FT on open-source and innovation
An interesting account in the FT of how the 'open-source' movement is now nurturing the innovation processes. It's called 'How open source gave power to the people':
In the internet age, it seems, the next big idea to change your industry may come from an unexpected direction. (...) Sophisticated tools that let individuals take part in the process of creation, the internet as a means to draw together communities of like-minded people, a willingness to share ideas for the common good – these are the basic ingredients of a new approach to innovation. (...) Even corporate giants are starting to learn from this. Microsoft, for instance, may take issue with many of the claims made for open source products but it does not dispute the power of some of the new working practices that are bringing them about. (...) To outsiders, the prospect of loose communities of innovators sharing their ideas can seem counter-intuitive. Why would creators of valuable intellectual property freely hand it over to others to exploit? (...) A growing body of literature, along with the experience of industries such software, provides some explanation. By building on work already done by others, companies can use their scarce R&D resources more efficiently. (...) Customers, meanwhile, contribute ideas because they can lead to products that more closely meet their needs. Or, suggests Mr von Hippel, they do it for the recognition they get from their peers – something noted** by Eric Raymond, one of the first chroniclers of the open source community – or just for the fun of it.
Why do I blog this? I am interested by this trend and feel like that the future is clearly a mix of open-source behavior, co-creation, analogy-based industries (transfering ideas from other fields as described in the article with the kite-surfing example), 'consommacteurs', 'minipreneurs'...