SPUG:Microsoft: Open source threatens our business model

Fred Morris m3047 at inwa.net
Mon Feb 17 22:41:24 CST 2003

Jonathan Gardner wrote:
>On Friday 14 February 2003 18:41, Michael R. Wolf wrote:
>> P.S.  Just because MS sees Open Source as a threat to their business
>> doesn't mean that *I* see Open Source as a business.  I'm still
>> looking for a sustainable Open Source business model.  Prove me wrong,
>> but I don't see Open Source making money, and I do see that M$ is.  I
>> don't believe that slash/burn is a good farming tactic any more than I
>> believe that embrace/extend is a good technique for interoprable
>> standards.  On the other hand, "free as in beer" as a loss-leader is
>> not a scalable A/R (Accounts Receivable) generator for core
>> comptetencies.
>I disagree with using 'Open Source'. I prefer 'Free Software'. There are a few
>differences between the two.

I prefer "botique software". Or perhaps more appropriately for my
allusions, fenced ranching.

>Now, as far as the argument "Microsoft makes money now, so any other business
>model is wrong" -- this is obviously absurd.

Windor... Greely... you've only got half the puzzle. The other half is all
those cowboys out of work because while the cattle barons try to keep it
from the stockholders, the herds are being decimated by their continued
slaughtering at ever younger ages (oh no, must be rustlers!) and so the
cowboys are out actually rustling any cow whose brand isn't clear.

So the homesteaders are caught in the middle. And that is why Wyoming was
the first state to give women the vote. QED. See, Barons + Rustlers adds up
to 100%; women and homesteaders don't count.

>Evidence that other companies that utilize Free Software, or even sell it, are
>making money is rampant. Red Hat is the most prominent example. They sell
>Free Software at a high price. They also provide additional services that
>Microsoft cannot.

Yes? Do you buy any? (Wouldn't be that hard, IME the MSDN support isn't

>There are people that make money off of Free Software by writing books.
>(O'Reilly). There are people that make money off of Free Software by
>incorporating it into the IT department (Amazon). There are people that make
>money off of Free Software by helping others utilize it (probably most of
>us). There are people that make money off of Free Software by maintaining it
>for people (any Linux sysadmin, and a variety of others). Even Microsoft is
>making money off of Free Software because they use Perl to manage their build

But not by writing software. And selling it. No, the cowboys seem to have
the press, and everybody's supposed to give it away so they can support
their customers. I propose this: you have a customer, they need their
problem to go away, you tell me who they are and I solve their problem and
bill them and give you a commission. Will that work?


Fred Morris, 4th generation Seattleite
m3047 at inwa.net

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