The Forkers Saving Open Source From A Corporate Bear Hug

Matt Asay | The Register | January 16, 2013

Promising tale of Portugal's Salt man

Open ... and Shut Open source has long had a strong corporate element to it, perhaps starting in earnest when IBM pledged to spend $1bn on Linux back in 2000. Despite the benefits of corporate funding of open-source software - more money, more source code written - some question whether open source has become too corporate. For those who worry about the commercialisation of open source, I'd like to introduce you to Pedro Algarvio, contributor to the SaltStack project.

Algarvio is interesting because he fits the original mold of the open-source developer: he writes code because he loves it, and not because he gets paid to do so. It's easy to overlook such developers, given years of analysis (by me and others) highlighting how GNOME, Linux, Apache, Mozilla and others are fueled by developers paid to contribute open-source code.

But Algarvio plays an important role with Salt, an open-source tool used to manage one's infrastructure. In some ways similar to Puppet or Chef, Salt distinguishes itself by being lightning fast and super easy-to-use. Black Duck named Salt one of its 2011 Open Source Rookies. Dave Gruber highlighted its rapid adoption...