08:01 AM

Getting Serious About Enterprise Open Source

If you think that Open Source software is just for wild-eyed, idealistic revolutionaries, it's time to think again.

If you think that Open Source software is just for wild-eyed, idealistic revolutionaries, incapable of working in the real world, it's time to think again.

Wild-eyed revolutionaries - like IBM?

Incapable of working in the real world - like Bill Gates?

Development tool vendors are making the bet that even the biggest corporations see the benefits of Open Source, and so they're making enterprise-app tools with more and more open-source flavor.

IBM Rational's plans for Atlantic include a unification on open-source Eclipse 3.0. And the company's WebSphere Application Server version 6.0, due in December, will support Eclipse, as well as the most recent Java and Web services standards.

Microsoft, meanwhile, which is the target of many of these open-source enterprise efforts, has stepped up its own open-source efforts, as well, and offered its FlexWiki third open-source tool to

Smaller vendors, of course, have gotten into the act as well.

So if you've stayed away from Open Source, it's time to take a serious look at its many benefits, including less cost, a wide community of support, and fast development. If it's good enough for IBM and Microsoft, it's good enough for you.

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