Open Source

Michael Rys pointed me to an interesting counterpost to my most recent post which, I think, somewhat unfairly, takes me to task for asking for the open source tooth fairy.

It says that Google essentially has a parasitic relationship with the open source community. As it turns out, Google actually puts quite a lot of time and effort (and occasionally money) into supporting open source efforts.

It suggests that my post speaks for Google in what I ask for. Actually I don’t. Google is dong just fine with respect to storage and indexing. It has built what it needs to support its products. I really was speaking based far more on what I heard from many many large corporate customers and from almost all services.

Lastly, the counter post assumes that saying software is free is the same as saying that you can’t make money from it. In fact, customers are always willing to pay for support and service. Essentially, long ago, Microsoft turned itself largely into an annuity business where the licences companies hold with Microsoft are just that, payments for guaranteed support and ongoing upgrades. Many open source vendors are now doing the same. My point was not that people should never get paid, but rather that it makes more sense to pay for the ongoing support.

Nevertheless, it is a good and entertaining post and I recommend reading it for a different point of view.

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