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Choice is Messy (Free Software Likes It That Way)

Sep 16, 2010, 01:34 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bruce Byfield)

[ Thanks to James Maguire for this link. ]

"Does free software offer too many choices?

"In the last dozen years, the question has been revived more often than the Daleks on Doctor Who. If the community could only agree to standardize on applications, deadlines, and options, the argument goes, then world domination would be within reach.

"The latest version of this argument is Graham Morrison's article, "The trouble with Linux: There's too much choice." Morrison writes that the amount of choice is "often overwhelming, needlessly complicated and an easy excuse for change. Choice goes hand-in-hand with redundancy and duplicated effort."

"Morrison goes on to suggest that, on the one hand, if the community doesn't make a decision to standardize, then it will lose the choice because others -- presumably, businesses and distros -- will make the choice for them. On the other hand, by giving up a little unnecessary choice, "we'll have gained a whole lot more choice where it's important: the freedom to run secure, safe and supported software on whatever platform we choose.""

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