Open GIS: technical maturity and commercial introduction.

Author: Marc Vloemans and Milo van der Linden

The world of open source business and the geo sector in particular is crowded with professionals with technical back grounds. Not surprisingly, when tracing back its origins to the early hackers and communities. The technical development needed to take precedence before anything saleable was to emerge. However, while the maturity and acceptance of solutions with open source in the market place increases, more non-technical people are involved in the purchase process. More traditional marketing and sales efforts are called for. This requires a new approach for suppliers; a less technical approach. For the GIS sector this has become an issue as the various stacks and components have reached technical maturity and the installed base has broadened considerably.

Technologies, products and industries, move along an S-curves: the so-called life cycle. From the initial stage of 'Introduction', via 'Growth' and 'Maturity' to finally 'Decline'. Open Geo-ICT moves along the same curve, both in technical as in commercial terms. With the emergence of open source and a drive for open standards the rules of the game have changed dramatically. Collaboration beyond technology is the name of the new game: in the Netherlands a number of Geo-ICT professionals and companies have joined forces by setting up a cooperation The Open Geo Groep (Group).This presentation will compare and relate the technical and the commercial development of Open Geo-ICT. Thereby setting an example and road map for other open source applications and communities.