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Modularity in Action: GNU/Linux and Free/Open Source Software Development Model Unleashed

Alessandro Narduzzo () and Alessandro Rossi ()

No 20, ROCK Working Papers from Department of Computer and Management Sciences, University of Trento, Italy

Abstract: Organizational and managerial theories of modularity applied to the design and production of complex artifacts are used to interpret the rise and success of Free/Open Source Software methodologies and practices in software engineering. Strengths and risks of the adoption of a modular approach in software project management are introduced and are related to the achievements of the GNU/Linux project as a whole, as well as to the outcomes of some of its sub--projects. It is suggested that mindful implementation of the principles of modularity may improve the rate of success of many Free/Open Source software projects. Specific case studies here depicted, as well as indirect observation of common programming practices employed by Free/Open Source developers and users, suggest a possible revision towards an improved theory of modularity that may be extended also to settings different from software production.

Pages: 38 pages
Date: 2003-01, Revised 2008-06-13
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Working Paper: Modularity in action.GNU/Linux and free/Open source sotfware development model unleashed (2003) Downloads
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