The world-wide success of Free Software brought up the question whether the principles of the production of Free Software can be applied to other areas and the society as a whole. Since 1999 the analysis done in Project Oekonux lead to theses which many find extremely exciting. The talk expands on some of these ideas giving a short introduction to basic Oekonux theory and then moves to some of the more recent findings.
The world-wide success of Free Software brought up the question whether the principles of the production of Free Software can be applied to other areas and the society as a whole. 1999 Project Oekonux was founded around this question. Since that time many analyses from different perspectives lead to theses which many find extremely exciting and give reason to a lot of questions, criticism and ideas.
The basis of the Oekonux theory is the finding that the way Free Software is produced differs fundamentally from the way proprietary software or other commodities are produced. Free Software is built not on the basis of exchange of money, commodities or work but on the Selbstentfaltung of the contributors. This has grave consequences for the development process as well as the resulting products.
Though non-exchange production has existed before Free Software is unique in it's success competing with a fully developed market. This success is a direct result of the development model of Free Software which delivers a higher quality than proprietary forms of production. Based on this it makes sense to distinguish between Simple Free Software and Double Free Software.
Project Oekonux puts these thoughts into a historical perspective and recognizes a fundamental change in the development of the productive forces. In this context Free Software is seen as a germ form for a new mode of production which first spreads in the digital world but has the potential to restructure all of society. It is interesting to compare this revolution with the bourgeois revolution which lead to capitalism some 200 years ago.
For all this digital copy is a fundamental technical development whiteout which Free Software is not thinkable. However, beyond the more technical aspects there are also interesting social and organizational aspects in the development of (Double) Free Software. One of the cornerstones is the maintainer model which is used in many Free Software projects.
The talk expands on some of these ideas giving a short introduction to basic Oekonux theory and then moves to some of the more recent findings.