Open Business Models

The Manufacturing Delusion

  1. In other words, software is largely a service industry operating under the persistent but unfounded delusion that it is a manufacturing industry.” – is education the same way? Are we really selling mentoring and care when we’re trying to sell information?
  2. Variables
    1. Reliability/stability/scalability are critical.
    2. Correctness of design and implementation cannot readily be verified by means other than independent peer review.
    3. The software is critical to the user’s control of his/her business
    4. The software establishes or enables a common computing and communications infrastructure.
    5. Key methods (or functional equivalents of them) are part of common engineering knowledge.
    6. How do these relate to OER?


  1. Slide deck
    1. textbook market broken – cost > access > outcomes
    2. better pass rates, lower drops
    3. everything is open, Lumen is selling the service (hosting, analytics)
      1. institutions adopt courseware, paying per enrollment fee for support and hosting
      2. Institutional leaders facilitate faculty review and transition
      3. All students have open access through the course and after
    4. Goal (2018)
      1. 10 million students
      2. save 1 billion dollars
      3. make 1 million
    5. Takeaways
      1. Like-ability, institutions are willing to work with and take more risks when they feel comfortable.
      2. Keeping values as you scale
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