A Mother Lode Of Business Code - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Mobile // Mobile Applications
Commentary
11/25/2007
10:07 AM
John Foley
John Foley
Commentary
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

A Mother Lode Of Business Code

Forget IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle. How much software do you think businesses have developed for internal use? Here's one expert's guesstimate.

Forget IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle. How much software do you think businesses have developed for internal use? Here's one expert's guesstimate.Ken Krugler is in the business of managing code. His startup, Krugle, has developed a source code search system that crawls, parses, and indexes code from hundreds of public and private software repositories, including SourceForge, CollabNet, and Yahoo's developers network. Krugle is putting the finishing touches on an appliance version of its technology for IT departments. The product will be generally available any day.

That experience gives Krugler a rough idea of just how much software is out there. Krugle, for example, has stored and indexed 2.6 billion lines of code, which includes thousands of open source tools. As a point of comparison, Windows Vista ranges from 50 million to 100 million lines of code, depending on what components you include and who's doing the estimating.

Now that Krugle is moving into the corporate IT market, Krugler's done some back-of-the-envelope calculations on how much code corporate developers have cranked out over the past 20 years or so. He puts it at "several hundred billion" lines of code. Where's it all coming from? Everything from small development teams to financial institutions and government contractors with thousands of software developers.

When you factor in salaries and other expenses, Krugler says it costs $50 to $100 per line of code developed. That would put the investment in proprietary, internally developed software, measured in today's dollars, in the trillions. Companies are looking to capitalize on that massive investment. Krugler expects a significant percentage of corporate code to become open source as CIOs try to benefit from the dynamics of community development and software sharing.

Internally developed software represents a tremendous amount of intellectual property, a cache that's growing in size and value. If Krugler's right, he may be selling a lot of appliances.

For more on Krugle, see InformationWeek's Startup Of The Week.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Slideshows
IT Careers: Top 10 US Cities for Tech Jobs
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  1/14/2020
Commentary
Predictions for Cloud Computing in 2020
James Kobielus, Research Director, Futurum,  1/9/2020
News
What's Next: AI and Data Trends for 2020 and Beyond
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  12/30/2019
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
The Cloud Gets Ready for the 20's
This IT Trend Report explores how cloud computing is being shaped for the next phase in its maturation. It will help enterprise IT decision makers and business leaders understand some of the key trends reflected emerging cloud concepts and technologies, and in enterprise cloud usage patterns. Get it today!
Slideshows
Flash Poll