Monday, April 20, 2009

Fire Modeling Workshop Live Blog and Video Feed.

During the Fire Modeling Workshop at the NIST Annual Fire Conference, we will be live streaming the event. You can find the page for the stream on the FDS-SMV site:

Before the event, feel free to respond to the information form at the bottom of the live stream page.

There are two components to the stream, a live blogging system and a live video stream. Both components will be integrated and accessible through the same page. The live blog will allow participants, not at the event in person, to post comments or questions to be asked during the workshop, a moderator will be watching the comments stream and selecting some to be asked during the Q&A portion. Attendees who are there in person with a laptop, can also connect to the NIST visitor wireless network and comment and ask questions through the same system.

The video and live blog will be archived and made available on demand after the conference for review by those who cannot participate in real time. Information about how to access the archives will be made available after the event on the same page linked to above. We will then create new threads in the FDS-SMV discussion group to discuss issues raised during the workshop.

We hope that these services lower barriers to the information presented during the conference, and at the same time increases the ability for the Fire Modeling community to participate in the event, even if they cannot attend in person.

Before the event, you can test your computer's connection to the services at a demo site.


Friday, April 10, 2009

NIST Annual Fire Conference

This is just a reminder that the NIST Annual Fire Conference is taking place April 28-30, 2009, in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The workshop agendas have been posted to the web site:

The last day for registration is Wednesday, April 22. There is no fee, but all who attend must register to enter the NIST grounds.

The workshop on fire modeling is Wednesday, April 29.

Friday, April 3, 2009

FDS-SMV Project 'Public Domain' License.

Google Code Project Hosting, which we use for our development process, updated their licensing options to include 'Public Domain' as a valid type. This is applicable for US Federal Government Agencies like NIST who by US Copyright law, are required to release their works as Public Domain.

Chapter 1 of Title 17 of the United States Code states:

§ 105. Subject matter of copyright: United States Government works37
Copyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government, but the United States Government is not precluded from receiving and holding copyrights transferred to it by assignment, bequest, or otherwise.

When we first setup the fds-smv project we had to select a license option to get the project in the system. At the time the MIT license was the most liberal from those we had to select from. But, still even though we picked MIT for Google Code Hosting requirements, we were careful to clearly state where relevant that everything we are creating and releasing is Public Domain according to US Copyright Law. It took some time in limbo, after some online and offline discussions with the Google Code Hosting Developers, but eventually it all worked out. This additional license option is great news for US Government Open Source Software (OSS) developers, as now we can select the correct option and use these tools without any confusion as to the type of license applied to the work product.