To some advocates of open source—the software created by squads of volunteer developers—Amazon has become a bogeyman because of the way it offers their free programs through its cloud computing arm, Amazon Web Services. Ali Ghodsi isn’t one of the Amazon haters.
Ghodsi is the CEO of Databricks, a six-year-old startup that develops open source data analytics and machine learning software. The company saw its valuation soar to $6.2 billion in a fundraising round in October as its business boomed, rising from $2.75 billion in February. In an interview, Ghodsi said he disagrees with the conventional wisdom that AWS exploits open source software for profit without contributing enough back to it.