Open Source Execs Name Most Influential People in FOSS

by Ostatic Staff - Oct. 27, 2009

The folks at open source collaboration platform MindTouch conducted a poll recently to get a sense of who open source executives think are the most influential people in the industry. More than 50 execs were polled from Europe and North America and no one was allowed to vote for anyone in their own company. The results were ranked according to the effect each nominee has on the open source industry, and some of the winners may surprise you.

Topping the list is Larry Augustin, CEO of Sugar CRM. As founder of SourceForge (formerly VA Linux) and highly-respected industry leader, no list would be complete without his name. Jim Whitehurst, President and CEO of Red Hat also made the top five. Rounding out the list is blogger extraordinaire and Alfresco bigwig Matt Assay, MySQL's Martin Mickos, and Drupal creator Dries Buytaert, who you may have heard about this week.

There were six honorable mentions ranging from retired JBoss exec Marc Fleury to Sun Microsystems' Scott McNealy. Of course, Canonical's Mark Shuttleworth also got a nod.

Mark Fidelman, VP of Sales at MindTouch, says of the results, "There were a few surprises from outside of the open source industry. For instance, Steve Ballmer was voted in because of his negative remarks on the open source industry and its subsequent positive impact. Vivek Kundra was voted in because of his contributions to the industry inside the US Federal Government (in fact the site was revamped with open source software). Notably absent however are any influential women."

To get more information about the results, and see what other names were mentioned during the survey, have a look at Fidelman's blog post. What names do you think were left off the list? Let me know in the comments.