The Allocation of Software Development Resources in 'Open Source' Production

TitleThe Allocation of Software Development Resources in 'Open Source' Production
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2003
AuthorsDalle, J-M
Date PublishedFebruary

The paper develops a stochastic simulation model capable of describing the decentralized, micro-level decisions that allocate programming resources both within and among open source/free software (OS/FS) projects, and which critically shape their growth. The core or behavioral kernel of our simulation tool is based on dynamic "growing" trees, and incorporates the effects of the reputational reward structure of OS/FS communities as characterized by Eric S. Raymond (1998). In this regard, our line of investigation also follows recent approaches associated with studies of academic researchers in ?open science? communities. For the purposes of this first step, we mainly focus on showing the ways in which the specific norms of the reward system and organizational rules can shape emergent properties of projects, and we also point to a validation in this framework of the often adovcated, but yet mainly empirical "release early" rule.

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