Open Source Is a Change Agent, but It Has Been Changed, Too, Study Says

Lora Bentley

The title of a new study from Saugatuck Research reveals that the software industry has changed open source as much as open source has changed the software industry. According to PRWeb, key findings from "Power, Speed and Assimilation: Open Source Changes the Industry, and the Industry Changes Open Source" include:

  • The same factors that attract users to open source -- lower costs and reduced times of development, and reduced dependency on vendor-specific technologies -- have attracted commercial software vendors to use and incorporate open source into their offerings and portfolios.
  • Commercial vendor development, release, adoption and use of open source software are a more accurate measure of open source's market presence and influence.

Interest from "masterbrand" software companies like Microsoft and IBM has helped to propel open source into the enterprise to such an extent that measuring the amount of open source in an enterprise is impractical, according to the study overview.


To complete the study, researchers relied on three years of user surveys (from 2005 to 2008) and also spoke to IT execs, representatives from various open source development communities, product development managers and strategists. Saugatuck's Bruce Guptill, who cowrote the report, says simply, "Open source's rampant commercialization has accelerated its adoption and change well beyond what most IT executives and software industry executive ever perceived or predicted."

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