Welcome!

Artificial Intelligence Authors: Zakia Bouachraoui, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, William Schmarzo

RSS Feed Item

[berkman] Open Source at Microsoft

Bryan Kirschner (Dir of Open Source Strategy) and Mario Madden (Open Source Licensing Counsel) at Microsoft are giving a Berkman Tuesday lunch talk on Open Source and Microsoft. [NOTE: I am live-blogging, typing too fast, missing things, getting things wrong, etc.]

They start with three framing positions: 1. Open source has changed the info-communications landscape. It’s “neither a fad nor a magic bullet” [missed the attribution] 2. It brings an opportunity for Microsoft, open source developers, and ICT customers. 3. It’s not any harder or easier to realize this potential, compared to other opportunities (e.g., cloud computing).

In 2004, Msft submitted two licenses to the Open Source Initiative. Now there are 500. There are at least 80,000 Open Source apps that run on Windows. Microsoft is virtualizing Linux on Windows and vice versa, and Silverlight is becoming Moonlight (= a Linux version).

Why is Msft doing this?

1. Motivation. What motivates OS developers? (From Karim Lakhani, who is in the room.) They’re motivated by creativity and learning, economic opportunity, and solving a problem.

2. Commercialization. Some of OS is money-driven, while some is community-driven. “At the end of the day, it’s about value-for-cost and solving a customer’s problem.”

There’s a “world of choice” these days. You use the best tool for the job. Mix and match. E.g., they want Windows to be a great platform for OS apps, including for PHP. So, Windows is working with Zen (commercial PHP company) and the PHP community. If your company wants single-sign-on; Msft has Active Directory that does that, including for php aps. Then, if you want to use cloud computing (Windows Azure), you can use it and it works with Active Directory. Then you could have OpenID and Ruby apps running on Linux. Then you might want to use virtualization to rapidly move apps across hardware, and you could then use OpenPegasus to do cross-platform systems management, contributing back to the Pegasus project. “At the application layer, it really makes sense to strive for openness.”

There’s a human relationship and emotions in the OS community, Bryan says. It’s inspirational. Microsoft wants to comingle, cooperate and co-exist.

Q: You touted collaboration with Novell. Many are not happy with that deal. Some people at Novell quit. The Linux kernel community would be a tougher community. They haven’t been happy about joining forces with you. Do you have any plans to bury the hatchet? E.g., Linus Torvalds is unhappy with Msft’s stance on patents…
A: I wouldn’t hold up Novell as a great example. Our customers, especially our large customers, like it a lot, though. It makes commercial sense, although it doesn’t necessarily make everyone feel happy.
A: [mario] The legal team’s job is to help the team navigate the shoals. We did the best we could in the Novell deal.
A: [bryan] We have an active partnership with Samba. Both sides are happy about this.

Q: I’m a European lawyer. Microsoft’s reaction to the European Court’s decision showed no sign of openness? How do you address the abuse that was found and the open attitude you’re expressing today?
A: [bryan] I’m not a lawyer. The question for me is how do you meet the needs of your customers? The overwhelming body of evidence leads you to openness. We will continue to develop .Net. But it’s not zero sum. We also have support php. The Windows media team wrote a plugin so Windows Media Player would work on Firefox. There have been 6 million downloads, so that’s great.
A: [karim] There’s a lag between court decisions and how the company thinks about it.
Q: My point was that you might have saved 500M euros if you had been more open…

Q: Once sw is fully developed, you’re half done. It still needs quality assurance. How do you assure open source software is of high quality? And how do you know it wasn’t stolen from an open source app?
A: [mario] When code is brought in, it’s up to the engineering groups to do the QA. Legally, OS software is just third party code. We brought in 500M lines of code last year. We scan it. A lot of it was Open Source.
A: [karim] Two studies have compared the quality of code from Open Source vs. commercial and found no difference, except perhaps OS is slightly higher quality because the QA is continuous.
A: [bryan] We’re a platinum sponsor of the Apache Foundation. They have overhead. It makes it easier to deal with them if they’re not under terrible financial stress.
A: [mario] When it comes to OS, we’re driven by business purposes. Can we decrease development costs?

Q: [me] What’s the business case that you see for contributing to OS, as well as enabling Windows to work well with OS? How much are you contributing?
A: [bryan] We contribute in three ways. 1. Product strategy. E.g., contribute to php to make it work better with SQL Server. 2. Does it actually make sense for your product to take an OS or hybrid strategy? E.g., Class server is curriculum management system. It competes with OS. It didn’t make sense to compete, so now it’s an OS product. 3. Having more developers creating more code is a good thing. It’s pie-expanding. E.g., we have XNA libraries for developing games. There are hundreds of XNA projects that are open source now.
Q: [me] Are 500 contributions a lot? Compared to the number of patents? Products?
A: We’ll measure success when every product group considers open source.
Q: [karim] IBM says they have 1,000 developers working on Linux, etc. Do you have any number you can point to that’s similar?
A: No.

Q: Has OS affected how stuff gets done inside?
A: Inside the company, we are not the Borg. Every product group has a lot of autonomy. Agile groups. You also have some 3-year-product-plan projects. Increasingly you’ll see a more blended model.
A: [mario] We have 30,000 developers. It’s hard to know, on the IP, what everyone is doing.
A: [bryan] You’ll see a company-wide statement from the company that we understand the world is heterogeneous, we respect the contributions open source has made, and we’re committed to greater openness. I’ll quote Heidegger: Fear is not knowing what to do. The Windows-Linux oppositional framework in 1998 took the public imagination. We formally responded with a site in 2007, so no one will accuse us of acting precipitously :)

Q: When will Steve Ballmer start putting out the OS msg? He has a reputation for being confrontational.
A: [bryan] He’s a strong, opinionated leader. But you’ve already seen Steve talk about the benefits of supporting open source. Inside Msft, the open source group always talks in terms of what makes sense for business.

Q: This has implications for DC policy positions. I.e., very strict IP enforcement.
A: [mario] We may disagree about strict IP; we support patent reform, for example. But we see our business as about IP. We’ll always support IP and IP rights.

Q: Chances are we’ll find out that the new Redmond Congressperson will be a former Microsoft manager. Since Msft employees have funded about a third of her campaign, when your lobbyists are calling her up, will you be asking to support Open Source?
A: [mario] Fascinating question, and I’m sure not going to comment :)
A: [bryan] We don’t want anyone fighting Open Source. We don’t think it makes business sense.

Q: [karim] If we’re back to big iron — Google is a server farm company — how do we think about the role of open source?
A: [bryan] It changes the dynamics. Clouds and server farms open up a lot more space.

[me[ What about OOXML vs. ODF? Why did you push OOXML as a doc format after we already had adopted ODF? Is that typical of what you mean by openness?
A: [bryan] Open doc formats are really important. I don’t see doc standards as a zero sum game. So being able to understand the doc through a published set of docs doesn’t seem exclusive to me.

Karim concludes the session by pointing out how contentious this topic would have been just five years. “The presence of Mario and Bryan here is a sign of success.” [Tags: ]

Read the original blog entry...

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settl...
Contextual Analytics of various threat data provides a deeper understanding of a given threat and enables identification of unknown threat vectors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, David Dufour, Head of Security Architecture, IoT, Webroot, Inc., discussed how through the use of Big Data analytics and deep data correlation across different threat types, it is possible to gain a better understanding of where, how and to what level of danger a malicious actor poses to an organization, and to determin...
@CloudEXPO and @ExpoDX, two of the most influential technology events in the world, have hosted hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors since our launch 10 years ago. @CloudEXPO and @ExpoDX New York and Silicon Valley provide a full year of face-to-face marketing opportunities for your company. Each sponsorship and exhibit package comes with pre and post-show marketing programs. By sponsoring and exhibiting in New York and Silicon Valley, you reach a full complement of decision makers and buyers in ...
There are many examples of disruption in consumer space – Uber disrupting the cab industry, Airbnb disrupting the hospitality industry and so on; but have you wondered who is disrupting support and operations? AISERA helps make businesses and customers successful by offering consumer-like user experience for support and operations. We have built the world’s first AI-driven IT / HR / Cloud / Customer Support and Operations solution.
LogRocket helps product teams develop better experiences for users by recording videos of user sessions with logs and network data. It identifies UX problems and reveals the root cause of every bug. LogRocket presents impactful errors on a website, and how to reproduce it. With LogRocket, users can replay problems.
Data Theorem is a leading provider of modern application security. Its core mission is to analyze and secure any modern application anytime, anywhere. The Data Theorem Analyzer Engine continuously scans APIs and mobile applications in search of security flaws and data privacy gaps. Data Theorem products help organizations build safer applications that maximize data security and brand protection. The company has detected more than 300 million application eavesdropping incidents and currently secu...
Rafay enables developers to automate the distribution, operations, cross-region scaling and lifecycle management of containerized microservices across public and private clouds, and service provider networks. Rafay's platform is built around foundational elements that together deliver an optimal abstraction layer across disparate infrastructure, making it easy for developers to scale and operate applications across any number of locations or regions. Consumed as a service, Rafay's platform elimi...
Two weeks ago (November 3-5), I attended the Cloud Expo Silicon Valley as a speaker, where I presented on the security and privacy due diligence requirements for cloud solutions. Cloud security is a topical issue for every CIO, CISO, and technology buyer. Decision-makers are always looking for insights on how to mitigate the security risks of implementing and using cloud solutions. Based on the presentation topics covered at the conference, as well as the general discussions heard between sessio...
Growth hacking is common for startups to make unheard-of progress in building their business. Career Hacks can help Geek Girls and those who support them (yes, that's you too, Dad!) to excel in this typically male-dominated world. Get ready to learn the facts: Is there a bias against women in the tech / developer communities? Why are women 50% of the workforce, but hold only 24% of the STEM or IT positions? Some beginnings of what to do about it! In her Day 2 Keynote at 17th Cloud Expo, Sandy Ca...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...