Open source 'ready to go' for business applications

The chairman of the recent Open World Forum believes that open source software offers real opportunities to businesses, the government and the rest of the public sector.

With open source already mainstream, companies are now arriving at the point where they are prepared to invest in this area for business applications.

So claims the chairman of the recent Open World Forum and chief executive of Wallix Jean-Noel de Galzain, who made his comments in an interview with IT PRO.

Galzain said that open source was a mainstream part of IT, found in internet infrastructure and high-performance computing, and would offer opportunities in cloud computing and network technologies.

Open source has also matured on mobile platforms, with Galzain quoting Juniper Research figures that said there was a 60 per cent market share for open source on mobile phones, which was increasing.

He is also encouraged by the growth of open source technologies and software in collaborative and content management, as well as web servers.

"These are the mainstreams. After that, we have the opportunity to improve this market share and this position in the technology park, especially on application software," Galzain said.

"For example we can consider today that open source has increased in all the infrastructure and the network part of information systems. We are now arriving and investing in new technologies for users and interfaces, in particular business applications."

In the future, there are big opportunities for open source in the digitisation of public and private content, leading to new opportunities in services, software and technology, according to Galzain.

In terms of the UK, he said that the government's release of a policy encouraging the use of open source showed that we were particularly well positioned on the subject.

Galzain believes there were three main reasons why the public sector should be happy to use open source.

"The first is the economics they can realise through open source software on their information systems," he said.

"The second reason is that more than other private organisations, the public sector needs to get in touch with users. Interoperability is important and open source is very well placed to replace ancient interfaces."

Finally, he added: "The third is about being in the crisis we are now. We talk about transparency and trust, so I think trying a new way with open solutions will give us more transparency on how to use technology."

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