Topics for this podcast:
*As the Oracle-Sun-MySQL EC world turns
*Google gets its Web on with Go and Chrome
*Open source and cloud computing complement, compete
*How transparent is your open core?
The complaints and concerns over Oracle’s pending acquisition of Sun Microsystems and open source MySQL database grew this week to calls for the acquisition, or at least the relatively small MySQL part of it, to be blocked. The Open Rights Group calling for such blockage was joined by none other than the father of the free software movement, Richard Stallman. However, I have to once again question how free and open are these free and open source software advocates? Is the movement and FOSS open to all (except Microsoft, Oracle or anyone else the Open Rights Group, Richard Stallman or any …[Read more]
Following the release of our report, ‘The Myth of Open Source License Proliferation’ and during research for it, we heard and sensed a feeling that open source software licenses had evolved to become a generally well-accepted piece of the the enterprise IT and IP market. However, we also heard from numerous vendors, developers and other individuals that the next battlefront is obviously software patents, which are in need of reform, according to many supporters of free and open source software.
This week, we saw some of the software patent skirmishes that are driving and validating this thinking. There was first news that the Open Invention Network, the consortium dedicated to legal and IP defense of Linux, had bought some software patents that related to …[Read more]
UPDATE: The final vote is in and a winner has been declared, with Matt Asay and his arguments for the GPL taking the prize. You can see the debate or follow links to the other judges’ votes and thoughts here.
This is my assessment as a judge of the recent open source license debate held by the FOSS Learning Centre. We’ll have to begin with some qualifications and definitions, starting with the fact that there is no ‘best’ open source software license. Still, a star-studded open source software panel provided a lively, informative debate on the merits of some top open source licenses. For that, I congratulate and thank the panelists, Mike Milinkovich from the Eclipse Foundation arguing for the Eclipse Public License, Matt Asay of Alfresco arguing in favor of the GPL and David Maxwell from Coverity arguing for …[Read more]
Code scanning and management vendor Black Duck reports the GNU General Public License v2 (GPLv2) now dipping below 50% share of open source software. While we already knew that GPLv2 was somewhat in decline from its far greater share of open source code over the last 5-10 years, it is useful to know what pool of code we’re talking about. We must also remember that while GPLv2 may not be as dominant as it once was and that other licenses, particularly GPLv3, are quickly gaining share, GPLv2 is still quite relevant to enterprise open source software, is used in a variety of newer and popular applications across the enterprise stack and is likely to remain in the top 10 licenses for a long time.
Regarding GPLv2 and Black Duck’s findings, some folks are rightly asking what code and how much of it are we considering where GPLv2 accounts for half or less of the …[Read more]
There has been no shortage of lively discussion on open source software licenses with recent shifts in the top licenses, perspectives on the licenses or lack of them for networked, SaaS and cloud-based software, increased prominence of a Microsoft open source license and concern over the openness (or closedness, depending on your perspedtive) of the latest devices. Amid all of it, we’re pleased to present our latest long-form report, CAOS 12 - The Myth of Open Source …[Read more]
The big news to kick off this week was Oracle’s announced acquisition of Sun Microsystems. There is already a lot of discussion of the integration challenges, how Oracle is getting into hardware (or as Matt Asay describes it, having an ‘iPod moment’) and of course, the implications for open source software. What stands out to me is the fact that the world’s biggest proprietary database player — one of few software giants that still sells and supports primarily proprietary software — will own the world’s most popular open source database, MySQL. It is unclear how significantly MySQL figures into the deal, but given Sun spent $1b acquiring it and further invested in its enterprise readiness and use, …[Read more]
One might have thought Microsoft was back rattling the patented software sabres against Linux and open source this week, reading some of the recent reports regarding Redmond’s patent infringement suit against automotive navigation and GPS player TomTom. However, upon further review, it seems that Microsoft is making a point to say that these suits are not aimed at the Linux OS or open source. In response to my own query, the company offered this:
First, to answer your earlier question on how the suit with TomTom involves the Linux Operating System, three of the infringed patents read on the Linux kernel as implemented by TomTom. However, open source software is not the focal point of this action. …[Read more]
My CAOS colleague Matt Aslett wrote recently about how we expect to see an uptick in open source merger and acquisition activity given the current economic conditions and bargains for the larger, mostly proprietary players. Matt also discusses the difficulty of further VC funding, though we have seen some significant investment announcements, such as Open-Xchange, Infobright and others. Still, Matt is probably right that funding will be harder to come by for any company, open source or not.
I also continue to see a number of startup and younger open source vendors — would-be fundees — that are opting to hold off on venture funding and stick to building up business, customers and …[Read more]
Sun Microsystems always seems to be forced to defend itself, whether it is the company’s ongoing strategy amid dimmed revenue and earnings or its participation in open source. As one who recently considered the fate of a somewhat weakened Sun, I’d also like to highlight a recent series of promising technologies and efforts — dominated by open source — from the venerable technology giant.
Despite continued doubts, Sun continues to focus its strategy on open source software, which is finding its way into the company’s Solaris OS, storage technology with ZFS file system and MySQL database and elsewhere. The company recently launched a new Web site where it is figuratively letting its open source ponytail down and more succinctly staking out its place and …[Read more]