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Open Source

When should you open source your software?

It’s 20 years since the term ‘Open Source’ was coined. In that time the movement for free and open software has gone from a niche to a common method of distribution and a normal way of operating for businesses.

Major technology shifts are now driven by open source technologies: Big Data (Hadoop, Spark), AI (TensorFlow, Caffe), and Containers (Docker, Kubernetes) are all open projects. Massive companies including Google, Facebook, and even Lyft regularly release Open Source tools for the world to use. Microsoft – whose former CEO once described Linux as a cancer – now embraces the concept. 

According to the latest developer survey by Stack Overflow, nearly 45% of developers contribute to open source projects. But when should an organization go from merely contributing to other projects to creating its own open source projects?

 

What to know before you open source a project

When and why:

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Dan Swinhoe

Dan is a journalist at CSO Online. Previously he was Senior Staff Writer at IDG Connect.

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