You already know the big-name open source companies, like Red Hat, Docker and Talend. But what are the up-and-coming businesses in the open source space? A new report from Black Duck offers some vital insight, with special focus on containers, collaboration and artificial intelligence.

The report, titled "2015 Black Duck Open Source Rookies of the Year," highlighted open source projects launched in 2015 that, in Black Duck's estimation, are "shaping the future of open source software."

Black Duck focuses on three main areas of open source innovation: The Docker container ecosystem, collaboration software for messaging and communication and artificial intelligence (AI).

The full list of projects cited by Black Duck is available in the report. Here are some of the names that stand out most:

  • Hygieia, a project started by Capital One and now open sourced. It's a DevOps dashboard, which helps companies manage container infrastructure.
  • Hubl.in, an open source video communications platform. It's not killing Skype yet, but it is showing that another world is possible.
  • MXNet, an open source library for programming AI solutions, designed to connect easily to other programming frameworks.

None of the projects named in the Black Duck report are likely to be ones you have heard of. But that's the point. The findings highlight just how rapidly organizations are innovating in the open source space. In the past year alone, a new generation of innovative projects has arisen to conquer frontiers where open source has not ventured before, or has yet to mature.

Some of these projects -- especially the ones related to Docker containers -- help to integrate ecosystems that have already been in development for some time, but are not yet completely enterprise-ready. Others push open source into very new territory, like AI. And the communications projects show that open source can still compete in a niche where proprietary solutions have a big head-start, as they do in areas like videoconferencing and email.