Subject: One "Objectivist"'s view of FSB
From: ghost@ALADDIN.COM (L. Peter Deutsch)
Date: Fri, 18 Jun 93 13:17:48 PDT

> Kindly unsubscribe me from this list. It's gotten to the point that
> you all are discussing the number of angels that can sit on the head
> of a pin. Free Software Businesses will not work in the long run -
> you can't just give away your software and then hope that people will
> pay for support. It's not a good self-policing system. Anything that
> relies on the good nature of people is hopelessly lost from the start.

If you don't have crime, you don't need "police."  I don't see why you say
the FSB "relies on the good nature of people."  It uses a free product to
create demand for a commercial product.  There are plenty of examples of
that in the market.  You can argue that there isn't enough demand for the
commercial product to support the business that creates the free product,
but that's an economic argument, not one about human nature.

> You haven't nailed down your target market audience all that well
> either. FSBs may be good for low level products like TCP/IP Ethernet
> drivers. (Yes, crynwr, we have them in the FTP product. Pretty good,
> but the installation needs a lot of help.) But as far as end user
> products are concerned, what FSBs offer is similar to creating high
> quality iron pigs, handing them to the user, and then saying "OK, now
> make your ploughshare" when the user wanted a ploughshare to begin
> with.

You appear to be implying that FSBs cannot create end-user software, or
cannot make a business from end-user software.  You do not state any
reasons for this claim.

> As one last parting shot, socialism is dead. (Ok, so some of you haven't
> noticed this yet, and continue to tilt at windmills.) FSBs are founded on
> the concept of socialist computer programming.

My interpretation is that they are ultimately founded on the belief that
it is neither necessary nor desirable that a detailed accounting of
transfers of money accompany every human activity that creates or destroys
value.  If that's "socialism", I'm all for it.  If you want to discuss
this in more detail, please send private e-mail.

> -scottm
>  (An Ayn Rand Objectivist: keep this in mind when you flame me.)

[flame on]

For an "Objectivist", your message contains a surprising number of
subjective opinions stated as declarative facts.

[flame off]

L. Peter Deutsch :: Aladdin Enterprises :: P.O. box 60264, Palo Alto, CA 94306
ghost@aladdin.com, ...decwrl!aladdin!ghost ; voice 415-322-0103 ; fax 322-1734
	    "Implementation is the sincerest form of flattery."