James Governor's Monkchips

Open Source, Creative Commons and Free Sardines

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So i am back from a week in Greece, where i stayed here and here. check out this nightview. I didn’t take many pictures, if any, though-because i have been to these islands before; i was too busy soaking up the atmosphere to look for the new. not much to report but it was really nice to not look at a computer for a week. One really cool thing – every day at the second hotel, mid morning and dusk, hummingbirds came to drink the nectar from the flowers in our private garden–just lovely!

While i was soaking up the sun RedMonk finalized our Compliance Oriented Architecture report. Great job Stephen! We’re already generating some signifcant interest, not least because we decided to use a creative commons license. thanks Mr Lessig! Basically we believe in the commons and we believe in open source. we can’t exhort everyone else to use more inclusive models and then not do so ourselves. no–we’re really interested in the participative aspects of work carried out in the commons which is why we’re trying this approach. We don’t like Big Media and have no plans to act like it.

On that note, i i heard some hair-raising tales yesterday about another small analyst firm that seems to be pushing a pay for play model. We are certainly not not going to go there. we don’t charge for briefings and don’t plan to. we don’t prequalify vendors that want to talk to us. we do charge for our time when we add value, but we would never dream of penalizing any vendor for not paying us. One of the advantages of working for a small firm is that we can be both innovative and ethical – thus the creative commons.

Talking about open source i got an amazing insight while we were away. A basic tenet of the open source model is that you give something away–that is good community behaviour. Sometimes something valuable is passed on to the community. One night in Alonnisos we went out to check out the Fishermens’ Festival – an annual event in the port. These guys were cooking thousands of Sardines and giving them out for free- to locals and tourists alike. They had also done a deal with the wine makers too, because they were serving table wine in vast quantities to all and sundry. the Fish was grilled and amazing. The wine was a little rough but perfect with the fish. No bread. No potatoes. Just fish and wine. How much goodwill do you think the fishermen store up that night? how many eggs or milk or honey do they get from their neighbours in the winter months when the fishing isn’t so good. I am not sure, but it felt like open source to me. Its not pay to play, its share to play.

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