The cathedral and the bazaar – and what should have been pointed out years ago


Introductory:

The cathedral and the bazaar was an essay comparing proprietary, slow and non-open software development (the cathedral) with an open market of ideas and developments (the bazaar) which explained how the bazaar was superior as the best ideas would evolve / win there – unlike for example software development at microsoft back then.

10 years ago it caused a longrunning discussion and got really famous, with many people convinced of it. that included me.
today, after 8 years in the world of commercial unix systems and tasked, but not responsible, for replacing them with linux boxes I feel I need to point at some flaws in the mental picture we had.

The question I’m asking is:

In the end – would you rather see a cathedral that will last for centuries as a masterpiece of arts or would you rather have a muddy bazaar that never raises above cheap pottery and the likes?

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