That doesn't mean there isn't some really cool stuff going on with Esri. Just 2 months ago, Esri said they were supporting the SciPy Library for spatial analysis. This is a huge shift and one that I think everyone should be excited about. SciPy is a great analysis tool that you can use anywhere, just not Esri. You don't need to worry about an Esri license being available for ArcPy, just use it wherever you wish. Now short term this is probably just a niche thing as only the bleeding edge ArcGIS Pro supports it, but the plans are to back port it to the classic ArcGIS Desktop enabling you to work with your existing projects. I can't stress enough that people should learn how to use SciPy with Esri if only to broaden their marketability.
Now let me go ahead and run the Perl script to convert this newsletter into HTML and send it off. I wish everyone a super 2015 and be ready for some amazing new spatial tools coming out in the next few months!