Money is tight. Buy more open source

Want to save money? Buy more open source.

Matt Asay Contributing Writer
Matt Asay is a veteran technology columnist who has written for CNET, ReadWrite, and other tech media. Asay has also held a variety of executive roles with leading mobile and big data software companies.
Matt Asay

CIO.com addresses the souring economy with this counsel for CIOs:

When IT directors take the time to build a business case demonstrating the ROI for these kinds of projects [training, etc.], they tend to get funded. Businesses aren't really interested in cutting costs for the sake of doing it, they just want to eliminate waste and get the most from every dollar spent on IT services. It falls to the CIO to demonstrate the value of IT initiatives to the business in real economic terms, and to counter the image of IT as a cost center.

Given that the CIO is generally the last person to know about the rising tide of open source within her walls, perhaps the savvy CIO should get out of her corner office a bit more and talk to her architects and developers more in this recessionary period to find out what open-source initiatives are going on, and which should be fed (or killed). I suspect there's a heck of a lot of efficiency gains to be had by dumping BEA for JBoss, Oracle for MySQL, etc.

In a bull market, it's easy to overspend on technology that you don't really need, and which never realizes its potential (or perhaps does, and there's the problem...). In a downward cycle, it's a good time to make some calculated bets. Open source should be one of them.