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« The Effective Executive | Main | TieCon 2006 »

May 10, 2006


Zack, you make a good point about how "open source developers shouldn't be caught up in adding every feature under the sun". Open source software seems to be better at figuring out which features are really needed by most people and not getting into the trap of trying to satisfy every need that a potential customer might someday have. Too many proprietary companies end up with bloatware because they try to provide too many features.

By providing the source code, open source software often avoids feature bloat. The source code gives a customer with a specific need the flexibility to add a feature. In some cases, projects nurture open source sub-communities who serve this purpose. Firefox, for example, has a robust community of developers who write extensions and themes that people can use to enhance Firefox with a flexible set of additional features. By providing these separately, Firefox avoids becoming too bloated with infrequently used features.

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