How should open source programmers make money?

 

https://www.quora.com/How-should-open-source-programmers-make-money/answer/Terry-Lambert?share=e265aa5a&srid=nwaF

Different people split this up different ways, but here’s my list of software models:

  • The Jacquard loom model.
  • The early research model
  • The early IBM model
  • The AT&T forced model
  • The late research model (Copycenter)
  • The proprietary model (Copyright)
  • The shareware model
  • The GPL model (Copyleft)
  • The Mozilla model
  • The modern tactical model


Each of these models has (or had) their benefits and drawbacks. The order I’ve arranged them in is roughly their historical order.

So back to the original question…

Individual programmers can profit from Open Source by:

  • Fame/exposure; generally most people can’t take this route, and it only gets you hired some places
  • Being paid by a company to develop it
  • Writing books about it
  • Getting grants/stock options over it (Linus Torvalds became very rich this way; however: you are not Linus)

    Leveraging Open Source as part of a project (tactical code); bonus: you offload ongoing support and maintenance onto the community, so long as your contributions actually provide value to them

  • They build reputation in the community
  • They have something to point to as work they’ve done
  • They build their resume

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