Open Source For Corporations: Set Up A $30,000 Gate

from the share-and-share-alike dept

While many in the tech industry always seem focused too much on companies that produce technology, there isn’t as much interest in how everyday companies use technology to improve their own bottom line. There’s a new “co-op” targeted at large companies that use technology as a way to improve their business, but who are sick of spending so much time and money on customized software for their business. Think of it as open source software with a $30,000 gate. Members of the co-op pay $30,000 per year to join, and then can freely share software they’ve built with others in the co-op. The benefits, in theory, are access to the other software from other companies, and the fact that some others within the co-op will contribute to and improve on software that’s been donated. Of course, companies could just open source this software (since it’s obviously focused on software that isn’t designed to give the companies a competitive advantage). However, it seems like they figure that the $30,000 gate will keep the level of the software included higher and more focused on corporate uses. Also, it’s much more likely that companies will be willing to spend their own engineering resources on applications that go into this program than on fully open source projects – since many managers still have a fear of open source. The article suggests that this could be disruptive to companies that design custom applications for corporate users. There is still a question of seeding the field with enough applications, but it sounds like they’ve already convinced some large companies (like Best Buy) to join and toss some of their corporate software into the pot.

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