Why do you do that? An exploration of open source business models

Business Leadership Day
Location: F 151 Level: Novice
Average rating: ****.
(4.20, 5 ratings)

Paul Ramsey’s keynote “Why do you do that? An Exploration of Open Source Business Models” explores open source business models not only from the context of developers but also from managers and users. In 2001 Paul founded the PostGIS spatial database. He continues to be an active developer and sits on the steering committee. Paul is a geospatial architect for OpenGeo and founded the Clever Elephant consultancy.

In this talk Paul starts by exploring the common questions of how you can build a business on the basis of giving software away for free. He engages the audience with compelling examples of success while combining development, distribution and licensing. Paul’s unique background, including his experience as a developer, entrepreneur and open source advocate allows him to draw on many examples of organizations who have extracted value with open source.

Paul dives into the motivators behind making open source software (community, shared accomplishments and others) but poses the question of weather money should be considered. This presentation has been given at FOSS4G 2011 and proved popular with developers and managers alike.

Photo of Paul Ramsey

Paul Ramsey


Paul has been working with geospatial software for over ten years, as programmer and consultant. He founded the PostGIS spatial database project in 2001, and is currently an active developer and member of the project steering committee. In 2008, Paul received the Sol Katz Award for achievement in open source geospatial software.

As a team member with OpenGeo, Paul leads consulting engagements, software and support of the PostGIS database; he works with our business development team to improve communication about our open source offerings; and, he speaks and teaches regularly at conferences around the world.


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