I have always contended that Gartner's style of analysis is old-school and caters to the laggards, but recently it seems to me that when it comes to open source, most within Gartner just don't get it.
Kudos to Matt Asay who calls this out in his blog.
It is no secret that Gartner mostly caters to the large, multi-national companies. And, in many ways, these companies are so risk-adverse that they will not implement new technology until it has been a standard for some time. I also feel that, when it comes to open source, Gartner is afraid of it mainly because many of the analysts never tried to understand it.
Their view of open source is conflicted even within the organization. Folks like Mark Driver "get it". Others do not.
I was even told by one analyst that:
"Open source is like communism and you see how well that did in Russia."
And that was less than a year ago! (Of course, he said he would deny saying it.)
In fact, here is a recommendation from a Gartner analyst at last year's Open Source Summit:
Begin developing skill sets for Linux as a production platform, especially for DBMSs.
They have really gone out on a limb there. To recommend that a company BEGIN to develop skill sets for Linux in 2006 is preposterous.
Below is another gem from Gartner. And you wonder why organizations are gravitating towards analysts that are more in touch like RedMonk, The 451 Group and Forrester.
"Unless you’re hiring the best electronic engineers and computer science graduates every year, you’re not ready to use open source in mission-critical areas"
CIO Magazine - April 3, 2007