[LINK] Open source projects for those on the dole
brendansweb at optusnet.com.au
Fri Apr 29 23:46:24 EST 2005
Deus Ex Machina wrote:
> Brendan Scott [brendansweb at optusnet.com.au] wrote:
>> Deus Ex Machina wrote:
>>> if, as was asserted floss represents a better business model than
>>> proprietary software (PS). why would you not be able to replace
>>> all PS with floss?
>> That's up to the market. My assumption is that, in the long run,
>> it will [perhaps not for specialised niches]. The reason it will is
>> because floss is a truer form of property over software than
>> closed licences are.
> its been a while now already ... whats the hold up?
Network effects, second to market disadvantage. More importantly, IP propaganda - unfortunately, funded by government subsidies. IP propaganda starts from the premise that everyone is a vendor of IP, which they aren't. Customers have internalised a vendor's view of the world. It's only now that customers are learning to think for themselves.
>>> apache has no accumulated capital and can fund nothing, its
>>> progress is entirely limited to what people gift to it.
>> This argument presumes that service economies either do not exist
>> or, to the extent they do, aren't such a good thing.
> nothing to do with service or not. if the cost of apache + service
> is higher then the cost of a competing product that doesnt require
> service then apache looses. the same applies to any software, people
> are not going to be jumping to floss if it is going to require
> substantial ongoing service costs which floss specifically
> either the $0+$service is less then $upfront+$ongoing or its not.
Yes. This is right.
My view is (again, in the long run) it must be less. If it is more over any significant period of time (all things being equal), then the closed source licensor is not exploiting the copyright monopoly for the purpose of extracting above market profit - ie they are licensing on an open licence (loss leading and predatory pricing cloud this analysis, but don't overturn it).
> this however doesnt address the issue that apache has no accumulated
> capital and cant fund anything.
It has no accumulated money, but that's irrelevant if it has equivalent access to money. You note below that IBM, Sun et al are all ready to fund it. You implicitly discount the value of the intangibles it holds, perhaps because you think they can't be sold. It is accumulating capital in the software it creates. Only it does better than that because the value of that capital is available for exploitation - without rivalrous consumption - by everyone. The benefits to the economy from the use by third parties outweighs any detriments to the economy from failure to manufacture excludibility over that capital. This may be a result of the power law (exponentially many more people are able to benefit).
>> The long and the short of it is if there are customers who have a
>> need and a developer is available to fill that need, then they will
>> pay that developer to fill that need. [this is speculation:] In
>> time developers will find it uncompetitive to offer closed licences
>> and will be forced into open licensing regimes.
> you forgot about patents.
Yes, patents do tend to destroy competition and innovation in a market and reinforce monopoly positions of incumbents. This is not necessarily a good thing.
>> This argument is clouded by your assumptions [dare I say "wishful
>> thinking"] about the market. Microsoft now lists Linux as its #1
>> threat in its SEC filings. If what you say were correct Microsoft
>> has nothing to worry about from Linux. The reason it's a threat,
>> and the reason MySQL is a threat to Oracle is (primarily) because
>> MySQL and Linux have leverage *as a result of the licence they have
>> chosen* which neither Microsoft or Oracle have.
> disagree the reason its a threat is because ibm,sun and others are
> funding it to trash microsofts business.
And they would have been able to do that if Linux was licensed in a closed fashion? Mac OS was there to invest in, as was OS/2 (and Solaris). For that matter, the BSD family was there as well (and I am informed that the BSD family was, at the time, a better technical solution). Why did they choose Linux and the GPL? Why did Sun choose the LGPL (which, btw, is very similar to the GPL in terms of reciprocal licensing requirements on modifications) and not the BSD or MIT licences? Are you telling me this is this all just coincidence?
How have they been able to make the inroads they have made with comparatively paltry expenditure? What will happen when (and if) they succeed? Will they simply ignore the next Microsoft?
The reason that they are doing it is because the closed approach was a failure for them. Open source is a reaction of the market to a market failure.
>> MySQL and Linux also have better distribution systems and channel
>> management (not necessarily now, but in the long run)
> you forgot about patents.
> look honestly its been many years now since this open source
? How many? I would say open source hasn't had general recognition for more than a handful.
> "revolution" or "evolution" just how long is this "long run" supposed
> to take? are we going to have the same discussion in 5 years? 10
Good question, don't know. How would you evaluate it? I think the landscape will be very different in 5 years' time, but that's not saying anything anyone didn't already know.
Microsoft, by the way, think Linux will win in the server space:
. "Linux is the expected winner," Allchin says, "with its lineage from
. Unix. But we're happy, because we're winning market share."
. Got that? Not only is Linux a formidable competitor in the server
. market, but now Microsoft actually paints itself as the underdog.
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