A recent article in Forbes got me thinking. Is open source still relevant in the cloud age?
I mean, everyone is going to the cloud, right, so who cares what is behind the cloud – all you want is the function of the cloud, the rest is unnecessary, right?
The cloud makes life for the end user easier than ever – to mix metaphors, they are getting more and more used to just “turning the key.” But what makes this unprecedented ease-of-use possible? Interoperability, access, open standards, modularity. Now, more than ever, flexibility is what’s needed.
What, then, does open source have to do with it?
Open source is: modular. Secure. Cost effective. Standards compliant. Customizable. Configurable. Based on what the group thinks is the best technical approach, not the best approach for a company to make money.
See OpenStack as an example. Or ownCloud.
What, then, do you get when you put open source in the cloud? All that, which basically leads to Innovation. Flexibility. Options. So, I would suggest that, while to many the innards of cloud services don’t matter – they just want the service – that the path to providing that service is open source.
In the cloud, I posit that open source software is more important than ever.