[svlug] Free Software and business models

Ivan Sergio Borgonovo mail at webthatworks.it
Sat Jan 11 15:52:23 PST 2003

Currently my Free Software local association is looking for economical 
reasons why developers and middle size companies developing software 
should choose Free Software.

We aren't looking to TCO, nor we would like to focus on the point of 
view of the client.

I'm a programmer and I started to make money with Free Software just 

I know why I prefer Free Software. I'm able to provide working 
solutions for problems I would never be able to work on alone.
I can just take a big project, working tool, chain of tools, put some 
glue, add some code and be able to sell a working solution.

Personalizations are 100 times less frustrating than on proprietary 

The development environment on Linux is 100 times better than what I 
was used to have on Windows and programming on Linux is much more fun.

Furthermore I don't lose the copyright of the software I developed.

I've found a lot of docs to motivate clients to choose Free Software, 
but I didn't find many documents to motivate developers, system 
administrators, software houses, service providers to choose Free 
Software based on economical data.

Most Free Software propaganda concentrates on the point of view of the 
users, not on the point of view of the developer or they just notice 
you can make money offering services and they don't go deeper.

Sendo and Zucchetti (italian company who develop accounting soft) gave 
us good clues about why it is better for companies to develop Free 

I think that most of you knew what happened to Sendo.

I'll explain shortly what is happening to Zucchetti.
Zucchetti was a good partner of Microsoft.

Now Microsoft showed interest in the accounting soft market and...
they started to say they are going to "fight Microsoft".

http://www.zucchetti.it/novita/conferenza_stampa.htm (Just italian)

They noted that the government chose MS for e-taxation and e-learning 
programs. They suggested to ask help to the EU and italian anti trust 
cometee etc... But in their "war plan" they never say they will ever 
develop Free Software.

Zucchetti sells for 155M EUR a year.
In Italy it would be considered a big middle size company.

We would like to collect a list of good economical reasons why 
developers (from free lance to companies) should choose to develope 
Free Software and support them with some case history.

Ivan Sergio Borgonovo
uniq life || sleep 24h

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