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Open a New Door for Your Business

Lotus and Zend boast active open-source communities

Lotus and Zend boast active open-source communities
Illustration by Ken Edmondson

In a word, open source is collaboration. More specifically, it’s public collaboration on a software project. Companies adopt open source to save money and to use, change and improve code. The high attendance at a COMMON annual conference session I presented on open source and Lotus* Domino* last year suggests open source has become a way of life.

Think of how many years IBM has committed to Java*, a cross-platform application environment available on every open platform today, and Linux*, an open-source operating system that any company can choose to run. IBM has committed to open source in a big way with contributions to more than 120 projects, including more than $1 billion in Linux development. It’s also donated Eclipse to the open-source world.

Open source has become vital to my own business as well. I focus on Lotus Domino and PHP—two technologies with active open-source communities. Let me share some of the helpful communities I’ve discovered.

Opening Up Lotus

OpenNTF ( has been in the Lotus Domino and Lotus Notes* communities for several years. The site is devoted to enabling groups of individuals worldwide to collaborate on Notes and Domino applications and release them as open source.

Before OpenNTF, IBM and business partners put code samples and sample applications in the Lotus Sandbox. IBM, along with others in the community who provided code snippets and sample applications on their Web sites and blogs, used this repository for years. Once OpenNTF began, the Sandbox community migrated in favor of OpenNTF’s volume of contributors.

I’m amazed at how ways of doing business have changed due to use of and contribution to open source.

Kim Greene is the owner of Kim Greene Consulting Inc. and an IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems—IBM i edition technical editor. Kim can be reached at



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