Opencola (company)

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Industry Software
Fate Acquired
Successor Open Text Corporation
Founded 1999
Defunct 2003
Headquarters Toronto, Canada
Key people
Grad Conn,
Cory Doctorow,
John Henson
Products Software
Slogan Peer Your Knowledge
Website (archive)

Opencola was a Toronto-based software company founded in 1999[1] by Grad Conn, Cory Doctorow and John Henson[2] to create "collaboration object lookup architecture" software, and sold in 2003. The software and specifications produced were all released as open source. The earliest archived page of the company website described "OpenCOLA" as an application, a protocol, suite of tools, and the company itself.[3]

The Opencola desktop client/server (or "clerver" in Opencola's parlance) application enabled users to collaboratively search, acquire, manage and share information from multiple data sources, including the Internet, peers on the Opencola network, and existing proprietary databases, from a single interface. Opencola extended search engine capabilities with the ability to perform contextual searching – a process that searches the entire contextual subject matter of a document for relevance and tries to replenish previous searches with more relevant results. Searches would propagate throughout the network as needed to locate the specified content.

The company funded further development of and released Justin Chapweske's Swarmcast,[4] then released it as GPL software May 18, 2001. The software used peer-to-peer swarming techniques similar to Bittorrent to accelerate distribution of large high-volume (frequently accessed) content, as a way to reduce load on source servers, with emphasis on content streaming.[5] The company's Folders project used Swarmcast technology to accelerate content distribution within organizations.[6]

In summer 2003, the company was sold to Open Text Corporation of Waterloo, Ontario.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Company Profile". 2001. Archived from the original on 2001-02-23. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  2. ^ "Management". 2001. Archived from the original on 2001-02-23. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  3. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2000-08-15. Retrieved 2010-03-18. 
  4. ^ Koman, Richard (May 24, 2001). "The Swarmcast Solution". O'Reilly Media. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  5. ^ Ingram, Mathew (December 1, 2006). "Torontos OpenCola Lives On In Swarmcast". Internet Financial News. iEntry Network. Retrieved 2010-03-18. 
  6. ^ Oram, Andy (May 24, 2001). "OpenCola: Swarming Folders". O'Reilly Media. Retrieved 2010-03-18. 
  7. ^ "Cory Doctorow; USC Center on Public Diplomacy". Retrieved 2010-11-16.