Who will pay for innovation?
Back in 1973, a young Bill Gates was demonized for asking the following:
"Who can afford to do professional work for nothing? What hobbyist can put 3-man years into programming, finding all bugs, documenting his product and distribute for free?"
In 2005, Marc Fleury voiced a similar thought in a BusinessWeek interview:
"No one is going to work for free."
Marc elaborated on this in a later blog:
"Without financial compensation comparable, if not superior to, what they could earn in the proprietary software world, most of the top FOSS developers move on or simply cannot sustain the time commitment to FOSS projects demanded by the Enterprise IT consumer.
When you think of an Open Source project in terms of the people who actually write it; what comes to mind?
Do you envision a passionate group of developers who are working on a project because they love it, or do you picture a competent group of developers who are working on a project because they are paid to?
My first direct use of Open Source was in 1990 with Michael Tiemann