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Can open source stop navel gazing and get real?

Oct 12, 2009, 22:33 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Matt Asay)

"We miss the mark on open-source marketing. In fact, it's often the case that the very standards we seek to set for the software world--interoperability, transparency, etc.--are better observed and delivered by open standards than by open source.

"As a case in point, Red Hat and other open-source companies (including Alfresco, my employer) routinely advertise "no lock-in" as a key reason to buy open source. There are two problems with this marketing pitch: one, it's only technically true, and two, customers don't care, as Redmonk's Stephen O'Grady recently noted.

"On the first, it's true that open source can reduce vendor lock-in by ensuring that a customer can get support and ongoing code development from someone other than the original developer of the software. But this is only trivially true."

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