Tuesday Mar 25, 2008

Another Benefit of Open Source

I recently wrote about the benefits of open-source but as I was reading Jonathan's blog on OpenSolaris, Security, and the NSA I was reminded of another huge benefit of open-source.

Specifically, the transparency of open-source helps ensure that the code is secure, or if not, that issues can be found and fixed right away without the vendor sitting on them until it is convenient to release or there is enough uproar to fix the issue sooner. As Bill Vaas said in Jonathan's blog:

"... one of the great benefits of being an open source company is that Sun can innovate out in the open, within a very large community. For security technologies in particular, transparency of development is absolutely vital, even for the NSA - you can't sneak trojan horses into open source platforms. So open source allows high security customers to trust vendors \*and\* verify."

Monday Jun 25, 2007

OSI cracks down on non open source open source

I blogged about what I call visible source software recently after attending a Gartner conference and talking with Mark Driver where he said he thought companies were abusing the term "open source" and that he would likely be calling out such abuses in the future.

From reading ZDNet's Between the Lines it sounds like the OSI is similarly inclined and is putting their foot down more strongly. In his blog on open source CRM, Michael Tiemann says:
So here's what I propose: let's all agree--vendors, press, analysts, and others who identify themselves as community members--to use the term 'open source' to refer to software licensed under an OSI-approved license.
This is nearly identical to what Mark said when we talked several weeks ago and I believe is a good move. Let's not allow those with less than honorable intentions abuse the term "open source" to try to benefit from the open source "brand", so that customers and users can trust those that are genuinely providing open source software.

Thursday Jun 14, 2007

Visible Source Software

I spent the last three days at Gartner's Application Architecture, Development, and Integration (AADI) Summit in Nashville. I had attended the AIWS conference in December and many of the themes were similar but there was some new information and predictions made that was great to hear.

I also had a chance to talk with several analysts, one of which, Mark Driver, has open source software as one of his focus areas. Something we talked about and he subsequently presented on is that many companies are positioning themselves as building open source software but that it isn't always the case that it is really open source. In fact, he says that Gartner will be changing their identification of some from open source to something else. This is because companies are using open source licenses that aren't truly open, either through not being able to use and extend the code or not being able to contribute back in any way.

Mark liked to think of this as accessible source software (doesn't result in a good acronym, although perhaps appropriate) and I suggested we talk about this kind of software as visible source software. In his presentation he talked about this as gated source software.

I like visible source as I think it properly distinguishes between those companies that are truly open, have a community, and opportunity for "outsiders" to join the community and contribute, and those that simply make their source available and try to benefit from the open source label but don't really allow for anyone to directly participate or become a contributor or committer. For all intents and purposes, the software is simply "visible" to others.

At Sun, we clearly believe in true open source software and this is evidenced by the contributors and committers in Project Open ESB. There are 7 companies listed as Community Partners, many of which are building components for the platform and several of those in open source with commit rights to the project, plus a growing number of individuals with commit rights that are building and contributing to components being developed in the project and community.

If you are interested in joining a truly open source community, come join Project Open ESB.

Monday Jun 04, 2007

Folks like vendor lock-in?

I was just purusing ZDNet and came across this blog on document formats and after voting was astounded to see that the current voting (only 68 votes mind you) 43% had voted for "My company will stick with whatever Microsoft serves up"!

So, if I understand this, nearly half of the respondents are just fine with vendor lock-in to Microsoft's file formats. Can that be true? Folks have become so accustomed to Microsoft's practices that they've just given up?

Thursday May 24, 2007

JDJ Readers' Choice Awards

Java Developers Journal is running their yearly Readers' Choice Awards and I'm pleased to see Open ESB doing well. I encourage folks to go vote, but also to comment here on why you did or didn't vote for Open ESB as the best Java ESB.

But since I brought JDJ up, I should note that we had an article on How to Deliver Composite Applications with Java, WS-BPEL & SOA published in the March 2007 issue. In it we describe how to use NetBeans and GlassFish with the JBI runtime and BPEL Service Engine being developed in Open ESB to build a simple app orchestrating several services into a comp app.

Tuesday May 15, 2007

Ubuntu, Java, and Open ESB

I'm a bit late in blogging about this, but I was very pleased to see that Ubuntu's Feisty Fawn (7.04) release includes a full Java stack with it. While I haven't installed it yet to see exactly what is there, it is advertised to include GlassFish and NetBeans which I'm guessing means it includes the Java EE 5 SDK Tools Bundle which is awesome as that means the Open ESB bits are also included!

This means that an even larger number of developers now have easy access to the integration technologies being developed as part of Project Open ESB.

Monday May 14, 2007

JavaOne Press

My boss and I ended up talking with the press quite a bit last week while at JavaOne and am pleased to see that a few things we said must have rang true as it is being written about!

Thursday May 10, 2007

Open ESB Preview Released

I have blogged about Open ESB previously and am pleased to see that we announced the release of our latest preview yesterday. This release builds upon what has been released previously continuing the alignment with NetBeans and GlassFish and adds more JBI components to those that are available. And I am very pleased to see that not only are the Sun built components but a number of others from our open-source partners and the community.

Please do take a look, try things out, and provide feedback, or if you are so inclined join the community and contribute!

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