You can make money with open source. Literally.


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This is an old story--two years old, to be specific. But it was new to me when I heard it at LinuxCon, and it was new to a lot of others in the room too. And it was a great story, so I wanted to share it further.

In 2008, the Dutch Ministry of Finance held a competition to design a coin that would honor the country's architecture.

To briefly describe the coin, on one side is a portrait of Queen Beatrix. But on closer examination, the portrait is made of of the names of Dutch architects. The names aren't all readable with the human eye, which the designer describes as a "compact disc" of information in the ancient format of a coin.

On the reverse are books by and about Dutch architects, arranged circularly. The shape in the center is an outline of The Netherlands. Bird silhouettes represent the capitals of the provinces.

netherlands coin

How is this relevant to opensource.com? The entire design was completed with open source software, including:

So the result? "Making money" with free software.

I recommend reading full explanation of the design. It's really remarkably well thought-out, and far more in-depth than most people probably consider when they're dropping their change into parking meters.

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2 Comments

ckoy's picture

The winner will be rewarded with a nice price, but most of all with the honor
Yes, the honor! It's the most important attribute in the reigning capitalistic order. There's no need for good stable income, there're no bills to pay, no children to raise 'cause they just grow themselves and all they need rains from the sky. We all can work for non-profits constantly avoiding tax liabilities 'cause no goverment really needs to collect taxes, right? You just take a cab, tell the driver you code open source for the glory and honor, and vooosh! He takes you anywhere, free of charge! Right?
While the guy using MS tools and systems is driving german luxury car, paying a hefty mortgage for his house, married with the awesome chick working at this bank, constantly traveling abroad and sending his kids to best schools; you, my eternally gullible penguin-fag friend, barely made out of your parents' basement (you made it, right?) to rent a 2 bedroom apartment, got engaged with this fat ugly raging chick, with no stable income, no stamina to plan your future and an aging Volvo. But, nah, you're cool. Right?

The acts of people like Google and Nokia CEOs are no different than those of Bill Gates' in 1990s:

  1. Set up the stage
  2. Exploit the gullible potential, to his last drop

It's just a different flavor of the kool aid.

Unidentified's picture

While not quite government issued money, you can also get open source coins minted with Tux, GNU, FSF and Debian here:
http://osstore.com