Back when I was at the university, in 1999, I had an issue with my Windows computer, and all the data from my hard-drive was lost. I was mad, I was really angry with Microsoft. I decided I would never use that OS again. I didn’t have much money those days, so a Mac was, unfortunately, out of my reach, but then a friend of mine introduced me to Linux and open source. Man did I fall in love with it. I installed Linux and became an avid developer and contributor to the open software community. I collaborated in lots of projects, and even thought later I switched to Mac OS X, I always kept Open Source in my heart… until recently.
I am convinced that the Open Source community has failed. It has failed because, back at the time, people using Open Source were developers and people with a desire to collaborate, work together, hack and have fun. If you found an interesting project, you would join in and collaborate. It would probably had lots of bugs, as it was usually maintained by a sole developer or a small team, but you won’t complain, because it was free, and I don’t mean “free” as “free beer”, but as “free speech” here, it was freedom for you. It allowed you to learn, to share, to help and improve the world.
This has changed now. I don’t know if it has something to do with the blossom of free, ad-supported Apps in our mobile devices, the “everything is free” culture, or just the overwhelming number of awesome Open Source projects out there -allowing you to use them without needing to care about understanding anything-, but it seems that users of Open Source now are kids who think they deserve quality software, and they deserve it for free. They expect everything to work flawlessly, be updated soon and frequently, and of course be available for them at no cost.
Of course I know Creamy is not (and has never been) perfect. I am not the best PHP programmer out there by any means, but it’s really frustrating reading kids complaining about your software, demanding you to deliver them quality software, and keep it fresh and up-to-date, letting you know that the project is probably that bad they don’t want to waste a minute of their precious time in it.
I know this is the world I live in, but I have progressively grown tired of finding this kind of attitude everywhere, and I have decided to give up collaborating with the Open Source community, at least in big projects. I have closed the Creamy project, and will be closing or making private the rest of the projects I have been working on. I will probably be writing about development and sharing small projects if I find the time, though.