This week we’re joined by Adam Jacob, CEO of System Initiative and Co-Founder of Chef, about open source business models and the model he thinks is the right one to choose, his graceful exit from Chef and some of the details behind Chef’s acquisition in 2020 for $220 million…in cash, and how his perspective on open source has or has not changed as a result. Adam also shared as much stealth mode details as he could about System Initiative.
This week we’re talking about the recent falling out between Elastic and AWS around the relicensing of Elasticsearch and Kibana. Like many in the community, we have been watching this very closely.
Here’s the tldr for context. On January 21st, Elastic posted a blog post sharing their concerns with Amazon/AWS misleading and confusing the community, saying “They have been doing things that we think are just NOT OK since 2015 and it has only gotten worse.” This lead them to relicense Elasticsearch and Kibana with a dual license, a proprietary license and the Sever Side Public License (SSPL). AWS responded two days later stating that they are “stepping up for a truly open source Elasticsearch,” and shared their plans to create and maintain forks of Elasticsearch and Kibana based on the latest ALv2-licensed codebases.
There’s a ton of detail and nuance beneath the surface, so we invited a handful of folks on the show to share their perspective. On today’s show you’ll hear from: Adam Jacob (co-founder and board member of Chef), Heather Meeker (open-source lawyer and the author of the SSPL license), Manish Jain (founder and CTO at Dgraph Labs), Paul Dix (co-founder and CTO at InfluxDB), VM (Vicky) Brasseur (open source & free software business strategist), and Markus Stenqvist (everyday web dev from Sweden).
Adam Jacob (co-founder and board member of Chef) joins the show to talk about the keynote he’s giving at OSCON this week. The keynote is titled “The war for the soul of open source.” We talked about what made open source great in the first place, what went wrong, the pitfalls of open core models, licensing, and more.
By the way, we’re at OSCON this week so if you make your way to the expo hall, make sure you come by our booth and say hi.
Adam Jacob (co-founder and creator of Chef) tldr’d his ideas to create sustainable free and open source communities by saying, “we should stop focusing on how to protect the revenue models of open source companies, and instead focus on how to create sustainable communities.” He says this will lead to better software, and that it’s also better for business.
In addition to this post, Adam also wrote a short book.
When I say “Sustainable Open Source Community”, I mean the following: A unified body of individuals, scattered throughout a larger society, who work in support of the creation, evolution, use, and extension of free and open source software; while ensuring its longevity through meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the community of the future to meet its own needs.