One November 17, 2009, I had the great honor of presenting at the 2nd annual Accenture Open Source Conference in Amsterdam. Accenture has made great strides over the past couple of years in spreading the gospel of open source software, and with the introduction of the Accenture Innovation Center for Open Source, I think that we are on the cusp of an even greater rate of adoption/acceptance of open source software in the enterprise.
My presentation's ambitious goal was to cover three topics:
- Introduce Liferay as an open source portal and as a company
- Discuss a case study of HanseMerkur
- Highlight the pros and cons of working with commercial open source products whose business models are either based on professional service or subscription/support.
Item 1 turned out to be pretty easy. I was impressed at how many people at the conference already knew about Liferay. We were mentioned during presentations by Sun and Accenture, and I had the opportunity to speak with several service integrators who are working on projects in Europe that use Liferay. The highlight for me occurred during a presentation by Accenture where they presented an impressive case study on how they used Liferay coupled with Alfresco for T-Mobile Czech Republic (http://www.t-mobile.cz).
Item 2 was fun to talk about as well. HanseMerkur has been a great supporter of Liferay, and it is always great to talk about success stories. I delved into their original decision-making process for choosing Liferay back in the 4.2 days, spoke to their architecture and how their needs have changed over time. Thankfully, Liferay has matured, and many of the process workarounds that HanseMerkur needed to employ are being solved by things such as Staging and Remote Publishing.
Finally, I spoke to the two predominate business models for commercial open source -- Professional Services-based and Support and Subscription-based. With the introduction of Liferay's Enterprise Edition in 2008, Liferay presented a great opportunity for discussing the benefits of both models. The audience, which consisted of business leaders as well as developers, were keenly interested in how our Enterprise Edition compares to our Community Edition. There are cases to be made for both models, and frankly, I'm a big proponent of the way that Liferay does business.
So, I'd like to thank Accenture for inviting Liferay to present at their conference, and I certainly hope that we get invited back next year. I always love spending time in Europe, and being surrounded by people who are engaged in open source always leaves me feeling empowered.
With all of that said, what's a trip report without some photos?
Amsterdam is beautiful at night -- particularly during the holiday season!
Being from Ohio, I'm used to wide-open spaces. The city of Amsterdam doesn't offer much of that.
The conference was held at the Amsterdam AJAX arena -- home to Amsterdam's AJAX football club.
The AJAX Arena has an amazing sliding roof and is magnificent.
Accenture put on a great show with great presentations, a wonderful vendor showcase and spectacular Dutch food!
After the end of a long day, I hopped the train back to Amsterdam Central Station for one last night in Amsterdam.
Where I spent time at my new favorite bar, Gollem. They serve a ridiculous number of beers -- most of which I have never heard of. It has a cozy, authentically Dutch atmosphere, and is a must for anyone who visits Amsterdam.