Wookie is a Java server application that allows you to upload and deploy widgets for your applications. Wookie is based on the W3C Widgets specification, but widgets can also be included that use extended APIs such as Google Wave Gadgets and Open Social. It was originally created at the University of Bolton as part of the European Commission funded Ten Competence project.
In January Scott Wilson attended an OSS Watch workshop on software sustainability at which I and my colleague Rowan Wilson presented a number of models for managing open source software in a sustainable way. After my presentation Scott approached me to ask what was involved with entering the Apache Incubator.
This is great news for all involved. OSS Watch hope that Wookie will go on to provide our first significant use case demonstrating that software developed in the UK academic sector can, and should, become useful beyond our sector. I congratulate the Wookie team on clearly separating the domain specific features of their work from the generic code that will be useful beyond their core team. It is this, and the teams awareness that restricting their code to a niche market would restrict the pool of contributors, that has enabled OSS Watch to assist Wookie as it worked towards entry into the Apache Incubator.
I truly believe that the University of Bolton, and any other project or institution that adopts the Wookie code, will benefit significantly from this move. Already we are seeing interest from many third parties, indeed, it is a long time since a proposal passed with such a large number of positive votes.
[DISCLAIMER: I am a Member of The Apache Software Foundation, but this has no bearing on the choice of the ASF as a home for Wookie. The justification for the ASF is that it has a track record of producing reference implementations for open standards]