Zukunft der Software

A Land Where Giants Rule / Open Source Slays Goliath

Von Christopher Koch

Indeed, by 2010, the strategy that will differentiate top CIOs from their more tactical peers will be one that focuses on a vendor-neutral architecture and less vendor reliance--not more. It will be a difficult task, but CIOs who focus on creating an infrastructure that is low cost, easily maintained and doesn't rely on a handful of vendors to function will have the upper hand in price negotiations with vendors and the ability to adopt innovative new solutions more quickly and easily than those CIOs who are locked in to a vendor's software release schedule. CIOs who merely pick vendors from a list will have a more appropriate title: contract manager.

[Szenario zwei]

Open Source Slays Goliath

Hyper consolidation might not rule the day if governments and companies decide that it is too risky to become reliant upon a handful of vendors for their IT. By 2010, nervous governments in Europe and Asia could instead shift their purchasing and development dollars to open-source software. Overseas anxiety about vendor lock-in could be compounded by the fear that the single vendor will be American and might put European and Asian needs second. Many European and Asian companies might follow their governments' lead by choice and by necessity--if their governments mandate open source for communication, they will need to comply.

Such a trend could force sweeping changes in the model for buying and supporting software. It could even spur a revolt among CIOs who decide that they have had enough of the endless cycles of complex licensing agreements and upgrades on enterprise software. Instead, they could adopt the open-source licensing model and turn everything they've paid for out to the market for free.

"What if corporations say, 'We don't believe in licensing agreements anymore, and we're going to open source all our [legacy] software and distribute it for free'?" asks Paul Maeder, managing general partner of venture capital company Highland Capital Partners.

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