Now, Microsoft might seem like a strange bedfellow for an open-source company, but the company continues to make great strides in the open-source arena recently. Microsoft has embraced Linux as a fully-supported operating system on its Azure cloud service. (CEO Satya Nadella proclaimed “Microsoft loves Linux” in foot-high letters at a press event back in October.) Microsoft supports Hadoop with Azure HDInsight and has partnered with Hortonworks to extend open-source Hadoop for the enterprise. (In 2013, Microsoft open-sourced REEF to provide a big-data analytics framework for YARN.) The .NET Core is now open-source, providing an alternative developer framework to Java.
Microsoft has been an active participant in many other open source projects, too. There are over 1,600 OSS projects from Microsoft on CodePlex and GitHub. Microsoft engineers have actively contributed to the Linux kernel for years, and the company has contributed to open source community projects including Chef, Puppet, Docker, MongoDB, Redis and OpenJDK. Microsoft blogs regularly provide information and resources for open-source tools, including Chef, Puppet and Docker.
And Microsoft is a big user of R. Microsoft used R to develop the match-making capabilities of the Xbox online gaming service. It’s the tool of choice for data scientists at Microsoft, who apply machine learning to data from Bing, Azure, Office, and the Sales, Marketing and Finance departments. Microsoft supports R extensively within the Azure ML framework, including the ability to experiment and operationalize workflows consisting of R scripts in MLStudio.