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Open Source Innovation and Commoditization

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OSS

Following up on Matt Aslett’s excellent post about the growth of permissive licenses and a short discussion about it on my research group’s blog, I wanted to suggest here a thought about the ratio of new vendor-owned vs. community-owned open source projects.

Software innovation is being driven forward by both single-vendor and community-owned open source projects, but that software commoditization is solely driven forward by community-owned projects. Single-vendor innovation takes place because there is money to be made, and community-owned innovation takes place where initial fun meets eventual business (or other) needs. Ultimately, all single-vendor innovation will be commoditized through a community-owned project.

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