Open Source software has undoubtedly become indispensable, especially in application development and IT infrastructure. Ironically most of the management personnel do not have an in depth idea of how Open Source software has played a vital role and changed the way software and infrastructure functions today.
Although open source’s is gradually demonstrating its calibre, its trends stay behind and are relatively unclear to the businesses and the consumers. This blog brings to you a few important ongoing trends in the Open Source arena.
Open Source – Gradual Acceptance: Initially Software vendors were reluctant to accept open source as they often misunderstood the term and related open source to be synonymous with free software. Associated with this belief there was another notion that open source software caused increased security risks to networks as anybody could modify it and that it was not supported well.
But with the wide spread use of open source operating systems such as Linux and the popular open source web platform – LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) stack, the scenario gradually changed. As of today, there is wider acceptance to Open Source amongst Software vendors.
Cloud Computing Stacks becoming popular: Many have turned to the Cloud and have started adopted the cloud computing stack – SaaS, PaaS, IaaS or hosted options. Popular Software – Microsoft Office 365 too is a partial cloud offering. Today the trend amongst the IT giants is that they would prefer to circumvent installation and maintenance of applications locally whenever that is likely.
Internet Giants contributing largely to open source: Some of the major contributions from Google are – MapReduce, Angular JS, and cgroups. Yahoo has rendered Hadoop. Many other popular IT giants such as eBay, Twitter, LinkedIn etc have contributed largely and initiated many Open Source projects. Cassandra and React have been valuable contributions by Facebook.
GitHub – where software germinates: A robust code review, collaboration and code management tool for open source projects. It is the largest host of source code in the world with over 21 million repositories. GitHub has completely transformed how software development is evolving. GitHub believes that re-inventing the wheel is pointless. Instead why not reuse the code that someone else has already created and has agreed to share under a liberal open source license. This not only saves time but increases productivity. Who knows you may find something really close to what you need exactly on GitHub saving you days and nights of relentless coding effort.
High Risks and increasing Security Concerns: Open source security has been undergoing ups and downs all through for the last one year. OpenSSL is a popular open source service implementation using SSL and TLS protocols. The OpenSSL error named Heartbleed is huge and was not addressed for a couple of years. But when it was discovered it created havoc for the administrators. About 6 months later came the Shellshock bug.
Open source solutions are becoming easy targets due to their increasing popularity and importance so the industry has been forced to jointly finance projects like OpenSSL which is the backbone for more than tens of thousands of programs and services that allow SSL or TLS protocols.