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Open Source: The Start of a New Decadefor FOSS

By Dick Weisinger

2018 marked the 20th Anniversary of Open Source code.  2018 had some big events that led some to even question if Open Source companies have gone too far in morphing their models to be aligned with standard commercial businesses.  For example, SalesForce bought MuleSoft, Microsoft bought GitHub, and sky-rocketing valuations were assigned to Open Source startups like Pivotal and Elastic.

Bruce Perens, one of the founders of the open source movement, told the Register that “my take on open source is that it’s a way to promote the idea of ‘free software’ to business people. It’s not fundamentally different than ‘free software.’ It’s just a way to talk about the same thing to different people.”

Tom Petrocelli, a research fellow at technology analysis firm Amalgam Insights, told InformationWeek that “Open source at 20 is more successful than anyone imagined.  This is amazing considering that the development of open source depends on companies working together, including competitors.”

With the beginning of 2019, what can we look forward to in the upcoming third decade?  An article on opensource.com suggests that the following can be expected:

  • Open Source components will continue to exist.  Monetization will happen when the components are integrated into more complex products.
  • Open Source projects will spawn more projects, creating component stacks.
  • Consortia and trade associations will continue to provide project repositories, resulting in families of hosted projects.
  • Generalist developers will become more common, contributing to many projects and able to integrate many components.
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  1. […] “my take on open source is that it’s a way to promote the idea of ‘free software’ to business people. It’s not fundamentally different than ‘free software.’ It’s just a way to talk about the same thing to different people.” http://formtek.com/blog/open-source-the-start-of-a-new-decadefor-foss/ […]

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