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Open Source: A Different Way of Doing Business

When businesspeople first encounter the idea of public open-source software, they are usually attracted by the fact that it is cost-free and that they get access to the underlying source code--open-source software is like coming across a blueberry bush bursting with fat ripe blueberries. But then it hits them that open-source software comes on an as-is basis with no warranty, no indemnification, and no support. No one is officially responsible--there is no one to contract with and no one to sue for liability.

Also confusing is the open-source development process. Who is in charge? How are decisions made? What is the development schedule? Finally, the idea of giving work done by their developers away to anyone--possibly including their business competitors--seems to violate common sense.

All in all this is not how they are used to doing business. But open source does make sense.

Innovation Happens Elsewhere
Ron Goldman & Richard P. Gabriel
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