"That captures it, don't you think?
"Some imagine that it's unthinkable to, as they view it, give
away valuable IP for nothing. But, first, it's not giving it away,
and second, it's not for nothing. Nor does pooling your code put
you out of business. The diagram shows a barter process. This is
the key word, because such contributions of code are compensated,
but the consideration is not money. It is code. You give a little
code, and you get back a lot more.
"When people receive back a complete Linux, they have the source
code. It lets them make changes and adjustments to suit their
purposes more exactly, and then they can contribute those
modifications back to the project and all the contributions are
then able to be integrated into the project. This ball keeps
rolling, and getting bigger, and Linux keeps improving. People
contribute because they want Linux to be available and to
"There's a fairness to it, which is why it is the most popular
FOSS license. And there is a purpose, to make a large body of code
available that anyone can improve and enjoy. People build
businesses around Linux. Google did. Amazon too. It's great for
startups, as Mark Shuttleworth has explained. He built a profitable
business, Thawte, using FOSS code. He was asked in an interview
about the impact of FOSS:"