Local heroes

Summary:Open source programmers are heroes, according to a new report from Demos, a British think tank.(Hey, I always thought so.

Open source programmers are heroes, according to a new report from Demos, a British think tank.

(Hey, I always thought so.)

The report, called The Pro-Am Revolution: How enthusiasts are changing our economy and society, by Charles Leadbetter and Paul Miller, compares "pro-am"programmers to volunteer firemen, lifeboat rescue squads and Samaritans, saying they're "providing the only real challenge to Microsoft's dominance of the personal computing market," and citing the Firefox browser as an example of what such heroes are doing.>>

The authors prefer the term "pro-am" for open source volunteers to such derogatory names as geeks, nerds, four-eyes, get-a-life, or sheesh-do-you-ever-bathe?

And so, our question. What term should we use to describe the open source volunteers who do so much to enrich our computing life?

Local hero suits me. But it's your lifestyle, how would you prefer to be addressed? (I'm sorry, but Your Satanic Majesty is taken.)

Topics: Open Source

About

Dana Blankenhorn has been a business journalist since 1978, and has covered technology since 1982. He launched the Interactive Age Daily, the first daily coverage of the Internet to launch with a magazine, in September 1994.

zdnet_core.socialButton.googleLabel Contact Disclosure

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Related Stories

The best of ZDNet, delivered

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
Subscription failed.