Keynote by Martin Fink

Not use the term viral license for the GPL rather “reciprocal” license. I give you something, now you have to give me something back. Copyleft or forced sharing is a key force in the relative success of Linux as opposed to Unix version the BSD license.

Is there analogy between the pharmaceutical industry and the IT industry with the respect to the development of open source. Patents for drug expires and generic drugs are introduced on the market almost on the exact date of expiration. It is an advantage that the pharmaceutical company can plan its business exactly on the premise that it knows when its monopoly will expire.

Not the same degree of predictability for IT company developing software. It know that it will get competition not from generic drugs but from open source software.

Business models for open source:

– Commercial software can run on open source software without itself being or becoming open source software (Oracle).
– Support and services tied to open source. Make distribution. Adapt to new version. Provide consulting services (Red Hat). “Let’s wait and see, if this is a sustainable business model.”
– Aggregating and enhancing. “My favorite”
– Commercializing with a dual-license (mySQL). An open source license or a closed source license.
– Enabling hardware. Providing drivers etc.
– End-of-life. I am not interested in the product anymore but I have customer that still care. Maintaining old products together with customers and competitor to save costs.
– Building an ECOsystem. Eclipse. Apache.

You might decide NOT to go open source:
– Product is control point for you. You might not want to give that up.
-Product should go obsolete.
– You want to compete against the open source community.
– Misdirection and defocusing of resource
– Just because the technology is cool. It may be better to sell it.

You want to go open source:
– when you want to promote existing standards
– pervasive technology that already exist
– you are able to refocus resources to add value.

What are you really buying when you are buying open source software? Are you just buying the right to copy?

Guidelines for using open source. Create a company policy (business and community), establish relationship with community and communicate to customers, partners and community.

Legal framwork. Which license does the company use? Who owns the code made in the spare time – the employee or the employer?

Types of open source organizations. Organizations, Projects (Linux, Eclipse, OpenSSI) and Individuals (Samba, Debian)

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