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SDForum and the Olliance Group Release First Ever Think Tank Report on the Future of Commercial Open Source

70 leading industry executives share insight and knowledge on where commercial open source will be by 2010

SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- SDForum along with The Olliance Group announced today the publication of "The Future of Commercial Open Source Think Tank Summary Report." The open source industry's first ever think tank event, hosted in January, brought more than 70 key thought leaders together to assess the impact of open source on the commercial software industry. Active program participants included more than 15 CEOs of open source companies, dozens of technology executives, industry experts and luminaries and end users. Attendees of this event were given the mission of describing commercial open source software in the year 2010 and the process of reaching that end state.

"The Future of Commercial Open Source Think Tank Summary Report" offers rich insight into the challenges and opportunities faced by the industry. During this six-hour event the level of consensus reached by this very diverse group of expert participants was unexpected, said Andrew Aitken, Managing Partner at Olliance Group. Most notably, the participants recognized and acknowledged that while open source may come to represent a dominant commodity-computing model over the next several years, today it is still considered a disruptive force. Participants also agreed that by 2010:

-- Service revenue will be a much higher component of today's large ISVs -- Open source will not be a business model in and of itself -- Open source will not be viewed as a software, but as an efficient means to develop and distribute software -- Open source standardization and commoditization will bring a shift in focus whereby function will become the single most important factor in software development

While there were few overall significant disagreements among participants there was strong contention in several key areas, especially in determining when changes were coming to the software industry. Participants agreed that changes were occurring and that they would be momentous, but as to when -- 2010 or before or beyond, they could not agree. And the participants were conflicted as to where the resources to drive this community-based development would come from -- would developers become free agents, would users become a much larger percentage of the community or would large ISVs step in?

The questions raised by these key industry leaders also helped determine several obstacles that need to be addressed if open source is to thrive:

-- Over funding by the venture community will result in non-differentiated and flooded markets -- There are not enough developers to participate in all the open source communities. With too many projects and not enough focus on key projects -- there is simply not enough talent to mature open source fast enough -- Fear that businesses will be driven out -- economic recession puts pressure on support for non-positive cash flow open source projects

"For more than 20 years SDForum has been committed to setting the technology industry's agenda while continuing to be a driving force in the technology community," said Laura Merling, Executive Director of SDForum. "The Future of Commercial Open Source, was an event that not only gave SDForum an opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to the technology community, but it was a landmark gathering that has provided leaders in the open source industry with insight into the future."

"The Future of Commercial Open Source Think Tank Summary Report" is available for download at http://www.olliancegroup.com/opensource/sdforum2006oss.php . For additional information you can also visit http://www.sdforum.org/.

About SDForum

SDForum (http://www.sdforum.org/) has been instrumental in setting the high-tech industry agenda for more than 22 years. A high-tech non-profit dedicated to educating and creating relationships within the technology community, SDForum provides the latest insights on emerging technology trends and best business practices through events, specialized services and resources.

About Olliance Group

Olliance Group is the premier independent open source business and strategy consulting firm whose mission is to help clients capitalize on the strategic, technological, and financial benefits of open source software. Olliance offers a set of corporate, business, and technology planning, risk management, investment, and education consulting services to technology developers and consumers.

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SDForum

CONTACT: Shital Mehta of Shanth Interactive, +1-213-620-0101 or
[email protected], for SDForum

Web site: http://www.sdforum.org/

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