Tag Archives: Innovation

Open Source in India Today

Open Source in India

Open Source in India

There is a lot happening around the world in open source. And open source is becoming more mainstream in the Indian economy. A variety of interests on the part of government, industry and academia are encouraging adoption of open source software in India. Demand for open source has followed the increase in demand for information technologies in all sectors. Liberalization in procurement policy has also contributed to the demand for open source solutions. Industry, academia and community groups are providing training for open source software skills. All of these trends indicate that India is poised to begin to leverage open source software in a bigger way.

Read more in my recent article on FOSSBazaar.org about what’s happening in India.

Google’s Indic Transliteration tool is pretty neat

While browsing through Google Labs‘ latest inventions, I was pleasantly surprised to find the Google India Labs site with this neat tool for Indic transliteration from English to 5 major Indian languages – Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu. The Hindi transliterator converts Roman characters to Devanagari characters. Of course it assumes that you can type “Hinglish” but the tool produces pretty accurate results. And it supports Google services such as Blogger and Orkut which are very popular in India. I’d love to see this tool integrated into GDocs for creating Hindi and other Indian language documents, presentations, spreadsheets. It would be a really useful tool for local language word processing and developing digital content. An API for transliteration of websites is available and its documentation can be found here. If you’re an open source Indic language whiz, check this tool out and provide feedback at google-india-labs@googlegroups.com

OSBC 2008: Open Source and True Innovation

Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst delivered the first keynote of the Open Source Business Conference in San Francisco with a state of the union on Red Hat’s leadership in open source – $500 million dollars in revenues, millions of servers, thousands of customers. Whitehurst highlighted Red Hat’s leadership in the Linux market with 80 percent marketshare with RHEL and 30 percent of the application server market with JBoss. His speech sounded like it was being delivered to “shareholders” of open source.

The new CEO is not quite 90 days into his job. But he’s been all around the globe – meeting customers, heads of government and policy makers in China, Russia, and Europe. He feels that open source is gaining more popularity internationally due to anti-US sentiment.

Whitehurst explained that one of Red Hat’s key challenges is to bring the value of the open source community development model to enterprise customers. For example, the “oVirt” project for building management tools around virtualization is helping Red Hat engage enterprise customers as participants in building these tools together. Another challenge is for Red Hat to be the defining company of open source for the 21st century – by changing the way technology is developed through “iterative innovation”. Patent reform is one of the biggest issues that Red Hat is currently facing and he hoped to see a broader strategy of protecting the whole community instead of just focusing on individual companies.