26TH Open Systems Days
Croatian Linux Users’ Conference
FER, Zagreb, Croatia
In the game of monopoly, are the days of the tech giants numbered or do they just pass go?
In 2018, global GDP was $84 Thousand Billion. The Big Five in tech - Apple, Amazon, Alphabet (Google), Microsoft and Facebook alone are valued at $3882 Billion.
The tactics these companies are using look more and more like the tactics of the great early monopolies, the US Standard Oil and Ma Bell. Agression, copying and buying out are the order of the day, killing competition and causing global antitrust lawyers to look up. The scandals they are embroiled in are pretty much daily news. Consumers and businesses are locked in.
Open Source suffers - these companies half open source old software, leading to consumer and developer lock-in. They give but they take far more.
Looking at how monopolies were broken up in the past, and examining the acquisitions made after, the companies that grow out of the rubble look almost exactly the same as the old companies, having bought the fragmented parts of old parents.
Does antitrust law work then. Are the big tech companies really monopolies, or is it not that bad? Why is this an Open Source issue? What can we do about it, and would we want to?
In an entrepreneurial career Robin Edgar has lead many projects for customers ranging from multinational stock exchange listed companies to small and medium sized business. Currently, Robin Edgar is consulting on organisational structures and strategy as well as IT projects, holding workshops on IT security for upper management as well as writing a book to motivate people to think about their careers. Guiding listed multinationals and smaller or mid-sized organisations, Robin Edgar is able to implement a clear structure and strategy in all levels of an organisation. By doing so, his goal is to increase efficiency, resulting in growth. With a strong international background, Robin Edgar has been exposed to many different cultures from a very early age. This has affected his views on life and interactions with others, creating a flexible approach to understanding differing points of view and ways of achieving results.
Independent consultant, open-source enthusiast (openSUSE, Drupal, etc). Also a big classical music lover (artistic manager of the Huygensfestival in Voorburg, supporter of several international chamber music festivals in/around The Hague, The Netherlands). One of my companies basic philosophies is, if open-source provides you with a stable revenue (thank you, 10x), you should do something in return. So my company donates 10% of its annual profit to one of the projects we've been using that year. This contribution can also be by providing help, i.e. in 2015 I was project lead and organizer for openSUSE conference in The Hague!