The hope is the investment will allow clients to utilize big data and cloud computing with systems that are able to operate the next generation of programs that will come to data centers as the post-PC era continues. This is IBM's second commitment of $1 billion to Linux development, as the first was announced by former CEO Louis Gerstner in 2000.
With the announcement came the unveiling of two new initiatives, the Power Systems Linux Center in France, and the Linux on Power development cloud, each intended to expand IBM's ecosystem supporting Linux open source vendors and applications.
Joining centers in Beijing, Texas, and New York, the newest Power Systems Linux Center in Montpellier, France, will allow software developers to build and deploy applications using Linux and other open source technology in the fields of big data, mobile, and social business computing. The center in Beijing opened in May and the other two were opened in July .
The Linux on Power development cloud is a move to expand IBM's Power Systems cloud by allowing users to access a no-charge cloud service that will give developers, business partners and clients "the ability to prototype, build, port, and test Linux applications on the Power platform."
IBM Vice President of Power Development Brad McCredie was quoted in the company press release as saying, "the era of big data calls for a new approach to IT systems; one that is open, customizable, and designed from the ground up to handle big data and cloud workloads."