Subject: Re: A few here may have an opinion on this
From: Ian Lance Taylor <ian@airs.com>
Date: 24 Oct 2002 21:00:39 -0700

"Stephen J. Turnbull" <stephen@xemacs.org> writes:

>     Ian> I don't think you can use return on investment to come to any
>     Ian> conclusions about proprietary software versus free software.
> 
> It's not ROI, it's IRR.  IRR is a generic formula for evaluating
> projects, and may include (as in my case) the social benefits.  ROI is
> that part of the benefit captured by the investor, which is quite a
> different matter.  (Admittedly, I only can measure benefits that are
> included in GDP, but that still leaves substantial room for variance
> between ROI and IRR.)

Whoops, sorry.  Still, my point is probably still more or less true,
though certainly less obvious.

>     Ian> It's impossible to measure the productivity generated by free
>     Ian> software.
> 
> How _dare_ you say that _on FSB_?  How can you run a business without
> measuring the value of the product?  What value is there to software
> besides productivity?

I apologize for the ambiguity.  I didn't mean to say that it is
impossible to measure the productivity generated by a particular piece
of free software, or a particular FSB.  I meant to say that it is
impossible to measure the productivity generated by the set of all
free software.

Ian