The First Open Source – Ben Franklin?

Franklin Stove

Franklin Stove

I am a huge open source proponent, not just because of all the advantages it brings to the world, but also because the community demonstrates a way of doing things that is exciting because it so incredibly successful, surprising and, in my mind at least, has many of the same properties that are behind the success of the United States.   So I was really delighted to see near the end of Chapter 12 of Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography that when Franklin was offered the opportunity to patent his design for what we now call the Franklin stove, he declined believing that he had borrowed from others so he should share freely.  Wow.  The founding fathers are really the ones that started open source!

Graphic Credit: http://www.examiner.com/article/founders-series-who-was-benjamin-franklin-part-2-of-2

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