[OSGeo-Discuss] Is the integration of FOSS4G and proprietary software good for FOSS4G?

Arnulf Christl seven at arnulf.us
Wed Mar 17 06:43:32 PDT 2010

Hash: SHA1

100% support to what Daniel and Brian say.

One mission of OSGeo is to support standards development, another to
interact with all geospatial communities. Even although they have a
different take on licensing proprietary vendors are a valuable part of
the geospatial community. To alienate users who are stuck on
proprietary software for whichever reason would not help any of us.

Best regards,

Daniel Morissette wrote:
> Hi Miguel,
> The answer depends on how you measure success. If your measure of
> success is the number of people who drop their proprietary apps in favor
> of open source packages then you may not want to build this kind of
> bridge since your best tactic may be to play the same vendor lock-in
> game as some proprietary vendors do (note I wrote some vendors and not
> all).
> OTOH, if you measure success by the number of happy users/customers of
> your software (as I do), then by all means, build as many bridges as
> possible. In this case it does not matter if your users continue to use
> their proprietary software in parallel with your open source package,
> what matters is that at the end of the day they could be more efficient
> in doing their work, and in the end become happier campers.
> A good example of this is the GDAL/OGR project which is a success (IMHO)
> in large part because the license and philosophy of the project
> encouraged proprietary vendors to use and contribute to it. As a result,
> it is in use everywhere today, and even ESRI considers it part of "the
> best open source technology" that "it is committed to supporting"
> (http://esri.com/opensource). See http://gdal.org/credits.html for a
> list of organizations who have adopted and supported the project over
> the years.
> My 0.02$
> Daniel
> Miguel Montesinos wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I throw out a question some people are debating in Spain [1 (only
>> Spanish)]. Sextante has the intention (or at least have thought about
>> it) of building bindings so that it can be used from proprietary
>> applications, like ArcGIS.
>> 1) Do you think that it may avoid proprietary users to migrate to open
>> solutions, as they can benefit of open-source libraries under their
>> proprietary software? Besides, this give arguments to proprietary
>> manufacturers because of the weakness of open-source software needing to
>> run on top of proprietary ones, or to sell out their compatibility with
>> FOSS4G.
>> 2) Do you think that it may lead proprietary users to try out and
>> migrate to open source solutions due to the good impression they can
>> have after using FOSS4G? Besides, this could generate incomes to improve
>> FOSS4G developments, and offer alternatives to proprietary extensions,
>> drivers, ...
>> What is your oppinion about this tricky question?
>> Best,
>> [1] http://sextantegis.blogspot.com/
>> ---------------------------------------------
>> Miguel Montesinos
>> CTO
>> mmontesinos [at] prodevelop [dot] es
>> www.prodevelop.es
>> _______________________________________________
>> Discuss mailing list
>> Discuss at lists.osgeo.org
>> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss

- --
Arnulf Christl

Exploring Space, Time and Mind
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