Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Open source and the next technology cycle 

Tim O'Reilly
Both open source AND proprietary software work at a given moment in time. What I've observed (and wrote about in The Open Source Paradigm Shift) is that openness begets innovation, which leads to commercialization, which leads to companies seeking a proprietary edge, until they go too far, close down innovation, and the cycle restarts.

. . .

There's a repeating cycle of open and proprietary, innovation and exploitation, driven by greed and ignorance overriding joyful exploration. But that exploration can't be denied, and breaks out anew elsewhere once one domain get too fenced in.

The necessary, pragmatic science is to discover the optimum balance between the value we create, and the value we capture. As long as companies create more value than they capture, they create a vibrant ecosystem around them. As soon as they capture more value than they create, they stagnate, however big the bank balance they build up before that becomes apparent.

Topics: We2.0 | Evolution

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