TECH Why I love FOSS

Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
I updated to the latest Amazon SimpleDB Perl library to play with the new SELECT feature they added. I found that the lib did not work. I got pretty pissed off, because Amazon is a major company and their cloud database offering needs to 'just work' if they're going to get my business.

So I mouthed off about 'SimpleDB sucks' on twitter. A manager at Amazon saw my twitter, and the next day I had email asking me about the problem. I provided them with the offending line number, and my temporary hack to make it work. They patched the software and re-released that day.

Stuff like this is why I love FOSS. If there are bugs, I can fix them if I have to. Combined with good support, I get to help the owner of the code fix flaws very rapidly. Try that with SQL Server :)

Now, that being said... there is no way Microsoft would ever have had such a fundamental bug in a library. But rapid iteration in public beta is the reason Amazon is so far ahead of MS in the cloud, so I cut them some slack... as long as they have such kick ass customer service. And they do.
 

deusexaethera

OT Supporter
Jan 27, 2005
18,592
I like FOSS too, but I don't think it's the be-all/end-all of software. It's pretty much impossible to beat having a well-paid dedicated development team for getting good software done fast.
 
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Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
I like FOSS too, but I don't think it's the be-all/end-all of software. It's pretty much impossible to beat having a well-paid dedicated development team for getting good software done fast.

It is impossible to beat that, which is why I like FOSS projects backed by well-paid dedicated teams :) Thats how all the big FOSS projects are... the open collaboration by many is only possible because of the core contributions from a smaller number of paid dedicated developers. Then you get the best of both worlds. You can fix it yourself, help them fix it, etc. And they always want to hear your feedback, what you're doing, and how to improve the product.
 
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Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
has anyone submitted a ban request for codex yet? his trolling is getting kinda ridiculous

Its true, he's worse than the ogre was by far. I miss the Ogre, at least he only talked shit about topics he knew something about.
 

deusexaethera

OT Supporter
Jan 27, 2005
18,592
It is impossible to beat that, which is why I like FOSS projects backed by well-paid dedicated teams :) Thats how all the big FOSS projects are... the open collaboration by many is only possible because of the core contributions from a smaller number of paid dedicated developers. Then you get the best of both worlds. You can fix it yourself, help them fix it, etc. And they always want to hear your feedback, what you're doing, and how to improve the product.
Fair enough; I like Mozilla and Canonical too.
 
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Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
All the big projects are that way, one way or another. Linux, Apache, MySQL, Postgres, etc. pretty much any big project you can think of has people paid to work on it all day, that integrate the contributions of others.

The other day we ran across the L-Tree modification to Postgres created by some crazy Russians funded by the Russian government. Its totally solid, and solved a big problem for us. Also totally free.
 

deusexaethera

OT Supporter
Jan 27, 2005
18,592
Russians, huh? We'll see how long they're willing to cooperate with the rest of the world. I dunno if you heard, but the law that would allow Putin to serve a third term as president is as good as passed now. People who don't like it are being strongly encouraged to STFU about it.
 
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Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
Russians, huh? We'll see how long they're willing to cooperate with the rest of the world. I dunno if you heard, but the law that would allow Putin to serve a third term as president is as good as passed now. People who don't like it are being strongly encouraged to STFU about it.

I lived in Moscow for 8 months in 2002/3. It was fascist then. Its fascist now, the only thing that changed is they xferred more of the economy to Putin's KGB buddies since then and jailed all of the opposition but the writing was on the wall long ago. Putin is king for life. Most people are ok with that.

As to the Russians, I don't think they're going anywhere and if they lost their funding I'm sure lots of western firms would throw money at them, and probably they already do.

http://www.sai.msu.su/~megera/postgres/gist/

P.S. LOOK AT THEIR PICS
 

deusexaethera

OT Supporter
Jan 27, 2005
18,592
It's a shame, because for a while there they did a pretty good job of making it look like they didn't want to be fascist anymore. It's too bad the people there have to be strong-armed into not being entirely self-centered, because it's a vicious cycle -- when given the chance, they'll make it every-man-for-himself specifically because the government is constantly interfering with their lives.

Hell, it wouldn't even matter that much if they weren't so xenophobic. Maybe that's the penalty for having such a sparse population spread across such a huge mass of land -- there are so many under-patrolled borders where people can sneak in, that after a while everybody just sort of assumes that everyone else is an evil invader.
 
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Peyomp

New Member
Jan 11, 2002
13,906
It's a shame, because for a while there they did a pretty good job of making it look like they didn't want to be fascist anymore. It's too bad the people there have to be strong-armed into not being entirely self-centered, because it's a vicious cycle -- when given the chance, they'll make it every-man-for-himself specifically because the government is constantly interfering with their lives.

Hell, it wouldn't even matter that much if they weren't so xenophobic. Maybe that's the penalty for having such a sparse population spread across such a huge mass of land -- there are so many under-patrolled borders where people can sneak in, that after a while everybody just sort of assumes that everyone else is an evil invader.

Well, their government wasn't working at all and they needed a strong central figure to return some kind of order. The entire wealth of Russia was stolen by a few guys under Yeltsin, so most people see this as an improvement... and its hard to argue with them. It probably is.
 

deusexaethera

OT Supporter
Jan 27, 2005
18,592
I didn't know that happened under Yeltsin, but like I said, when given the option they will make it every-man-for-himself, to the exclusion of even their own families sometimes. It would probably take several generations of liberalism for that to wear off. Russia's expansionist history unfortunately precludes the people slowly and painfully building a societal understanding that working together is the best way to run a country.

Again, it wouldn't be nearly as much of an issue if they didn't seem to apply that every-man-for-himself attitude to international relations as well. Russia has enough natural resources that they could legitimately afford to ignore the hell out of the rest of the world for pretty much all eternity, but instead they're actively xenophobic on the world stage -- and given their size and their past behavior, that bothers a whole lot of people. Those people then take measures to defend themselves, which Russia then percieves as an unjustified paranoid reaction to their perfectly rational aggressive posturing. I mean, what self-respecting nation doesn't threaten everyone within arms' reach (pun intended) on a regular basis, right?
 

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