By now you probably know Sun is buying MySQL, as this was announced last week. I've collected the links to a few interesting articles:
- Official announcement: Sun is going to by MySQL AB (the company behind the popular open source database) for 1 billion dollars. In their own terms, Sun is buying the "M" in LAMP, the stack of technologies behind many web sites and web applications.
- Sun shines on LAMP: The perspective of Zack Urlocker (MySQL product manager, formerly Delphi product manager, and a friend). He points out that Sun already has many open source products. Two quotes: "We're not going to forget about our users and partners" and "While some folks might see this move as a competitive move against Oracle, I don't think that's the case". See also Zack's personal blog.
- Jonathan Swartz has a few interesting comments in his blog. He points out of the key assets Sun is buying is Falcon, which is nothing but the integration in MySQL of the ideas and the work of Jim Starkey, InterBase original author.
- Alan Zeichick has a blog post raising a few doubts... "That might be cause for worry for advocates of the LAMP stack"
- Tim O'Reilly has a very positive view of the deal: "This seems to me to be a great deal both for Sun and for MySQL"
- Larry O'Brien is skeptical.
What does it mean for the rest of us in general, and for Delphi developers in particular? It is hard to tell. In my experience, there are more and more Delphi applications powered by MySQL, which is getting popular even outside of the web development realm. Mostly because it is free (if it is, but that's another story). Some more comments:
- Considering Jim Starkey could have worked with the open source InterBase, had Borland managed this properly, I cannot help but thinking this was really a huge missed opportunity.
- I was already a little skeptical of the M in LAMP, because of their far from clear licensing terms, now I'm even more skeptical.
- Sun has many open source products, but its relationship with the open source community has been mixed, positive for some products and not-so-positive for others. The Java language and runtime is a typical example, but I remembers fights in the OpenOffice community as well...
- I think this is another great opportunity for a truly open source and fully independent database like FireBird (and to a much lesser extend for InterBase)
There is a final, relevant note: Who said you cannot make money with open source?