HP creeps to brink of enterprise innovations
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Directions cleared for OpenMPE's website

Although the its board of directors is deciding where the group ought to go this year, hits on the OpenMPE website are now arriving at the intended destination -- by heading to the more straightforward openmpe.com. Starting just before Christmas, a user who typed openmpe.org in a browser landed on the hp.com main web page.

While you still don't arrive at the group's site (including board meeting minutes) via openmpe.org -- a GoDaddy temporary page now pops up -- at least the mis-direction has stopped. Former treasurer and openmpe.org domain manager Matt Perdue was quizzed about the events that cut off the group's website. "I don't know that it is a problem," Perdue said in mid-January. "Perhaps someone from OpenMPE should contact me to discuss the issue and we'll see what comes of the contact."

No one from OpenMPE has asked me to look into the matter and I'll not spend time on it until they do. How many people are on the OpenMPE Board? Wouldn't it seem like one, even just one, could contact me and ask me to look into this issue? Well, they haven't. So no, I've not looked into it and will not spend any time on it until asked -- by someone from OpenMPE.

Perdue added in mid-January that "the [openmpe.org] domain name for OpenMPE is not in my account with godaddy.com -- it is in a separate account, and I've not been the only one with the password in the past. I know who it is, at least that person had it in the past. That's one of the things I'll have to check."

Regardless of how the mis-direction got repaired, the group has a new homepage address even easier to remember. Thanks to work with Allegro Consultants, openmpe.com is the new home of the group. Allegro owns that domain and will manage it, according to OpenMPE volunteers. The Invent3K service is now at invent3k.openmpe.com.

OpenMPE is reaching out for more of this kind of alliance it's formed with Allegro. What it would do with such support is still emerging. There's a debate going on about the group's lifespan. Perdue said, after being voted off the board, that he believes "there is a place and a purpose for OpenMPE to exist for the community I've been a part of for more than 35 years."

Another former board member, who's now advising the board, believes differently. Paul Edwards, who volunteered for OpenMPE for five years before retiring in 2009, posted a call for disbanding the group late last summer on the OpenMPE News blog. At that time there was no Invent3K server online, or hosting of the CSL software and Jazz materials.

Several major tasks undertaken by the group include acquiring the source code for the MPE/iX operating system, as well as providing an HP3000 server to host the Invent3K environment, the Contributed Software Library, and the Interex Conference Proceedings. A donated server hasn’t hosted the items listed above as promised by Matt Perdue several years ago.

Unless there is a radical change in the way the group is organized and managed, there is no hope of success. It must be remade into a full blown corporation with a realistic business plan, focus on proper organization and management, profit producing products, employees, and proper legal status. There seems to be a total lack of leadership by the Board of Directors.

Edwards added in his August 25 post, "I feel that the OpenMPE organization should be dissolved by the end of the year 2010. All assets acquired from Hewlett Packard and Client Systems should be returned to them. Any money left should be given back to the persons who made loans to the group. It is time to close the doors."