In my quest to convince the Pointy Haired Bosses that open
sourcing our new accounting app is a good thing, I came
across an inportant discovery. I don't need to estimate
the amount of support revenue that the GPL'd product will
bring in. For GPL'ing the software to increase revenue, it
just needs to bring in more support dollars than you will
in licensing fees. Given that we've always went after a
niche market, this is almost a certainty.
If anyone wants it, here is a great paper by Paul Everitt of Digital Creations (Zope) about why they open-sourced their product. It's a wonderful paper that makes a very strong business case... I'm surprised I hadn't come across it before.