Earlier today, I came across an oft-tweeted post by Adrian Bridgwater entitled What does Microsoft think of open source? on his Open Source Insider blog on ComputerWeekly. After quoting the Microsoft official open source position set out below:
We are actively participating in open source and share the common industry view that software users will continue to see a mixed IT environment of open source and proprietary products for years to come. We also understand that open source software alternatives can represent healthy competition and an opportunity to complement or enhance Microsoft technologies and products.
Adrian goes on to ask whether we should take Microsoft’s official statement at “face value” or not. He ultimately concludes
The truth is that we probably don’t have to. What Microsoft knows is that the trend across the industry is toward a mixed-source world in which the bottom line for any technology, development and distribution approach, or business model is going to be based on best practice, best value and best profit margins.
Adrian wraps up with a call to “continue to keep our world multicultural and our technology multifarious and multi-faceted. Or as the French would say, Vive La Différence.” Thanks, Adrian, for your interesting thoughts on Microsoft’s thoughts on open source.