OSNews: A Customer-Driven Approach to Open Software: “Community Code”

“The Open Source model–and by Open Source we mean products that
adhere to the Open Source Initiative (OSI) guidelines–doesn’t, and
may never, work for many important software domains. All religious
fervor aside, this is a reality because customers say so. We may
want it to be otherwise, but the ultimate arbiters in the Open
Source versus proprietary debate are customers.

“We founded Dark Horse in December 1999. Our business at that
time was solving interesting customer-related challenges for our
clients, and specifically through the use of information
technology. And because we’d had considerable experience using OSI
products we assumed we could deliver as part of our value a
compelling Open Source CRM that would save money and meet the needs
of our clients. But we were mistaken. For while there were great
OSI products at the lowest levels of the software stack (e.g. Linux
and Apache) and quality stuff in the middle (e.g. MySQL and
PostgreSQL) the application layer was disappointing. There simply
weren’t any enterprise-class, Open Source CRMs that we trusted
could serve as the foundation for a robust customer management
platform. And in our humble opinion, there still aren’t…”


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