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osOpinion: Winner Takes All: A Dead Paradigm

Aug 21, 2000, 04:09 (5 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tom Nadeau)

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"Sure, they're already calling "Bring out your dead!" for the KDE interface. And like the old Monty Python skit, KDE is saying, "But I'm not dead yet."

"The computer press seems to have developed a bad case of brainlock. They are locked into an obsolete, brain-dead paradigm. They believe that all competition in the technology field quickly narrows down to two alternatives, and that sooner or later all disappear except one. Then a "winner" is declared, a "funeral" is held for the alternative, and the next battle ensues. KDE must "disappear," OS/2 must be "dead," and Netscape is now "history."

"But this paradigm does not work in the new millennium. It certainly does not work in the Internet era, which can combine tiny market percentages from all over the world into a single global demographic in support of a favorite application or platform or programming language. This new paradigm allows the creation of a virtual marketing-and-advocacy community. It absolutely does not work in the Open Source era, which can combine scattered supporters and geeks located in different places -- and even more dramatically, at different times -- to produce a virtual development community. And since the Internet and Open Source are based on openness, no single-point decision can terminate a product or a project."

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