open core

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A Consulting Firm Transition to Open Source Health Software

Andy Oram | EMR and HIPPA | September 7, 2016

The best hope for sustaining HLN as an open source vendor is the customization model: when an agency needs a new feature or a customized clinical decision support rule, it contracts with HLN to develop it. Naturally, the agency could contract with anyone it wants to upgrade open source software, but HLN would be the first place to look because they are familiar with software they built originally. Other popular models include offering support as a paid service, and building proprietary tools on top of the basic open source version (“open core”). The temptation to skim off the cream of the product and profit by it is so compelling that one of the most vocal stalwarts of the open source process, MariaDB (based on the popular MySQL database) recently broke radically from its tradition and announced a proprietary license for its primary distinguishing extension.

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Coopetition: All's Fair in Love and Open Source

PostgreSQL vs. MySQL. MongoDB vs. Cassandra. Solr vs. Elasticsearch. ReactJS vs. AngularJS. If you have an open source project that you are passionate about, chances are a competing project exists and is doing similar things, with users as passionate as yours. Despite the "we're all happily sharing our code" vibe that many individuals in open source love to project, open source business, like any other, is filled with competition. Unlike other business models, however, open source presents unique challenges and opportunities when it comes to competition...

How Percona Has Built a Successful Open Source Business Based on Support and Services Revenues

The open source community is a diverse and fractious collection of individuals and organizations. In its infancy, in many ways it could be compared to the hippie movements of the '60s: a lot of passion, a lot of fun, a lot of weirdness, and not a lot of organization. Over the last decade or so, it has evolved into a respected software development force that relies on the support of its members. As it's grown and diversified over the last decade, it has gotten more mainstream in the sense that there are now many different players that are making quite a bit of money based on open source principles. It has more prestige and a lot more respectability. As they say, money changes everything...

Top 10 FOSS Legal Stories in 2016

The year 2016 resulted in several important developments that affect the FOSS ecosystem. While they are not strictly "legal developments" they are important for the community. For one, Eben Moglen, the general counsel of the Free Software Foundation, stepped down. Eben has been a leader on FOSS legal issues since the late 1990s and has been critical to the success of the FOSS movement. The FOSS community owes him a huge debt of gratitude, and I expect that he will continue to be active in the FOSS community. The success of FOSS adoption was dramatically illustrated when Microsoft joined the Linux Foundation and summarized in the article, Open Source Won. So, Now What? in Wired magazine...