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Mobile Ridesharing Service »OpenRide« Goes Open Source

06-10-2011 08:14 AM CET | IT, New Media & Software

Press release from: Fraunhofer FOKUS

Ridesharing is becoming increasingly popular. Not only does it allow for cost-saving and environmentally friendly travelling but it also reduces city traffic. In order to promote this development, Fraunhofer FOKUS releases the source code of its innovative mobile ridesharing service, OpenRide. OpenRide is thus the world's first software of a dynamic ridesharing service that has been released under an open source license. This step enables developers and users to use the software free of charge, to develop it further and to customise it to suit individual ideas and business models.
From now on, anyone, from a private company, a town, or a community, to an event organizer, an entrepreneur or a private person, can start a ridesharing agency for spontaneous ridesharing and help to further develop the software.
With OpenRide, drivers and passengers can spontaneously post or search for rides on the go via mobile phone. In the process, the OpenRide software does not only consider the start and end point of a route but the complete route and possible detours. Thus, passengers can be picked up en route and be taken along for part of the route. The system combines location-based and social media services and uses a standard web browser. Thus, unlike other solutions, OpenRide can be directly used on all popular Smartphones. Also users that are on the go with their Netbook or Tablet can find or offer a shared ride using OpenRide.
“We hope that releasing the OpenRide software as open source will lead to faster increased popularity of mobile ridesharing and improved combination with other services“, says the technical project manager Anna Kress.
The free software also keeps operators of ridesharing agencies free from dependency on a single software manufacturer. If needed, different ridesharing agencies can connect to each other in order to turn mobility islands into mobility networks.
"OpenRide as free software means that companies, developers and users can start their own ridesharing agency and further develop the software as well as customise it to meet individual needs. This way, new innovations and business models can be developed thus giving the mobility market an additional momentum”, says Jan Ziesing of Fraunhofer Institute FOKUS. The OpenRide code is available under www.sourceforge.net/projects/openride. Further information is provided on the project pages under www.open-ride.com.

The Fraunhofer Institute for Open Communication Systems, Fraunhofer FOKUS for short, is a Berlin-based research facility devoted to studying and developing communication and information technologies. In particular, it specializes in multi-domain networks and interoperable, user-centered solutions.
With more than 20 years experience, Fraunhofer FOKUS is an important IT research partner for the telecommunications sector, the automobile industry, media services, and public administrations. It frequently cooperates with governmental agencies and software companies to create need-oriented e-government solutions and is a leading collaborator in projects funded by the European Union as well as by national-level sponsors. Further information www.fokus.fraunhofer.de

FOKUS Fraunhofer Institute for Open Communication Systems
Electronic Government and Applications
Kaiserin-Augusta-Allee 31
10589 Berlin

Strategic Communication
Holger Schloesser
Tel: +49 30 3463 7367
www.fokus.fraunhofer.de
holger.schloesser@fokus.fraunhofer.de

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