Open source resource

After UC Santa Cruz alum Sage Weil earned his doctoral degree in computer science he didn’t let his thesis work languish. Instead, he spent seven years refining the open source storage solution, Ceph, and then created a startup for the platform, which sold to Red Hat last year. Now, with major gifts that total $3 million for research in open source software, Weil is creating similar opportunities for other UC Santa Cruz students.

“Sage was a brilliant student and deeply committed to open source software as a model for how to move computer science forward,” said Scott Brandt, vice chancellor for research and computer science professor. “His success was quite extraordinary, and he wanted to give back to the university.”

With matching funds from the UC Presidential Match for Endowed Chairs, Weil’s gift of $500,000 established a $1 million endowment for the Sage Weil Presidential Chair for Open Source Software. An additional $2 million supports the Center for Research in Open Source Software (CROSS), directed by computer science professor Carlos Maltzahn.

“CROSS will bridge the gap between student research prototypes and successful open source software products,” said Maltzahn. “We’re the first graduate-level program that offers this completely new way for students to get involved in a very sophisticated professional community,” he added.

The newly minted CROSS has already attracted three founding member companies: Toshiba, SK Hynix Memory Solutions, and Micron.