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Think Tank: Enterprises Open Doors For Open-Source Software

Optimize and InformationWeek editors jointly held a roundtable discussion on the topic of open-source software at the recent InformationWeek Spring conference in Hollywood, Fla., to get a sense of how viable a solution it is for enterprise users. Participating were: Raven Zachary, director, Internet technology, La Quinta Corp.; Pedro Villalba, senior VP of information technology, HIP Health Plans; Richard Plane, chief technologist for information services, Harris Corp.; James Hatch, principal, The Hatch Group; and Ben Sabrin, director of North American sales, JBoss. The discussion is presented here in an edited form.

Optimize: What's your interest in or experience with open-source software?

Raven Zachary, director, Internet technology, La Quinta Corp.: We've been using open source at La Quinta for two to three years now. I also used open source prior to coming to La Quinta, at Excite—before its bankruptcy, but not the reason for its bankruptcy; let me make that very clear. La is powered by open source: Apache Web server, Tomcat, and JBoss, and we rely on an Informix legacy database at the back end.

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