Thursday, October 23, 2008

Open source Linux worth billions, Microsoft warned

Can Microsoft compete with an billion dollar open source project which benefits from widespread collaboration?

A new study claimed that the development of the Linux Fedora 9 operating system would cost $10.8 billion (£6.3 billion) to build, and that Microsoft’s software monopoly could disappear.

The value was measured by the Linux Foundation using today’s software development costs, with an estimated cost of $1.4 billion (£0.8 billion) for the Linux kernel alone.

The Foundation said that since it began in 1991, Linux has become a computing force with a $25 billion (£14.7 billion) ecosystem, powering devices from mobile phones to supercomputers.

Report authors Amanda McPherson, Brian Proffitt and Ron Hale-Evans said that the open nature of the Linux operating system benefited from its collaborative nature which meant that one company did not need to have responsibility for its development or support.

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