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Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business

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Offline Charles Pegge

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Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business
« on: February 26, 2008, 11:03:46 PM »
This substantial article discusses profound issues about how the economy of 'free' thrives in a digital world, where conventional economic theory, based on scarcity of resources, no longer applies.

One of the concluding paragraphs:
There is, presumably, a limited supply of reputation and attention in the world at any point in time. These are the new scarcities — and the world of free exists mostly to acquire these valuable assets for the sake of a business model to be identified later. Free shifts the economy from a focus on only that which can be quantified in dollars and cents to a more realistic accounting of all the things we truly value today.

Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business
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Offline Theo Gottwald

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Re: Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2008, 08:20:34 AM »
Somehow right.
Look at Google. A free Service for searching.
Now these days on the stock market more expensive then Daimler Benz.

The stock got from $100 to $700 (you could have multiplied your money by 7 - did you?).
Maybe the same chance applies to Baidu the new chinese search engine?

Offline Kent Sarikaya

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Re: Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2008, 01:28:27 AM »
I think for digital services and products it is the future. If you are musician, you can make money from merchandise of products for your fans and also from having bigger crowds at concerts. I am sure even new services can even come up to interact or perhaps jam with your favorite band type things for a fee.

For programmers, customer support seems to work well as it did for mysql for all these years.

For the web, I think it works because a nice busy site can generate more than enough money from ads. Check out this article on this teenager:

It is the future and once free or very low cost energy becomes a true reality and those inventing cool things are not murdered. If you search and watch the documentaries on free energy it is chilling to see how many are dead from strange circumstances. In New Zealand, one of the universities open sourced the design so that they could not be targeted and are putting the plans on the internet for free, derived from the work of one poor man who finally after 14 years got patents in the US and around the world, only to die after he showed a car that ran on instantly produced hydrogen from tap water, it even works better with salt water! He died from food poisoning, pretty chilling to watch the videos on you tube and see him working on the car after the lab tests and patents came through. Then you see the video of his car going down the road showing that it worked and then of course his death came.
But hopefully with the open source working on their own designs based on his patents this technology will come to be soon.

The future can be like Star Trek, you can see what seemed so utterly impossible be possible now with the breakthroughs happening. Very exciting times as well as dangerous.

Offline Donald Darden

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Re: Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business
« Reply #3 on: February 29, 2008, 07:42:49 AM »
It's an interesting topic.  If you look at virtually any object that mankind has ever fashioned, you might recognize certain distinctions, such as function, form, suitability to purpose, and craftsmanship.  Sometimes we prize things because of what they signify to us personally, and sometimes we accept the evaluations that others make for those objects.

What the digital age is doing is giving us the means of virtualizing many things that once were only part of our experience through physical interactions.  People are now able to enjoy many pleasures and experiences in a vicarious way, yet without the emotional entanglements and downsides that come from havng those things actually happen to us.  It's shallow, but for a short time it keeps us involved and interested.  TV, movies, video games, books, and even music can influence us in this way.  Thbe problem is that we become jaded and keep needing to find new experiences to enthrall us for a time.  Or deeper experiences that make a longer lasting impression on us.

Stripping content out from books, movies, and other sources and making it available in virtual (electronic) form means that we have reached a stage where we no longer the package and its contents as being inseparable.  We may yet reach a stage where AI can be used to gleam through the multiple writings on any subject and give us a composite best suited to our needs or understanding.

But what many people are looking for is some way to reduce the human experience to virtual forms that can be imposed on other minds or sences as though actually experienced.  If the human experience can be rendered in this way, then you could experience the thrill of being there, and only your credit card will ever know the difference.

Then, if we ever get to understand other species, perhaps we will get to know what a whale feels like when it hunts a giant octopus, or why killer whales seem to like humans, or what really drives a shark as it relentlessly searches for food.

What I find difficult to understand is the idea of "owning" virtual property or acquiring virtual wealth, or that there can ever be any parity between things in the real world and some VR universe.  But I guess if anybody got so far out there that they cannot distinguish what is real from what is not, that maybe the distinction is not so clear in their minds.