Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Canonical Going Solo For Their Ubuntu Certification Program

Canonical has decided to go it alone in unveiling their new certification program. Up until this time, they have collaborated with LPI. The full press release can be found here. It will be interesting to see if this will eventually increase corporate demand for this certification. Up until this time, not surprisingly, the RHCE reigns supreme. Let's see if Canonical can put a dent in Red Hat's domination of this market.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Companies Grapple With How Much Leeway to Provide Outside Developers

A very interesting article was recently published by BusinessWeek. In it, Dr. Joel West and Dr. Siobhan O'Mahony share their research on the difficulty companies have had in creating a rich open source community based upon projects that have been initially developed internally.

On the surface, putting code out in the public domain sounds like a great idea. Take code that was written internally, release it, and then have engineers from far reaches of the world fine tune and enhance it. What could be better than that? It is the ultimate way of efficient engineering.

In general, the model works. Plenty of companies allow their employees to contribute mightily to a number of leading open source projects. That has had a profound effect on how we have been able to get to where we are today. However, the focus in this case is the success of projects developed internally with the hopes of being a success externally. That has posed a great challenge to a number of organizations.

So, why is it rare that there are so few successful projects that have originated within a company's four walls? As they discuss in the article, it is all about control. Even though there are a lot of companies that will market themselves as open source believers, and many of them may be, they still have difficulty when it comes time to provide developers freedom to tinker with their code.

Whether this is due to them following the advice of their legal departments, one can only determine that on a case by case basis. However, one thing is for sure; as great as the open source development model is, it still faces challenges from the inherent proprietary nature in which businesses have primarily been built.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Open Source Companies Hiring As The Tide Turns

Here is yet another article detailing the strength of open source companies as we slowly climb our way out of the deepest recession in decades. Bill Snyder, of InfoWorld, details the gains in hiring amongst a number of open source based companies.

As the landscape continues to thaw, it is open source companies that are benefiting. Granted, it helps that they are relatively small companies. This affords them the luxury of being much more nimble than some of their larger enterprise brethren.

One important point that Mahau Ma, of MuleSoft, makes is the lack of talent available as the rebound begins. We have witnessed this first hand. Even though the number of open positions that we are trying to fill is down in comparison to a couple of years ago, those searches tend to be difficult in locating the right talent. Therefore, the demand/supply equation is still leaning more toward the demand side.

All in all, this information is just another sign that the rebound is beginning. After a brutal 18 month stretch, that is something to get excited about. And, within it, the open source employment landscape continues to shine a bright light.