"2) Sharing the wealth; a gift culture. If I've written
something that I use, that's more than just a scrappy little
script, then I think "Wouldn't it be cool if someone else found it
useful too?" I get a little warm glow when someone uses my stuff,
just like I get a warm glow when someone reads and likes my fan
fiction (which is another arena where people don't comprehend why
someone would want to do this stuff without being paid for it).
"2a) Positive feedback.
Another aspect of this is positive feedback; with professional
coding, it's just a job, people don't *thank* you for it. With
FOSS, yes, I've gotten emails with people bitching, but more often
I've gotten emails with positive remarks along with the bug
reports. I know that *I*, as an individual, am helping people.
Which is cool. (and this also is one of the reasons I write fan
fiction - the feedback is much closer and much quicker than with
"3) My own master.
I can work on what I want, when I want. When I feel like hacking
Fvwm, I can do that; when I feel like writing my own static photo
album script, I can do that."