Open Source: spinning straw into gold

Posted by VISITOR on Feb 6, 2005 9:08 AM EDT
Mad Penguin; By Christian Einfeldt
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Rumpelstiltskin is dead. And good riddance.

You remember the guy. He's the original loan shark. The town's miller is suffering from a mid-life crisis, lies to the king that his daughter can spin straw into gold, the king gets greedy, throws the daughter into lock-up giving 24 hours to work her magic or it's curtains for our heroine.

Poof. Enter the Nasty R. Before there were police scanners, bail bondsmen, or Danny DeVito, there was Rumpelstiltskin, hunkered down over his magic crystal, looking for pigeons in need of a short term, high interest loan. In desperation, under increasing demands from the king for more gold, Nasty R squeezes our heroine into agreeing to give him her first-born for more gold.

Now it's 800 years later, and Nasty R has moved uptown, and is living in a mansion near Redmond. Nasty R is done with taxing maidens in despair; that doesn't scale. If you want continuous gross margins of 80 percent, you need to lock-down desktop PC users and tax their OS and office productivity suite, which they never really own, but are only renting for three years or so. There are billions of these pigeons, you own the market, and life is good.

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