Eric Raymond on Open Source

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Richard Poynder [1] interviews Eric Raymond


Part of the Basement Interview Series at


"Eric Raymond President Emeritus and Co-Founder of the Open Source Initiative.

A hacker himself since the 1970s, Raymond has always taken an interest in hacker culture. When the Free Software Movement took off in the 1990s, therefore, he set out to try and understand how — contrary to all expectations — hackers were able to develop technically superior software, not least the now ubiquitous GNU/Linux operating system. The result was the highly influential essay The Cathedral and the Bazaar, which was published in 1997.

When, a year later, Netscape decided to open the source code of its browser (and indicated that it had been partly influenced by Raymond's essay), Raymond and a number of other Free Software supporters responded by founding the Open Source Initiative (OSI) — with the aim of re-branding Free Software as Open Source Software and making it more palatable to the "suits".Today Open Source software has become mainstream, and much of the credit for this must go to Raymond." (from the profile by Richard Poynder)