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Why some open source projects die?

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Open Source community is really huge and everyday we witness new software being released. Most of the softwares are aimed to solve some set of problems. Surfing over Github or BitBucket one can see most of them. Red Hat, billion dollar revenue says that Open Source is a viable business model & is here to stay.

Ohloh, a web portal and activity tracker which monitors various Open Source projects, has listed 660,919 projects. Big numbers, isn’t it?

But a  closer look at statistics gives a shocking observation. Over 50% of the listed available projects[available PAI] are either inactive or have very low participation.

atul-jha-graph-1

What went wrong with them?

Not too many interested contributors
Open Source project hugely depends on community contribution. If it’s not lucrative & does not address the needs of contributors it is almost  dead.

Not too many users
Even though  if one has built a brilliant software, unless it has users to test/deploy it in production environment and give the feedback, the developer may lose his motivation to pursue further.  One needs to find motivated evangelists to promote the software for traction

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Not moved on with time
Cloud computing is the next big thing, if you want to stay in the picture better change your software to fit in the distributed environment.

Atul Jha (@koolhead17) has been actively involved in many FOSS project for over 10 years now.

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