Amadeus and Open Source software go back many years, though 2011 was particularly important. It was the year The Open Source Initiative was launched, creating a dedicated infrastructure to support Open Source development and community building.
Now, Open Source has gone from being a vision and ambition, to a necessity for all IT companies. This is more than evident with the backing of IT giants the likes of Google, Netflix and Facebook, and can be rooted to the numerous benefits it brings, which include:
- High quality code – Working collaboratively and sharing knowledge means that code produced on Open Source is usually of very high quality, and in turn, very secure – in fact, it has to be vetted by many developers before being accepted and approved.
- Cost – Open Source is not a charity, it’s a business model. However we believe that the total cost of ownership, in most cases, is lower than the one generated by proprietary software.
- Innovation – Some of the most prominent work that Amadeus has done in Open Source is through its pa rtnership with Red Hat on the OpenShift platform, to create and run a private cloud-based application – an innovation designed to meet specific customer demands. Amadeus then selected OpenShift to build the Amadeus Cloud Services solution, another innovation in cloud computing for the travel industry.
- Time to market – In an Open Source environment, time-to-market can be cut by allowing us to better allocate resources to Areas where Amadeus brings unique value to our customers:
- Security – A company can audit Open Source code itself before adoption, meaning accountability is enhanced as code can be checked before it is accepted. Research agrees with this idea, with survey results showing that 55% of companies believe Open Source delivers superior security when lined up against proprietary solutions.
- Talent – Open Source is also about giving back to the community and engaging in collaborative work with likeminded people. Many talented, young engineers and developers pride themselves on being able to contribute to a global network of their peers and build future-proof systems. Ultimately, the freedom to ‘give back’ helps attract talent.
- Business continuity – If a company buys an important piece of software from a particular supplier, and that supplier ceases to trade or discontinues the product, they could find themselves having to find a workaround. In an Open Source world, this isn’t a problem, as no one company ‘owns’ the code.
- Flexibility to build exactly as you want or need – By definition, Open Source allows you to customise code to your exact requirements, giving companies much greater flexibility.
There is continued debate about the merits of Open Source versus ‘closed’ software approaches, but it’s clear that Open Source offers a range of unique benefits, allowing companies to innovate quickly, securely, and in a cost-effective way.
Open Source software is fundamental to Amadeus’ cloud computing vision and it benefits customers in a multitude of ways, including improved response time and resilience of Amadeus’ core computing functions; the ability to host third party applications via software APIs; and improved time-to-market. You will learn more about how we use Open Source within Amadeus in the coming weeks on our blog.