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OpenStack: Product or… yeah, nah

It’s not my turn to aptirablog but as they say: “Someone is wrong on the Internet”.

I’m going to start with some fairly uncontroversial statements about OpenStack:

1) OpenStack has value to customers.
2) Program level of control of OpenStack development by a single entity is essentially impossible.
3) Organisations can add value to OpenStack through their own contributions, largely independent of the wishes of other organisations.

Now for some opinion:

For an organisation to deliver value with OpenStack it needs to participate in the community, contribute what it wants, and help guide other effort away from pitfalls. Each organisation gets the value from the effort expended by themselves + some fraction of the community’s effort, based on how aligned the organisation is with that effort.

Any organisation can attempt to build product out of OpenStack if they want. Loads of people are doing that, some are succeeding, some are struggling and some have failed.

Do customers want a product, a service, a project? The want an outcome, they want to remove risk to some extent, but they all want something different: varying levels of vendor responsibility, with corresponding commercial models.

What customers want is relevant and what vendors, like us at Aptira, do to meet that demand is relevant. What OpenStack is at it’s source is irrelevant because it enables multiple business models, including the non-business model of doing it yourself. Take potshots at OpenStack if you want, but the questions “is it a product?” or “what should it be?” are strawmen. Go ask that question of the vendors.

What is the point of pigeonholing OpenStack? It encourages a simpler, dumber market. Yeah, nah.

How can we make OpenStack work for you?
Find out what else we can do with OpenStack.

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