00pm at Thomson Reuters in New York Times Square to hear panelists from Citibank, J.P. Morgan and Reuters discuss the best ways to promote adoption of financial objects standards, identify gaps in the industry and talk about how to fix them. The event is open to the public with registration on our website here.
Our FINOS Community is growing! Find out what's been going on, what's coming up and how you can get involved at our 2018 Q4 FINOS Community Update webinar.
Join us on October 16th, at 11am EST. Here is the link to the webinar, with more detailed information.
Another event to mark in your calendar is our second Open Source Strategy Forum (OSSF) in London on the 14th and 15th November. This year’s program is designed to deliver practical, focused knowledge about how to build an effective open source strategy within a financial technology organization. The first day will feature three tracks: Business Value & Strategy, Policy & Process, and Tools & Technology. Each track is targeted at a different set of stakeholders and will progress from fundamental to advanced topics over the course of the day. The second day will feature panel discussions, trainings, tutorials, and other sessions where attendees can dive deep into the topics introduced on day one. Check out our blog post for more information about the program.
We have a great lineup of speakers including Dave Kappos, a leading intellectual property attorney and the former Under Secretary of Commerce and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Kappos will join the Policy & Process track to present Accounting for Patents in Collaborative Development, a presentation on how contributors to open source and open standards can come to terms with the licensing of standard-essential patents (SEPs). His talk will explore the history of open source development, open source definition, and patent law to show that open source and SEPs can work together to protect intellectual property rights and spur innovation. Read more about Kappos and his presentation.
Registration for OSSF is open so sign up now. It is free for FINOS members and their employees and their is a modest fee for non-members who are welcome and encouraged to join us. There are still sponsorship opportunities available and you can find details in the sponsorship prospectus.
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about the event or sponsorship opportunities.
Finally, we’d like to welcome our newest FINOS member, GitLab. GitLab enables teams to manage all stages of the DevOps lifecycle in one place from one application. GitLab provides teams a single data store, one user interface, and one permission model across the full DevOps lifecycle, allowing teams to collaborate and work on a project from a single conversation, significantly reducing cycle time, and letting them focus on building great software quickly. Built on Open Source, GitLab leverages the community contributions of thousands of developers and millions of users to continuously deliver new DevOps innovations. We are delighted that GitLab has joined the foundation and look forward to their participation in our programs and working with them to continue improving access to and engagement with open source in financial services firms. Please visit about.gitlab.com to find out more
~The FINOS Team