The United States has Elon Musk, Germany has Rafael Laguna, a former software entrepreneur who, as the founding director of the new Federal Agency for Jump Innovation (Sprind), is also supposed to help the Federal Republic to make lucrative disruptions. That he drives a Tesla himself, and already the third, as Laguna recently revealed on Twitter, may not be a bad sign. And now the state innovation sponsor gave the German car companies an interesting tip on how they – perhaps – can survive the software part of the Tesla challenge.
Reference to Linux at Tesla
Laguna’s advice was prompted by a report according to which Daimler, VW and BMW are developing their own operating systems for electric cars in response to Tesla and Google. “For the record: Tesla uses Linux, that’s already there,” he wrote in response to the article, which again spoke of possible software alliances between German car companies. And the question of whether they should at least combine their strengths for the core system was answered in the affirmative by the Sprind boss: “In my opinion, this can only be done in cooperation.”
By this, the Tesla driver did not mean a classic cooperation and not a joint venture or a cartel, but an “open source model” such as Linux, as he wrote. Such free software is Laguna’s specialty, so to speak. Several of the companies founded and financed in the course of his career have to do with open source, i.e. software whose source code is disclosed and can be freely modified. With adjustments, service and services, you can still make money with much better quality, as he explained in 2005 and has shown with companies like OpenXChange.
In my opinion, this is only possible in collaboration, in the open source model, based on existing components, yes, for example. #Linux
– Rafael Laguna de la Vera (@rafbuff) May 25, 2020
One of the examples Laguna mentioned at that time was Apple. Since then, the company has grown to become the world’s first or second most valuable tech group (interestingly, in a race with Microsoft, which has meanwhile also relied heavily on open source). The current Apple Mac OS X operating system is not based directly on Linux, but on the related and also open FreeBSD. And as Laguna mentioned, Tesla’s Linux auto system is also based – some contributions have been published on the GitHub platform; According to previous reports, Tesla did not reliably comply with the open source obligation to release further developments.
Agency boss in the third Tesla
Germany’s jump agency boss and the Tesla CEO seem to agree on the power of Linux or open source in general. In addition, Laguna appreciates the electric cars built by Musk’s company, but not necessarily the use of the optional FSD option for partly current, but largely future autonomous driving. He showed this on Twitter last week when Musk announced a price increase for FSD: Whether you could have the option for the next Tesla for free if you had already paid for three cars but had not yet received the functions, he asked the Tesla -Chef slightly provocative, but of course only “for a friend”.