My Stuff

2010 Conferences

OSGi DevCon @ JAX London

February 23 - Keynote titled OSGi in the Enterprise: Agility, Modularity, and Architecture’s Paradox

EclipseCon

March 22 - 25 - Tutorial on Modular Architecture

Über Conf

June 14 - 17 - Sessions titled Turtles and Architecture and Patterns of Modular Architecture

Catalyst

July 26 - 30 - Two sessions on rich mobile applications and one on agile development. Half day tutorial on software process improvement.

Tweets @ Twitter

re: #apple event "We sold more iPads than any PC manufacturer sold of their entire PC line." 2012-09-12

re: #Apple Event ""Our notebooks now rank #1 in the US in Market share in the last three months." 2012-09-12

Right on. I just won a Best Buy drawing worth $1000. Either that or I won a shiny new virus by clicking the link. Hmm...what to do. 2012-08-29

The #osgi alliance response (http://t.co/KrN8XNWg) to the @mreinhold #jigsaw announcement (http://t.co/9YvcDdqC). 2012-08-29

Good Q&A with @mreinhold on project #jigsaw. http://t.co/9YvcDdqC. Modularity will change the way we design and run apps! 2012-08-28

LinkedIn Profile

The opinions expressed on this site are my own, and not necessarily those of my employer.

Developer, You Have a Voice

Filed Under Development, Industry |  

I’ve been thinking a bit more about the list of disruptive technologies on Richard’s list, and then I watched Dan Pink’s TED talk on the surprising science of motivation. There must be some relationship between the list, which is comprised of almost all open source software products, and Dan’s assertion that the 20th century reward system won’t work for the cognitive tasks performed by workers in the 21st century. What is it, though?

We develop open source software to scratch a personal itch, ease the pain in performing a certain type of task, or create a more compelling alternative to a commercial product. While the professional open source model has emerged the last few years as a way for the open source community to create a sustainable business model, none of the open source technologies on the list were initially developed that way. They were developed in response to need. Ant because Java lacked a good build system. Spring because Java EE was cumbersome and bloated. JUnit to help increase quality. In many cases, these tools have grown to become defacto standard technologies widely used by enterprise development teams.

In Dan’s mind, the new incentive program within organizations must revolve around three things - autonomy, opportunity, and purpose. We must be given autonomy, or the empowerment to make our own decisions. We must be given the opportunity to master something that matters to us. And we must be given purpose, which is the desire to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves. Dan notes that financial incentive is also important, but is not the decisive factor in what motivates us.

There are a lot of ways to connect the dots between the open source products so prevalent on Richard’s list and Dan’s point about incentives. I’ll allow you the opportunity to connect these dots any way you wish. A few that immediately come to mind for me include the way commercial software is sold, corporate incentive programs, empowering developers, and flaws in corporate culture. But here’s something else to chew on.

In most of the cases, it was the developer who spurred adoption of the most disruptive application development technologies of the last decade. We weren’t motivated to develop or adopt these great products because of financial incentive or a reward system. Sure, in some cases that’s a positive side affect, but it is not the force that motivates. Instead, we were motivated because they make our jobs a little bit easier and our software a little bit better.

Developers are fighting like hell to create better software. While a lot of commercial vendors are selling shelfware (they aren’t selling it to the developer, mind you), developers are driving adoption of the technologies that are making a difference. Developers seek autonomy,  opportunity, and purpose. Given corporate culture, it’s not always easy to find. But if the last decade is any indication, we are finding it, developers do have a voice, and that voice is being heard.

Comments

6 Responses to “Developer, You Have a Voice”

  1. dmdtech on February 2nd, 2010 7:20 pm

    I am not sure if I agree with your post here. See you do make the best point, I don’t think you have actually given a large amount of thought to the opposite side of the argument. Perhaps I could do a guest post or a follow-up, just tell me.

  2. Anonymous on June 18th, 2010 9:24 pm

    It is true that it is getting harder and harder to figure out where compensation for open source software will come from. Generally, I believe that ads will make a comeback. Right now open source is either a method used to undermine a competitor or to lead a customer into a pipeline. Can this go on forever? I don’t think so.

  3. Speech Writer on June 18th, 2010 9:26 pm

    It is true that it is getting harder and harder to figure out where compensation for open source software will come from. Generally, I believe that ads will make a comeback. Right now open source is either a method used to undermine a competitor or to lead a customer into a pipeline. Can this go on forever? I don’t think so.

  4. how to lose weight fast on February 28th, 2014 3:07 pm

    Hi my loved one! I wish to say that this article is awesome, nice written and come with almost all important infos.
    I’d like to see more posts like this .

  5. Ezequiel on March 21st, 2014 8:58 am

    Hey there, You’ve done an excellent job. I will definitely digg it
    and personally suggest to my friends. I’m sure they will be benefited from this website.

    Also visit my web site Ezequiel

  6. www.offshoredeveloperdirectory.com on May 1st, 2014 12:21 am

    Wow, that’s what I was seeking for, what a information!
    present here at this weblog, thanks admin of this web site.

Leave a Reply