Would you support implementing FOSS/OSS in your work environment?  To me this is timely as I was taken into this debate in working through some challenges for my Assignment 1 submission.

I wanted to post this succinct and valuable summary that helped me in developing some perspective on this debate. A couple of points that have been touched on through the discussion for this module and hold for me are the advantage of having access to the code to tailor the program to an organization’s needs, as described by Cindy in her post. The other area is in terms of support I often get these message to report a problem to Microsoft but where do these go – I have never had any indication that they were received or addressed. Finally, it is interesting that I can open a Microsoft document with Open office but in my experience the opposite is not true. A subtle point that Sophia Peters makes in her analysis is the perceived idea that proprietary software is more reliable, easier to use, and better supported. From what I hear this is not true. When open source producers do not have advertising budgets they may suffer in the public relations campaigns waged by the advertising budgets of proprietary software that have everything to lose. The only area I am working on resolving as an issue with open source is the security aspects of having student groups working on these systems – are they as secure in terms of identity and published materials as the proprietary packages?


1 Annette Smith { 10.21.09 at 5:34 pm }

I think you have made a good point that it is the perception that OSS is more difficult to work with that holds many people back from using it.

What strategies could OSS projects, without the big marketing budgets, use to demonstrate the reliability and ease of use that their products have?

2 Barrie Carter { 10.25.09 at 11:07 am }

Hello Mark:

For me, proprietary software (PS) seems to have more embedded productivity tools, a cleaner design, and stability (much fewer versions and updates).

Also, because I use MAC, the PS I buy from Apple are robust, intuitive, and easy/simple to use (fewer clicks for end results).

However, I do enjoy experimenting with OSS and choosing certain ones that I can use or are unavailable from Apple.

Overall, I am comfortable with my perceived idea.


You must log in to post a comment.