What's next after Open Source?

This talk is from the Crystal 1.0 Conference and the title refers to a brief part at the beginning, but then from 7:50 onward, the talk shifts into the interesting question of what comes next after the many issues regarding Open Source Software, developers, big tech, etc. https://youtu.be/XRl-it1-ruI


Thank you so much for sharing this link. I’m very interested in this topic and I think that Bruce hit the nail on the head: big corporations have evolved to deal with FOSS in the same exact way that 1% of bacteria evolves to survive soap.

I think I’ll try to reach out to learn more about the license he’s working on.


This is an interesting idea but I’m skeptical about these issues being fixable through purely licensing. The only way that can win is if all (or, at least, most) developers get on board this “one true license” and agree that splitting revenue by means of a popularity contest is the way to go. I can already see this backfiring when the left-pad Node package gets more money than Zig because it’s transitively included in almost everything…

What I agree with is the idea that GPL shoot itself in the foot by focusing on “linking”, which doesn’t cut it when you have large, distributed services crossing process and machine boundaries. An overhaul of licensing in a way that protects open source from exploitation is overdue, but I fail to see what the magic wand should be.


lol this is a good point.

My initial thought was also that if you try to challenge big tech with what is basically a frontal attack on their turf (licensing), you are also going to engage in a battle where you’re at extreme disadvantage. That said it’s worth engaging with other people that recognize the problem even if you’re not fully sold on their proposed solution.

I really liked from that presentation that it was someone who has worked on the VC side of the fence to come out and say how things are.

In my case, I guess I was still living in The (Open Source) Matrix and this presentation was the red pill. I know it’s quite a dramatic analogy, but now I see the possibility of the Open Source landscape like the “real world” presented in The Matrix. Only that “the machines” are big tech, the captive humans are us the developers, and the harvested energy is the code we produce and freely make available on massive repositories like GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket etc. It’s kind of scary, disappointing, frustrating. Another tough puzzle for us to solve.

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Sometimes I have thoughts, well it’s not really a battle between us, mere humans, and big corporations. It’s a battle of captivating people’s minds. If everyone is on the “good” side, then no one will ever do anything good to “big corporations” since people are aware of the harm it brings and will be unwilling to participate in it. But history doesn’t really give a lot of evidence for this point. It’s only us, true intellectuals, who are able to comprehend all the complexity of this vicious machine, others have more important matters to attend to, like family, children and less virtuous matters.