Power To The People: We Should Know How the Sausage Is Made - Open Source Technology

Power To The People: We Should Know How the Sausage Is Made - Open Source Technology

Knowledge is power. This adage, as old as time, holds a profound truth that is particularly relevant in the realm of technology. As we have previously discussed in this publication, the open access to information is a cause that we must fervently champion. In a world where technology is increasingly centralised, the importance of open source technology cannot be overstated.

Information Asymmetry

In the world of technology, information asymmetry refers to the imbalance that occurs when one party has more or better information than the other. This imbalance can lead to a power dynamic that favours the party with more information, often at the expense of the other. In the context of centralised technology, this can mean that large corporations or governments have control over information and technology that the general public does not. This can lead to a lack of transparency, reduced competition, and even potential misuse of information.


Decentralisation, on the other hand, is the process of distributing or dispersing functions, powers, people, or things away from a central location or authority. In terms of technology, this means that control over technology and information is distributed among many users, rather than being held by a single entity. This approach has several benefits, including increased transparency, improved security, and the promotion of innovation.

Rapid Innovation after Knowledge Share

Open source technology is a prime example of decentralisation at work. By making the source code of a program freely available, it allows anyone to modify, improve, and distribute the program. This encourages a culture of knowledge sharing, where ideas are freely exchanged and built upon. The result is rapid innovation, as improvements can be made quickly and efficiently, without the need to reinvent the wheel each time.

Reverse Engineer: Great Artists "Steal"

The concept of reverse engineering in technology can be likened to the idea that "great artists steal". In both cases, the idea is not about literal theft, but rather about learning from what has come before and building upon it to create something new and better. In the world of open source technology, reverse engineering allows developers to understand the inner workings of a program, learn from it, and then use that knowledge to create improved versions or entirely new programs.

So we can see that open source technology plays a crucial role in combating the dangers of centralisation. By promoting transparency, encouraging innovation, and levelling the playing field, it helps to ensure that the power of technology is in the hands of the many, rather than the few. As we move forward, it is essential that we continue to champion the cause of open access to information and the decentralisation of technology.