Posted by: Anonymous
on November 22, 2008 12:49 PM
Mark Driver has it right. Financial success for software supplier A, B or C in a down economy will have nothing to do with open source terms and conditions or the open source culture. The key determinants of success (as measured in the context of your article--"the bottomline for OSS vendors"--) will be solely whether they build a better mousetrap and whether the market wants to catch mice.
That's not to say that the open source culture can't keep producing software, just as non-professional painters keep painting in good times and bad times and find it fulfilling (and even a good way to overcome the angst of the down times).
It's important to note that Alfresco itself says its open source product is recommended for the "Developer, Highly Technical Enthusiast. Non-Critical Environments."
Also as a nit, Alfresco should not be described as "Linux-based." Like most open source software (at least in terms of installation surveys if not in terms of number of projects on sourceforge), it runs both on multiple Linux distros and Windows. According to a survey done by Alfresco's marketing VP, most people start using open source software on Windows and later migrate to Linux (the survey is skewed to Alfresco users so presumably the finding applies to Alfresco).