Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Open source projects 'need more customer focus'

Filed under
OSS

Open source projects need to be more customer focussed if they are to succeed in the corporate marketplace, according to several companies attending the Holland Open Software Conference in Amsterdam this week.

Alan Williamson, an open source evangelist at IT services company SpikeSource, said that one reason open source projects fail is that some developers do not think about the features that customers will need. For example, many projects have poor documentation and some even omit relatively basic features such as a tool to uninstall the application, Williamson said.

"One thing we've done at SpikeSource is work on how to uninstall a project. The project leader didn't even think about the need to uninstall it, but the harsh reality is that users do uninstall applications," said Williamson, speaking at a session on how to bring open source to the mainstream on Monday.

Marcel den Hartog, the European director of advanced technology at Computer Associates, agreed that open source project teams are not always aware of what corporate customers want. He told the audience at the conference that support, including support for older versions of the software, is an essential requirement for open source projects that want to succeed in enterprises.

"One of the things I hate about the open source community is that they only talk about two versions — the current version and the future version," said Hartog. "We have clients who will pay us to support really old versions of software — they don't want to change their production environment because it works."

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

Running Linux On The Intel Compute Stick

The Intel Compute Stick has begun shipping, a tiny device that plugs into any HDMI TV or monitor and turns it into a fully-functioning computer. This low-power PC ships with Windows 8.1 or Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, though at the moment the Windows version is first to market with the Ubuntu Compute Stick not widely shipping until June. I have an Intel Compute Stick at Phoronix for testing. Read more

Research community looks to SDN to help distribute data from the Large Hadron Collider

There is one project called the LHC Open Network Environment (LHCONE) that was originally conceived to help with operations that involved multiple centers. To understand this, though, I have to explain the structure of the data and computing facilities. Read more

NASA Space App Challenger Runs Yocto on an Intel Edison-Based Nanosat

NASA has long had an interest in Linux and other open source technologies, and has used Linux in a variety of systems, including the R2 humanoid robot now at work at the International Space Station. With its International NASA Space App Challenge, the space agency is tapping into the maker gestalt to come up with new ideas, as well as inspire future space engineers. In this year's two-day Space App Challenge hackathon, which ran April 10-11 in 133 cities around the world, NASA greeted participants with over 25 challenges split into Earth, Outer Space, Humans, and Robotics categories. Read more

How to Find the Best Open Source Project to Work On

In my last article for Linux.com, I explored a few ways newcomers to open source projects can get started. While there are many resources to explore open source project communities, choosing which project to contribute to can still be a quite daunting task. You could go searching in the more than 23 million repositories on GitHub, the world’s largest source code hosting platform. But there are better ways. This article is meant to be a short guide to help novice open source practitioners more easily identify the first project they’d like to contribute to. Read more