Linked by Rahul on Sat 11th Oct 2008 01:39 UTC
Features, Office Michael Meeks who leads the development team within Novell has taken a detailed look at contributions associated by metrics to and makes the case that Sun's tight control over the codebase and the lack of enough volunteer contributors leaves the development slowly stagnating over a period of time. Michael Meeks has recently started strongly advocating the position that Sun needs to setup a more independent foundation or otherwise allow more relaxed policies for commit access and be less rigid about assignment of copyright to itself for the development community of to thrive beyond Sun developers.
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something to read
by Phobos on Sat 11th Oct 2008 23:26 UTC
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I was just reading this and I thought it would be interesting to share... it also has some things Mr Meeks should consider when doing his analysis:

"2. Linux software is free, as all software should be

Linux software, for the most part (as far as I know), is quite free. There are packages like OpenOffice which prove that the open-source model for software development does, in fact, work. There are unique software creations, such as Beryl or Compiz-Fusion that do things that no Mac or PC has ever done with regards to 3D desktops. However, these are but the exceptions to the rule in Linux development.

OpenOffice is an anomaly.

First of all, it’s a software package created, for the most part, using the machinery available to a large software company; namely, Sun Microsystems. This means that all proper development tactics, such as planning, developing, debugging, and patching is done with corporate efficiency, something scoffed at by the larger Linux community. This lies in stark contrast with typical development seen in Linux, repeated again and again on Sourceforge. Software projects that barely got out of beta that have one or two maintainers at most that updated their software less and less frequently until it either “dies,” or is integrated into another software package that, more likely than not, will die the same death in turn. This often happens with productivity software in general, and this is not a trend one often sees with packages that deal with services on Linux, which, as it turns out, is actually a very, very good thing.

Secondly, OpenOffice is Sun Microsystems’ probono effort. Sun sells servers (and, by extension, Solaris), so more than likely OpenOffice is just a tax break for them. Sun makes no money (that I can see, as there’s no advertising or anything like that) since there doesn’t seem to be any revenue stream from OpenOffice. How many purely software companies (like Microsoft, for instance?) could possibly survive given this business model?"

Edited 2008-10-11 23:28 UTC

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