March 26, 2001, 5:15 PM —
Overwhelmingly, responses to my last column contained challenges from readers who did not think that language or a dictionary were very adequate comparisons to use in a discussion of open source development and free software. (That article covered the scientific method, open source, and the Oxford English Dictionary.)
But I stand by my metaphor.
If language and communication consisted only of cryptic codes and secret
handshakes, we wouldn't get very far in life. And with more and more of
our world depending on computers and technology, we'll not get very far if
these crucial systems are closed.
Open source development is like a box of chocolates
For those who object that language isn't the best comparison for the open
source development model, I offer another: open source development is
like the law.