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The Open Society Foundations is a private operating and grantmaking foundation created to shape public policy by promoting democratic governance, human rights, and economic, legal, and social reform.

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Project Outline:

The Open Society Foundations (OSF) has been funding the development of "KARL", an online knowledge management system, to support their distributed organization of staff and affiliates. They also chose to make KARL an open source project.

Six Feet Up provides KARL hosting and support services for OSF and many other large organizations. In addition, Six Feet Up participates in OSF's KARL Development Team.  KARL is actively being developed to fix any identified regressions as well as to implement new features and tools for KARL customers. Six Feet Up manages and performs releases of updates for KARL customers.

KARL was developed based on the following vision:

  • Communities with well-integrated tools of fully integrated blog, layered group calendar, rich text wiki, secure file sharing
  • KARL wide features of system-wide tagging, granular access control, strong e-mail integration, powerful search, and content feeds
  • Accessibility and usability for everyone in a distributed organization
  • Capability to collaborate securely with individuals who are external to an organization
  • Enterprise-level quality through a solid architectural vision, stringent testing, agile planning, and a strong focus on performance

Six Feet Up has worked with OSF to help make the use of KARL a success.  It has provided OSF with hosting infrastructure design, implementation, support which includes updates to hardware, infrastructure, dependencies, and the KARL application.

In 2010, Six Feet Up worked with OSF to create an improved infrastructure that reduced the use of independent Xens (virtual machines) required per KARL site and moved to a shared infrastructure with improved features.  Six Feet Up also set up automation for releases for KARL, allowing for faster implementation of updates.

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