- Parthenon Software Group
Open source is leading the way in development. For those of us who have been using open-source tools, this comes as no surprise. We've known about the benefits of open source for years. However, there are still enterprises and people in general who are taking note of everything open source has to offer and how it's already integrated into many of today's development trends.
The open source development model is founded on the belief that there should be universal access to free languages, resources and frameworks (modified and unmodified) under open source licensing. In addition, open source opens up the playing field for developers of any sort to change and share any modifications.
One of the top reasons that enterprises have chosen an open source strategy is the quality of the code and as a result, the caliber of the end project, application, etc. This stems from an overall emphasis on collaboration, distribution, transparency and flexibility. These attributes have lead to successful ends, and if you put things in perspective, there's a lot of be gained by applying them to enterprise infrastructure and application development and deployment efforts.
Also included in the decision are significant cost savings, security and adaptability along with a sense of freedom from vendors and the ability to choose what will actually work for you.
Still, more importantly, open source has improved to the point where it can hold its own against commercial options. One might even say that it's better than other alternatives. There's a huge community of developers who believe in open source and are actively working toward the best possible offering. Therein, there are more pairs of eyes on things which also accounts for better quality.
Even if you were to resist the shift to open source, it may be hard to hold out for long given that many of today's development trends carry some element of open source.
Big data has emerged as an important piece of development given the emphasis how much information must be taken into account and how that information will be processed. With that said, effective and efficient collection, storage, management and analyzation are essential pieces of the puzzle. This this particular course has been aided by the use of open source technologies such as Apache Hadoop and other software that addressed distributed, data-intensive applications. It's probably even fair to say that such technologies are getting in the way of big database vendors.
Another big resource to keep in mind is that of Hybrid Cloud Computing. In this environment, you essentially get a two for one. While you can store sensitive information on a private cloud, you also can also use a public cloud for other resources. All of this enables applications to be run using data from both. In this case, using open source has added benefits such as cost savings and flexibility. As for open source options, there are several. From Apache CloudStack to OpenNebula and Red Hat, it's a good bet you'll find just what you need.
Automation is yet another key area to consider. As you're probably well aware, automating tasks and testing has become a big part of development. Here you have a process or processes that allow you to code and test that much quicker with the added bonuses of efficiency and quality. Where does open source come in? Many automation processes have been coded using open source languages, environments and platforms. Common examples include Python, Selenium, Ansible, Jenkins, and so on.
While it hasn't always been advisable to jump on the bandwagon with other trends, in this case, it might just be what you need. Given the characteristics of open source software and certainly the benefits, you can gain a competitive edge, and if not that, then a fair amount of traction.
Think in terms of not only cost, but also availability, adaptability and freedom.
As I've mentioned throughout this post, cost is a big factor of open source. Obviously, no-one wants to pay more than they have to. Open source frees you from having to think about the money you're spending because it's minimal if not nonexistent. As a result a wide variety of products and services over a large spectrum can be offered for less. And customers will appreciate that.
When it comes to adaptability, think about how open source can be modified. Easier customization anyone?
As for freedom, you have the ability to choose what will work best for you needs without having to worry about vendor lock-in. Moreover, with open source being available for download at any time, you also have more freedom in obtaining resources.
Also think about staying up with the times. Open source is fast becoming one of the leading methodologies in development and as such startups aren't the only ones that stand to benefit from its use.
2014 saw an increase in enterprise adoption of open source software. This trend continues today. With many development trends and processes already incorporating open source, it stands to reason that there will be more instances of its use now and in future endeavors. Given the things to come and the advantages, it's probably a good idea to at least consider an open source approach. After all, it's certainly not a bad way to go.