Other: QuESo – A Quality Model for Open Source Software Ecosystems

Citation: Franco-Bedoya, O., Ameller, D., Costal, D., & French, X. (2016). QuESo – A quality model for open source software ecosystems. (UPC, Report No. ESSI-TR-16-1). Barcelona: Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya. (link)

This resource is a little far afield from either Accessibility or Open Access, but it’s close enough to the latter to be included here.

This is a technical report by researchers from the University Politecnica de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain, and it describes in some detail a model called QuESo, which can be used to measure the health of Open Source Software Ecosystems (which the authors abbreviate as OSSECO).

The QuESo model examines factors in a number of areas to arrive at a view of the overall health of a given Open Source Ecosystem, as shown in the figure below:
The QuESo model measures the quality of a software ecosystems community and network

QuESo measures not just a specific piece of software, but its community and network health.

For community quality, areas measured are:
Maintenance capacity (size and activeness)
Process maturity
Sustainability (heterogeneity, regeneration ability, effort balance, expertise balance, visibility, and community cohesion)

For network quality, areas measured are:
Resources health (trustworthiness, vitality, OSSECO knowledge, and niche creation)
Network health (Interrelatedness ability, synergetic evolution, information consistency, and ecosystem cohesion)

QuESo claims to measure the entire ecosystem (e.g. of all Open Source journal management systems), but there is a little bit of confusion on this point, as many of their measures seem to refer specifically to a single product’s community. Presumably this confusion comes about because they are interested in measuring large products which may have multiple iterations of software coming out of a single original product.

In effect, this confusion means that QuESo can do double duty by examining not only ecosystems, but users of a specific OS project. The model, although some of its measures are overkill for most OA advocates’ purposes, is a useful tool to have when looking at Open Source software for creating OA repositories, journals, and other things.