Does a free software community exist?
Dec 15, 2009, 10:32 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bruce Byfield)
"At first, the idea seems absurd. Perhaps a free software
community existed fifteen years ago, when the software and its
ideals were shared by a small number of developers. But these days,
most people involved in free software tend to stay within their own
community. Is there really some common thread that links a member
of large projects like Fedora or OpenOffice.org with small
two-person projects? Old Unix hands with new Ubuntu users? Debian
community developers with employees of Oracle or IBM? The divisions
seem so great that people can't even agree whether to refer to free
software, open source, or some combination of the two like free and
open source software (FOSS).
"However, on closer examination, the answer depends on the angle
from which you approach it. New Yorkers and Californians may talk,
behave, and live differently from each other, yet still consider
themselves Americans. Moreover, non-Americans will usually identify
both as Americans without much hesitation."