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Ephracis 07-05-2005 03:11 AM

Open source could damage the market
I just found an article called Gartner: Open source could damage the market and I just wanted to point out some things about it.

First, the author, Jeanne Lim writes that Bob Hayward means that Open Source is damaging the innovation in software engineering because every developer must make sure you are not creating a software that already exists as open source and is given away for free.


"It has a somewhat paradoxical impact on the market. On one extent, it could be seen as a threat to innovation," Hayward noted. He explained that, in order to ensure a product is unique and marketable, a developer would have to check that it is not similar to open source software that is already available in the market.
I disagree. I think that innovation has nothing to do with however you can make money out of a piece of software or not.

He goes on saying that one way to actually be innovative is to take an open source product, change it, and sell it.

... people can take what is available as open source from the market, improve it, add a module, feature or a function, and sell that as their own.
This can not be done if the software is licensed under the GPL, which IMO is a bad thing (one should not force people to do things). But I can't see why Hayward seems to think that you MUST sell your product. You can join an open source project, or you can write your own open source product. You can have innovation within an OSS project, too.

Maybe it is Lim that wants us to believe that OSS is damaging the innovation. I don't know, I haven't had the time to find some info about Lim.

As a whole, I disagree with the article, it has a very narrow perspective. Also, it is only Hayward talking which makes it not very objective.


titanium_geek 07-06-2005 08:19 PM

Well, this is a nice change. It's nice to see some thought put into response to an article. Well done! I'm voting this thread as a five star.


Kdr Kane 07-07-2005 07:41 AM

I also second that and say you gave a good review. I'm not going to hit that site and read the article, so I'll take your word for what it says.

The first thing that struck me is that the whole idea behind the article is bogus right off. Open Source software does not mean it's free (although it can be free). Assuming that gets you in trouble. It just means that the source code is available. The code can still be proprietary.

Second, proprietary software has always had similar and competive software from other sources. Just because their competitor might be free doesn't mean it's better. I think I'm agreeing with you there. :)

Nice post!

Hano 07-10-2005 12:17 PM

I would say that this Gartner guy is clearly contradicting himself. It says Open Source hampers innovation because developers must check that there is no similar open source software already available. But again, how could be innovative if there is already something similar around?

The fact that an adult person exposes a so clearly contradictive argument meants that, scientifically speaking, it's a moron

Ephracis 07-10-2005 01:57 PM

A lot of simular projects around can actually increase innovation. If you have several simular projects around you HAVE to be innovative and make something new and good in your project to compete with all the others. This is just what we need in the "Desktop Operating System"-market where currently Microsofts monopoly is killing all competition and hence all innovation.

Hano 07-10-2005 05:48 PM

well but sure! but in the length that your software does a thing a tad different but improves the range of the user experience in a new way, its moronic to describe your software as 'similar' to others just because overlaps with preexisting niches, because precisely that innovative aspect is what makes it 'not similar' in the user's eyes.

sundialsvcs 07-11-2005 10:14 AM

This open-source thing sometimes brings me a sense of deja vu, because in the 1970's and so-on the source-code to systems like VM and DOS/VS (on IBM mainframes) was routinely distributed and maintained in source-code form. The vendors relied very much upon the ability and the willingness of customers to assist in maintaining the system software. Many fundamental developments in those systems started out as customer-initiated projects. The user-community was aptly named SHARE: Society to Help Avoid Redundant Effort. ( And that's exactly what it did. Many of those fundamental improvements simply wouldn't have happened otherwise; they could never have "bubbled to the top of IBM's list" if only IBM's own resources could have worked on them. They were instead a product of synergy.

The stakeholders in a piece of software number far greater than the administrators, employees or stockholders in a software-company. The stakeholders in a piece of software's success include anyone and everyone who relies upon that software and/or has a business interest in it. These stakeholders, located around the world, can and do have both the ability and the technical expertise needed to make the software better. The result, without dispute, is that the software advances much more rapidly than it otherwise could.

This advancement is viewed by "traditional" software vendors with a mixture of envy and fear, or even hatred. But this view, in the long run, makes no more sense than the recording industry's original distrust of the idea that songs could be played on the radio or recorded on cassette tape. "The cat is out of the bag, and it's a much better, stronger cat for it."

Unfortunately also, many of these vendors view the situation as "open source equals free" just as surely as the music people thought that "download equals theft." The availability of source-code does not mean that the product must be given away. It does not mean that the stakeholders no longer need you. They need you more than ever. But they need you for more reasons than "you're the one and only way that I can get this stuff."

The traditional, properietary software world could never have provided Linux. And today's world not only demands Linux but demands even more. We must all cooperate. We must tear down the stone wall mentality... customers demand it.

Hano 07-11-2005 05:07 PM

yes im on it! we no need no education, also, we no need no thought control. So please teacher, leave the ph*cking kids alone! ;)

alred 07-12-2005 03:22 AM

sundialsvcs posting is a good one ...

i guess having lots of innovations however they are good and well intentioned , do come to a point of not being innovative and creative anymore ...

what i mean is , things that we are doing right now if are strictly for "private" use or for exploration and learning are ok if they are innovative and creative , even if there are hundreds of others similar efforts being done . But projects or any creative things if were meant for delivering a functional value to the people at home or at work , then too much of similar efforts and brainstorming are indeed counter-productive , it's a wastage of talents and hardwork while the people are forever waiting and hoping for the final release of things which are suppose to be pragmatically functional in our lives , preferablely immediately . In this case the true meaning of sharing really makes you think when you are going to design or create a new project ....

consider ourselves lucky cause the new culture of sharing now are in good hands and timely ...

Ephracis 07-12-2005 05:14 AM

Yes.. It is one thing when you program just to learn. Then you should not care if there are simular projects going on. I mean, how many have not written "hello world" over and over again? :P

But simular projects can be good, too. At least IMHO. If you have two projects they may be competing with each other and inventing good and innovative things just to win more users than the other. Have you noticed that there is often two of a good thing? KDE/Gnome, vi/emacs, Qt/GTK, MPlayer/Xine, Lilo/Grub. The more projects the better, because then natural selection will make sure that only the good software survives.

alred 07-12-2005 07:21 AM

yup , agree with you ...

infact i'm not against "The more projects the better" , that is what people like to do , why not ...

if somehow someone realised that the prevalent "major" software are not very good in delivering what the people actually need , by all means , go ahead and crack up his own from scratch and deliver it in a way that he thought should be the better method ...

i always believe that good window managers does not stop at gnome , good media player does not stop at xine , good editor does not stop at emacs and good firewall does not stop at iptables , etc etc , but if someone somehow stop by and telling us that "Are you trying to put four legs onto a snake ?" , then we should at least try to slow down a bit and rethink some of our designs in our project and most importantly , about the delivery of the project to the people , it will definetly help us a lot for not creating something which will eventually get drained with wasted efforts and talents after the so-called natural selection which is suppose to be "caculated" (if it can be caculated , which i doubt) in milestones of half a century or preferably , a century or so , definately longer than those multiple fluctuations of world market i guess ...

what i mean is , that prefered idea of sharing are more urgent points for ponder for those who possese the talent , technical resources and maybe some financial abilities if needed ...

as for the rest of us , as what your sig is saying "There is more than one way to do it" , why not , let us all go ahead and move on and be infront of the old properietary world ...

just my opinion ...


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