community + git = value
This is why open source development and open collaboration in a community is great:
- Someone posts a question about a problem they have: http://groups.google.com/group/mapnik/browse_thread/thread/85ede4787e2dc32b/b87dc582e2cf1035
- I see this question find it interesting so I have a go at writing a solution. I release this freely and openly to anyone on github under a free software license (CC0): https://gist.github.com/1675606/eb39d06c948bae471fee902a3cb688f28cefc9da
- Original poster gets back to me thanking me and finding the solution I wrote useful.
- Someone else comes along and forks my code https://gist.github.com/1953554 adding some cool extra functionality to, building on my work to make something new and useful.
- We continue to build on the solution collaboratively https://gist.github.com/1675606/e8bfe1525478ada610ebc7f4d14eb433ed2866b1
None of this would have been possible without a platform to openly and freely communicate inside a community (1), free licensing and open sourcing of solutions allowing others to legally build upon others works (2), git and github a program and platform that allows one to publish derivative works that are visible to the original author but without needed permission or interaction with the original author (4, 5).
Albeit small, it is extremely rewarding to see this unfold upon my own work.