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linuxforartists
January 15th, 2011, 10:09 PM
The Economist had a book review about two professors who conducted a survey of open-source users:

(http://ubuntuforums.org/We%20are%20delighted%20to%20announce%20Merry%20Lee %20Corwin%20@KailuaNEWS%20has%20agreed%20to%20edit %20the%20soon-to-be%20launched%20TEDxHonolulu%202011%20monthly%20ne wsletter%21)Open-source software: untangling code (http://www.economist.com/node/17899970?story_id=17899970)

Excerpt:

"Although the book is a good primer on all this, its main contribution consists of two surveys—one of users of software, the other of developers—that are unprecedented in both scale and scope. More than 2,300 companies and nearly 2,000 programmers, spread across 15 countries, both rich and poor, filled out questionnaires. And Messrs Lerner and Schankerman asked a lot of questions, from how much open-source software a firm has implemented to whether governments should mandate the use of such programs.

The findings contradict much conventional wisdom."

Any thoughts?

nerdopolis
January 15th, 2011, 10:33 PM
Uhh...

The link links to the forum homepage...

Hyporeal
January 15th, 2011, 11:02 PM
The review seems to be here:

http://www.economist.com/node/17899970?story_id=17899970

The book doesn't sound all that great. If you're going to turn a survey into a book, you'd better have some pretty insightful analyses. The review makes it sound like all conclusions are drawn from the opinions of those surveyed, who are not described as experts in tech policy or software economics. Furthermore, none of the results of the survey shared in the review are surprising.

disabledaccount
January 16th, 2011, 02:09 AM
They have done a good job—although its academic tone makes it unlikely that the book will fly off the shelves, even in areas with a lot of hackers (who are sure to take offence at the fact that the authors took money for research from Microsoft, long the arch- enemy of the open-source movement— although they assure readers that the funds came with no strings attached).
Oh, really?
... so why results are exactly what MS wants to hear and to imply to others?


Yet the finding that open-source advocates will like least is that free programs are not always cheaper

They do not believe that governments should intervene in favour of open-source software, as many have done through subsidies or public procurement. Instead governments should make sure that the two forms of software compete on a level playing field and can comingle efficiently.

Lets guess: Russia decided to switch to Linux. Android kicks out windows from mobile market, too much linux PCs in India, China, and EU that have tried to force MS to give opportunity of choosing web browser - suppousedly this is the reason for spending money for such "valuable" and "revolutionary" research

...old tricks won't work forever.

borderblu
January 16th, 2011, 08:04 AM
I agree with Tomazzi. Don't forget the U.S. has given billions of dollars to Microsoft and billions (if not trillions) to other software vendors in the form of license fees. The powers that be are betting the pile on intellectual property being our golden goose. Wrong bet, if you ask me.

alexfish
January 16th, 2011, 01:19 PM
the whole thing is benchmarked around business

1.
Take corporate computer programs away, and the economy comes to a grinding halt

then
2.
At least theoretically, open source could also resolve the main dilemma that bedevils innovation policy.

So What is the intent of the survey

To me it sounds like advocating Foss , but only under by corporate or governmental control. using the 1. argument


and why the heck : Schankerman. MIT Press; 264 pages; $35 and £25.95.
if it was a survey based on this

They have done a good job—although its academic tone makes it unlikely that the book will fly off the shelves, even in areas with a lot of hackers (who are sure to take offence at the fact that the authors took money for research from Microsoft, long the arch- enemy of the open-source movement— although they assure readers that the funds came with no strings attached).

I will wait until a hacked (free version comes available) or wait to see if appears in the historical , of the local library

PS: forgot to add

Untangling code
Much conventional wisdom about programs written by volunteers is wrong

Can only assume twisted statements like this will get right up some peoples nostrils

ki4jgt
January 16th, 2011, 02:33 PM
Much conventional wisdom about programs written by volunteers is wrong

I can't say I disagree. Wikipedia is the pentacle example of this. It presents the user with wrongful information constantly.

Then you have the developers who are constantly patching things. (Don't get me wrong, developing is HARD!! - I wrote a 1000 line program and I don't even want to touch it anymore, most developers do more than that) I know we're not supposed to reinvent the wheel, but after so many patches, a program needs to be rewritten. In open source, there is no incentive to do so.

In closed source, there is the monetary gain associated with the software to inspire the writers of programs to go above and beyond, and not just patch this and patch that. (Don't get me wrong, there are some open source developers who actually do "FIX" problems with their programs.)

And yes, the survey is correct. We do need both. Closed source software is merely the competitive jolt needed for Open Sourced software to spark a brand new idea. (Most not All) open sourced programs are just a spark of a closed sourced program, and wouldn't exist unless they weren't trying to prove that they could do a better job.

All in all, don't get me wrong. We need open and closed source programs. Open sourced programs make sure we aren't being screwed over by closed source programs and closed source programs set the bar at what open source needs to accomplish b/c closed source programs are forced to do so, b/c they are paid to make their customers happy.

weasel fierce
January 16th, 2011, 06:12 PM
I agree with Tomazzi. Don't forget the U.S. has given billions of dollars to Microsoft and billions (if not trillions) to other software vendors in the form of license fees. The powers that be are betting the pile on intellectual property being our golden goose. Wrong bet, if you ask me.

Don't forget that we've undoubtedly also given them tons of tax breaks on top of it.

And correct on IP. We're competing in a sandbox while large parts of the world are competing on a football field.
The entire IP/copyright system is based on the notion that everyone plays by the same rules


EDIT: People are missing one part. There's no inherent reason why open source software cannot involve getting paid.

Austin25
January 16th, 2011, 07:06 PM
They took money from Microsoft, therefore the research likely to be biased.