Benevolent dictator for life

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Benevolent dictator for life (BDFL) is a title given to a small number of open-source software development leaders, typically project founders who retain the final say in disputes or arguments within the community. The phrase originated in 1995 with reference to Guido van Rossum, creator of the Python programming language.[1][2] Shortly after Van Rossum joined the Corporation for National Research Initiatives, the term appeared in a follow-up mail by Ken Manheimer to a meeting trying to create a semi-formal group that would oversee Python development and workshops; this initial use included an additional joke of naming Van Rossum the "First Interim BDFL".[1] Van Rossum announced on July 12, 2018, that he would be stepping down as BDFL of Python.[3]

BDFL should not be confused with the more common term for open-source leaders, "benevolent dictator", which was popularized by Eric S. Raymond's essay "Homesteading the Noosphere" (1999).[4] Among other topics related to hacker culture, Raymond elaborates on how the nature of open source forces the "dictatorship" to keep itself benevolent, since a strong disagreement can lead to the forking of the project under the rule of new leaders.

Referrant candidates[edit]

Name Project Type Reference
Juan Benet InterPlanetary File System Decentralized internet [5]
Sylvain Benner Spacemacs Community-driven Emacs distribution [6]
Vitalik Buterin Ethereum Blockchain-based cryptocurrency [7]
Dries Buytaert Drupal Content management framework [8]
Evan Czaplicki Elm Front-end web programming language [9][10]
David Heinemeier Hansson Ruby on Rails Web framework [11]
Rich Hickey Clojure Programming language [12]
Adrian Holovaty
and Jacob Kaplan-Moss
Django Web framework [13]
Laurent Destailleur Dolibarr ERP CRM ERP and CRM [14]
Francois Chollet Keras Deep learning framework [15]
Xavier Leroy OCaml Programming language [16][17]
Yukihiro Matsumoto (Matz) Ruby Programming language [18]
Wes McKinney Pandas Python data analysis library [19]
Bram Moolenaar Vim Text editor [20]
Matt Mullenweg WordPress Content management framework [21]
Martin Odersky Scala Programming language [22]
Taylor Otwell Laravel Web framework [23][24]
Theo de Raadt OpenBSD A Unix operating system [25]
Ton Roosendaal Blender 3D computer graphics software [26]
Sébastien Ros Orchard Project Content management system [27]
Mark Shuttleworth Ubuntu Linux distribution [28]
Don Syme F# Programming language [29]
Linus Torvalds Linux Operating system kernel [11][30]
José Valim Elixir Programming language [31]
Pauli Virtanen SciPy Python library used for scientific and technical computing [32][33]
Patrick Volkerding Slackware Linux distribution [34]
Nathan Voxland Liquibase Database schema management [35]
Shaun Walker DotNetNuke Web application framework [36]
Larry Wall Perl Programming language [37]
Jeremy Soller[38] Redox Operating system [39]
Stephen Wolfram Wolfram Language Programming Language [40]
Eugen Rochko Mastodon open source, decentralized social network [41]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Guido van Rossum (July 31, 2008). "Origin of BDFL". Artima.com. Archived from the original on July 21, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2008.
  2. ^ "Python Creator Scripts Inside Google". eWeek. March 6, 2006. Archived from the original on August 9, 2018. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  3. ^ Van Rossum, Guido (July 12, 2018). "Transfer of power". mail.python.org. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  4. ^ Eric S. Raymond (2000). "Homesteading the Noosphere § Project Structures and Ownership". Eric S. Raymond's Home Page. Archived from the original on July 1, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2008.
  5. ^ "Understanding the IPFS White Paper part 2". Retrieved August 21, 2017.
  6. ^ "Spacemacs COMMUNITY.org". Retrieved August 24, 2017.
  7. ^ "Ethereum's Boy King Is Thinking About Giving Up the Mantle"
  8. ^ Randy Fay, "How Do Open Source Communities Govern Themselves?"
  9. ^ "56: Ember vs. Elm: The Showdown with Philip Poots | The Frontside Podcast". The Frontside Podcast. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  10. ^ elm-conf (September 19, 2016), "Code is the Easy Part" by Evan Czaplicki, retrieved August 14, 2017
  11. ^ a b Constine, Josh (December 7, 2012). "Dropbox Hires Away Google's Guido Van Rossum, The Father Of Python". TechCrunch. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  12. ^ "Clojure JIRA Workflow". Archived from the original on November 13, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  13. ^ "Adrian and Jacob retiring as Django BDFLs". Adrian Holovaty. January 12, 2014. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  14. ^ "Dolibarr project organization, different roles of actors".
  15. ^ "Keras API Special Interest Group, Leadership".
  16. ^ "A History of OCaml | OCaml.org". Retrieved September 18, 2015.
  17. ^ "OCaml Infrastructure mailing list". Retrieved September 18, 2015.
  18. ^ "A Ruby Design Process". Retrieved April 17, 2016.
  19. ^ "pandas 0.20.3 documentation: Tutorials". Retrieved July 24, 2017. "Wes McKinney's (pandas BDFL) blog"
  20. ^ "Why Neovim is Better than Vim". Retrieved September 30, 2015.
  21. ^ "Thesis, Automattic, and WordPress | Post Status". Retrieved July 24, 2015.
  22. ^ "Programming in Scala Leaps onto the World Stage!". Retrieved November 25, 2015.
  23. ^ "Taylor Otwell, Twitter". Taylor Otwell. October 9, 2014. Retrieved October 9, 2014.
  24. ^ "Taylor Otwell, Creator of the Laravel PHP Framework". August 5, 2014. Retrieved August 5, 2014.
  25. ^ Hildebrand, Matthew (July 5, 2005). "Interview: Theo de Raadt on Industry and Free Software". The Epoch Times. The Epoch Times. Archived from the original on June 21, 2015. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
  26. ^ "Developer Intro/Overview". Retrieved July 20, 2018.
  27. ^ "Orchard Project Steering Committee". Archived from the original on August 12, 2015.
  28. ^ "Ubuntu carves niche in Linux landscape". CNET. Archived from the original on November 6, 2015.
  29. ^ "Contributing to the F# Language and Compiler". Retrieved September 29, 2015.
  30. ^ Dee-Ann LeBlanc (July 31, 2006). Linux For Dummies (7th ed.). John Wiley & Sons. p. 15. ISBN 978-0-470-04793-4.
  31. ^ "Elixir Companies". Retrieved November 1, 2017.
  32. ^ "SciPy 1.0.0". Retrieved October 27, 2017.
  33. ^ "SciPy project governance". Retrieved October 27, 2017.
  34. ^ "Stories of Linux: A Look at Slackware Linux". linux.com.
  35. ^ "User and Developer Community | Post Status". Retrieved August 13, 2015.
  36. ^ Book: Building Websites with DotNetNuke 5, Michael Washington and Ian Lackey, Packt Publishing. Page 14 "The core team comprises individuals invited to join the team by Shaun Walker, whom they affectionately call the "Benevolent Dictator"."
  37. ^ "The Art of Ballistic Programming". Archived from the original on June 17, 2013.
  38. ^ https://gitlab.redox-os.org/jackpot51
  39. ^ "CONTRIBUTING.md · master · redox-os / redox".
  40. ^ "Wolfram Language (Mathematica) vs. Python for Data Science Projects".
  41. ^ "Mastodon is crumbling—and many blame its creator".