Open source organizes its developers, developers, developers

Open source organizes its developers, developers, developers

Summary: The Open Solutions Alliance is being debuted this week at LinuxWorld. With dues of $10,000 for ISVs, and $5,000 for VARs, the OSA hopes to "organize solutions," in the words of Barry Klawans, chief technology officer at JasperSoft, who is helping shepherd the group into being.

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One of the first Internet video hits I remember was Steve Ballmer, now Microsoft CEO, dancing around a stage chanting "developers, developers, developers."

He was making a serious point. Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and Value Added Resellers (VARs) are still keys to Microsoft's success, especially in the enterprise space.

Open source has never organized these people. It never organizes anyone. The heart of the movement is the idea of self-organization.

Finally, some of these people are doing just that. The Open Solutions Alliance is being debuted this week at LinuxWorld. With dues of $10,000 for ISVs, and $5,000 for VARs, the OSA hopes to "organize solutions," in the words of Barry Klawans, chief technology officer at JasperSoft, who is helping shepherd the group into being.

"We’re talking about business level advocacy," he explained. "We need to talk to sets of customers about open source applications, make them aware of what’s out there."

In addition, "We’re going to ask our members to represent the OSA at the vertical market shows. Don’t just talk about your software, but about solutions using other technologies."

This is not like Microsoft's centrally-controlled organization. This is all bootstrap. "Besides the dues we’re asking companies to donate 20% of someone’s time to the cause. Some of the members are already donating things in marketing, or in interoperability."

Amd before anyone in the OSA tries imitating Ballmer's dance, know that the key to the act is the audience reaction. Build the audience first. It consists of developers, developers, developers....

Topic: Software Development

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4 comments
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  • Killer IDE

    What's needed is a true killer IDE that's on the level of Visual Studio, and allows creation of GTK apps and QT apps, and includes a WYSIWYG forms designer integrated, as well as an integrated debugger, and a package deployment wizard, code completion (intellisense), refactoring, and other goodies.

    There are currently some good choices, but none do all of the above:

    MonoDevelop - the most comprehensive of the bunch. But it does GTK/GTK# only, and is mono only.

    KDevelop - Really powerful, and now has the separate forms designer (based on QT Designer). But it's all separate, and really KDevelop is mostly a front end for various command line tools. In other words, it does not have the level of integration and ease of use that more full fledged IDE (like VS or NB) has.

    Eclipse - Bare Eclipse is good for Eclipse RCP, but that's it. It's hard to GTK/QT specific stuff, and it also does not come with an advance forms designer (separate plugin).

    NetBeans - simply awesome, and you can certainly run it on Linux. But it's for JME, Java/Swing/Matisse, and JEE, not for Linux desktop development. Certainly, Java Swing apps can run fine on a Linux desktop, but it runs the same everywhere.

    Glade + Anjuta - pretty good combo for C/C++/GTK development. But not integrated fully, and again, C/C++/GTK - no QT, and it also supports Java, but nothing else.

    And of course, there are loads of other editors, mini-IDEs, and various other tools.

    But nothing comprehensive, and super easy like Visual Studio (or in the Java world, NetBeans or IntelliJ IDEA).

    Now a combination of a Killer IDE, with the standards/tools being produced by the Portland project, and CNR on Ubuntu, SuSE, RH, Debian, and then we can see ISV's flocking to the Linux desktop platform.
    super_J
  • Sounds like a marketing budget.

    People being requested to donate cash and time...

    There'd have to be money in it, increased sales sufficient to justify the investment.

    Think that's possible?
    Anton Philidor
  • another alliance?

    Dana,

    It's the general hush hush way of launching this alliance which is making lot of people uneasy.

    We need more code to solve interoperability and less whitepapers and committees.

    We are doing this using our own blogs and wikis - http://www.openapp.org

    Plan is to just share our experiences working with leading open source customers. If all companies do this then there will be a natural knowledge resource to work out the issues.

    We believe eventually decentralized and distributed model will come to solve any interoperability issue facing open source ecosystem.

    Brij
    brijsingh
  • There is a herding cats feeling to this

    The group does say it wants to work on code, and I am awaiting an interview with Unisys on this point.

    Meanwhile, I'll check out openapps. Stay in touch!
    DanaBlankenhorn