Open source as a tool to stay competitive in the db landscape

More and more databases build their business models around open source. Although fauna has some key advantages at the moment, it is only a matter of time until companies like Supabase offer a regional distributed database. If this happens I could see myself moving away from Fauna just because I feel better if I build on code that I can actually read. Besides this I also feel much more confident in the future of Fauna as open source is a great way to attract new and talented developers. It is much more important to me to know that my team could actually push a pr if we want to get something implemented compared to knowing that Fauna has some great developers themself with good funding.

With companies like Redis, MongoDB and Supabase that all have build valuable business models around open source, I am confident that Fauna could do the same. No matter what the tech is, at the end of the day it is code that is in some kind of repository which could be open sourced.

Regarding self-hosting. The more my project grows, the more I am afraid that at some point someone will ask for self-hosting. Even though I myself like that a company like Fauna takes care of the regional distribution of my database I can understand that some user / company does not care about the latency and just wants to have once instance of their database hosted in on their server near the place they access the application from. With that said, for me on-premise is not about undermining the business model of fauna but to have that extra option for customers and I think a lot have a similar thinking.

I care about the future of fauna and the team behind it but talking with developers all around the world it is clear that open source databases are the future.

I want to add one last thought about decentralized applications. Fauna has a section on their website where they advertise themself to dapp developers as a secure offline storage. I personally think and know of others who are working on dapps who are really into the tech (not just some random nft dapp, I am referring to complex DeFi applications) that they would never consider a non-open source database even if this database has some great advantages as fauna has them. They are okay with a company taking care of database management but when it comes to marketing they want to be able to say that their stack is 100% open source.

Again, when it comes to relational databases companies like Supabase who also work towards SOC 2 compliance also work towards easy global regional access with low latency and once that is the case I feel like Fauna will have a much harder time.

The database business is a social business and the community is the most important thing (especially for new databases). Open source => best way to build a solid long lasting community.

Tagging @aleclarson as he has also posted something related to that.

As @databrecht wrote:

Keep in mind that we aren’t building standalone software, we are building an entire platform that isn’t targeted at self-hosting, open source won’t alleviate these problems. FaunaDB is solving operational complexity for you which is quite different from creating something for you to run yourself.

I understand that, though there has to be a way to make sure that the database itself is open source. There is this dev tool for a local faunadb instance, however I would like to see something that is focused on on-premise / self hosting with easy migration from the faunadb cloud to this the self hosted database.

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Also please have a look at this, these numbers support my experience that open source databases are preferred.

Edit: I removed the security paper mention as on-premise in this document seems to be referred to a customers infrastructure before moving to fauna.

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