This ITConversations Open Source Conversation with John Roberts, CEO and Co-Founder of SugarCRM was downright eerie in how Roberts described the source availability, licensing and commercial qualities of Community Server. The weird thing was he was using terms like “SugarCRM”, “SugarForge” and “PHP.” I thought I was in some sort of freaky parallel universe or something.
On the heels of last week’s discussion on Community Server as Open Source, this interview was particularly timely. Roberts very clearly articulated how SugarCRM benefits from the best qualities of an Open Source model as well as Commercial, client-focused characteristics. A product “in the middle,” like Community Server.
There were parallels between SugarCRM and Telligent in this podcast from start to finish. The separation of community and commercial web identities for instance. SugarForge.org and CommunityServer.org for the community and shared source availability, SugarCRM.com and Telligent.com for commercial services.
When asked about product upgrades and development focus, Roberts said it was the core team of engineers who made those decisions, and described an engineering approach and release cycle very similar to Telligent’s. He made statements that were so Rob Howard-like that after a while he started to sound like Rob, like he’d rather “compete on the basis of great engineering rather than great cocktail parties.”
Roberts said something to the effect that he felt SugarCRM Forums was the most exciting place to find information about the product being created and shared. I certainly feel that way about Community Server Forums, or I wouldn’t spend so much time reproducing information from it for the [DailyNewsShort] every day.
John Roberts is a very smart, articulate guy and SugarCRM is a fantastic product. I think if you listen to this podcast you’ll learn a lot about Community Server, um, I mean SugarCRM.