I just started this week as the Support Lead for Piston Cloud. We are close to shipping pentOS, the first enterprise OpenStack cloud operating system specifically focused on security and easy operation of private clouds.
I think "OpenStack is an open source project launched a couple of years ago by Rackspace" might make it unclear NASAs and others contributions that made that possible.
What do you feel are the top reasons and areas that OpenStack is overstretched? I was surprised to read "The numbers could be seen as high but they are necessary to sustain the community's numerous sub-projects which create a dispersion of resources." which suggests that we, the OpenStack community, has the resources.
Could you also clarify what you mean by "I discovered that only one-third of these companies are really contributing to the code in some way? I think (a) there are a lot of other essential ways to participate, and (b) it takes time to get up to speed on any technology, explorer the code, investigate solutions, and make the relationship in the community to advocate your code. 2012 is going to be a huge year for OpenStack!
Would you provide the best examples of the hundreds of other similar open source projects that lost focus, so I might research them and try to learn from their mistakes? You use the term similar, so if you could restrict it to those, that would be wonderful.
I'm a big fan of open source where participants have pragmatic motivations. Therefore, I don't share you concern about the "very different, often conflicting, goals". The best designs and code will win the day!
Thanks for the read!