Best Open Source
Open source software. Often (and sometimes incorrectly) called freeware, shareware, and "source code," open source software has been responsible for key functions of the Internet for many years. But outside of the software development industry, few people have heard the term
open source, and even fewer are aware that this alternative software development model exists. Most consumers aren't aware of the wide variety of software available to them.
Open source software is widely available, constantly being modified and improved by software developers, has strong technical support, and provides individuals as well as large and small businesses many flexible alternatives to corporate software packages. Now, it's seen as a promising alternative for computer operating systems, web browsers, Internet and web servers, and other key software applications.
Best Legal Practices for Open Source Software Open Source software has been called the software that runs the Internet - from the Apache web server to the Mozilla browser and from the Linux operating system to the invisible inner workings of the Internet. Open Source refers not only to software programs and the unique licenses that govern them, but also to a philosophy and what some might call a movement.
The Open Source licenses represent a very different approach to licensing than most businesses, and their lawyers and legal departments, have become accustomed to in the commercial software setting. Research on the Open Source licenses will often turn up conflicting interpretations, misinformation, philosophical arguments and diametrically opposed points of view. This result should not surprise you, especially if you have researched the commentary on the changing Microsoft software license policies where you will see much of the same.
The Emerging Economics of Open Source Software best Open Source developers have, perhaps without conscious intent, created a new and surprisingly successful economic paradigm for the production of software. Examining that paradigm can answer a number of important questions.
It's not immediately obvious how Open Source works economically. Probably the worst consequence of this lack of understanding is that many people don't understand how Open Source could be economically sustainable, and some may even feel that its potential negative effect upon the proprietary software industry is an overall economic detriment. Fortunately, if you look more deeply into the economic function of software in general, it's easy to establish that Open Source is both sustainable and of tremendous benefit to the overall economy.
Open Source can be explained entirely within the context of conventional open-market economics. Indeed, it turns out that it has much stronger ties to the phenomenon of capitalism than you may have appreciated.
Best Open Source Software Solution A panel of industry professionals at the LinuxWorld Australia conference in Sydney has named the Mambo Content Management System ?Best Open Source Software Solution.? The award marks the third time the Mambo software has won the coveted award and brings the number of awards received in the last two years to six. Representatives of the event coordinators and sponsor Builder.com.au announced the award on 28 March. Judging was done by a panel of industry experts.
The Team is honored to receive this recognition,? stated Ric Shreves, Director of Advocacy for the Mambo Foundation. ?A lot of people work very hard to create and sustain this project and six awards in two years is a persuasive testament to the fact that the team consistently delivers world class software,? added Shreves who was on hand to accept the award together with members of Team Mambo and Mambo Communities.
Microsoft and Open Source Software The continuous interaction among government, academic, and private research has always been the engine of innovation in the software ecosystem. Governments and universities undertake basic research and share this knowledge with the public. In turn, companies in the private sector use some of these technologies in combination with their even greater ongoing investment in research and development to create commercial products, while also contributing to the work of common standards bodies.
Microsoft has been learning from the OSS community regarding the benefits of deeper collaboration and increased transparency leading to better communication with customers. We believe the most effective pathway for a commercial software company is to strike a balance between investing in research and development and the release of intellectual property assets in the form of source code for both reference and collaborative purposes.
Microsoft: Open source's best friend Microsoft's love-hate relationship with open source software can be epitomised by recent efforts to enhance interoperability and lure developers to Windows.
In December, the software giant introduced a pilot programme called NXT to make it easier for ISVs with
Microsoft technologies, including Linux and Unix developers, to tailor their products to the Microsoft operating system.
Run by Microsoft's partners, the NXT programme offers software development support, technical briefings, testing and marketing campaign funding to these software makers. A representative of the company said the programme is still in the pilot stage.
Bill Hilf, a platform strategy technology manager at Microsoft, insisted there is no conflict between the goals of the company's open source lab and the NXT programme. Hilf runs the lab, which tries to marry open source software with Microsoft products.
Best Open Source Product MySQL AB, developer of the world's most popular open source database, announced that the MySQL database has been named by the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) as the winner of the 2004 Codie Award for Best Open Source Product. The Codie award adds to several recent MySQL accolades, including being named for the second year in a row to both the SD Times 100 list and as ?Product of the Year? by
Developer.com. SIIA, a principal trade association for the software and digital content industry, announced the Codie award winners at the 19th annual awards ceremony on Tuesday, May 18, 2004 at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, Calif. The Codie Awards is one of the industry?s most prestigious and recognized awards programs, showcasing the finest companies, products and services in the software and information industry.
Zimbra? Open Source Software
best Zimbra is contributing its core intellectual property (IP) in enterprise messaging and collaboration to the Open Source Software (OSS) community. Zimbra is making the contribution in the hopes of:
1. Getting our technology into the hands of as many users and developers as possible;
2. Validating and enhancing our architecture and implementation through the OSS community;
3. Driving down costs for and protecting investment in the deployment of collaboration/messaging technology;
4. Giving back to the community that provided so much technology that we leverage within Zimbra - Linux?, Apache?, MySQL?, Postfix?, OpenLDAP, and so on; but at the same time
5. Building a profitable business (a.k.a., funding future investment) through the selling of optional "network" services to those users that choose to become customers as well.
The best freeware software
There are a lot of great freeware products out there. Many are as good or even better than their commercial alternatives. This list features my personal pick of the "best of the best."
All the utilities in this list have featured in past issues of my free monthly newsletter "Support Alert" More freebies are published in each new issue. If you are interested in great utilities and freeware you really should consider subscribing. It's free.
Listed below are 46 different freeware categories with my selection of the best products in each category. The list is ordered by program function rather than merit so you'll get the most out of it by browsing down this page at leisure. The pathologically impatient can consult the index below.
Open source' software trend faces barriers
Federal, state and local governments around the world are catching "open source" fever, purchasing software that lets them view and modify source code as opposed to proprietary software such as that made by Microsoft. But whether the global trend will continue may depend upon new and old factors that could hinder the increased spread of the open-source movement.
Barriers to growth include continued flaws in the ever-improving open-source technologies - which is being used more for computer servers than applications - and opposition by Microsoft, the world's dominant software player and thus the one with the most at stake if governments turn to open-source products. The leading open-source product is Linux, and the recent LinuxWorld in California conference focused heavily on product improvements.
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