Thursday, June 25, 2009

At what stage of life is the open source industry?

Every industry goes through life stages, just like people.

At what stage is open source at, now, in the middle of 2009?

Matt Asay says we’re at the growth stage. He is cheered by Red Hat’s latest earnings. So am I.

But there is another way to look at this news. Is it possible we have already reached the consolidation phase?

Industry life stages are a little like the old joke about fame. Applied to me, they would be who is Dana, get me Dana, get me someone like Dana, get me a young Dana, and who is Dana? At age 54, I admit some may be looking for a young Dana. As to Matt, I think we want more people just like him.

Applied to industries, these stages would be the industry’s birth, its entrepreneurial period, its growth, consolidation, and the maturation of the market in the few strong hands left.

Or to put it more bluntly, what’s open source, get me open source, get me anything that sounds like open source, get me the big gun in open source, and who cares about open source.

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