Ayende @ Rahien

My name is Oren Eini
Founder of Hibernating Rhinos LTD and RavenDB.
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Open source and the programmer's dilemma

time to read 1 min | 170 words

Nick Carr is quoting an IEEE article about OSS Economics. I am going to respond to the article later, rigth now I wanted to comment on this piece:

Given the natural imbalance between employers and employees, this aspect of open source is likely to increase competition for jobs and drive down salaries.

I have one word to say to it, rubbish! I have stated it before, working on open source software means that you have credentials. There is nothing that speaks louder than code for developers. And experianced developers are worth quite a bit, regardless of their choice of platform or license.

This statement seems to assume that the only thing that separate developers from one another is prioprietry knowledge aquired in mystic rights at the dark of the moon.


Gian Maria

You are rigth, open source code is the life of the software, with open source everyone can look at code written by other people, there will be confrontation, and I really do not think that open source can drive down salary.


Grimace of Despair

I think Nick lives in a world where there's no innovation and the whole world runs on existing open-source solutions that miraculously make a perfect fit for the job. Please Nick, show me this parallel universe!


I disagree with another part of his post:



Hey Oren, I think the article actually includes your argument as well.

I think you've identified one of the weak spots in the article, however. I cannot see where he justifies (or provides a reference to such justification) how switching costs are lowered when recruiting open source developers. I perceive that to be his motivation behind the point you critize.

He also speaks of a pool of OSS devs; granted the projects committer roosters may provide such a pool, but there are many competent users and trainers that do not commit - and that may be just as competent. In that respect, I think it is analogous to the closed source situation.

Oh well, it was a couple of weeks since I read it but I thought it had some thought provoking points, most of where on the pro-side of OSS, but that is our POV, of course. :)

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