Saturday, March 22, 2008

Open Source Growing at an Exponential Rate

Although many of those of us in the open source community believe that open source is growing rapidly, a new study validates these conclusions: the study released March 14 by SAP Research concludes that open source software is growing at an exponential rate in "additions to open source projects, the total project size (measured in source lines of code), the number of new open source projects, and the total number of open source projects". They also noted that the total amount of source code and the total number of projects double about every 14 months. The report is based on information from the service.

The consequences of such growth are dramatic. As we noted at the Open Source Think Tank, open source software is becoming standard and the comparison for users is now between functionality and price rather than "closed" and "open" source software. In fact, this report suggests that "open source" may cease to be a different type of software, it will simply become another way (and probably the dominant way) of developing and distributing software.