Open-Source Strategy’s Pillars
This article is written by Mohammad Eslim, a Contributor Author at Startup Istanbul.
Kaan Demircan is a Turkish/American living in Istanbul. He is also a big Open Source enthusiast that has always been interested in working on innovative projects. For almost four years he had worked in Red Hat as an Infrastructure Solution Architect working in the META (Middle East, Turkey and Africa) region based in Dubai and Istanbul.
Taking a step towards change is hard but worth the effort you are doing, any change towards a better future that is. In Microsoft’s case, it was the change towards applying open-source strategies into the company’s software products. However, it was not easy at first since it was a huge cultural and technological transformation, they succeeded in doing that due to three basic pillars that reined the change into a successful one.
First pillar is to be innovating, and being innovating means creating more projects as a company then you submit these projects to the community in order for them to use, modify or help you build it into a more enhanced version. One of the preferred programs by many developers is VS code, it is now the number-one project on GitHub. Other than that, there are many closed source products that Microsoft had kept to itself like PowerShell and typescript that are now available as open source programs for community developers to contribute and help or get help from all around the world.
Even though putting projects or products in the open-source community is very important for innovating, it is not enough for a company may still fail at this stage of the plan to adopt open sourcing into the company’s strategy. Submitting and putting projects into the community must be followed by the company’s contributing and working with the community on existing projects as well.
What is remarkable for sure is that a huge number of Microsoft and Red Hat engineers are committed %100 to working with the community on said projects. Suppose there are not companies supporting and helping the community with this process of continuous development, helping and building, then projects like this will start to fail and when so you loose a nice product that could have been improved and developed into a much better version.
Enabling is the part that helps the company reach the customer and the developer and assist them as well. Developers nowadays want to be agile, fast and less tied up with procedures and operations. They want to be able to write their code and get into the market as fast as they can, so by companies doing their best to find ways to provide the community with these service features, such as MySQL database and Hadoop without developers having to install these tools, you enable them to have the tools they need for the projects without boring procedures or any complexity working on the projects.
Open Source has enabled Microsoft to create its Open Source Ecosystem, it consists of all the projects worked on and developed by the innovation of the open-source community members or by the company’s engineers, contribution has to be given off by both of the sides working on the project and the enabling is when the company creates easy accessed tools that are needed for the developments made by the community on said projects with the company’s employees. In conclusion, open source strategies are in need for follow-ups at every stage to ensure that every project becomes a success.