The Ubuntu Developer Network idea over in Brainstorm has been chugging along (thanks everyone!). However, two ammendments were proposed. One called for the service to be subscription-based with a low monthly fee, and the other, calling for it to be completely free. Since their writing, the “Keep it free!” suggestion has had overwhelming support. Perhaps it is my fault for not explicitly stating that the Ubuntu Developer Network is not so much of a service but a resource, and would be completely free along the lines of Ubuntu’s free to recieve, free to modify, and free to pass on mentality. It would be great for everyone — not just corporations, but individuals as well, building the critical community around the project. If there’s one thing holding Ubuntu back — it’s application compatibility. Why try to hinder that by requiring a monthly fee for something some people will not use for that long? Why should we limit the information that is available to individual who is interested in creating applications for a free and open system? It’s like creating a catch for the free Linux world. It just would not make sense. Do not get me wrong, I love capitalism, but there are other ways to make money in Open Source, just as Canonical has modeled in it’s paid support for it’s server offering. They also make money from the computers that companies are selling with Ubuntu preinstalled. If anything, with greater application compatibility, it would make Ubuntu more favorable for both computer companies and users.
What’s the Cost?