October 2010

Recent news coverage could suggest that the Java ecosystem is about to implode, and thereby put at risk the billions of dollars and tens of thousands of hours the customers and developers have invested in Java. The reality couldn’t be farther from that prognostication.

Java’s rocky 2010
Java champion and Apache Software Foundation member Stephen Colebourne provides a good summary of recent trials and tribulations that the Java ecosystem has endured. In his post, “Babylon 5 & the Great War of Java,” Colebourne writes: “In a short period of time, Java has gone from the platform designed to unify the entire industry to a highly politicized punching bag.”

A key element surrounding the angst around Java’s future has been Oracle’s lack of public engagement with the Java ecosystem as the events in Colebourne’s blog post were unfolding.

The Eclipse Foundation’s Ian Skerrett provided helpful advice to Oracle on working in open communities:

The basic premise of the book [The Cluetrain Manifesto] is that communities are really conversations and to succeed you need to be part of and interact with the community. I know this can be a challenge with all your lawyers and marketing executives trying to control the message, but you have to do it to gain the trust of the community. Companies like IBM and SAP manage to do it, so you can too.

The good news is that Oracle has broken the silence and is helping to clear up the fear, uncertainty, and doubt behind its recent Java-related decisions. For example, Oracle’s Adam Messinger, vice president of Java development, commented on Colebourne’s Java Community Process (JCP) post:

On the topic of Hologic, our feeling is that standards folks, technologists, and technology vendors are already well represented and there is room for some new opinions at the table. The fact is that a big part of Java’s success is driven by thousands of developers at small and mid-size companies like Hologic. These developers, who are working squarely in the Microsoft sweet spot, are on the forefront of our competition with .Net. Hologic has bet its business on Java — not as a supplier of Java, but as a consumer — and we think having their perspective on the [Java Community Process Executive Committee] is valuable. They are absolutely representative of a large cross-section of the Java community.

When explained, the nomination of Hologic is perfectly logical. In fact, you could question why Java customers were not better represented on the Java Community Process (JCP) in the past. In response, you could presume that Java vendors, like IBM or Red Hat, brought forward the needs of their customers to the JCP.

The Java ecosystem – too big to fail
The Eclipse Foundation’s Mike Milinkovich wrote a well reasoned and rational post about the future of Java and the JCP. One conclusion that Milinkovich makes is that “IBM, Oracle, Red Hat, and others are committed to making OpenJDK and the JCP successful, so there is no vacuum to fill.”

Whether the vacuum posed a significant risk to companies or developers adopting Java is a separate matter.

Ex-JBoss executive and now CEO at CloudBees, a Java ecosystem vendor, Sacha Labourey tweeted: “The ecosystem has no other way but to recover, somehow; it’s too big to fail.”

While the words “too big to fail” have gained a fairly negative connotation of late, Labourey correctly highlights a key facet that “Java is dead” prognosticators neglect to mention.  The financial investments and skills built around Java are simply too large for Java ecosystem vendors to do anything but move forward in the interests of their customers and developers. With IBM, Red Hat, and Oracle pledging support and development resources, the open source OpenJDK project now appears to be a rallying point for the Java community to do just this.

Even Microsoft, hardly considered a Java ecosystem vendor, continues to highlight its support for the open source Apache Tomcat servlet container on the Microsoft Azure cloud. According to RedMonk analyst Michael Cote, in attendance at Microsoft’s annual Professional Developer’s Conference, Microsoft executive Bob Muglia stated in his keynote, “We’re making Java a first-class citizen on Windows Azure.”

Looking beyond vendors, a review of enterprise Java jobs at Indeed.com suggests that enterprise Java skills remain in high demand.

And Devoxx, a European Java conference billed as a “conference for Javaholics,” is sold out with nearly 3,000 attendees from 40 countries. Oracle Glassfish team member Alexis Moussine-Pouchkine recently tweeted, “Every conference I’ve been to recently was sold out. JUG (Java User Group) meetings are as popular as ever. It must be Java’s decline causing this.”

Encourage programming language diversity
While Java’s future appears far less unclear than news reports may suggest, IT decision-makers should still evaluate Java alternatives in the enterprise.

Why? Because, few of as today’s new college graduates consider themselves simply “Java developers.” Rather, they are familiar with multiple programming languages. Many even moonlight with PHP or Node.js. By allowing developers to use those skills for certain enterprise projects, IT decision-makers could help accelerate application delivery.

Plus, increased technology competition within your IT department ensures that technology ecosystems, such as Java, Node.js, and .Net, and the vendors in those ecosystems don’t become complacent or ignore innovation occurring in another ecosystem.

Follow me on Twitter at SavioRodrigues. I should state: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies, or opinions.”

Microsoft’s CEO attended a joint press conference with New York City (NYC) mayor Michael Bloomberg to announce a new software deal for NYC. Details of the deal, including the related discount and Microsoft’s willingness to be flexible, suggests open source and cloud-based office productivity suites are becoming central to licensing discussions with Microsoft.

First of a kind deal or first of many?
According to New York Times reporter Ashlee Vance, Mayor Bloomberg began the press conference stating:

I am sorry if you are looking for a story of sex and pizzazz. That is not what this is about. This is about making the city government work better.

The deal, labeled as a “first of its kind” by Ballmer is valued at $20 million per year and will save the city $50 million over five years. To put these figures in perspective, NYC’s annual budget is about $63 billion.

NYC shifted from individual city agencies negotiating separate deals with Microsoft to a city-wide licensing deal for the city’s 100,000 employees. Additionally, Microsoft is allowing NYC to pay license fees based on the actual applications that city workers use. Vance reported that “New York will put workers into three categories based on how many applications they use.”

It could be argued that few enterprises are large enough and have not yet consolidated corporate-wide licensing to follow in NYC path. In fact, Ballmer is quoted: “corporations often negotiate more nuanced licensing deals than government bodies”. However, categorizing employees based on the applications they use, and paying for a few applications together versus selecting between an individual product license and a significantly larger product suite license could become more common in the enterprise.

Did Microsoft accept a 33 percent revenue reduction?
While “sex and pizzazz” may have been absent in the announcement, the deal, and the negotiation, could hardly be considered just another sale.

For one thing, it’s not everyday that Ballmer attends a press conference to announce a deal. Especially when the deal will, at least potentially, see Microsoft make $50 million less from the NYC over five years.

The quick math suggests NYC was able to negotiate significant concessions from Microsoft.

The deal is valued at approximately $20 million per year, suggesting approximately $100 million in revenue to Microsoft over 5 years. Next, the deal is expected to save NYC $50 million over that same period.

Using these two pieces of data, one could assume that Microsoft was on track to make $150 million over the five year period, had it been able to negotiate separate contracts with NYC agencies. Instead, Microsoft will settle for $100 million, or 33 percent less, over the five year period.  Additionally, this is a 33 percent reduction against the discounted rates that each NYC agency had already negotiated themselves as part of the potential original $150 million over five years.

It could be argued that the $50 million in savings are not entirely due to a reduction in license fees paid to Microsoft. Maybe some city agencies were using alternatives to Microsoft technology, and will now use Microsoft products and thereby save the city money. This would represent net new revenue for Microsoft while also reducing NYC’s costs.

However, to even consider a 33 percent discount on already discounted city prices, if Microsoft were displacing a competitor in any part of the NYC, Microsoft would have negotiated to make this fact public.

There was no mention of Microsoft displacing a competitor in the announcement.

In fact, quite the contrary, NYC Deputy Mayor, Stephen Goldsmith, credited competition for helping NYC negotiate the significant discount. Goldsmith is quoted: “we took advantage of the competitive moment.”

Playing the Google & open source card
IT decision makers are increasingly using Google Apps and open source office productivity suites as negotiation tactics. Vance quotes Mary-Jo Foley, a well known Microsoft reporter, stating:

So many of the customers I am talking to play the Google card even if they have no intention of going to Google. Microsoft knows people are doing it, but what can they do?

It’s logical to assume that Microsoft will be pushed to a point at which they will aggressively attempt to call a customer’s bluff. As much as companies would like to threaten “we’re going to drop Microsoft Office”, the realities of doing so are far from clear cut – at least today.

IT decision makers are encouraged to help a subset of users to build skills with alternatives to Microsoft Office today. Users that require infrequent access to office productivity tools, or that need to access files and collaborate across computing devices could be good candidates.

At the very least, this will help companies appear more credible during future negotiations with Microsoft.

It’s interesting to note that as part of the NYC deal, Microsoft was able to convince NYC to license Microsoft products for a, as NYC deputy mayor Goldsmith claimed, “a large number of individuals that don’t even have e-mail access”.

While NYC has certainly negotiated an aggressive deal with Microsoft today, one can’t help but wonder if they’ve lost future negotiation power. Not only is NYC remaining fully committed to Microsoft client technologies, they are also increasing the number of city employees skilled with Microsoft products. These two points will make it even harder for NYC to adopt a competitive solution in 5 years.

Negotiate hard, like NYC did. But don’t forget to take steps to ensure future negotiating power.

Follow me on Twitter at SavioRodrigues. I should state: The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies, or opinions.

A recently released OpenOffice.org marketing video from Microsoft attempts to highlight prospective issues for companies considering alternatives to Microsoft Office. While the video suggests OpenOffice.org is increasingly becoming a viable alternative to Microsoft Office, the video also presents insights into Microsoft’s business growth strategy for Microsoft Office.

The title of the video, “A few perspectives on OpenOffice.org“, could suggest a balanced view from OpenOffice.org users. However, the quotes, which can be grouped into the following five categories, are far from balanced.

  • Anti-open source
  • OpenOffice.org increases IT costs
  • Users already have Microsoft Office skills
  • OpenOffice.org lacks Microsoft Office interoperability
  • OpenOffice.org lacks Microsoft’s feature completeness

The marketing video includes fifteen customer quotes largely from existing Microsoft Office case studies.

Anti-open source quotes
“I need something I can rely on. If an open source based system breaks, who’s going to fix it?”
Jeff Cimmerer, Director of Technology
Pittsford School Districts, USA

“A hugely disproportionate 30 percent of our IT resources was required for a period of months to service open source…an estimated 25 percent of additional staff time was routinely required to install and maintain open source-based systems”
David Sterling, ICT Manager
Central Scotland Police, Scotland

OpenOffice.org increases IT costs quotes
“We originally installed Linux based PCs running OpenOffice to save money in the short term. But we quickly found that the exorbitant cost and limited availability of support left us worse off.
James Fleming, Infrastructure and Support Manager
Speedy Hire, UK

“We were accustomed to fielding calls from users in a bind due to difficulties with OpenOffice.org on a daily basis”
Eugenio Mariotto, ICT Director
Cobra Automotive Technologies, Italy

“The company paid too much for using open code, OpenOffice.org software. The efficiency of operations was decreasing.
Leonid Medvediev, Head of IT Department, CJSC SPC
Borschagivskiy Chemical and Pharmaceutical Plant, Ukraine

Users already have Microsoft Office skills quotes
“New employees lacked OpenOffice.org applications’ use skills that significantly increased employees’ adaptation period and adversely affected their operational efficiency.”
Igor Gentosh, Head of Systems Integration Department
Kredobank JSC, Ukraine

“Our users’ familiarity with the Microsoft Office interface and the uniformity of different application tools have minimized calls to the help desk.”
Tiziona Battilana, Information Systems Coordinator
Euromobil Group, Italy

“When we returned to Microsoft Office after our experience with OpenOffice, we could practically hear a collective sigh of relief across the entire district”
Bailey Mitchell, Chief Information Officer
Forsyth County Schools, USA

“By using Microsoft Office 2007, we have reduced the internal support costs significantly because our staff is familiar with this system. This increases acceptance and job satisfaction.
Joerg Lenze, System Administrator
Heinrich Berndes Haushaltstechnik GmbH & Co KG, Germany

OpenOffice.org lacks Microsoft Office interoperability quotes
“With OpenOffice.org there was total uncertainty about the formatting of documents and also about their inconsistency when shared outside our production group.”
Eros Borgogelli, Information System Coordinator
Ciar, Italy

“Employees using OpenOffice.org weren’t always capable of correctly making sense of documents arriving from outside the company, and doing so with adequate security guarantees.
Eugenio Mariotto, ICT Director
Cobra Automotive Technologies, Italy

OpenOffice.org lacks Microsoft’s feature completeness quotes
“When I open a large spreadsheet, it can take ten times longer in OpenOffice.org than Office Excel 2007”
Sergey Sakharov, Business Process Optimization Manager
Art of Transport Logistics, Russia

“Our employees were frustrated because OpenOffice and our overall IT environment prevented them from being more productive”
Darek Muraszko, Information Systems Administrator
Kaczmarski Inkasso, Poland

“When I was using OpenOffice.org, I was especially having trouble with macros not being supported enough. I was asking for help from the IT department. They evaluated my request and suggested that I use Microsoft Excel.”
Bulent Turker, Product Manager
Scarves Department, SARAR Group, Turkey

“I’ve had students who turned in files that they’ve converted from OpenOffice with formatting problems. That affects their grades.”
Tisome Nugent, Educator
Orange County Public Schools, USA

The marketing video has received a generally negative response from open source pundits, with many concluding, “Microsoft is validating OpenOffice.org as a viable alternative to Microsoft Office”.

Considering the ninety percent plus share Microsoft Office has in the office productivity market, why would Microsoft validate OpenOffice.org?

At this share level, it’s virtually impossible for Microsoft to grow its Office business unit revenue faster than the rate of growth of new businesses added to the global marketplace. Eastern European countries present attractive growth opportunities, likely the largest opportunities outside of China, India and Brazil.

Not surprisingly, the overwhelming majority of businesses quoted in the video are from growing economies in Europe, largely from Eastern European countries such as Russia, Turkey, Poland and Ukraine. Not a single quote is from a US headquartered company. In fact, the only North American-based quotes are from two school districts.

Enterprises in emerging markets are able to make greenfield technology decisions – not typically possible in the established North American and Western European markets. Emerging markets also have fewer employees with established Microsoft Office skills. These enterprises are also more willing to consider open source software, especially when initial cost of acquisition is a critical software decision criterion.

Emerging markets are so important to the future of Microsoft Office’s revenue stream that Microsoft is willing to validate OpenOffice.org as a competitor in the eyes of existing Microsoft Office customers in the West. This must have been an explicit strategic decision by the Microsoft Office division.

The reality is that North American and Western European companies already using Microsoft Office, with employees possessing Microsoft Office skills, face several barriers to leaving the Microsoft Office ecosystem. The cost of migration, training and interoperability often counter balance the costs savings of using a Microsoft Office alternative.  In essence, Microsoft is betting that existing customers will, by in large, remain customers, and the real competitive environment are new enterprises in emerging markets.

IT decision makers in the West or emerging markets should understand a vendor’s business strategy before evaluating vendor marketing and product offerings. This recommendation couldn’t hold truer, than when evaluating marketing materials from the Microsoft Office division.

Follow me on Twitter at SavioRodrigues. I should state: The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies, or opinions.

Gartner estimates global IT debt at $500 billion in 2010, potentially doubling to $1 trillion in five years. What does this mean for your business? How can IT decision makers use open source software to help address this “IT debt”?

What is IT debt?
Hardly a week has gone by in the past three years where debt – too much of it, or the risk associated with it – hasn’t played a prominent role in mainstream news headlines. Earlier this week Gartner added to these headlines, but with a twist – IT debt.

Andy Kyte, vice president and Gartner fellow, has written a fascinating research report about global IT debt. Gartner defines IT debt as “the cost of clearing the backlog of maintenance that would be required to bring the corporate applications portfolio to a fully supported current release state.”

IT debt hinders business agility
The reason that companies should be concerned about IT debt is because this form of debt hinders IT’s ability to meet line of business requirements at the rate and pace required by the market. Findings from IBM’s CEO Study, based on over 1500 face-to-face interviews with CEOs of companies of all sizes across 60 countries and 33 industries, continue to highlight the importance of responding to market opportunities and growing complexity faster.

It’s incredibly difficult to respond to market changes or deliver IT systems that support new business designs when underlying IT systems are too brittle to accept change.

Kyte explains how IT debt has built up over time:

Over the last decade, CIOs have frequently seen IT budgets held tight or even reduced. The reaction has been to still deliver quality of service for operational services and to use any potential project spend to deliver new functionality to the rest of the business. The bulk of the budget cut has fallen disproportionately on maintenance activities — the upgrades that keep the application portfolio up-to-date and fully supported. There is little problem if this is done in one year, or even in two years, but year after year of deferred maintenance means that the application portfolio risks getting dangerously out of date.

Why do CEO seeking business agility accept IT debt?
Israel Gat, senior consultant with Cutter Consortium and CEO at The Agile Executive, attempts to uncover why CEOs have been willing to accept alarmingly high levels of IT debt.

Gat draws from “The Big Shift: The Mutual Decoupling of Two Sets of Disruptions – One in Business and One in IT” [PDF] by John Seely Brown. Gat summarizes five key findings from Brown:

  1. The return on assets (ROA) for U.S. firms has steadily fallen to almost one-quarter of 1965 levels.
  2. Similarly, the ROA performance gap between corporate winners and losers has increased over time, with the “winners” barely maintaining previous performance levels while the losers experience rapid performance deterioration.
  3. U.S. competitive intensity has more than doubled during that same time – i.e. the US has become twice as competitive.
  4. Average Lifetime of S&P 500 companies ha declined steadily over this period.
  5. However, in those same 40 years, labor productivity has doubled – largely due to advances in technology and business innovation.

Gat uses Brown’s findings to explain the business agility vs. IT debt paradox:

Put yourself in the shoes of your CFO or your CEO, weighing the five facts highlighted by Brown in the context of Highsmith’s technical debt curve. Unless you are one of the precious few winner companies, the only viable financial strategy you can follow is a margin strategy. You are very competitive (#3 above). You have already ridden the productivity curve (#5 above). However, growth is not demonstrable or not economically feasible given the investment it takes (#1 & #2 above). Needless to say, just thinking about being dropped out of the S&P 500 index sends cold sweat down your spine. The only way left to you to satisfy the quarterly expectations of Wall Street is to cut, cut and cut again anything that does not immediately contribute to your cash flow. You cut on-going refactoring of code even if your CTO and CIO have explained the technical debt curve to you in no uncertain terms. You are not happy to do so but you are willing to pay the price down the road. You are basically following a “survive to fight another day” strategy.

How companies can start to minimize IT debt
To put Gartner’s $500 billion global IT debt estimate in perspective, IDC forecasts the total 2010 global packaged software market, across operating systems, middleware and applications, at just over $280 billion. This $280 billion includes spending on new licenses and ongoing maintenance subscriptions.

At a simplistic level, companies would have to stop new software license and ongoing maintenance renewals for nearly two years just to clear the IT debt backlog – a scenario that few IT decision makers, or their CEOs, would support.

There is no silver bullet for companies to reduce their IT debt. Rather, companies will need to take incremental steps over several years.

First, work to hold the line on IT debt. Gat recommends IT departments combine technical debt measurements with software process change. Gat suggests “…you stop the line and convene an even-driven Agile meeting whenever the technical debt of a certain build exceeds that of the previous build.”

This first step clearly requires buy-in from line of business and C-level executives. Buy-in will require line of business and C-level executives to understand the relationship between IT debt and business agility. The fact that CEO claim business agility is a key corporate requirement, and yet, accept IT debt, suggests that the linkage between IT debt and business agility is not well understood. IT decision makers are encouraged to draw from Gat and Kyte’s research to demonstrate the linkage to C-level executives.

Use Open Source based on technical and business needs
The second step is to reduce the cost of running existing or new applications and redirect the savings to tackle existing IT debt. Open source software can play a role in this step.

Using open source software, with or without a support subscription, often carries a lower cost of acquisition versus closed source alternatives. However, IT decision makers should look beyond initial cost of acquisition, and rather, focus on total cost of ownership.

An IT department could choose to run an open source product in production without acquiring a support subscription. The cost of the software license and support subscription would be zero and zero. However, that’s not entirely true. The cost of supporting and keeping the software current has simply shifted from a yearly subscription payment made to a vendor or support provider, to the salary cost of an employee who undertakes the effort. This employee is thereby unable to do some other work for the department. Don’t ignore the people costs of software selections.

A more typical scenario is using a commercial open source product in place of a higher priced closed source alternative. However, it’s again important to consider the total cost of ownership (TCO) which includes costs such as training, hardware required, administration costs or cost of downtime. Not surprisingly, TCO, is heavily related to the project at hand.

For instance, TCO studies using open source and commercial Application Server products, which I’m most familiar with, reveal that both sets of products can deliver lower TCO than the other, depending on the project’s technical and business requirements.

This doesn’t sound as appealing as blanket statements that suggest: “open source is always cheaper” or “commercial software is always superior”. However, reality is always more nuanced than marketing messages or pundit sound bites would suggest.

IT decision makers are encouraged to analyze technical and business needs, and align them to open source or closed source software using TCO metrics. Consider prioritizing projects where the cost savings from using open source software in place of closed source, or vice versa, can be used to tackle your IT debt.

Follow me on Twitter at SavioRodrigues. I should state: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies, or opinions.”

Recent surveys have found that small and medium businesses (SMB) are increasingly willing to consider open source solutions. Not surprisingly, SMB and large enterprises are predisposed to different categories of open source software. Survey data suggests that open source ERP is one such OSS category where SMBs are more likely to adopt OSS than their large enterprise peers.

Several open source ERP vendors are vying for a share of the action. Small and medium business owners and/or IT department heads should consider whether an open source ERP package could meet your business needs as your company grows.

Growing adoption of OSS in SMB
Just fifteen months ago, Forrester published survey data that suggested SMBs were much more apprehensive about open source software then large enterprises. In summarizing the Forrester results, I wrote:

The Forrester study also found that more than half of SMBs (57 percent) also expressed concern that open-source software would be complex and hard to adopt, but only 32 percent of enterprises expressed a similar sentiment. In addition, 68 percent of SMBs cited the availability of service and support for open-source software as a concern, compared with 47 percent of enterprises.

More recently however, Jay Layman of The 451 Group reported that a study from CompTIA suggested SMBs were more willing to consider and invest in open source products. Layman wrote:

In terms of open source, the study indicates nearly 20% of SMBs polled plan to begin using open source software in the next year. We believe that is a significant figure, particularly when we consider all of the open source software – from OS to middleware to applications — that SMBs may already be using, but just are not necessarily aware it is open source (via SIs, resellers, service providers and others that are increasingly using and incorporating open source).

Open source ERP usage small, but larger in SMB
Forrester analyst Jeffrey Hammond’s recent LinuxCon keynote contained a wealth of data, including a view of OSS adoption by software category across company sizes.

According to a 4Q2009 survey of over 1,900 IT decision makers, companies with 20 to 999 employees were 50 percent more likely to have adopted open source CRM and ERP business applications than companies with more than 1,000 employees.

It should however be noted, that only 9 percent of companies surveyed with 20 to 999 employees were using an open source ERP offering. The adoption rate was however higher than Portals, such as Liferay, or Business Intelligence tools, such as Jasper Reports, across companies of all sizes.

All this begs the question, “could an open source ERP package be right from my midsize business”?

When to consider open source ERP products
Ned Lily, CEO of open source ERP vendor xTuple, explained in an email that his company is seeing strong interest from two types of customers.

First, companies with revenues of $5 to $50 million annually that are outgrowing the capabilities of QuickBooks. Previously, their only logical choice was an SMB version of SAP or Oracle Applications. However, the complexity of an SAP or Oracle Applications implementation and the time required ultimately forced customers to make due with QuickBooks.

Second, midsized companies that adopted an ERP package in the lead-up to Y2K, and are now beginning to consider alternatives that provide greater flexibility without the need for an army of consultants and at a much lower cost. Access to source code, either directly or through service providers, is a key attraction to companies in this second camp. Lily explained

We hear anecdotally from partners and customers that implementations are faster because of open architecture and ability to make low-impact changes to the source code or extensions around the core.

xTuple recently announced new customers, a Cloud-based offering, a user community of over 25,000 active members and over 400,000 downloads to date.

Openbravo and Compiere, both previous winners of InfoWorld’s Best of Open Source in the ERP category, are two other leading open source ERP products.

In addition to a traditional software package, Openbravo offers its ERP package as a software or hardware appliance to further simplify and cut deployment costs. Openbravo also boasts a large partner network, which can help midsize companies evaluate and adopt an appropriate product.

Compiere on the other hand was recently acquired by Consona Corporation. Coverage of the acquisition suggests that Compiere needs to refocus on its users, partners and community if it hopes to grow again.

The list of open source ERP vendors is not exhaustive by any means. Midsized enterprises considering an ERP package are encouraged to evaluate several packages – which, of course, is made easier through the low barrier for open source offerings.

Follow me on Twitter at SavioRodrigues. I should state: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies, or opinions.”