Free and open-source software is not an emerging property but rather the result of studied design

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Free and open-source software is not an emerging property but rather the result of studied design
Authors: Paolo Magrassi
Citation: missing journal missing volume : missing pages. 2010 December
Database(s): arXiv (Arxiv/1012.5625)
DOI: Define doi.
Link(s): http://arxiv.org/pdf/1012.5625
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Free and open-source software is not an emerging property but rather the result of studied design argues that free and open source software (FOSS) is not developed by a collaborative effort without supervising leadership and top-down coordination.

Among his points are that

  • six in every seven Linux kernel developer is employed and
  • that a large part of the Linux kernel is developed by relatively few persons.
  • There is a distinction between "benevolent dictator", "co-developer" and "ordinary contributors".
  • He regards software development is a tightly-coupled system requiring coherence more than editing on Wikipedia a loosely-coupled system. Missing or incorrect information in one part of the system (in Wikipedia a missing article) may not compromise the rest of the system.

On FOSS motivations he lists:

  • Willingnes to participate in an attractive and important challenge
  • Developer name will appear on the list of software
  • Genuine sense of sharing and participating
  • Homo ludens payoffs
  • An urge to contrast dominant players
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