The Cathedral & the Bazaar: Musings on Linux and Open Source by an Accidental Revolutionary
Open source provides the competitive advantage in the Internet Age. According to the August Forrester Report, 56 percent of IT managers interviewed at Global 2,500 companies are already using some type of open source software in their infrastructure and another 6 percent will install it in the next two years. This revolutionary model for collaborative software development is being embraced and studied by many of the biggest players in the high-tech industry, from Sun Microsystems to IBM to Intel.The Cathedral & the Bazaar is a must for anyone who cares about the future of the computer industry or the dynamics of the information economy. Already, billions of dollars have been made and lost based on the ideas in this book. Its conclusions will be studied, debated, and implemented for years to come. According to Bob Young, "This is Eric Raymond's great contribution to the success of the open source revolution, to the adoption of Linux-based operating systems, and to the success of open source users and the companies that supply them."The interest in open source software development has grown enormously in the past year. This revised and expanded paperback edition includes new material on open source developments in 1999 and 2000. Raymond's clear and effective writing style accurately describing the benefits of open source software has been key to its success. With major vendors creating acceptance for open source within companies, independent vendors will become the open source story in 2001.
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The power of this effect is easy to underestimate. In fact, pretty well all of us in the
open-source world drastically underestimated how well it would scale up with
number of users and against system complexity, until Linus Torvalds showed us
differently. In fact, I think Linus's cleverest and most consequential hack was not
the construction of the Linux kernel itself, but rather his invention of the Linux
development model. When I expressed this opinion in his presence once, he
smiled and ...
... you assume that bugs are generally shallow phenomena—or, at least, that they
turn shallow pretty quickly when exposed to a thousand eager co-developers
pounding on every single new release. Accordingly you release often in order to
get more corrections, and as a beneficial side effect you have less to lose if an
occasional botch gets out the door. And that's it. That's enough. If ''Linus's Law'' is
false, then any system as complex as the Linux kernel, being hacked over by as
Musings on Linux and Open Source by an Accidental Revolutionary Eric S.
Raymond. Linus coppers his bets, too. In case there are serious bugs, Linux
kernel version are numbered in such a way that potential users can make a
choice either to run the last version designated ''stable'' or to ride the cutting edge
and risk bugs in order to get new features. This tactic is not yet systematically
imitated by most Linux hackers, but perhaps it should be; the fact that either
choice is available ...
Both the Linux and fetchmail projects show evidence of this. Linus, while not (as
previously discussed) a spectacularly original designer, has displayed a powerful
knack for recognizing good design and integrating it into the Linux kernel. And I
have already described how the single most powerful design idea in fetchmail (
SMTP forwarding) came from somebody else. Early audiences of this essay
complimented me by suggesting that I am prone to undervalue design originality
But this expectation is clearly falsified by (to give just one example) the stunning
variety, quality, and depth of Linux documentation. It is a hallowed given that
programmers hate documenting; how is it, then, that Linux hackers generate so
much documentation? Evidently Linux's free market in egoboo works better to
produce virtuous, other-directed behavior than the massively-funded
documentation shops of commercial software producers. Both the fetchmail and
Linux kernel projects ...
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Fouad_Bendris - LibraryThing
Interesting mind set for surrounding global commitment over any Corporate folks vs. huge Community - This is for sure a kind of new 'Business Model' to learn ! Thursday, Dec 16 2010 Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - albertgoldfain - LibraryThing
An internal hacker's history of the rise of open source software and Linux, presented as a series of essays. At times prophetic, at other times quite dated. Only made it through half of the essays before losing it while traveling in Finland (i.e., releasing it open source). Read full review
Appendix A How to Become a Hacker
Appendix B Statistical Trends in the Fetchmail Projects Growth
Notes Bibliography and Acknowledgments
Other editions - View all
The Cathedral & the Bazaar: Musings on Linux and Open Source by an ...
Limited preview - 2001