Ramblings & ephemera

Open sources turns software into a service industry

From Eric Steven Raymond’s “Problems in the Environment of Unix” (The Art of Unix Programming: 19 September 2003):

It’s not necessarily going to be an easy transition. Open source turns software into a service industry. Service-provider firms (think of medical and legal practices) can’t be scaled up by injecting more capital into them; those that try only scale up their fixed costs, overshoot their revenue base, and starve to death. The choices come down to singing for your supper (getting paid through tips and donations), running a corner shop (a small, low-overhead service business), or finding a wealthy patron (some large firm that needs to use and modify open-source software for its business purposes).

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