Media Develoment Loan Fund (MDLF) launched the Campware initiative in March 2001 as a platform for open source solutions for independent news media organizations in emerging democracies. The initative is coordinated by MDLF's new-media arm, the Center for Advanced Media--Prague (CAMP).

Campware grew out organically from the need of MDLF's CAMP to provide cost-effective, open solutions for a number of new-media projects it was pursuing.

While searching for such solutions (from 1999 onwards), CAMP realized that most available software solutions for print and radio catered to commercial players in the West and were thus beyond the financial reach of independent media in emerging democracies. At the same time, open source software tended to cater to the geek/webmaster community and as such was not tremendously suitable for journalists. Mulitlinguality or Unicode-support were just an occasional afterthought.

CAMP's main idea was that software developed and distributed under the Campware initiative should be user-centric, i.e. built explicitly for the end user. Our first project, Campsite, first released in March 2001, embodied such ideals. For example, we called things the way they are called: our article was an "article," not an "asset"; our images were called images not "objects"; Campsite's user interface was automatically customized to each user based on his rights, so there were almost no "You don't have the right to do this, please contact your administrator" messages. And all of this the end user could read in her very own language.

Campware continues to adhere to the logic of short learning curves and non-mystifying interfaces in all its projects, from the Cream customer relationship management software for newspapers, to the Campcaster radio automation solution.

MDLF's active partners in Campware are Redaktion und Alltag (Berlin) and the Department of Digital Design of the Parsons School of Design (New York). Campware is open to cooperation with likeminded projects.

The Team
(In alphabetical order)

Douglas Arellanes (Prague, Czech Republic)
Head of Research and Development at CAMP has been involved with all Campware projects.

Frans van Berkel (Netherlands)
Campcaster Tester and Power User.

Aleksandar Brajanoski (Prague, Czech Republic)
Braja is the real life experience behind the campware web development. As Internet development manager of Transitions Online, he had helped to clarify and define the functionality of the Campsite scripting language, and has been a driving force for inclusion of advanced features in the Campsite parser.

Micz Flor (Berlin, Germany)
The man behind all Campware concepts.

Ferenc Gerlits (Budapest, Hungary)
Campcaster developer.

Sebastian Göbel (Berlin, Germany)
Campware's jack of all trades, original coder of Campsite's PHPWrapper and localizer, originally responsible for the development of Campcaster's web interface.

Slobodan Gogić (New Belgrade, Serbia)
Campware implementation expert and co-author of Campsite packaged templates.

Nebojša Grujić (Toronto, Canada)
Campcaster developer.

Michal Hruška (Prague, Czech Republic)
The man behind the Campware infrastructure.

Robert Klajn (Belgrade, Serbia)
Of Radio B92 fame, he is in charge of the main features of the Campcaster radio automation project.

Ondra Koutek (Prague, Czech Republic)
System administrator, Campsite tweaker, and FreeBSD porter.

Ana Nedić (Belgrade, Serbia)
Responsible for site design within different projects and co-author of Campsite packaged templates.

Nenad Pandžić (Prague, Czech Republic)
The main man behind Cream & Dream. Author of the latest Digital Kiosk and co-author of the original Campsite editor Campfire.

Holman Romero (Bogota, Colombia)
Campsite and Campcaster developer and free software superstar working on various GNU projects.

Mugur Rus (Romania)
The father of the Campsite parser. He designed its scripting language, coded it and wrote the language documentation and continues to be a driving force behind Campsite development.

Ljuba Ranković (Valjevo, Serbia)
Campware implementation expert and the man in charge of Serbian localization.

Sava Tatić (Prague, Czech Republic)
The managing director of CAMP, the man ultimately responsible for all Campware's successes and failures. In few words, the Campware's father, mother and who knows what else...

Charles Truett (New York, USA)
The man in charge of Campware esthetics.

Zoran Živković (Belgrade, Serbia)
Swedish Helsinki Committee expert, the iron fist of Campware implementation.

Campware hall of fame:
  • Paul Baranowski (Toronto, Canada), former team leader for Campcaster, developer for both Campsite and Campcaster, former technical lead on most Campware infrastructure projects.
  • John Pye (Sydney, Australia), man of many Campware projects
  • Roman Maxymchuk (Zurich, Switzerland), Cream & Dream developer
  • Ákos Maróy (Budapest, Hungary), former head of Campcaster development
  • Lucian Mureşan is a gifted coder and database expert who has contributed greatly to the development of Campsite.
  • Attila Egyedi, co-author of the original Campsite WYSIWYG editor Campfire
  • Mira Zdjelar, beta testing
  • Melissa Paulissen, documentation
  • Joe Silber, documentation
  • Sangita Shah, designed logos for all Campware products
  • Mark Kretschmann, contributed to Campcaster development