|Opensource becoming OCP?|
|[en] Scribbles||opensource, software, sose, apr 23, 2009|
So, sun is being bought by Oracle. If that's a good thing for the Opensource projects run by sun still has to be seen. My guess is that MySQL might have become a lot more then it now ever will be .
One thing is sure, the projects are now complete parts of the maneuvering giant IT corporations, just like normal product lines are. They buy and sell companies based on the projects they start, support and promote.
Whatever happened to the catedral and the bazaar?
What was the main selling point of Linux systems, when it was just being laughed at... What was it... ohhh ya... It was that the system never ever went down, solid as a rock. If linux went down, it was because it had failty hardware, end of discussion.
And that was the big deal. It showed the competition for what is was: nicely polished but profoundly broken product. And why was Linux like that? What magic make Linux kernel so much superior?
The Mantra of "Release early, Release often". Seeing early on how the product performs in the cruel and unforgiving world outside the lab. And care for quality. Developers saw a kernel "oops" and took it personal. Their system should *not* do "oops", ever.
The difference was not that the code available it's the process that makes the difference.
In "Traditional" open source the priorities are set by people that are personally involved with it. Those that will suffer when the software suffers. The developers, administrators and users. They know that they will need to maintain, support and use the beasts they create and adopt.
Compare that with Open-Corporate-Projects. They are Opensource, in name and license and especially in marketing. But it does not go much further then that.
In a OCP, the choices on what to develop, how the design should be, what features to include in the next stable, and what is "good enough" to ship and how to handle security issues are corporate ones. Those are often decided for internal reasons: politics, budgets, sales, marketing forecasts, market segmentation, bonuses and the competition.
All of which has only very, very indirectly to do with quality, usability or maintainability of the product.
Using a forum maintained by payed support is not a substitute for following the developer mailling list, where the features are discussed as they are being implemented. Having an issue tracker is no subsitute to be part of the project's design as a peer. Phoning home at each start-up is not something a opensource project would do. Nor should it try to detect a license.
A OCP will degenerate to the same state as closed software. With all it's tendency for low quality, feature bloat, poor design... But there is premium support and someone-to-yell-at!
Nice polish on a broken process, soon leading to broken products.
More then just "access to the code" maybe we need to rescue respectful software. Respectful of resourses and the time of people that need to work with it.
I guess I should go back to refering to free software. Opensource is too tainted by OCP now. :-/