The Golden Age Of Open Source Has Arrived

Marius Moscovici | TechCrunch | December 15, 2015

In the new economy, it’s not the code that matters — it’s how you use it to connect people to things they need. From 3D printers to Docker, open-source-based innovation is fueling some of the hottest digital capabilities of our time. Finally — the golden of source arrived. Companies 20 years ago built monopolies on licensed software; today, free and –source code fertilizes economic growth. The way to win at tech is no longer to own code, but to serve customers — and service source at its roots.

Like cloud storage and hardware components, coding languages hold little value by themselves anymore. The services around the code are what differentiate commodity companies from those with market value in the billions. Tesla released all of its patents to the public in 2014, jump-starting a new ecosystem of electric vehicles without threatening its own dominance. Facebook’s entire data-center architecture is available via Compute, and its Apache Cassandra, released into the wild, become a cornerstone of many an enterprise database. And that didn’t stop the social giant from reporting $12.46 billion in revenue last year.

Companies aiming to win in the new marketplace must either build or buy their way into a thriving open-source-driven service — or risk falling too far behind.
It’s not just about free updates, cheap compute capacity and efficient production. It’s about positioning yourself in an economy where the ownership model fundamentally shifted, and becoming the go-to service in a world that values sharing...