The popularity of open source software soared during the pandemic – technology visionary and longtime open-source proponent, Leonid Radvinsky, is excited about this. “Open source software plays a vital role in democratizing technology for developers of all levels,” he said.
Open source software has a publicly available source code that anyone can access or contribute to. It differs from proprietary software where one company maintains exclusive control over the codebase. Open source software is free to anyone who wants to use it and according to a survey of 3,400 developers and technology managers, is as good or better than proprietary software.
The Pandemic and Open Source Technology
During times of economic uncertainty, open source software allows companies to have powerful, innovative technology while spending less than they would by buying or creating a solution. In many cases, open source software meets all of a company’s technology needs.
In a Tidelift survey, 42 percent of respondents said their organization’s application development budget was cut as a result of the economic downturn. The use of open source technology is 60 percent more likely at companies that have reduced technology budgets.
The pandemic also accelerated the move of many enterprises to the cloud, which, in turn, has further driven the move to open source software as a means of managing the cloud environments.
Radvinsky and B4X
During Leonid Radvinsky’s long history as a tech innovator, he has invested in software such as B4X, an open-source technology that supports easy cross-platform development. As an early investor in the project, he helped to shape its vision. Originally designed as proprietary software, Radvinsky helped to convert B4X into an open-source model.
B4X is a suite of development tools that can be used to develop cross-platform applications. With this technology, developers can create applications that run natively on a variety of platforms without having to write separate code for each platform. Radvinsky’s project focuses on providing simple yet powerful development tools that are still accessible to beginners. The active community of developers enabled B4X to grow quickly. Radvinsky also emphasized B4X’s value as a way to introduce students to programming basics.
Radvinsky and Elixir
He is also heavily involved in the development of several languages and is passionate about investing in programming languages he believes are ahead of the curve. Leonid Radvinsky uses Elixir as the standard in most of his projects, was a key sponsor at the Elixir conference in 2019, and financially backs ventures that are creating new apps using Elixir.
Elixir is an open source programming language designed to create decentralized architecture for web development. It is derived from an older Norwegian programming language called Erlang, but is easier to use. It is resilient and recovers from errors quickly, since it provides the infrastructure to manage data separately across multiple independent servers, it is also easily scalable.
Elixir is compatible with many other programming languages and Radvinsky is studying ways to increase this compatibility. “I envision Elixir language becoming the technology standard,” Radvinsky said.
The Future of Open Source
Leo Radvinsky is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist. He has been building software companies and advocating for open source software for more than 20 years. He sees technology as an innovative way to solve most of society’s problems and open source software is vital to that goal.
“I see a future of a world where open source software can make technology more accessible to developers of all skill levels, Radvinsky says. “It fills a gap that proprietary software cannot because it is primarily community-driven. This means that the community itself is creating accessible technology that meets the needs of an evolving user base,” he says. “As more and more developers use this technology, its robustness will grow.”