Teper: No. What we've done is actually foster a community on top. So if you go to CodePlex, I think there's 800 or 900 open source projects out there in the industry building on top of SharePoint, which we think is great. We're not huge fans of, say, the security model of SharePoint being open sourced or the Web publishing model. It's sort of like where Office and Windows and so forth are. We think the business model where we invest sort of $1 billion in R&D and monetize that as a good business model, but that all the value add around it, we definitely think there's a role for open source. And we're fostering this CodePlex community that's got upward of 1,000 apps already built on SharePoint.
InfoWorld: Now these are open source applications that function with SharePoint?
Teper: Yes. [Examples include] different kinds of Web Parts [widgets] that get stock quotes or the weather, administration tools that help clean up your sites.
InfoWorld: What are the advantages to using SharePoint over other technologies for e-commerce or a Web site?
Teper: First and foremost, it saves people money. Kraft.com is running their Web site, actually a lot of Web sites on SharePoint and they saved $2 million in doing that. So the biggest thing is people are focused on saving money right now, and then the second is the ease of use. Businesspeople want to get their content out to their commerce site faster than they do today. SharePoint makes that easier than traditional homegrown Web publishing systems.
InfoWorld: How does Kraft know they're saving $2 million?
Teper: They looked at the cost that they were spending to build, license, and maintain their various existing sites and compared that to what they are spending on SharePoint and added up the difference. It's not hard if you've got 10 different systems and you look at them and say, "Wow, I've written 10 different systems, tons of custom code, I'm going to move them all to SharePoint and write some code," but not as much to look at the software savings and the development savings and have it add up to be that amount of money.
Teper: Not so much directly, but what we've tried to do is, through things like Web services and REST and Atom, expose standard protocols for SharePoint so that you could build apps in front of it on Windows Server. So if you wanted to write something in IronPython and Windows Server, you could, but also, just on any system, if somebody's got a Linux PHP-based Web site, they're going to be able to call SharePoint via REST or SOAP or any other of the mechanisms we have. Part of the approach has been to open up SharePoint data for any back end.
InfoWorld: What if I wanted to develop a major e-commerce site with SharePoint. Would I be limited with PHP or IronRuby or IronPython?
Teper: No. Think of it as all the APIs are the same. It's just within Visual Studio we give you the wizards, the things that generate code for you. You'd have to write that code yourself in PHP, so there's no limit. It's just that we give you the better development tools in Visual Studio.