The Industry choice

Steve Holden steve at
Mon Jan 3 14:45:36 EST 2005

Terry Reedy wrote:

> "Steve Holden" <steve at> wrote in message 
> news:_rTBd.66275$Jk5.46 at lakeread01...
>>Well clearly there's a spectrum. However, I have previously written that 
>>the number of open source projects that appear to get stuck somewhere 
>>between release 0.1 and release 0.9 is amazingly large, and does imply 
>>some dissipation of effort.
> And how do the failure and effort dissipation rates of open source code 
> compare to those of closed source code?  Of course, we have only anecdotal 
> evidence that the latter is also 'amazingly large'.  And, to be fair, the 
> latter should include the one-programmer proprietary projects that 
> correspond to the one-programmer open projects.
> Also, what is 'amazing' to one depends on one's expectations ;-).  It is 
> known, for instance, that some large fraction of visible retail business 
> fail within a year.  And that natural selection is based on that fact that 
> failure is normal.
Well, since everything you say is true, I suppose there's not much 
wriggle room for me.

But when a shop goes belly up, it's most often replaced by another 
business in fairy short order, and proprietary project failures are 
usually hushed up by firing the programmers and promoting the managers.

Whereas the bleached bones of the failed open source projects are 
visible for all to see on the SourceForge beach.

Steve Holden     
Python Web Programming
Holden Web LLC      +1 703 861 4237  +1 800 494 3119

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