Word of the Day: Tech Definitions from WhatIs.com

Feb 18 2008   1:39PM GMT

Overheard: The beekeeper model and open source software

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse

jamesdixon.jpg The customers don’t want to deal with the bees. A single bee or even a swarm of bees cannot directly meet the needs of any of the Bee Keeper’s customers. It is the work of the Bee Keeper that turns the efforts of the bees into products that the customers desire. The honey in the jar is the same honey that was in the hive, but the customers will only pay for it in the jar. Likewise the commercial customers don’t want to deal with open source. They want ‘whole product’.

James Dixon, The Beekeeper Model

James Dixon compares the open source community to bees and a company like Red Hat as the bee keeper. Great analogy.

The beekeeper creates an environment that is attractive for bees: accommodation and a natural, food-rich habitat. The bees do what they do naturally and make honeycombs. The beekeeper sells the honey and bees-wax to his customers and uses the money to grow his bee farm.

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