Applauds to them and the fantastic job they have been doing in the last decades.
- Level of quality that is so high that a rational commercial entity would have long ago decided that marginal gains in quality were uneconomic.
- Fills a niche that needs filling.
- Has an extended history of continual incremental improvement, most likely but not always having lived long enough to see the original creator pass the baton.
- Remains intelligible and consistent over time. If I’d been frozen a decade or two ago could I wake up today and feel familiar with the software?
SQLite is definitely on my all star list.
A sampling (probably leaving out #1):
- The whole damned OpenBSD project including OpenSSH. I mean, wow, if ever there were an unsung hero...
- VLC came up the other day, and I had to conclude that it’s been around sufficiently long (I thought I remembered late 90s, but was actually early aughts).
- Emacs and Vi/Vim (modulo some allowance for sometimes questionable quality, however I’ve used and depended on both)
- Postgres (since we’re talking about databases)
- XFCE Even though I only use bits and pieces of it today with XMonad, XFCE is the only stable, complete desktop environment for free Unixes if you take the long view. KDE and Gnome are unrecognizable as compared to their original versions. XFCE started as something of a spiritual successor to CDE built on less byzantine tech, and is still as functional and unpretentious as it was back in the day.
- Heaps of GNU CLI tools. We may not be living in the house Stallman built, but he and his project sure get credit for the remodel. Can you live without GNU grep? Me neither.
- Probably dozens others that I’m totally dependent on, that are as natural as oxygen to me. Bash? Zsh? I might live without one or the other, but certainly not both.
This caught my attention. Never heard of this problem before, but doesn't at all surprise me.