WARNING(virus check bypassed): Re: [development] One core, many distributions

Charlie Lowe cel4145 at cyberdash.com
Wed Nov 23 16:38:25 UTC 2005

Gerhard wrote,

"No, no, and no. The "community" (I hate that word) is not the reason
d'etre for Drupal or the reason why anybody would develop for it. The
reason is to get stuff done for our own needs. You are free to use it,
too. But that's it."

Okay. I'm non-coder, but I do work with Drupal for my "own needs," and 
would suggest that here is part of the conflict which traces back to 
Liza's post. It all depends on your perspective of what is important 
about open source (or free software if that is your term). I've been 
doing lots of reasearch on open source lately, and IMHO, the idea that 
the community is unimportant and that the code is "free to use" is very 
short-sighted. In The Success of Open Source, Stephen Weber explains 
that “the essence of open source is not the software. It is the process 
by which software is created” (56).  The licensing merely gives users 
rights. The fact that the open source product becomes available in a 
gift economy for everyone to use is not the end in itself, but rather 
the means to that end as Ilkka Tuomi pointed out in an article on First 
Monday, “open-source communities control the developmental dynamic of an 
evolving good. The 'openness' of open source, therefore, is more about 
open future than about access to currently existing source-code text” 

So for those for whom Drupal is not just a short term solution for a 
client, but part of a long strategy for developing a successful 
consulting business (or other types of career advancement), the 
community is very important, and even the end users of which Liza 
speaks. Open source depends on collaboration--and as long as the 
workflow processes and organizational structure can handle it--increased 
growth in the community. End users play an important role in this. For 
every 100 new end users, there are 100 new people potentially marketing 
Drupal for those trying to build a client base. And out of those 100, 
there are probably at least a few who will contribute to development and 
increase the functionality of the product.

Need further convincing? I sent the following statistics to Dries at the 
end of October. For anyone who's long term prosperity depends on 
Drupal's brand name succcess (and I think it does; IMHO, DeanSpace, for 
example, did a lot for advancing Drupal's community growth), consider 
the followiong statistics. I'm sure they haven't changed much in the 
last month. Are the perceptions represented there going to make a 
difference in everyone's current client work. Probably not. Is it going 
to affect most people's ability to build a larger client base and more 
successfuly consulting opportunities? Most definitely so.

Charlie Lowe

Check out the Google results on these phrase and term combinations:

"Drupal sucks" 627 hits
"Mambo sucks" 289 hits
"PostNuke sucks" 341 hits
"Plone sucks" 123 hits

"Drupal is easy" 100 hits
"Mambo is easy" 656 hits
"PostNuke is easy" 117 hits
"Plone is easy" 514 hits

"Drupal is hard" 52 hits
"Mambo is hard" 43 hits
"PostNuke is hard" 5 hits
"Plone is hard" 28 hits

"Drupal is difficult" 280 hits
"Mambo is difficult" 89 hits
"PostNuke is difficult" 44 hits
"Plone is difficult" 14 hits

Now what's interesting are these keyword stats:

Drupal usability 372,000 hits
Mambo usability 338,000 hits
PostNuke usability 82,900 hits
Plone usability 147,000 hits

A lot of talk about Drupal usability, but it seems that more needs to be 
accomplished to change public perception.

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