The Business of OSS Podcast: Ensuring a Project's Long-Term Survival with William Morgan

April 5, 2024

This week on The Business of Open Source, I have an episode recorded on site at KubeCon EU in Paris with William Morgan, CEO of Buoyant. We had a fabulous conversation, which touched on some touchy subjects, including Buoyant’s slightly changing relationship with Linkerd. But we talked about:

  • Being an open source mercenary, but also being dedicated to making Linkerd a ‘proper’ open source project
  • Feeling like open source was table stakes for a company in the space Buoyant plays in. This is an under-appreciated reason for being an open source company — you feel like it’s just expected in the market you play in, so you do.
  • Waiting too long (or is it too long?) to commercialize
  • Starting out by selling support, but the problem with that because Linkerd worked well and people kept saying that they didn’t need support because they never had problems
  • Competing against Istio, which was backed by the Google engine and how that made Linkerd / Buoyant an underdog (or cockroach).
  • For those of you who haven’t been following Linkerd / Buoyant… Buoyant recently announced that they would be doing edge releases for Linkerd, but not stable releases. We talked about why they made this change and how the ecosystem responded.