The open source movement changed how companies build software. Facebook, Twitter, and Yahoo employees pitched in during the early days of the data-crunching software Hadoop. Even after the relationship between Apple and Google soured, the companies’ coders kept working together on an obscure but important piece of software called LLVM. Microsoft now uses and contributes to the Linux operating system, even though it competes with Windows.
The embrace of open source isn’t about altruism. Facebook started using Hadoop because there was no commercial off-the-shelf software that met the company’s needs as it grew. Because Hadoop is open source, Facebook could customize and extend it to solve its specific problems; sharing its changes allowed others to innovate further, making the software better for Facebook and all other users. Collaborating on freely available code enables companies and programmers to pool resources to solve common problems and avoid reinventing the wheel. Companies build competing products and services from these open source foundations that they might never have been able to build otherwise.
To read more, please visit: https://www.wired.com/story/using-open-source-designs-to-create-more-specialized-chips/