From the launch of Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala, to the continued improvements in Firefox, open source products achieved a lot in 2009. While established products like OpenOffice continued to flourish, we saw the emergence of new and promising contenders like Chrome OS. Here is a highlight on what open source community, as a whole achieved this year:
The Drupal content management system runs Whitehouse.gov and dozens of other high-profile Web sites. Acquia, a startup in charge of commercializing Drupal, has received more than $18 million in venture capital to date, which is testimony the success of Drupal.
In October, Canonical released Ubuntu 9.10, code-named “Karmic Koala,” which enables companies to build their own cloud computing environments on their own servers and hardware. As it has done with desktop and server Linux, Canonical aims to take a pioneering role in cloud computing, and this release is the first step in that direction.
Git, a distributed version control system created by Linus Torvalds to manage the Linux kernel, has very quickly entered the mainstream since its creation less than 3 years ago. The documentation that comes with Git describes it as “a fast, scalable, distributed revision control system with an unusually rich command set”.
Novell launched Suse Studio in July as part of its Suse Appliance Program. So far, Linux users and developers are impressed with what Suse Studio brings to them, in terms of simplicity and functionality.
Unveiled in July, Chrome OS, an open-source system that initially will be targeted at netbooks, is Google’s bid to offer a fast, lightweight and secure way to find information online. Google released Chrome OS to open source in November and revealed its intention to partner with as-yet-unknown hardware vendors to bring Chrome OS-powered netbooks to market in time for next year’s holiday season.
In October, OpenOffice.org proudly declared that more than 100 million visitors had clicked on the Web site’s ‘Download OpenOffice.org’ button since version 3.0 of the software was released in October 2008. OpenOffice is being adopted by more and more users because of its increased interoperability with Microsoft Office.
Mozilla’s Firefox Web browser passed the one billion download. No need to talk about its speed and performance, which always continues to be better.