In these days of multi billion dollar businesses and partnerships in the software industry, there is one thing that has considerably backed the internet community. We are talking about open source software, which has helped in bringing some of the most advanced applications not only to the layman’s desktop, but also to large scale organizations. It is indeed a welcome change that has happened through the use and recognition of open source software. Open source is now making its impact on a variety of software organizations and enterprises. And the good part is that, even the most traditional businesses are taking the Open source route.
Why Open Source?
The best part of Open Source software, apart from the fact that it is free, is that you can access the source code and customize it to your unique requirements. That's why open source software is so special, as it gives total control to the user. Also, as an Open Source user, you always have the option of choosing another vendor if you are unhappy with the current one. The reasons why people like open source is because it is cost effective, easy to get, and easy to maintain. Of these benefits, the most significant advantage is the cost effectiveness. In these days of recession, cost cutting is an important part of running an organization. The other big advantage as already pointed out is the freedom from vendor lock-in. That is, you don’t have to depend on one particular software vendor for your support needs.
Imagine what will happen if the use of all software and resources was restricted only to those who shell out the money for it. This would have a negative impact on software education as a whole. Nevertheless, this is what is happening with the use of proprietary software model. That is why the industry needs open source development to prosper and get to the next level.
Common Barriers to Open Source
Although open source is doing great and is being used from individuals to large organizations, it still faces certain barriers. One main hurdle is the resistance to changing from conventional software to an open source one. Also most employees are not familiar with open source software, and hence there is a natural resistance to changing to new software. However, this issue can be solved if proper orientation and training is offered to the users.
The highlight of open source software is that everyone gets an opportunity to collaborate and allow the best technology to succeed. This happens not only in a single organization, but as a world wide phenomenon. The internet has made it possible for innovations to get communicated around the globe in an instant, and this has helped the development of faster and more competitive open source software at extremely low costs. It is thus high time for the development community to go for the open source option, if they want to come out with software that focuses on the user.