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By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2005-05-26 Print this article Print

Because of this change, open-source software is no longer developed by communities using Eric Raymonds bazaar model of development. "The idea that a software community is there for all open-source projects is no longer true," said Henry. Instead, companies now employ developers to write open-source programs.
In these cases, "if a company that makes an open-source package abandons it, its abandoned."
Linux is already big business, Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols claims. Click here to read his commentary. In five years, Henry predicted that open-source revenue will overcome the free software religion. "Linux might be the first, biggest and perhaps only major bazaar-style open-source development project to get traction in the commercial sector," he said. In the future, open-source and proprietary programs will be competing on an even playing field and there will be little difference between how they will be developed, he said. As a result of the enterprises penetration of open source, the open-source licenses will change as well. Exactly how this change will play out isnt clear, but Henry expects "economics to prevail over doctrine." One shape this might take, according to Steve Garone, vice president and senior analyst for the research house Ideas International Ltd., is Suns CDDL. "Sun just might be on the right path," he said. Editors Note: Peter Galli, eWEEK, provided additional reporting for this story. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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