Monday, April 16, 2007

Predictions galore

Oh, no, heres one more "the open-source bubble is going to burst" story. And guess what, to make this even more credible, its an open-source CEO (a successful one) speaking. But what does he have to say? This:
"Right now, open source is hot," says Rod Johnson, author of the Spring Java development framework and CEO of Interface21, the company he founded to market it. Most open source projects are supported by an army of volunteers who buy into the hype, but "capitalism will inevitably reassert itself" and developers will find they need to put more effort into steady jobs and private lives, leaving "open source zombies"--unsupported, unmaintained projects--he predicts.
Really? Whats the argument here? Or is this just prophecy? "The hour draws nigh when capitalism will assert itself". Newsflash: capitalism has already asserted itself in the world of free software and open source (like, maybe 1998?). And, "open source projects are supported by an army of volunteers who buy into the hype"? (Methinks this reporter has brought into the hype - so in that sense the subject and reporter are in sync). And I'm mystified by what it could mean that developers will need to put "more effort into steady jobs and private lives"? All those people working for open source businesses must crave the kind of job security the rest the corporate world has (like those 17,000 folks Citigroup laid off last week). Finally, just to strike fear into all of us, there is the prospect of "open-source zombies". Scary. But at least we know they are out there. What about all those closed-source zombies, confined to the campuses of their proprietary headquarters? Who knows what they're capable of?


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