Open Source for the Rest of Us

The traditional Open Source projects are collaborations on infrastructure software (e.g. Linux operating system, JBOSS middleware, MySQL database), while the software applications needed to run a business are still tightly controlled, proprietary systems that offer no vehicle for collaboration and are sold by companies like Oracle, PTC, UGS, Infor, SAP and Dassault.

Aras is tackling this business application software problem.  We don’t have all the answers... but we’re trying to keep this Simple and Open for the largest possible community of contributors.  Instead of infrastructure programmers, the participants are the IT Systems Analysts, Business Process Consultants, Architects, and Power Users.

The highest priority for this community is tackling the enterprise business application problem where the basis of collaboration is at the business data and process model level, not the infrastructure software layer.

Here’s what we are doing:

microsoft-loves-open-sourceFor companies deploying business applications on the Microsoft stack, the operating system, middleware and database source code is not available.   That’s something neither you nor I can change.   This is the reason we developed Innovator; to create an environment where open source can flourish on Microsoft’s closed platform.

The Aras Innovator model-based SOA framework is a business solution development and run-time environment, distributed as a free, easy to install,  binary that binds into .NET and Sql Server, creating an environment where open source business applications can be developed, tailored and run.

100% of the source code for the business applications is included in the standard distribution.  But don’t look for C++ source code and header files in the distribution. Aras Innovator is a model-based development and run-time environment.  XML models with embedded CLR-based method code and service extensions are the source code for complete, robust, Open business applications.   OK, it’s different, but that’s the point, it needs to be.

I’m looking forward to a time when we can talk about “Open Source” without causing something akin to a religious war.  When open source projects embrace the millions of people who want to collaborate, but don’t spend their day buried in complex programming exercises.