The Simple Economics of Open Source

Robin Becker robin at
Sat Apr 22 10:35:37 CEST 2000

In article <raffael-63EB69.23345321042000 at>, Raffael
Cavallaro <raffael at> writes
>In article <f4JdfuAkLKA5EwcQ at>, Robin Becker 
><robin at> wrote:
>>exchange ideas, concepts and criticism freely, but compete for
>Speaking as a painter, I can tell you that many painters do not share 
>ideas and concepts, but are quite secretive about them. In fact, there 
>is a long history of artists keeping their working methods secret from 
>each other, for precisely the same reason that any other set of business 
>competitors do.
Clearly not all do; same with hackers. You must know a different set of
artists and painters. The ones I know seem to have a sort of verbal
diarrhoea about how wonderful they are and how they achieved exactly
which effect etc etc etc.

Grinding the paint etc corresponds to real infrastructure like getting
the chips to work better. The problems and solutions of perspective,
style, lighting and the like are discoverable in the product by the keen
observer. It might be harder to discover the secret of 'true' vermilion
or exactly how such accurate perspective effects were achieved.

Artists are forced into a dialogue if not directly with each other at
least with their clients and hence with each other. 
Robin Becker

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