Open-source software is big business. For example, most of what Oracle is getting for it $7.4-billion purchase of Sun is open-source software. Thanks to a Linux Foundation study, we know that creating the Fedora 9 Linux distribution would have cost $11.5-billionin conventional software costs. So, given all that, what do you think OSS (open-source software) as a whole is worth? How’s about $387-billion?
That’s the number that Black Duck Software came up with. Black Duck isn’t an open-source ISV (independent software vendor). The Boston area company started as an IP (intellectual property) risk management and mitigation company, but has since grown into an open-source legal management firm.
Since Black Duck was founded in 2002, the company has been tracking all known open source on the Internet According to their research, there are over 200,000 open-source projects representing over 4.9 billion lines of code. To create that code from scratch, Black Duck estimates that “reproducing this OSS would cost $387 billion and would take 2.1 million people-years of development.”