Desktop applications and programming are being encompassed and enriched by connectivity to the Internet. Even closed systems gain by mimicking open web services. Hardware designs shared through web communities, experiences rapid prototyping and immediate feedback. The Internet has become an amplifier to our creativity. Designers can connect to builders in ways that they were not able to just 10 years ago.
The centralized hierarchy that controlled design and implementation has all but been removed. The most creative and expressive designs are happening as hobbies outside of the control of the corporate environment. Even the concept of ownership is being questioned as many developers find that sharing their designs allows for more rapid and effective improvements. What we are witnessing is the evolution of society based on the connectivity of the net. As we explore and share, we embrace the forces that empower this design pattern, and make obsolete the barriers to it's progression.
But how do individuals cash in $$?
- By applying a tiny tax on usage to the heaviest users aka Freemium
- By being the known source of a new platform. 37 Signals extracted Ruby on Rails from Basecamp, and it's the ultimate marketing for their tools. Dave Pollack @dpp started lift on scala and I think about him whenever I consider expertise for implementing a project in scala
- by consulting as a company for business users of your freely shared work
- freelancers can have a living breathing resume in the form of live sites/services and customers
- public speaking at conferences. But not through fees for giving a talk, but by connecting directly with businesses who want to include your work in their solution and are willing to pay license fees (related to freemium)
- systemitizing your knowledge and design patterns. YCombinator is leveraging the knowledge of folks like Paul Graham and the focused community effects between startups and successful entrepreneurs to own a small share of dozens of fantastic new businesses. Angels investors like Chris Dixon are gathering together to start their own funds based on their combined experience and business networks: Founders Collective, or John Borthwicks more hands on incubator Betaworks
- If you have heavy traffic to your site you can leverage personal advertising to pay the bills
while pointing visitors to a new visual social search tool