Saturday, March 11, 2006

The SchoolTool lesson

Open source projects are not easy to execute. The team often constitutes people from different parts of the world; many of them are often volunteers; there are bound to be differences in focus between the person who funds the project and the people who work on it; and more than anything else it is bound to test one's team skills to the maximum extent.

In his blog, Mark Shuttleworth talks about the lessons he learnt from the SchoolTool project. See http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/date/2003/11/

As a freelancer, I found this lesson extremely relevant. I learnt not to focus on "my writing" but on the needs and style of the magazine. The magazine's editors know their publication better than me (although I do attempt to study a publication before writing for it), therefore any suggestions from them will only make my work gel better with the magazine. I always invite such comments and suggestions for improvement from the editors and gladly incorporate them in the article. I'd rather rework an article and present one which fits the bill perfectly, than an article which is "originally mine" but sticks out like a sore thumb in that magazine :-)

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