Review: Innovation Happens Elsewhere–Open Source as Business Strategy

5 Star, Best Practices in Management, Change & Innovation, Information Technology, Strategy

Innovation HappensGuide to the Value Created by Free/Open Source Software,

January 27, 2007

Ron Goldman

This is not the book I was expecting, but that’s my fault. I was expecting something beyond “The Innovator’s Dilemma” focused on management. What I ended up with was in fact much more useful, an elementary but essential and easy to read guide to Free/Open Source Software (F/OSS).

This book is a real gem, and for any manager thinking about how to explode out of their tired old proprietary software architecture, joins “Wikinomics” and “Infotopia” as essential reading.

This book is well-structured, comes with credible and extensive references and appendices, and also offers an online version for preview or later quick search at [ …w.]dreamsongs.com/IHE.

I’m still waiting for Sun and RedHat to create a skunkworks where we can quickly test-drive and adapt open source softwares addressing each of the 18 functionalities that the Central Intelligence Agency has known it needed since 1986 but still does not have precisely because the CIA is the anti-thesis of open source (see image I have added above).

Earth Intelligence Network is going to put CIA out of business–it will be based on open source software, and everyone will benefit. That is a good thing! The sub-title of this book is on target: it is a primer on open source as business strategy. To that I would add what I have recommended to the organizers of OSCON, that managers be very aware of the others opens: Open Source Intelligence (OSINT), Open Spectrum, Open Access, Open Culture, Open Innovation, Open Society, and Open Circle/Open Space. There are others emerging. Open is now a meme as well as a culture, and this book helps us to understand why that is and why that matters.

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