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From Jim Jagielski <>
Subject Re: incorporating? (was: Copyright & donating code)
Date Mon, 25 Jan 1999 15:42:49 GMT wrote:
> Correct. Apache has done incredibly well since it's grass roots inception.
> However that is all about to unravel. Let me expound a little. Let's examine
> the question of "market share" and "perceived market share". 

Well, I don't think that everything is going to unravel. In fact, I
personally believe the exact opposite. Open Source is hot right now.
Linux is hot right now. Apache is hot right now. And all are getting

> Unfortunately your good reputation (read perceived market share) will be
> diminished greatly by this lack of success in the windows market, which is
> comfortably owned by Mr. Gates and Co. with about 98% of the market. In this
> arena Apache is probably at about .01%. 

This is comparing the consumer market, using Windows to the corporate and
business market, which isn't a valid comparison. Instead, you have to
look at the "server market" and there's no way that MS has 98% of that
market, especially if you consider Internet services. Look at DNS handling,
Email, basic Internet functionality. MS's "influence" is small. If you
took away NT and MS today, the Internet would still work. There would be
obvious holes but for the vast majority of it, things would still get
by. Try the same for UNIX and, well, there _is_ no Internet. So using
this as a starting point for your discussion poisons the rest that

So saying that Apache has little or no success in the windows
market really is a hollow argument. Of what use would Apache be to
the grandmother down the road using her Micron computer to keep
in touch with her grandkids via AOL? Why, exactly, would she need
a copy of Apache on her PC? Thats like saying the market share of
"Be So Tall Lifts" among NBA players is very, very small, and therefore
it's a failure and we better come up with some plan to grab the
NBA market. ;)

Knowledge is a powerful thing. Before Open Source and Linux and Apache and
SAMBA become "well known", Lan managers thought that their servers were
_supposed_ to crash every day. As they become more informed, they are seeing
that things can be faster, cheaper and more reliable by NOT choosing
MS. Sometimes people may due to with something simply because they don't
know there are options.

Certainly it's nice to get Apache more "in the news." We welcome it.
I don't think that there's been a time when some journalist wanted
some info about Apache and we haven't helped out. We want the word
out. We want Apache used. But it's not so we can corner the market.

> Think about this one for awhile. Someone with no programming experience has
> just told you, with years of programming experience to stop what you are doing
> and solve some other nonsensical issue on another platform.

This is called handling a bug.

> The Apache group at the moment does whatever it feels. When was the last time
> someone added up all the PR's out there. Quality control is always an issue,
> but when the labor is free and dare I say strongly "opinionated" they go with
> "their" flow not always what's in the best interest of the company.

Well, I guess in a sense we do do "what we feel like", but it's with
our eyes and ears tuned to the web community. In some way, Apache
already IS a public company, and we are responding to our "shareholders"
who are simply those who use Apache and those that help develop it.

Of course, this does not mean that development of Apache is a free for all.
Obviously patches and code cannot be added willy-nilly. But I honestly
feel that we do what is right for Apache.
> This brings me back to market share. Your real market share is about 53% give
> or take. 
> Admirable, but how do you plan to grow this? No one has addressed this issue. 

This would be a valid point if the whole idea behind Apache was to take
over the market and make loads of money. WHY do we need to address the
issue of "We 'only' have 53% of the market, how can we grab more"?
Everytime the latest stats come out and Apache has, once again, grown
with deltas higher than anyone else, AG feels very happy and proud.
Our desire is to KEEP ON producing a kick-ass server, not to increase
market share. Sometimes creating something that you are proud of and
something that other people use and appreciate really _is_ enough.

> Remember these are all business decisions not programming decisions.

As Roy said, The Apache Foundation will exist to support and foster
Apache (the server). Not the reverse. Think of it this way; ladders
exist to allow people to reach higher. Without them, there's a limit
to how high people can reach. TAF will exist to allow Apache to
continue to grow and develop exactly as it has in the past. Apache
does not, and will not, exist to give TAF something to market.
And with this "protection" and support and infrastructure, Apache
will be able to keep obtaining fresh talent.
   Jim Jagielski   |||   |||
            "That's no ordinary rabbit... that's the most foul,
            cruel and bad-tempered rodent you ever laid eyes on"

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