I think today is my musings day.
I sometimes wonder if Linux and free software projects
becoming business is a good thing. I mean on the positive
side it does mean people can get to work fulltime on Linux,
GNOME, Apache etc., but on the other hand the reason many
of us enjoyed working on these projects to begin with was
the stressles, only work at what you find fun, situation
that comes with a truly volunteer system like the free
software community mostly was uptil 2-3 years ago.
When I started out I used to read Freshmeat everyday to see
if there was something ‘new and cool’ out, and if there was
I would eagerly compile the 0.0.1 release to test it out.
Today things have moved to a different level and instead of
being excited about the existence of a project to do xyz,
we now have apps that can do xyz in most common cases and
the focus have moved to issues like portability,
accessibilty, usability, release schedules etc. I don’t
really find that as exciting for some reason. So today I
can use Linux and GNOME as a tool to do my job, but I do
sometimes miss the good ‘ol time when it was just a fun
This being said I don’t really want to go back to
the good old days either. Having fifthy 0.0.1 apps that
could almost do something was fun at the time, but today I
am older and less full of energy and would probably find
those 50 ‘almost’ apps mostly frustrating. I guess it would
be like seeing one of those movies from your youth that you
remember as extremely funny, but seeing in again you just
find it rather stupid and plain.
In case you wonder what made me think about these
issues, well it is not software related at all actually.
What started my thinking about the good ‘old’ days was
meeting again the most beautiful girl of my college years
early last week first the first time since graduation day
10 years ago. She had in my mind since that time always
stood out as the dream girl I wished I could meet again.
Well actually meeting her again was a big wake-up call, not
only had she gotten really old during those 10 years not
even being close to the beauty I remembered, but meeting
her again and talking to her made me also remember the
reason why I didn’t really pursue a relationship with her
back then, she was now as then rather dumb and shallow.
Having gotten my illusion broken I started feeling rather
old myself and that started me thinking about how much
better things where before. Which I rationally know is not
true, things where not better before it is just that you
always forget the trouble and remember the only the good
times. I am sure that in 10 years time I will one day sitt
back and think ‘darn how much better things was 10 years
ago’, no children to feed and take care of, no wife to keep
happy and no giant house loan to strugle with, just me and
all the opportunities the world had to offer <g>