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Lessons learned from open source Xara's failure

Posted by: Anonymous [ip:] on October 13, 2007 04:31 PM
The Xara people need to understand that the simple act of releasing code does not an open source project make. You've got to have ambassadors to the open source world. You've got to have ambassadors on the corporate side who, first and foremost, ignore flamers. Most of the memorable posts by Xara employees were flame-feeders, saying things along the lines of, "stop complaining; you have what you need," or just being sarcastic.

I'm not a developer, I'm a designer/illustrator. I was impressed by the initial moves by Xara, but I resisted moving my work to Xara because the community was saying, "something's not right here" almost from the get-go. There were a few big red flags, and, as I mentioned, the corporate people came off as really stubborn. They're probably nice enough in person, but seriously, a community can not be purchased with source code.

I don't know if it's a good sign, but it's becoming easier to sniff out open source projects where there's a PHB in the background wondering when it will start to make him millions of dollars, vs. Shuttleworth-style projects where somebody has the wherewithal to make lots of peoples' dreams come true and works very hard at it.

(Well, that was corny, wasn't it? :-))


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