democratizing development

democratizing innovation by eric von hippel is a fairly dry, academic business book, which made it tougher than i had expected to get through. there are some interesting observations and insights in the book, but they are perhaps too few and far between. you can read the book online.

over on planet mysql, the related topic of distributed version control has gotten some attention, with some shout-outs to free tools for doing distributed development. (i’ll add one for mercurial.)

ian bicking tries to argue in favor of centralized scm systems, but i think he’s neglecting the cost imposed on the center of the project by such centralized systems that the distributed systems do a really good job of distributing — you can impose something even better than his proposed “we don’t accept patches, we only accept pointers to branches in our repository” — “we don’t accept patches, we only pull changes from publically-available repositories.”

i can’t imagine the security nightmare of providing global check-in access to everyone, and the complexity of tools that would be required to manage the layers of dead-end branches.

« august 6, 2005 8:47am august 6, 2005 4:18pm »