The Web 2.0 development platform, KickApps, released Version 3.0 of their service today. For those who don't know, KickApps allows web site publishers to add a "social media" page to their site, which may include spaces for blog posts, pictures, videos, and a message board. The service also allows the user to embed widgets containing this media throughout their site. For a good example of what I am talking about, check out the newly launched Guinness World Records site.
The newest release will provide for more developer support through KickApps' new Open API's. Those … Read more
Hyperic has announced a series of customer wins and community traction in Europe. It's good news for Hyperic, an open source systems management company, but not at all surprising for those of us whose companies started on that side of the Pond. Europe has long been an open-source proponent.
It's perhaps a sign of things to come. In most software companies Europe takes a minority share of a vendor's sales. But open source is shaking this up. I keep getting calls from friends at other open-source companies who are just starting to dip their toes into Europe, … Read more
Marc Fleury says something that doesn't ring true for me in his analysis of which license - GPL or BSD - to use for a new startup. Marc gives a great answer, born of hard experience, and one that is definitely worth reading. (Teaser: Use GPL if you want protection of your code and BSD if you want to be free lunch for everyone else to achieve ubiquity.)
I have one quibble, though. Marc suggests that the RHEL/Fedora model is only for established companies:...[T]he ultimate license scheme for OSS is still RHEL/Fedora: a proprietary distribution of OSS software. It doesn't matter if the software inside is GPL/BSD or whatever. Realistically speaking however, RHEL/FEDORA is not an option for young projects, this is only viable for established products and may snuff your growth in the early stages.
Much depends on what Marc means by "established products," because my own experience with the model is directly contrary to Marc's statement.… Read more
Ostensibly, SpringSource today announced the acquisition of Covalent to beef up its support for the Apache-sponsored project Tomcat. The problem with such thinking is that if this is the real reason, SpringSource got very little for its money.
There's no doubt that Spring+Apache is a recipe for success. In my own experience, I've seen widespread adoption of both, and often together (not the least being within the product my company, Alfresco, ships). Rod Johnson, CEO and founder of SpringSource, states:We see Apache code being used by many of our customer accounts--the Apache Web server, Tomcat, Web services frameworks, Active MQ and a slew of other Apache technologies. We see pent-up demand for services from folks using Spring and Apache technologies.
It's unclear how an acquisition furthers this, since the best that SpringSource has acquired is a few developers associated with the project, but not the project itself.… Read more
Loopfuse has been actively selling to customers and blogging about its successes for nearly a year now. Yet such is the industry - where open source has become so mainstream that we often neglect the rise of truly innovative software - that it's not surprising that IDG missed Loopfuse until now. We forgive you, IDG! :-)
Regardless, if you haven't heard of Loopfuse or started using its (or a competitor's) marketing automation software, you need to correct this fault. Immediately. Here's what it does:Lead generation products track the activities of potential customers on a company's Web site and use factors like their job titles and activities on the site to assign "lead scores," which help salespeople to target their efforts. The products work in tandem with customer relationship management software.
This is, in part, what open-source Loopfuse (as well as proprietary products like Eloqua) does. It's more than this, though this would be enough.… Read more
Jeff Gould has written an excellent piece on the big question arising from Sun's acquisition of MySQL: how will Sun make enough money on the deal to justify the $1 billion valuation? Gould's analysis is generally solid, but he misses a few key points.
First off:Only time will tell. But in my humble opinion, MySQL's open source business model will make Sun's road to payback a lot steeper than if it had bought a software company with conventional revenues and profits.
Ah, the good old days! Just one problem: those days are gone. Pining for an acquisition of the old way of selling and distributing software is like pining for Mayberry: you can want it, but those days are never coming back. VCs aren't investing in proprietary Mayberry anymore. Except from the consolidators of 20th-century software (Oracle, IBM, SAP, Microsoft), customers aren't buying into the false Mayberry that left them destitute of innovation and options.
Open source is the way forward. But that doesn't make it an easy road, as Gould suggests. Here's where his analysis becomes relevant.… Read more
Dell has entered a partnership to take to Fonality's affordable VoIP phone systems to small and midsize businesses.
This is big news for the VoIP world--and for the open-source Asterisk project underlying Fonality.
Dell will be selling the Fonality VoIP Phone System through its global SMB sales organization, as well as its channel.
Needless to say, the opportunity is huge. According to a Dell'Oro Group group analyst quoted in The Wall Street Journal (PDF), 35 million small businesses worldwide are expected to adopt VoIP calling over the next three years.
Fonality brings to the table a product designed to be easy to use and directly installable. Dell brings its market reach and brand. It's a good deal for Dell. It could be the making of Fonality.
Look at the math.… Read more
Shortly before I took off for a half-day of incredible skiing at Alta (see right), I spent some time on the phone with the founders of eTelemetry, one of the coolest start-ups I've seen in some time. eTelemetry maps the "social graph" within an enterprise. Want to know who the movers and shakers are within your company? Ask the graph, not them.
It's not quite what I've been hoping for since 2001: someone who can build trust into one's personal address book and use that trust to enable new e-commerce activities, among other things. But it's a huge boon for enterprises that want to peer into their ranks to separate the wheat from the chaff and benefit from the wheat.
How does it work?… Read more
I didn't know all the history behind JBoss until I read Shaun Connolly's blog on the topic. It turns out that JBoss has been stalking BEA for some time. Unfortunately for BEA, IBM and JBoss now appear to be poised to eclipse its once-thriving business altogether.