I was reading a SF book, where due to the End of the World, shops were being looted to the extend where the shopkeeper decided to just give everything away. And that is where it hit me. He could still make money out of it.
Nobody’s house is big enough to have everything. The shop owner could give away the goods, but sell the advice on what one needs to survive the longest in relative comfort (toilet paper, can opener, large UPS battery for the computer, etc). He may not make as much, but it certainly better than just giving it away with nothing returned. He may even be able to advise on what to take from other shops.
So, there we have it. People kept saying that the Open Source Philosophy of giving away the goods and selling the services would be applicable to many areas. I believe I have found an unexpected confirmation for it.
Oh, and the book was Messiah Node by Lyda Morehouse. It is 3rd in the series and the whole series is strongly recommended for a geek (only slightly less so for a strongly religious geek).
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