Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Penguin Design

This weekend when trying to describe open source software to a friend, a neat association came to mind. Many of us have heard that "a camel is a horse designed by committee." What about open source. Well: "a penguin is a bird designed by open source!"

Assuming that I had heard this somewhere before, I searched but could not find it. Interesting: it seems like such an obvious connection to make :-) If anyone knows of a source for that statement, please let me know and I'll make the proper attribution here....

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

EclipseCon Submission Deadline: Sooner than you think

Sure, November 19th sounds like it's a long time away. Especially if you're a PHB: "We could build an entire operating system by then!"

But really -- October 25 is tomorrow, people! And October 26 is right after that! (Work with me here...) and then it will be November 20th before you know it, and all your friends will be laughing at you for missing the EclipseCon deadline. We really don't want that: everyone looks foolish when one of us is diminished in that way.

So, come on -- there must be dozens of you Little Bobby Tables out there who could give an excellent talk about DTP! Let's have those submissions!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Open Source Silver Bullet

Recently Jörg Siever made a very interesting keynote speech at Eclipse Summit Europe about why VCs like open source companies. Even if you're not involved with venture funding, I still recommend this presentation for understanding open source business models. One of the comments he made (about open sourcing unpopular applications) reminded me of an open source antipattern I've seen a number of times.

In brief, open source is not a silver bullet for software product development. In addition the productivity issues that Brooks discussed, open source does not absolve companies from the requirement of providing valuable products and services. Simply producing open source software does not mean that money from adoring users will flood in. This might seem obvious, but I assure you it is not in many cases. Rather, a very common mistake starts from wishful thinking and ends in disappointment when open source involvement does not automatically translate into product sales.

Open source is a method of production, one which of course has advantages and disadvantages. For me the most intriguing aspect of open source is that the full potential of its advantages is only now beginning to be understood and leveraged. And, yes, there are real disadvantages that need to be understood and accepted; otherwise unrealistic expectations will certainly be the source of later frustration.

Friday, October 05, 2007

DTP at OS Summit Asia

OS Summit Asia is not too far away (26-30 November), and DTP team members will be giving a number of presentations:

It sounds like a great conference, so, if you're in the area, be sure to attend!

BTW: There's no picture for Linda? Hey, Linda -- where's your picture?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Eclipse Summit Europe

I'm looking forward to next week's Eclipse Summit Europe in Ludwigsburg, Germany. I really enjoyed the format last year, and, from all indications, this year is going to be even better! If you're going to attend ESE, be sure to stop by my talk or take another chance to introduce yourself. I'd also be happy to schedule meetings, if you'd like to talk with me about DTP: please drop me a line on the Summit Network.