Asia is huge and open source is still emerging in most of it. Some countries like China and India lead the way with open source development and usage. Some like Sri Lanka have very high capacity of open source developers. On the other end of the spectrum, there are high income economies like Singapore and Hong Kong that are not moved by software license fees (but may have other motivations). Some governments such as in Malaysia are pro-active in terms of proposing open source as a default implementation, but execution is poor. What about South Korea where until about 2007 everything required ActiveX (and a Windows PC) — now embracing open source at a rapid pace?
Travelling, working and living in many parts of Asia it is clear that Asians are hungry for open source. Many Western open source companies look at Asia as their last part of growth, and at best perform business through partners. Open source projects without promotion or a foot in the door find it hard to succeed. Language barriers might have similar itches scratched repeatedly.
This is not to say that many companies do not want to do business in Asia. From different cultures to different business practices to different infrastructure and language requirements, many are just overwhelmed by the unknown.
Come to this talk to learn about open source in Asia. From communities of developers, to communities of business users and governments, we not only show you who they are, but how active they are and how to harness them.
When it comes to business do you go the partner route or do you create Asian pricing in a world that is rapidly becoming flat and customers can use a search engine to find cheaper overseas prices? How do you localise your support and is it necessary in all markets? Can you perform training in English, effectively? Can you afford a budget for adoption to recognise revenue later?
Come see some of the results of the Asian Open Source Industry and Community Census presented at this conference.
Colin Charles works on MariaDB at SkySQL. He has been the Chief Evangelist for MariaDB since 2009, with work ranging from speaking engagements to consultancy and engineering works around MariaDB. He lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and had worked at MySQL since 2005, and been a MySQL user since 2000. Before joining MySQL, he worked actively on the Fedora and OpenOffice.org projects. He’s well known within open source communities in Asia and Australia, and has spoken at many conferences to boot.
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