An OSS ecosystem

The Biblical world view sees Earth and its ecosystems as the effect of a wise God’s creation and… therefore robust, resilient, and self-regulating, like the product of any good engineer.”
Christopher Monckton

Yesterday’s post highlighted Jon Parrish’s five questions for establishing uniqueness of a product. It also spoke of the fragmentation of the OSS market and the diversity of customer needs being an instigator in that fragmentation. I believe that it’s unlikely that any single vendor is going to be able to create a product (or product suite) that dominates the market because of those diverse needs.

Many of the OSS experts that I come into contact with have ideas for how to overcome their day-to-day concerns. Many even have the skills to do something about it, to generate scripts or apps to alleviate some of their pains. But rarely do they have the time and resources to create a full platform that they can take to market. I believe that our industry could thrive on this multitude of micro-innovations if only there was an ecosystem that they could easily plug into. Consolidation by platform – via the contributions of a vendor mesh that facilitates vendors large and small.

History shows us examples of ecosystems providing the opportunity for many innovators to contribute, including:

  • WordPress for content management systems
  • Apple and Google for mobile apps
  • Facebook for social media
  • Github for code collaboration
  • Even the operating systems of Microsoft and Apple in personal computing operating systems
  • There are too many others to list

What are your thoughts? Would you like to contribute to an ecosystem such as this (and prosper from if your talents match customer needs)?

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