Document Actions

Nvidia''s embrace of Linux Foundation highlights open source's growing status

ITWorld - The announcement this week that chipmaker Nvidia is among the latest crop of companies to join the Linux Foundation is a sign of the growing importance of open source to the business sector -- and a reversal for a firm that, traditionally, hasn't been counted among the stalwarts of that community.

The GPU manufacturer may actually have contributed to the difficulties that Linux has had in breaking into the desktop market, says 451 Research senior analyst Jay Lyman.

"Nvidia comes to mind as one of the influential technology leaders that's really lagged in terms of supporting Linux," Lyman says, though he adds that, in the past, this disinterest in the platform was not uncommon.

Times change, however, and the analyst points out that Nvidia even has a vice president of Linux platform software now. "That's a testament to how far Linux and open-source software have come, not only in the eyes of big corporations ... but also in terms of their place in the market," he says. Of late, for a variety of reasons, "we see a realization of the need to participate [in] Linux, because it is increasingly a factor in the market," he adds, pointing out that the server, embedded and mobile (in the form of Android) markets have proven fertile.