[p2p-research] is open source design inferior

Ryan Lanham rlanham1963 at gmail.com
Mon Nov 9 19:38:38 CET 2009

Sure.  I'm not saying free doesn't have incentives.  It does.  I'm also
nothing of a mind that people have to gain to get something.

All I am saying is that it is tough to get free to be responsive.  My own
preferred model for most things is Mozilla or Apache.  Seems a win/win.  But
then again, I see Twitter as a commons.

Free to me is an afterthought to the commons.  I see no reason for free with
abundance either.  Price is a great way to allocate given a bit of social
justice regulation thrown in..

On Mon, Nov 9, 2009 at 11:44 AM, Paul D. Fernhout <
pdfernhout at kurtz-fernhout.com> wrote:

> Ryan Lanham wrote:
>> On Mon, Nov 9, 2009 at 10:22 AM, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:
>>  The problem is that FLOSS people and usability don't mix.
>>> At least the current culture doesn't seem to, it might mend
>>> eventually.
>>> Not holding my breath, though.
>> I think it was a separate thread where Michel and I were speculating on
>> why.  It may be that the work of being customer driven is unappealing and
>> therefore requires a market model to succeed.  FLOSS is fun for
>> programmers.  Fun isn't necessarily the path to useful.  I doubt games
>> that
>> people make up would have the features wanted by gamers in the main.  I
>> doubt cars designed by care enthusiasts would have cup holders.  Profit
>> creates interesting incentives to be responsive.  Free has no such
>> incentives.
> There's certainly truth to that.
> Still, free has other "incentives" in the sense of direct engagement with
> the substance of the situation.
> What "incentives" does a parent have to be responsive to their child? It's
> just something most people do given the circumstances (unless something is
> really pathological).
> What "incentives" does a gardener have to grow flowers in their front yard
> or windowboxes, for everyone to see? (There actually are some, but they are
> more social than directly material or ration-unit oriented.)
> Another aspect is openness. People who want their individual needs met can
> either extend the system or get someone else to do it for them. So, there is
> a direct way individual needs can be met, but it is different than a simple
> fee for service in that sense.
> Also, on games specifically, for a lot of people, it is more fun to make
> games than to play them. So, there are lots of ways to have fun. So, again,
> there is a paradigm shift there on that issue.
> As I said before, from all the programming mailing lists I've been on, I've
> always got the feeling that open source software would be better if most
> programmers doing it did not need an eight-hour day job doing something else
> (usually programming, but sometimes other things). A lot of times the
> developers of code want to be responsive, but do not have the time.
> --Paul Fernhout
> http://www.pdfernhout.net/
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Ryan Lanham
rlanham1963 at gmail.com
Facebook: Ryan_Lanham
P.O. Box 633
Grand Cayman, KY1-1303
Cayman Islands
(345) 916-1712
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