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oss research email interview-- questionnaire attached

From: Yuwei Lin
Subject: oss research email interview-- questionnaire attached
Date: Thu, 12 Dec 2002 22:20:54 +0000

Hi there,

-- Apologise if you have seen this message before from other lists --
-- If you have helped me with this questionnaire, thank you very much --
-- If you haven't done so, here is your second chance doing something good--

This is Yuwei Lin from the university of York, UK. I am a PhD student working in the sociology of science and technology studies. My research is about the institutionalisation of open source software practice. To collect empirical data, I have designed a short questionnaire as follows. I would really appreciate it if you could take 10 minutes answering these questions and email back to me. These data would not only help me conduct my research but also be good for the whole OSS community when being used by other researchers in future research projects. Your information would be made anonymous. Unless you request otherwise, your
name will be replaced with a code consisting of two letters and the date of the interview: e.g. AA230501. Other people that were mentioned during the interview will also go unnamed. Anonymity will not, however, cover names of companies, organisations, or government bodies, unless this is specified by you.

It would be fantastic if you can try to send your answers back to me before Christmas so that I can have a Merry Christmas. Thank you very much.

Best Regards,

-------   Questionnaire   ---------

1. To begin with, can you just give a brief description of your current
work? Whether this has formal link to the computer industry?

2. What is your experience of using open source software? What do you
think are its strengths and weakness?

3. Are there times when you use the functionality of open source
software to develop your project/program? If so, can you give an example
(this can relate to writing simple scripts, application developments or
even kernel programs)?

4. What sort of issues do you discuss in the informal communication with
other open source practitioners? How do you think these issues have
changed in recent years?

5. Could you have a look at the following list of activities:
1) Interest in tackling software problems and resolving them.
2) Writing challenging scripts to explore software vulnerabilities.
3) A strong interest in decryption, code-breaking and code making.
4) Writing creative scripts and sharing them.
5) Developing novel hardware and sharing the proprietary information on
  which it is based.
Are these similar to your own activities when engaged in software projects?
If not, could you summarise your software activities in your own words? Do you think that software innovation is fully captured by the list? Do you think
some of these are especially important for open source software compared
with a proprietary system. If so, can you say why?

6. Some programmers engaged in open source software development have
considered themselves as computer hackers. How do you think about that?
Do you regard yourself as a hacker as well?

------   Thank you very much for your help.  ------
Yuwei Lin
Science and Technology Studies Unit (SATSU)
Department of Sociology
University of York
York YO10 5DD
Tel. +44-01904-434742
Fax. +44-01904-433043

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