Leverage open-source to scale your digital initiatives

Due to the fast-paced nature of innovation in cutting-edge technologies, open-source also provides a way to build on top of the collective knowledge instead of working in separate silos

Digital is driving the world today. Every aspect of our personal and professional lives is being transformed through digital engagements. According to a Statista report, there are over 6.5 billion mobile phone subscriptions across the globe. Such a high degree of device proliferation is driving an irreversible trend, signifying the enormous need for digital. Thus, even businesses must re-imagine their digital and technology adoption and strategy. Yet, the way digital experiences are being developed is still decades old. We cannot power the digital age by having millions of developers write millions of lines of code for each experience every time. What powered the technology of the Management Information Services (MIS) era cannot power the digital age.

In the short-term, growth in digital is increasing IT services headcount and skill shortages, as witnessed in the past few years. While this is good for the services industry in the short-term, it comes at the direct cost of services and time. It takes many months to build the software, applications, and solutions in most projects. On the other end, there is the proliferation of citizen development tools across automation, no code, and others. They provide faster results but are plagued with scalability issues and indirect costs of maintenance, security, and others.

With such a high demand for scalable digital solutions and gaps in talent, it is critical to acknowledge the open-source as a codification of global technical knowledge and find effective ways to re-use them. Open-source began as a platform for software developers, coding enthusiasts, learners, and everyone to share knowledge and experience, encompassing all software development domains with countless methods and practices. Linux has been the poster boy of open-source success. What began as a hobby project in 1991 has taken over the world and is among the most crucial pieces of software today. GitHub estimates over 97% of applications leverage open source, and over 90% of companies use it in some way.

Over the past decade, OSS has moved into the application space with millions of public repositories and code snippets being shared to implement use cases. However, users have not been able to use this because finding the right solution is like finding a needle in a haystack. Beyond the ability to identify the right library for the requirement, there are issues like license, security, quality and whether the code implements what it claims to, and so on. To solve this, we have created kandi. This platform helps users find re-usable open-source libraries and code snippets across half a billion items, hundreds of thousands of used cases in 23 programming languages, and over 500 hot digital topics like AI, Blockchain, Metaverse, etc.

Ashok Balasubramanian
Chief Executive Officer – Open Weaver

It is fascinating and heartening to see public repositories accelerating digital development in hot areas like AI, ML, Blockchain, Crypto, Metaverse, etc. Library re-use, on average, saves over 400 hours of development, while code snippet re-use saves over 6 hours of development. These result in the time to market that is critical for digital. Open-source reduces direct costs from re-use and indirect costs from open-source environments, portability, and maintainability.

Given the dynamic nature of innovation in cutting-edge technologies, open-source also provides a platform to build on top of the collective knowledge rather than work in silos. And since global developers support many open-source repositories, they eliminate risks like bias and promote localization. Open-source also eliminates any lock-in to proprietary technologies and reduces the risk for the users.

I am excited about making open-source more accessible and re-usable to developers. I would encourage all our readers to adopt open-source in a big way to accelerate digitalization.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

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