Commentary

Open source software fundamental to success in the mobile and consumer electronics markets

By Ari Rauch, Linaro board member: Today more than ever before, our industry views open source software (OSS) as fundamental to success in the mobile and consumer electronics (CE) markets. I see this echoed in my work as the software and system engineering manager for TI’s wireless OMAPTM processors, and as a board member of the Linaro Organization. Industry innovators are learning to appreciate the OSS a key to differentiated, speedier designs. While this appreciation runs deep and fuels new opportunities, the OSS world continues to increase in complexity and remind industry players that a “go-at-it-alone” approach yields inefficiency. Gone are the days of “one-size-fits-all” technologies or solutions. Instead, our complicated world reiterates the need for greater collaboration, which rests as a founding block for the Linaro Organization.

This community collaboration has inspired companies like TI to adopt a new culture and approach to technology supply, design and innovation. At TI, we see extremely positive value in extending beyond our TI family to collaborate with the outside world – from developers, to partners and garage designers. Doing so not only helps us share out talents, but learn from others’ educational experiences and leverage external contributions to yield success.

We also realize that development environments that include the right features, tools and codes, at the right time and cost, can make a huge difference to our business results. They enable developers and companies to bring innovative solutions to market in record time, with astonishing, increased performance. This is a drastic improvement to the long, painful development cycles we worked in just a few years back.

As a core member of the organization, we consider Linaro to be one of the development environments that encourages such positive results. Inside Linaro, we see how Linux open source power marries the ARM® architecture to spur proliferation of ARM-based solutions in the mobile and CE spaces. Each Linaro player continues to passionately add differentiation on top of the common foundation, which helps in this growth. Whether it’s via optimized performance + power balances – like those found on TI’s chips – or low-cost development platforms like the recently launched PandaBoard, the bustling community stands strongly committed to helping each other achieve great things, together. We are proud to be a part of it all, and look forward to a future of community driven success!

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