CoverI. Intellectual Property1. James Boyle, “The Why of Intellectual Property”2. James Boyle, “Thomas Jefferson Writes a Letter”II. Free Software3. Richard Stallman, “What is Free Software?”4. Richard Stallman, “The GNU Project”III. Open Source5. Eric Raymond, “The Cathedral and the Bazaar”6. Eric Raymond, “Homesteading the Noosphere”IV. Open Content7. David Wiley, “About the Open Publication License”8. David Wiley, “Open Content: The First Decade”V. Defining Free9. Franklin D. Roosevelt, “The Four Freedoms Speech”10. Richard Stallman, “Four Freedoms”11. Erik Moller, “Freedom Defined”12. Bruce Perens, “Debian Free Software Guidelines”VI. Defining Open13. Bruce Perens, “The Open Source Definition”14. David Wiley, “Open Content”15. OKFN, “Open Definition”16. David Wiley, “The Access Compromise and the 5th R”17. David Wiley, “Open Definitions, Specificity, and Avoiding Bright Lines”VII. Open Source Software Licenses18. GNU General Public License19. BSD License20. MIT License21. Apache License22. Comparison of Open Source LicensesVIII. Open Content Licenses23. Creative Commons Licenses24. GNU Free Documentation License25. Open Publication LicenseIX. Open CourseWare26. Charles Vest, “Disturbing the Educational Universe: Universities in the Digital Age — Dinosaurs or Prometheans?”27. History of MIT OCW28. MIT OCW Evaluation Report (2005)29. MIT Reaches OCW Milestone30. David Wiley, “OpenCourseWars”X. Open Educational Resources31. UNESCO Forum on the Impact of Open Courseware for Higher Education in Developing32. Cape Town Open Education Declaration33. UNESCO, “2012 Paris OER Declaration”34. Wiley, Bliss, and McEwen, “Open Educational Resources: OER Literature Review”35. Boston Consulting Group, “Open Educational Resources: The OER Ecosystem”XI. Open Textbooks36. Nicole Allen, “Open Textbooks: A Cover to Cover Solution: How Open Textbooks are the Path to Affordability”37. Frydenberg and Matkin, “Open Textbooks: Why? What? How? When?”XII. Research in Open Education38. OER Research Hub39. Open Education Group40. Marshall Smith, “Ruminations on Research on OER”XIII. The Economics of Open41. Yochai Benkler, “Coases Penguin, or Linux and The Nature of the Firm”42. Yochai Benkler, “Common Wisdom: Peer Production of Educational Materials”43. Yochai Benkler, “‘Sharing Nicely’: On shareable goods and the emergence of sharing as a modality of economic production”XIV. Open Business Models44. Eric Raymond, “The Magic Cauldron”45. OSI, “Open Source Case for Business”46. Various, “A Summer 2014 Conversation on Business Models in Open Education”

Eric Raymond, “The Cathedral and the Bazaar”

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Largely because of this paper, Eric Raymond is one of the leading voices and proponents of open source software. The open source software movement traces its roots back to the free software movement of the 80s and 90s. Rather than being motivated primarily by ideology, as is the case with free software, the open-source community is driven largely by the utilitarian gains that can be realized through participation in open source.  As society has moved more towards open source models, Raymond’s thinking and the community he inspired has heavily influenced intellectual property rights and laws as well as cultural norms regarding software production and development. For example, it is widely accepted that The Cathedral and the Bazaar persuaded Netscape to release the source code for its web browser and launch the Mozilla / Firefox project.

Key Points

In “The Cathedral and the Bazaar” Eric Raymond provides an outline of 19 lessons he has learned from his participation in the open source community. The thematic thread running through each of these lessons is the superiority of open source and open coding over proprietary software. Raymond offers a strong argument that open source software communities develop software faster, produce software with fewer bugs, are more innovative, and offer a better fit for the end-users than do proprietary software production companies. Raymond also outlines the various preconditions which must exist in order for an open source software community to thrive.

Discussion Questions

  1. According to Raymond, what pre-conditions must be met before open source software communities can flourish? Do you agree or disagree?
  2. Besides open source software, what other creative works are developed using similar principles to those outlined by Raymond in this article?
  3. What other production environments could benefit from incorporating these principles? Why?
  4. Which type of production environments would not benefit from the open source software approach? Why?

Additional Resources