The secret life of open source developers

Ian Turton and Andrea Aime

Playlists: 'foss4g2019' videos starting here / audio / related events

A common question seen on many open source mailing lists is “When will you guys fix my bug? It is critical to my company!” This is often followed by one of the developers replying to say “When you write a fix or pay someone to do it”. This leads to the user complaining to everyone that this “snarkiness” is not a “welcoming” response or how unreasonable it is to expect them to learn to program, or to pay. The discussion often descends into a rambling maze of twisty insults and justifications. When the fuss dies down, all the developers go back to doing what they the were doing (something useful) and the user becomes either a dissatisfied user or an ex-user.

This talk by two veteran open source developers will help users see that play out from our the developer point of view. We’ll look at the reasons that drive developers to share their code, the licencing conditions covering it, the real life of developers and associated constraints, and what is actually reasonable to expect from both sides.

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