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Ask Slashdot: What Defines Success In an Open Source Project?

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the having-people-care-enough-to-complain-endlessly dept.

Open Source 88

rbowen writes "Nine years ago, Slashdot readers discussed what makes an Open Source project successful. The answers were varied, of course. An academic paper summarized the results, agreeing (albeit with more precision) that motivations for Open Source projects are varied. Has anything changed since then? In the era of mobile apps, social media, and Google Ad revenue, have the definitions of Open Source project success changed at all? Have your reasons changed for being involved in Open Source?"

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Score (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488679)

Your project is a success when a corporation embeds it in their product and violates the GPL.

Re:Score (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489375)

Your project is a success when a corporation embeds it in their product and violates the GPL.

No, it's when you enforce it.

Re:Score (4, Insightful)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489663)

Or when MS shills tell the world how much it sucks!

Re:Score (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39490501)

Unless you choose to make your software truly free. Then, it's a success when they embed it without having to violate anything and everybody wins.

Re:Score (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39496855)

And when someone is using that version, and realizes a bug causes them big problems, and the EULA and lack of source prevents them from fixing the bug, they will realize how "truly free" they are.

Usage (5, Insightful)

recoiledsnake (879048) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488685)

I think widespread usage is a good metric and not just gloating over profit like the Apple fans like to do. "Apple derived the most profit from the cell phone industry." they say, to put down Android's usage gains. By that metric, IIS is totally killing Apache and Nginx in the web server space, but most folks consider Apache beats IIS. Which of this is true?

Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488905)

More people eat McDonald's Double Cheeseburgers (or whatever they're calling them now) each day than eat a nice medallion of filet mignon.

I know which beef product is superior, and it isn't the salty pink slime-infested crap off the dollar menu.

(Not that I'm defending IIS; hell no. Apache might suck, but IIS's vacuum will one day cause the universe to implode upon itself.)

Re:Usage is asinine. (3, Insightful)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488959)

You might not like Mickie-D's fair but nobody in their right mind wouldn't call them successful. That's what we're talking about here.

Re:Usage is asinine. (0, Flamebait)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489507)

You might not like Mickie-D's fair

I wash you guys would stoop using in correct homophones*, it make reading comprehension a pain in the ass. It took me a minute to figure out wtf a Mickie-D fair was... like a state fair? No, you meant FARE.

It also makes you look like an idiot. Please pay attention! Use that preview button. Dew knot truss yore spill chucker.

* on porpoise for illustration purposes. Yes, that too.

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489605)

It took me a minute to figure out

Has the possibility that maybe you're just an idiot occurred to you?

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39490735)

'las time sumone called me a homophones I bussed 'is ass

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#39493563)

Mickie-D's is actually a pretty common one. Probably not in your region.

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39493915)

I think he was referring to "fair" and not "fare"....

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39494923)

MickeyD's is a common nickname for McDonald's when I'm from, as is Rotten Ronnie's.

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39491021)

You might not like Mickie-D's fair but nobody in their right mind wouldn't call them successful. That's what we're talking about here.

Quite right - but the GP seems to be insinuating IIS isn't successful.

I know all the cool Slashdot kiddies can't resist jabbing Microsoft whenever possible, but it's utterly ridiculous to say a product is not successful because it's not used by as many people.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

znrt (2424692) | more than 2 years ago | (#39493837)

Quite right - but the GP seems to be insinuating IIS isn't successful.

from this thread I learned (with a bit of surprise) that people actually still use that crap. a full 10% according to some prospections.

if this means success I cannot judge, nor do I care, since "success" is totally subjective in this context. I guess that that 10% of sysops have their reasons and could label IIS as a successfull server, or something that helps them succeed. I can respect that but for me its still just crap. expensive crap, maybe.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

elgeeko.com (2472782) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489085)

A filet and a hamburger are not the same thing. It's like comparing french fries and potato chips. With that being said, McDonald's makes an awesome dbl cheeseburger considering it's $1 and won't rot for decades. I personally don't eat there because it make me ill, but since they've sold 500 quadrillion hamburgers I'd say they are successful, disgusting, but successful. That's what this conversation is about, success, not quality. Hmmm, so I guess we can knock off quality as a marker of success. Anyone disagree with that?

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

rbowen (112459) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489317)

Certainly not. Open Source is nothing if not self-defined. I get to define when my project is successful, and quality might be that definition, in my particular case. Fortunately, quality often leads to usage. But even when it doesn't, it's a worthwhile goal.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

elgeeko.com (2472782) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489715)

Self Defined? You're right. Very well put. Quality is no guarantee of "success", but it is definitely a worthwhile goal and marker for determining success. I only asked because I've used many open source projects and often times there is a lack of quality despite some of those projects having had great "success" (popularity?). Overtime their quality often improves, but in some cases the project never really improves and eventually dies off or is forked by someone who does care enough about the project's quality to adopt it and improve upon it.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

WaywardGeek (1480513) | more than 2 years ago | (#39491997)

Well said. I'd say open source projects are successful when they give those contributing what they want. In my case, I volunteer for projects that help blind/VI people, projects like Vinux [vinuxproject.org] - Linux for the Vision Impaired, SpeechHub [speechhub.org] - free voices everywhere, NVDA [nvaccess.org] - the free screen reader for the blind, and Orca [gnome.org] - the Linux screen reader. I also contribute algorithms, such as libsonic [debian.org] - speeding up speech for speed listeners, and an enhanced FFT algorithm [vinux-project.org] for speech recognition.

So, my win is helping the blind and otherwise disabled with computing technology. In Open Source Land, it's whatever floats your boat.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

PT_1 (2425848) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489837)

You're absolutely correct. I've been a vegetarian for many years. (I have no problem with other people eating meat -- I do understand that we evolved to eat it etc. -- but I just choose not to.) It's funny that, after all this time, I never crave chicken or steak or any of the better quality meats; but if I'm hungry and drive past McDonalds, I almost always start to crave a Big Mac, despite knowing how disgusting they are. :-)

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

WaywardGeek (1480513) | more than 2 years ago | (#39492121)

Well, personally it's never McDonalds I crave when trying to be kinder to animals by eating fewer of them. It's peperoni pizza and sushi that make me a carnivore. So, I give myself a break and instead of being "vegetarian", I'm "trying to be kinder to animals". I don't ask for a special meal at a party where the choices are hot dogs or hamburgers, and just eat them, and I'll still buy sushi or peperoni pizza, but I'd guess my consumption of turkey, pork, chicken, and products where I now know animals have been tortured to bring me cheap meat are now 1/10th as much of my spending as before. I figure that we can make a lot of progress without having to be perfect. If a Big Mac now and then is what you really feel you need, don't feel like it makes you not a vegetarian if now and then you indulge. Anyway, there's not all that much actual meat in a Big Mac, and cows seem to have better lives than the other animals we factory farm.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489625)

"Pink Slim" is fat. A good steak will have fat in it. "Pick Slim" is a bumper sticker logic. Since most people are so disconnected from where their food comes from that they don't even recognize how ridiculous the "Pink Slim" term is.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39490403)

Sorry, but that's not what it means. So-called "Pink Slime" is a a Mechanically Separated Meat [wikipedia.org] product. It is not present in a steak, or any other actual cut of meat.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39492551)

Do you actually think before you post nonsense? According to an article in the Washington Post, Pink Slime is closer to 80 to 90 percent lean- doesn't make it any better, but it is -not- just fat. Furthermore, it's "Pink Slime", not "Pink Slim". "Pink Slim" more closely describes that little thing in your pants.

Re:Usage is asinine. (1)

chrismcb (983081) | more than 2 years ago | (#39491609)

The superior product isn't always the most successful product.

Re:Usage is asinine. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39492481)

Borland Delphi agrees with you.

Re:Usage (4, Insightful)

localman57 (1340533) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489619)

I think widespread usage is a good metric...

I would say that any usage is a good metric. If you google the name of your project, and another person has made a positive comment somewhere about it, the it's a success, because you've touched someone. You don't have to measure yourself by the standard of Apache or Android or Firefox.

It reminds me of a story:
Two men are walking along a beach after the tide has gone out, leaving stranded starfish for as far as they can see. One man leans down and picks one up, and throws it back into the sea.
"Why bother?" the other man asks. "Look at all of them. It doesn't make any difference."
"It made a huge difference to that one," he replied.

Re:Usage (1)

tautog (46259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39492155)

Well said.

Re:Usage (1)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 2 years ago | (#39495825)

I would say that any usage is a good metric. If you google the name of your project, and another person has made a positive comment somewhere about it, the it's a success, because you've touched someone. You don't have to measure yourself by the standard of Apache or Android or Firefox.

Absolutely. It's a great ego boost to find that someone is using something you wrote, not because they have to, but because they *want* to. Writing commercial applications doesn't have the same feeling. Yes, a paycheck is nice, it's more practical, but for a lot of people the emotional bump from having somone use your OSS stuff is more powerful than a paycheck.

Re:Usage (3, Interesting)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 2 years ago | (#39490105)

I think widespread usage is a good metric and not just gloating over profit like the Apple fans like to do. "Apple derived the most profit from the cell phone industry." they say, to put down Android's usage gains. By that metric, IIS is totally killing Apache and Nginx in the web server space, but most folks consider Apache beats IIS. Which of this is true?

Both are metrics. Android vs. iOS, profit is a good metric - but so is usage. Android usage is under-reported because it's going by official Google Android numbers, and misses AOSP numbers. It's why the #2 tablet is the Kindle Fire, but isn't really seen in the Android listings. And there are many Android AOSP based phones out there (mostly in China) running nice "alternative" app stores. Profit's also a good metric too - after all, if Apple is making the most profit, it means that despite Android having a much larger marketshare (or usage), when combined with profits from non-smartphones, Apple is making more money then all of them combined. It helps explain why Nokia/RIM/Samsung are opposing any and all Apple proposals (money money money...)

As for Apache and IIS - I believe Apache actually has a larger marketshare over IIS (at least it did when all those IIS exploits were floating around), and quite possibly, the Apache-based ecosystem is far more profitable than the IIS ecosystem. But that's because of the licensing and support and many other factors.

In the end, success is whatever you want to define it. Some people consider success as making profits. Others may consider having someone else use the software a success. And others may define it as having most marketshare. Or maybe it's the entire economic profit of the software and its ecosystem. The only person that can judge the success of open-source software are the developers.

Heck, another definition of success may be the original creator can step down and see their software continue to evolve instead of becoming abandoned.

I can think of one measure (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488691)

If RMS takes credit for the project and insists that everyone put "GNU/" in front of the name.

Re:I can think of one measure (1)

jd2112 (1535857) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488931)

Heaven forbid you write a PHP application hosted on Apache running on Linux against a MySQL database.you might have to callit GNU/LAMPMyProgram.

Re:I can think of one measure (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488975)

Of if you rename PHP to GNU/PHP and Apache to GNU/Apache and Linux to GNU/Linux and MySQL to GNU/MySQL then its GNU/GGGGMyProgram

Re:I can think of one measure (1)

TeXMaster (593524) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488963)

You mean GNU/RMS, of course, yes?

Re:I can think of one measure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39491569)

It's not a success unless it only works half assed, and then when it actually starts looking OK and people begin using the maintainer stops maintaining it because he realizes he can't do something that takes all his time for no monetary reward and make a living that actually allows him to live and have a life at the same time. Unless of course he is a Tibetan monk who doesn't have to worry about paying for food or taking care of his family.

Does it still itch? (4, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488709)

If so, you're not done yet. If not, find another itch to scratch.

Re:Does it still itch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488851)

good answer.

Re:Does it still itch? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489661)

Exactly write. Proprietary software is written so you can sell it, open source software is written so you can use it. If your open source program solves the problem whose existence was the reason for its creation, then it's a success. If it partially solves that problem, then it's a partial success.

APK-approved (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488731)

Nothing will make an Open Source project successful the way an endorsement from Alexander Peter Kowalski will.

Re:APK-approved (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488789)

...or BSK: Bat Shit Krazy

Oh God, I hear him coming.....HIDE!

Re:APK-approved (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39572109)

You have to say its name three times if you want it to appear...

- T

Sales figures (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488781)

Oh wait, you don't have those.

Open source is a broken model. How are you going to get reliable metrics from a disorganized, ad-hoc group of users and contributors? With real software, you know exactly how popular it is based on how many licenses have sold. You also have the benefit of getting support from the experts who have an incentive (money) to respond to you in a timely and respectful fashion (as opposed to the arrogance typically seen on support forums and mailing lists for OSS projects.) A closed source product also has the benefit of added security, without all of those prying eyes scouring for bugs.

Re:Sales figures (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488891)

I see what you did there. Troll better.

Re:Sales figures (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489035)

Because Redhat makes no money from their nearly $1,000,000,000 in revenue per year and you can't pay them to support their OSS projects.

Re:Sales figures (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489223)

Meanwhile, Red Hat has now a yearly revenue of one billion dollars (source [zenoss.com] ). Clearly OSS doesn't work.

Re:Sales figures (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489291)

You're a troll, but both responses about RedHat completely missed your point.

Re:Sales figures (2)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#39492197)

you know exactly how popular it is based on how many licenses have sold.

In related news, gonorrhea judged a favorite based on penicillin sales.

It depends, I think (2)

DangerOnTheRanger (2373156) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488797)

On a personal level, your open-source project is successful when it accomplishes everything you set out to do with it. On a non-personal level, widespread usage is probably the best metric.

When it's better than you alone could make it. (4, Interesting)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489013)

I'd say, when your open-source project is better because you made it open-source, it's successful. My own minor projects have been improved by testing, bug reports, bug fixes, and new feature contributions through the years. Certainly they are more useful to me now than they would have been if I was the only one working on them.

When someone compares you to commercial software (3, Insightful)

crazyjj (2598719) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488837)

When respected authorities begin to compare you directly to the commercial alternative, even if you're still found somewhat wanting, you have arrived.

Re:When someone compares you to commercial softwar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489917)

Even better is when they see a presentations by your users at a conference and their marketeers show up in force at those same users' offices first thing the next week. :) Being compared is one step. Winning many of the comparisons is another. The marketing staff recognizing your project as a threat is yet another.

What is best in life? (5, Funny)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488847)

I believe RMS said it best when he declared the following metrics required for FOSS project success:

1) To crush your enemies
2) To see them driven before you
3) To hear the lamentation of their women

For a good example of this, check out how Android has dominated Window Phone 7 and how their womenfolk continually spam Slashdot with first posts about their crushed dreams.

Re:What is best in life? (2)

gknoy (899301) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488897)

You know, comparing RMS to Conan's uncompromising character is amusingly on-target. :) Thanks for making me nearly spit my drink, as that was awesome.

Re:What is best in life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39488937)

Not sure if to mod funny or insightful

Money Maker (1)

what2123 (1116571) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488901)

It's a success once you can profit from all the labor that was invested into it. Which is hard to do with a project that "never ends." Corporations seem to get the profit right away because they don't actually invest their labor into the problem.

Lots of things you can look at (5, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488925)

1. Did it solve the original problem it was intended to solve?
2. How many other people had their problem solved by it? (usage stats, as much as possible)
3. How many other people were motivated to improve it? (got involved as developers, testers, documenters, etc)
4. Did it reach a point where it was so darned useful and bug-free that nobody really needed to think seriously about the problem ever again? (e.g. GNU's "bc" utility, which hasn't changed since 2000, and does its job beautifully)

The ultimately successful open source project goes through a lifecycle of something like:
1. solve an immediate problem
2. get developers, testers, documenters involved solving the problem in a wider context
3. solve the problem for a whole lot of users
4. nobody thinks any more work is needed

Quite simple: a healthy and vibrant community (2)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488935)

When a project evolves into that state where developers and users get along an coexist peacefully, then you have an environment that benefits both groups. It seems like a simple social skill, but actually this is rather rare. I have been in a couple of projects, one where the users and developers have something of an acid relationship and have a confrontational nature. Little gets done, and nobody is happy. But in the other one, users, developers, and other contributors (I18N, addons, builds, examples, etc) all get along harmoniously and produce a wonderful product. The producer/consumer model does not work in open source projects. Mutual respect and courtesy are the key to getting the job done. This also includes upstream library developers, distro managers, etc.

The same thing (4, Insightful)

AdrianKemp (1988748) | more than 2 years ago | (#39488947)

The exact same thing that defines success in non-open source software: It does what you wanted.

Doesn't matter whether it's a log rotation script, a web app, a POS system or firmware for electronics on the next spaceship. Software success is determined by only one metric. Open source doesn't enter into it.

Success (4, Insightful)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489031)

Success is when you have reached the goal you have set, nothing more, nothing less.

An open-source project can be success even if it has NO users whatsoever outside the developers, and equally well it can be a failure even if it had 200,000 users. An outsider cannot really say whether a project is a success or not, it's the developers who has that say.

Re:Success (1)

Mandrel (765308) | more than 2 years ago | (#39491673)

A relevant quote [youtube.com] .

Easy - releasing it (1)

GNious (953874) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489057)

Easy: A release v1.0

A lawsuit. (3, Insightful)

DieByWire (744043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489079)

You know you've arrived when you've been sued for patent infringement.

A *second edition* of an O'Reilly or Manning book (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489107)

... describing the software you created.

That would be a Dr Hook moment [youtube.com] .

Yuo Fail IT... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489183)

Success = BrowserQuest (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489333)

This. [slashdot.org]

when you scare your corporate competitor (1)

DragonTHC (208439) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489489)

When your corporate competitor is scared enough to threaten you. That's how you know.

Gold Standard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489515)

When the entire industry goes to your product first to fill the need, then you have succeeded.

When the anti-MS zealots... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489547)

....start acting crazy.

Continued development (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39489567)

I think that continued development is hugely important.
So many projects are started and then quickly become stagnant.
Reach your goal, and continue to refine it.

Noble Aspirations (1)

Ukab the Great (87152) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489607)

When a how-to book about your project can be found in the computer book section of Barnes and Noble. Bonus points for making it to the "For Dummies" series.

The Production of Meaningful, Useful Documentation (3, Interesting)

Petersko (564140) | more than 2 years ago | (#39489689)

...and what a wasteland of failure lies before us... :)

When there is not a superior commercial product. (2)

crhylove (205956) | more than 2 years ago | (#39490423)

I would say under that metric there is Linux, Firefox, VLC, Bsnes, Dolphin (Wii Emu), Pidgin, SumatraPDF, Filezilla, Blender.... The rest of the FOSS world has some way to go.

I'd say there are a few that are getting close: Gimp, Ardour, Libre Office, OpenShot.....

The bummer is how many FOSS games are just not good enough. It's the year 2012, and there's STILL not a better FOSS Civ 2 than the original Civ 2. Almost all of the best emulators are FOSS though, so.....

Also disappointing is the audio apps. Winamp 2.81 is still the best on Windows. Audacious is good on Linux, but there's no Windows version, so.....

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 2 years ago | (#39491733)

Also disappointing is the windows> audio apps. Winamp 2.81 is still the best on Windows. Audacious is good on Linux, but there's no Windows version, so.....

FTFW. Windows appears to be the *only* operating system that is still stuck with horrible music software.

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

samoanbiscuit (1273176) | more than 2 years ago | (#39492953)

Another key feature of most of the successful FOSS projects GP mentioned is that they are all cross platform. If you don't have a Windows port, you're not going to be successful (this is considering only desktop apps). If only KDE had taken the time to port KOffice to Windows. They'd be miles ahead of LibreOffice and associated application now. But because they kept it exclusive to *NIX until quite recently, and even now have an awkward installation process, noticeable foreign looking window theming and tons of bugs, they'll never get traction against project with larger install bases. The more widely distributed your application is, the more users are using your app and promoting the features they like, more bugs are experienced and reported, more developers are likely to notice your project and want to help out, and more people are likely to hear about it, eventually the momentum snowballs into a Mozilla Firefox, or Apache Server or some other popular FOSS project. Refusing to port to Windows is a sign of either bad initial design decisions, or a dev team that doesn't realize the benefits of a huge userbase.

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

samoanbiscuit (1273176) | more than 2 years ago | (#39493007)

A lot of FOSS projects have Windows ports, they just don't get a lot of love (like the Audacious Music Player mentions previously). Whatever your feelings about Windows as a platform or as a product of Microsoft, the huge userbase gains should be reason enough to put a lot of love into the Windows port.

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

olau (314197) | more than 2 years ago | (#39495809)

The problem is that most people do it for fun, and it's just not a lot of fun to work on something you're never going to use and that requires you working in an environment you'd rather not work in.

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 2 years ago | (#39509469)

That's not entirely true. Sure windows may have 50-100 times as many users, but they sure as hell don't have 50-100 times as many developers willing to donate their time for free, otherwise windows would have a decent audio player by now!

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 2 years ago | (#39491901)

When there is not a superior commercial product.

xeyes?

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

Inda (580031) | more than 2 years ago | (#39494505)

Try the Foobar2000 audio player. It's almost open source; freeware with OS components.

It pisses on WinAmp for memory footprint (I still use it on a 14 year old P3, 384mb, while running a host of other programs), plays everything I chuck at it, and it feels like a FOSS application (no gimicks, no fancy graphics, no bloat).

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

Geeky (90998) | more than 2 years ago | (#39494647)

I'd say there are a few that are getting close: Gimp....

Not close. Not close at all.

Certainly not for pro or semi-pro use.

Re:When there is not a superior commercial product (1)

crhylove (205956) | more than 2 years ago | (#39519841)

I use Gimp professionally daily. For all kinds of web work, fliers, biz cards, posters... The only thing I miss from photoshop is cmyk and the heal brush.

The occasional ... (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#39492145)

... chair flying by your head.

Re:The occasional ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39505293)

As Ballmer rants about developers no doubt. :D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8To-6VIJZRE

That's easy! (1)

Sigg3.net (886486) | more than 2 years ago | (#39494591)

A name that no one can pronounce!

- How's your FOSS project doing?
- xcxcczgfhkklngs! Is a huge success! :)

My Project Is a Success, With Only A Few Users (1)

ios and web coder (2552484) | more than 2 years ago | (#39495027)

I write a project that addresses the needs of a very small population (I won't link to it, because I don't want to slashdot my server).

I only have a few dozen users, and we all agree that it is a rousing success.

If it meets the needs of its intended audience, in its intended scope, then it is a success.

Their own measure (1)

snadrus (930168) | more than 2 years ago | (#39500425)

Firefox's goal is to have an open web, not to be first in the browser market or even have a single user. Open Java's goal wasn't to have any usage of their product, but to threaten to enough to open the main (then Sun's) Java implementation.
If corporations were legally responsible to their charter (rather than maniacal about profit), the world may see successes that are equally as good for society.

FaceHub (1)

beefsack (1172479) | more than 2 years ago | (#39504983)

Success is measured by the number of forks the project has on GitHub.
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