Over the coming months, the Corteza project will be launching its Ecological Programme, an initiative which orients the Digital Work Platform for Humanity towards what is perhaps the most pressing social and political issue of our time. There’s still some work to be done formulating a more detailed purpose and scope to our work, but once that’s complete, it will be full steam ahead.

Of course, at this point in history we’re in a crowded marketplace with giant cloud vendors pumping their corporate sustainability messages hard. That’s a challenge in itself, but I feel the bigger challenge is in focusing people on where the most gains are to be made. This involves having a good hard look at the platforms your organisation uses for going about its daily business.

I have previously argued that clouds can be a good thing, but that we need far more of them. We need to ensure we’re not dumping all our data in a handful of providers and that we can retake control of our data with ease, if required. Being a downloadable, standards-based, private cloud solution, Corteza is a natural solution.

However, at the heart of it, clouds are about providing infrastructure as a utility. Making them carbon neutral is a big step, but it only solves one small part of the problem. The bigger question is what application platform to choose to run on your cloud. Having to re-assess your approach a year or two after implementation can be deeply wasteful, after all.

It’s all about getting the first step right.

Building a proper green strategy for your organisation is a long game, not a short one. The best-fit software platform will support your business goals and your sustainability goals without compromise. An inferior choice will impose difficult and unnecessary trade-offs at a later stage.

Energy consumption is just one component to consider. Corteza is built in modern code (the backend is in “Go”), designed to be as processor efficient as possible. It will also run on any cloud of your choice, accommodating your preferred data localisation strategy. However, there’s much more to consider:

  1. Corteza can never be sold off.
    Both the code copyright and even the trademark are foundation owned. This approach protects the using organisation and ensure the code and its development are always open to scrutiny. The organisational measures and innovations you deliver on the Corteza platform can never be taken away from you.
  2. Corteza is standards-based.
    This is critical, because as a species we cannot collaborate properly without agreeing upon standards. Also, the relative cost of platform change for poorer economies when we fail to implement standards globally is much higher than for richer economies. To address a global problem, we should seek to avoid imposing unnecessary economic pain.
  3. Corteza embraces federated architecture.
    Different instances of Corteza can be set up to “speak” to one another and share data, anonymously if required. For example, different government bodies can easily share like-for-like data and metrics without compromising privacy or other security concerns – either within borders or across borders.
  4. Corteza allows very flexible builds.
    Every organisation is different and has local business logic, local assumptions and local values that it wishes to embed in the platforms which support its daily operations. Software to help you address global concerns should not negatively impact your capacity to operate as a business.
  5. Corteza scales to large populations.
    In order to address complex subjects such as climate change, governments need to act in concert. To do that, the software used must both scale to large populations when required, but also be capable of creating a rich array of user roles.
  6. Corteza is the right sort of “free”.
    There are no catches, no financial tricks, no freemium models, no data grabs. It’s all there for your organisation to use, as is and free forever.
  7. Great UX.
    User experience is often neglected in free software. Aspiring to be as good as, and even better than Apple, is no bad thing when it comes to UX. Corteza will always strive to improve. Your organisation deserves the best.

Now it’s time to take the first step. Sign up at the free online Corteza community server today, and try it out. The community is there, ready to answer any questions you may have.