On The Cathedral and the Bazaar (cont’d)

What I find interesting is the open-source as ecosystem; what the local actions of participating agents are that make the ecosystem work. Clearly, the process Eric Raymond hints at is a system that is run by a single individual or a small group of individuals. He is, or they are, the system. What I find interesting is an automated system that goes beyond what is possible for humans; a system beyond versioning systems, beyond Sourceforge.

In Mob Software: The Erotic Life of Code Richard Gabriel and Ron Goldman write about a possible ecosystem beyond open-source. I posted a Christopher Alexander quote from the paper earlier which itself seems to invalidate Raymond’s choice of analogy for closed source: the cathedral. The quote suggests that cathedral’s weren’t any more master planned than open-source projects.

An aspect that is interesting is how you “build” a culture for a project; a culture that contains both the shared vision for what the system should be about, as well as the local rules to follow for each participant.

Richard Gabriel (whose Worse is Better is listed by Raymond in the bibliography for his paper) and Ron Goldman also developed a pattern language (PDF) for the Jini community, which in Mob Software is dubbed “one of the first explicitly mob-software projects.”

Gotta go.

The above was posted to my personal weblog on October 24, 2002. My name is Peter Lindberg and I am a thirtysomething software developer and dad living in Stockholm, Sweden. Here, you’ll find posts in English and Swedish about whatever happens to interest me for the moment.


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