Nick Heudecker

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Nick Heudecker
Research Director
1 years at Gartner
15 years IT Industry

Nick Heudecker is an Analyst in Gartner Intelligence's Information Management group. He is responsible for coverage of big data and NoSQL technologies. Read Full Bio

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Benefits and Risks in Curated Open Source

by Nick Heudecker  |  June 24, 2014  |  2 Comments

Today, Aerospike announced its in-memory NoSQL DBMS is available under the AGPL license, the same license used by a few of its competitors. According to Aerospike, there were a number of reasons to pursue an open source path, such as getting their DBMS into the hands of developers – who are the people leading the NoSQL charge. Of course, the long-term objective is some of those OSS users will eventually become paying customers.

The unexpected result is enterprises with open source mandates will be able to use Aerospike more broadly. As closed source software, Aerospike was a point solution. But the licensing change means Aerospike’s addressable use cases expand overnight.

This is a fundamental shift in enterprise attitudes toward open source and vendor lock-in.

During my career, I’ve seen open source software transition from a heretical notion to an essential factor in how enterprises evaluate and purchase software. This is especially true in the Information Management space. Information Management has a long history of understanding and adopting open source, essentially starting with Ingres and spawning a variety of data management options available today.

However, it takes more than simply having an Apache project or something on Github. Enterprises aren’t turning to StackOverflow, IRC or mailing lists for support. Open source software needs to be curated by commercializers for enterprises to be willing to use it.

It’s an interesting shift. Companies are directing – or outright owning – the development of open source projects to make them palatable to enterprises. In some cases, only one company is developing or shipping the open source project. That leads to an interesting question about the actual value of open source in that scenario: If only one company supports an open source product, is that product viable at avoiding vendor lock-in?

Let me know what you think in the comments.


Category: Big Data DBMS NoSQL     Tags: ,

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Benefits and Risks in Curated Open Source | Euler Global Consulting   June 24, 2014 at 8:45 pm

    [...] Source: Benefits and Risks in Curated Open Source [...]

  • 2 Monica Pal   June 26, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    Great question Nick. Really depends on the quality of the product and how the company enables the community and customers doesn’t it? If the technology is not good, then no one cares. If the technology is great but the company does not deliver, then the beauty of open source is that someone else will… thats why as NEA’s @kittukolluri says, “open source is the new escrow for enterprises”

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