8 Favorite Open Source Projects of 2018

By January 1, 2019Articles

Wow! 2018 has been a banner year for opensource-centric companies. RedHat one the original open source companies was acquired by IBM for $34B. Github — the developer platform built around the open source tool git — was acquired by Microsoft for $7.5B.  Gitlab – a company built on open source products raised $100m and is now valued over $1B.

At Orange Robot we leverage the awesomeness of open source projects to build new software projects faster. The huge breadth and quality open source projects are always amazing.  In fact, the free software often amazes/confuses my non-technical clients (“Why would anyone give this away?”).

This list does not include fundamental projects such as Linux, git, and Python that are critical to custom application development. Instead, here are some our most used/loved projects in 2018.

More Features less Fuss

  1. Django makes it easier to build better Web apps more quickly and with less code. More than just Django, the entire ecosystem is fast, secure and scalable. I am often amazed how fast you can build sophisticated REST API with Django and Django Rest Framework. Django dumped Python 2 support in 2.0 and is an awesome reason to migrate legacy projects to Python 3.
  2. ReactJS is a JavaScript library for building user interfaces. It is wildly popular which means there is a lot of great packages (e.g. Create React App, Material-UI), a growing base of knowledgeable developers. ReactJS is our default tool for building user interfaces in web applications.
  3. PostgreSQL, the self-proclaimed “world’s most advanced open source relational database”. In fact, Postgres is older than many of the devs these days, with over 30 years of active development; however, it is still rocking along. The great GIS support, JSON capability, broad support, and multiple SAAS offerings make it a great database choice.

Putting the Dev in DevOps

  1. Kubernetes is an open source container orchestration platform that can automatically scale, distribute, and handle faults on containers. Its popularity is boon to companies as they can now run services in all the major cloud providers: Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), Amazon Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes (Amazon EKS), Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) using Kubernetes. Even upstart cloud providers like DigitalOcean have a Kubernetes offering.  Kubernetes gives customers more choices and saves development and deployment dollars.
  2. Ansible is a radically simple IT automation platform that makes your applications and systems easier to deploy. Developers need “glue” to connect everything together in cloud-native architectures built on top of multiple services. Ansible is a great glue layer.

Developer Tools

  1. Prettier is an opinionated code formatter. Code formatting seems simple — but style guides can lead to holy wars and an inconsistent code base is just yucky and confusing to developers. Prettier takes all the opinions and EFFORT out of code formatting. Prettier is my favorite new (to me) tool of 2018. For the reason, A simple but excellent tool that saves time and sanity. Let’s be real no ONE likes formatting code.
  2. Black – Same as Prettier but for Python. See above☝️. Python formatting is way easier than Javascript, so Black is not quite as revolutionary as Prettier.
  3. Atom is a hackable text editor for the 21st Century. We spend all day editing files and Atom makes it easy.

All done! ✨ 🍰 ✨

Scott White

Author Scott White

Scott White is the Founder of Orange Robot and a fractional CTO. With 20 years of product development experience, he has built 7 products from idea to revenue in markets including defense, travel and the automotive space.

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