[clug] Re: pay for software (was Bluetooth mice)

Paul Wayper paulway at mabula.net
Sun Sep 30 17:07:36 GMT 2007

Hash: SHA1

Richard Reynolds wrote:
> If were going to put a value to this lets compare things, windows does
> this fairly out of the box, so a basic windows license for a new
> computer runs about $200 now to get good scheduling, contact lists you
> will need office or at least outlook alone which runs about 100, so $300
> for software thats free, or close to compete with software thats not
> free. sounds to me like its worth is somewhere under $300 ???? am I
> missing something? so can anyone hack this out in 12 hours???
> That sounds fair to me???? any other ideas?

Sure, if it was a once-off project that one single person wanted that was
going to be useless to anyone else.

Since it makes no sense to design software like that, I think we can
reasonably say that if we got a bunch of people together we could raise the
cost of writing the software.  Or, a company like Red Hat, Novell or Canonical
could decide that they were happy to spend the money to fund the developer
time.  Put say $5000 in and I'm sure you'd get a very reasonable product, and
if that means a company goes with RHEL, SLED or Ubuntu then it's almost
certainly paid back in support costs.

But a lot of the software that we use in Linux has been done outside that
equation entirely.  It's been written by people who thought they could use a
bluetooth device browser and that many other people would too, so in
scratching their own itch they also solved a problem many other people had
too, for free.  Then other people contribute to the same project and it all
builds up from there.

Are you still interested in comparing this with buying a copy of Windows,
which doesn't support many of my favourite applications, forces me to buy lots
of extra software to keep it free of viruses and treats me like a evil-minded

Have fun,


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