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Thursday, April 28, 2005

Novell & Open Source Ambitions

Martin Tobias writes about his conversation with Jack Messman, CEO of NOVELL and notes two important points:
1. Most of his staff would say that Google is their #1 competitor, although he would prefer Microsoft. Jack believes Google could whip up an OS anytime they wanted. Martin Tobias writes it may not be easy. We wrote recently, It is widely speculated that Google is in the process of building an operating system platform and as Rick Skrenta points out Google has the most amazing talent on OS today.Martin is perhaps alluding to the fact that an operating system can not be developed in total secrecy - other desktop vendors would need to develop applications that may run on it - so far no evidence of any desktop application vendor having been shown/ given a peek into the vision/prototype of the mysterious killer operating system that Google may be working on.

2. Open source stack support companies like Spikesource (KP funded) and SourceLabs (Ignition funded) will have a tough time getting to market as Novell (through Suse) and others (Redhat) will just implement partner programs and the need will be gone. Jack argues Vendor consolidation around trusted brands. Martin says, one can argue about if Novell makes that cut, but would tend to agree in principle. We covered less than 24 hours ago while commenting on the NYTimes article on VC funding of opensource that broad distribution, which is critical to the service model, is still quite rare in the opensource industry and wrote that any investment would demand reasonable results and VC's are there to fund promising ideas which funded well can reap very high returns. Well differentiated strategies, value propositions, strength of the ideas, capability of the management team, marketforces by and large determine the suceess of any investment and certianly not whether it is opensource or otherwise - sectoral investments are for central policy planners - VC and high tech investments are for sharply defined ideas, focus and execution abilities. With the software market consolidation happening faster, lot more forces thatc can complicate investment decisions come into interplay.. The opensource sucess recipe is getting more and more difficult to guess!!

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
"All views expressed are my personal views are not related in any way to my employer"