Subject: Re: A few here may have an opinion on this
From: Rich Bodo <rsb@ostel.com>
Date: Thu, 24 Oct 2002 14:46:45 -0700 (PDT)


On Thu, 24 Oct 2002, Chris Maeda wrote:

> Cute.  I'll bet you can't name one publicly-traded consistently-profitable
> free software business.

Well, if we could decide what a free software business is, we might
try.  Hey, why don't we just include businesses that depend on free
software for their livelihood, and say Microsft!  O.K. I am being a
smart ass now.  But how about RedHat?  They're profitable.  Not in
MS's class, but I have a guess as to why.  In the recent issue of CORE
(http://www.computerhistorymuseum.org/core/) there was a reprint of a
letter from Bill Gates to hobbyists dated 1978.  He complains therein
that he and his employees effectively make $2 per hour because of a
lack of sales due to piracy.  30 years later, no complaints.  Most of
my friends that own what I would consider free software businesses
started their businesses within the last 5 years or so.  There are a
few that have been around longer, but the majority are very young.  I
think we just need to give the small businesses that are out there
another 20 years or so to go public.

-Rich

Rich Bodo | rsb@ostel.com | 650-964-4678
> At 01:01 PM 10/24/2002 -0700, David N. Welton wrote:
> >Chris Maeda <chrismaeda@attbi.com> writes:
> >
> > > I looked up MSFT's latest financial release
> >
> > > ...
> >
> > > Do you still think that proprietary software is not a great business
> > > model?
> >
> >I'm no economist, but I think your sample group is 'micro' and your
> >data is very 'soft'.
>
>