Open source needs contributions: automation, scale & security are key

Automated software container security company Twistlock claims to be passionate about open source contributions.

Company CTO John Morello points out that all too few firms actually contribute with ‘code commits’ despite many claiming to be open source advocates, or openly stating their use of open technologies.

Spin or substance here then?

Well… Twistlock has more technical tutorials on its blog than it has press releases on it’s media pages, so there may be some value here.

Morello suggests that although the rise open source software (OSS) is a good thing, he bemoans the lack of firms actively contributing back to community contribution model code bases. 

“The biggest challenge for OSS is that so many successful SaaS platforms are built and extended with OSS with few contributions back out to the world. Some companies are really good about contributing their internally focused innovations, but it’s not universal and there are many projects that would greatly benefit from increased interaction from SaaS vendors, especially in the areas of automation, scale and security,” said Morello.

Automation, scale & security

These three areas here highlighted are telling i.e. why should automation, scale & security be the most (potentially) pertinent areas for sharing code?

  • Automation: because this area denotes code that has been created as a result of defined best practices for efficiency in business and so, once obfuscated and anonymised in terms of user data, it could and should be productively shared back to the community.
  • Scale: growing pains are always tough and taking software from what was conceived to be sufficient for its initial deployment upwards to what may be a radically increased scale is a ‘learning’ in architectural terms that should be shared back to the community.
  • Security: similar to both of the above, firms should share best practices back with the community and perhaps concentrate on particularly focused engagement inside the same defined industry verticals where technology use cases are most similar.

Twistlock’s Morello thinks that the most significant accomplishment (of the open source software movement in general) is the fact that right now, from any cheap PC, you can: download, build and run the exact same software used to run Google, Facebook, Amazon and other leading edge organisations add to it, and then have your contributions reused by those organisations.

Isn’t that enough to make you want to contribute?

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