A phony headline for a phony story

Despite all the hullaballoo over open source, everything we've written, said and done, we're still just 6% of the market.

Fistful of dollars from iRise blog
I have to admire the creativity of market research shops, especially within their own marketing departments. (Picture from the blog at iRise, which makes simulation software.)

This ability to pull numbers out of the air and get other people to pay for them...simply amazing.

The second part, that is. The getting people to pay for them part. That's the part which has always intrigued me, and which is the subject of continuing fascination, wonderment and consternation.

Especially in the open source world, where people wonder why, when they're giving away their code and letting people work on it in their own shops, they're not being showered with buckets of money.

Today's contestants are the Standish Group of Boston. And their number is $60 billion. (You can buy the report for just $1,000.)

Quite a number.

This, they say, is the amount of money open source is costing proprietary software companies. Every year! 

Where does the number come from? Well software is a $1 trillion market worldwide and open source has a 6% market share...

The press release also has this great quote from the head of Oracle's OnDemand unit, whose book is called "The End of Software." "It is a shocking examination of Open Source usage by commercial and government organizations," he says.

Real bedtime reading. I'm sure Bill Gates is using it right now to explain to his kids why they're not going to be richer than he is. Ever. Unless they get out there and compete. (Good on him for that.)

Why my snark? This is not news. Everyone knows that open source is becoming pervasive, that it's taking real market share away from proprietary companies, and that many open source firms are growing at a healthy clip.

OK, if you absolutely must have some numbers, these are numbers. Despite all the hullaballoo over open source, everything we've written, said and done, we're still just 6% of the market.

Now go back to work.