Yahoo! is turning out to be a very savvy open-source player.
So maybe I've been wrong about Yahoo!'s stance on open source. Rather than viewing open source as a toy to be contained, it certainly seems, as Zack Urlocker writes, that Yahoo! increasingly sees open source as a strategic weapon against Google (and in favor of customers). Both Google and Yahoo! employ a range of open-source gurus, but only Yahoo! seems to have open source source as part of its customer-facing strategy. Google keeps it all behind the curtain.
I've written pejoratively before about Yahoo!'s interest in open source. I said it was seeking to leverage it, but not replenish it. Whether I was right then, I think that statement is wrong now.
Yahoo! may well turn out to be one of open source's greatest friends. Time will tell, but its purchase of Zimbra (which Satish tells me, contrary to my speculation yesterday, actually does have a lot to do with open source), its embrace of Hadoop, and its active use of open source internally point toward a future that embraces open source, and not merely as coal to fuel its other work.
I'm sorry, Jeremy. I was wrong.