Ory is committed to open source
Ory is fundamentally rooted in open source, its community dynamics, and development principles. Ory software is licensed under the Apache 2.0 license. The founders and developers working at Ory have decades of experience in open source. Ory engineers spent thousands of work hours, committed hundreds of thousands of changes, and published millions of lines of code under permissive open-source licenses such as MIT and Apache 2.0. This deep commitment and history in open source software development isn't a marketing ploy.
To build open-source software and help its community and adoption grow, Ory offers a commercial product which uses open source software from Ory and others like the Linux foundation.
Why Ory is developing open-source software
Building an open-ource business is hard. There are many reasons why open source is the right choice for a company like Ory.
Releasing work as open source and the corresponding contribution process eventually result in a higher return on the initial investment made versus the alternative closed source process.
Establishing and supporting open standards
Publishing your project under an open-source license can encourage adoption of a standard. When a project becomes a standard, you benefit from a massive influx of outside contributors so the project, and the ecosystem around it, evolves more rapidly.
Cut out the middlemen
Releasing open-source software can serve to decouple software components and create an opening to compete in a new field. Consider Kubernetes, software for automating management, deployment, operations and scaling of containerized applications.
Driving adoption of a platform and ecosystem
Releasing a project as open source allows others to adapt and build on top of your project. When people build on top of your project, they are invested in your success as well as their own. In cohesive communities there are frequently skilled participants who move across company boundaries with a primary affiliation to the project.
Technologies and architectures sometimes grow stagnant, and open-source projects with fresh thinking can drive change. For instance, the release of MongoDB, Couchbase, and other "NoSQL" databases shook up the one size fits all approach taken with relational databases.
Recruiting and onboarding
Recruiting is not a primary goal of releasing a project under an open-source license. It is a useful side effect, especially when a company open sources things that are used internally.
Binary and Docker releases
Ory releases binaries and docker images for its open-source projects. Releases are published on a quarterly basis (spring, summer, autumn, winter) unless:
- There are no changes that would warrant a release, skipping the quarterly release until there are such changes.
- Bugfixes or security fixes are required, in which case a release is published as soon as possible.