The Business and Economics of Open Source

I’ve just been to hear Stormy Peters’ keynote on The Business and Economics of Open Source in the Enterprise. This was one of few talks that I have been to hear at the conference that discusses commercial reasons to move to Open Source. Even though I know why I use Open Source software I really enjoyed hearing a sound business case as to why HP use this.

Stormy also listed the circumstances when she believes that you shouldn’t move to Open Source:

  • The product is a control point for you
  • The product should be obsoleted
  • The cost involved in moving to Open Source doesn’t justify the benefit
  • The IP risk is too high
  • To compete against the OS Community
  • Just because it’s a cool technology

I can only admire someone who is willing to stand up at the Open Source conference and say something along the lines of:

“Why should Microsoft make Windows Open Source when they are already the pervasive operating system and are making lots of money from it”.

It seems that HP has an Open Source policy document. This is a great idea as is the concept of actually keeping track on the various licenses that are being used across the company.

Hopefully I will be able to get a copy of her slides.