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Thread: Open Source Software

  1. #1 Open Source Software 
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    How has the development of Open Source Software changed IT for individuals and society?

    Many thanks.


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  3. #2  
    Forum Freshman Goddard's Avatar
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    I believe it has changed a lot in terms of how things were. Microsoft for example would of never had to lower prices, or offer discounts to students.

    It has also opened the door for the younger generation to easily learn from professionals which is very important to the progressive movement of technology and the status quo.


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  4. #3 re-open source 
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    I believe that open source software has had a huge impact on individuals and indeed society itself.

    it has changed many areas of society for example education (as Goddard has previously stated). this may be a useful source for further interest. http://cnx.org/content/col10431/latest/.

    users can actually amend the programs they use themselves. as is always said the customer is king and DOES know what is best. therefore they can make the best decisions in what changes are most urgently required.

    as with any new technology it changes society, whether for better or worse, and the changes will become more significant in the future. the introduction of openoffice.org etc. is just the beginning!!!!
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  5. #4  
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    ...here's another source that you may be interested in

    http://news.cnet.com/The-rising-impa..._3-281244.html.
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  6. #5  
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    Mainly economic changes really. Nowadays everyone wants something for nothing and open source software provides the basis for this. Google is free. Apache is free. Now even music is free (Spotify, Sky Music etc).

    Making money through traditional methods, such as sale of the use of individual copies, is more difficult and in many ways against the very concept of open source software. Open Source software is just another stepping stone in making completely free products.

    I found this on Wikipedia, it may be of some value to you:

    'The main advantage for business is that open source is a good way for business to achieve greater penetration of the market. Companies that offer open source software are able to establish an industry standard and, thus, gain competitive advantage. It has also helped build developer loyalty as developers feel empowered and have a sense of ownership of the end product[30]. Moreover less costs of marketing and logistical services are needed for OSS. It also helps companies to keep abreast of all technology developments. It is a good tool to promote a company's image, including its commercial products[31]. The OSS development approach has helped produce reliable, high quality software quickly and inexpensively. Besides, it offers the potential for a more flexible technology and quicker innovation. It is said to be more reliable since it typically has thousands of independent programmers testing and fixing bugs of the software. It is flexible because modular systems allow programmers to build custom interfaces, or add new abilities to it and it is innovative since open source programs are the product of collaboration among a large number of different programmers. The mix of divergent perspectives, corporate objectives, and personal goals speeds up innovation[32]. Moreover free software can be developed in accord with purely technical requirements. It does not require to think about commercial pressure that often degrades the quality of the software. Commercial pressures make traditional software developers pay more attention to customers' requirements than to security requirements, since such features are somewhat invisible to the customer[33].'
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  7. #6  
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  8. #7  
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    Open source software following dvantages

    1) The availability of the source code and the right to modify it is very important. It enables the unlimited tuning and improvement of a software product. It also makes it possible to port the code to new hardware, to adapt it to changing conditions, and to reach a detailed understanding of how the system works. This is why many experts are reaching the conclusion that to really extend the lifetime of an application, it must be available in source form. In fact, no binary-only application more than 10 years old now survives in unmodified form, while several open source software systems from the 1980s are still in widespread use (although in many cases conveniently adapted to new environments). Source code availability also makes it much easier to isolate bugs, and (for a programmer) to fix them.

    2) The right to redistribute modifications and improvements to the code, and to reuse other open source code, permits all the advantages due to the modifiability of the software to be shared by large communities. This is usually the point that differentiates open source software licences from ``nearly free'' ones. In substance, the fact that redistribution rights cannot be revoked, and that they are universal, is what attracts a substantial crowd of developers to work around open source software projects.

    3) The right to use the software in any way. This, combined with redistribution rights, ensures (if the software is useful enough), a large population of users, which helps in turn to build up a market for support and customization of the software, which can only attract more and more developers to work in the project. This in turn helps to improve the quality of the product, and to improve its functionality. Which, once more, will cause more and more users to give the product a try, and probably to use it regularly.
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