An Open Conversation About Open Source


5 minutes read


Kristopher Sandoval

May 28, 2024

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The web is built upon open standards – open source software has transformed the internet, unlocking amazing functionality and becoming a critical driver of massive growth. Open source is not just a good idea—it is becoming increasingly essential for organizations seeking sustainable growth and competitive advantage in the digital age.

With this in mind, let’s look at what open source means, why it’s so beneficial in the general sense, and why it is a critical attribute you should seek out with your partnered solutions.

What is Open Source, Exactly?

At its most basic, the principle of Open Source is the release of software under a license that allows for transformation, distribution, and review. This Open Source license gives users the right to use and change under certain conditions, often resulting in new development, bug fixes, etc.

While that’s the easiest definition for the concept, it’s helpful to look at open source as a paradigm shift. The alternative to open source is closed source, wherein a developer owns the entire process of development behind a garden wall – the end user has very little access to the underlying code, and there is certainly no forking or additional development resulting from public publishing.

Open source is a paradigm shift that moves the nexus of interest and development into a more public, open, and collaborative realm, unlocking major benefits through the process.

The Benefits of Adopting Open Source Software

With this in mind, let’s look at some of the benefits of adopting open source software solutions.

Accelerated Innovation Through Collaboration

A fundamental benefit of open source software is the establishing of a collaborative nature between developers, users, and organizations.Unlike closed source software, open source projects are built on the principle of collective input and transparency, which allows anyone to contribute, modify, and distribute the resultant code.

This collaboration is a sort of cheat code for innovation, pooling diverse perspectives and expertise, leading to more robust, innovative, and secure software solutions. By leveraging the collective intelligence of a global community, organizations can rapidly adapt to new technologies and market demands. Perhaps even more importantly, they can leverage this collective intent to discover bugs that may otherwise sneak into production, resulting in a more secure, reviewed, and trusted source.

While this is not true of literally every open source solution, the fact is that open source generally results in a more secure and trusted solution.

Reduced Costs and Increased Flexibility

Open source software offers significant cost advantages, especially when you consider the cost that is incurred in verifying and customizing closed source solutions. Removing the need to go through these incredibly expensive processes is a huge cost reducer. There is also the reality that open source solutions are often solutions that can be tailored, combined, and remixed, allowing for a custom solution without the underlying and typical custom cost.

This benefit is not just a cost impact – the pure amount of flexibility that is unlocked by shifting the nexus of interest and development to the user base in an open manner is a huge enabling factor for business success. This flexibility also extends to the prevention of vendor lock-in – because open source standards are able to shift and change to your own needs, you can avoid proprietary changes that might incur significant development cost to “dig out of” in a vendor lock-in situation.

Increased Trust and Transparency

Open source builds trust in the community, as nothing is obfuscated to the end user. Proprietary development hinges on the user trust, and while there are many companies who have built trust with their user bases, this trust still expects a leap of faith. Utilizing open source solutions allows you to validate for yourself that a solution should be trusted and can be implemented without headaches.

This transparency also allows you to find issues with implementation before they become breaking and significant to the business use case. This level of transparency is rivaled only by in-house development, but without the costs incurred by such internal development processes and demands.

Ensuring Long-Term Sustainability

The longevity and sustainability of software are crucial considerations for businesses. Open source software typically has no end-of-life in the same way that proprietary software does, because its maintenance and development are not dependent on the financial health or strategic decisions of a single vendor. This aspect of open source ensures that software can continue to evolve and remain useful over time, with continual development taken up and supported by a community of developers and users committed to its improvement and adaptation.

The Risks of Not Adopting Open Source

The benefits of adopting open source are huge, but there are also major risks that are incurred simply by NOT adopting open source solutions. Organizations that hesitate or fail to integrate open source solutions into their operations may find themselves at a significant disadvantage on the modern business stage. They risk falling behind in innovation and efficiency, as they are unable to leverage the rapid advancements and cost efficiencies that open source communities drive. To make matters worse, their dependency on proprietary solutions may lead to increased costs and reduced flexibility over time and at scale, making it difficult to adapt to new challenges or opportunities swiftly.

There is also the core problem of trust. Closed source solutions might work today, and the sales teams behind them certainly will tell you as much. But what happens ten years from now? What happens when the org is sold to another company who may not have the morals and ethics of the current company? What happens when it is no longer financially solvent to support this solution, no matter how perfect it is for your use case?

Adopting closed source solutions have their time and place, but open source delivers such incredible value that it should be considered a principle solution.

Genezio and Open Source Solutions

All of these reasons are why Genezio is open source – we believe that open source builds a level of trust, transparency, and efficiency that is second to none. Our platform boasts full static type-safety and auto complete, typesafe RPC, and seamless bundling and compiling in a framework agnostic environment. Most importantly, it does all this in an open source format, supporting a community of developers and users who are passionate about our project.

Genezio is changing the serverless game and making your life easier, and this effort starts with our commitment to open source and the end developer experience. We believe that Genezio is by far the easiest way to write and host a serverless application – if you’d like to experience the difference with Genezio, you can get started today in less than an hour !

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