Dave Rosenberg writes an interesting piece about open source downloads and reciprocal value. Dave mentioned a few metrics and his quest for a model that ties downloads to user code modification contributions to value for the project.I did market opportunity forecasts for a few years with IBM’s Software group, so his quest piqued my interest.

Here’s what I was able to come up with VERY QUICKLY (i.e. formatting the file took longer than thinking about the model). Although I will note that many times during my forecasting days I found that a quick & dirty model wasn’t orders of magnitude less accurate than models that try to quantify everything with p=95% data. I’ve made some assumptions, feel free to change the field values (in any yellow cell) and see the results.

You can download the spreadsheet here or view it here.

If you come up with a better model, please leave a comment or hit savio13 at google’s free email service (come on, ya know the name).