Open Source

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Description


The competitive environment of operating systems has formany years been completely dominated by Microsoft, who has set the agenda and trends - and in itself has been a driving force for the development of the internet. Interestingly enough, the competition is no longer from other more traditional and commercial competitors that compete against MS in the more traditional way, but the line of smaller developers of free source (or free code to be used by anyone interested) - the most famous of them being Linux - and collectively referred to as Open Source.
It seems, however, that the open source software has limited success in the long run and for the future predictions. At the same time, Linux and the likes are ironically a strong tool for MS in their numerous court cases, where they even by MS are a demonstration that there are real alternatives and that they are not a monopoly! Are they then in reality supporting MS and thereby weakening the mere competition they were trying to enforce? Fighting MS by restricting them may inhibit the development of the internet, while the support of alternatives in stead could (in the longer run) support there being alternatives which could prove to be an economically more sound direction.

Enablers


- Technogical advances in in the development of operating systems, which in turn is driven by other driving forces, such as demand.
- The drive away from the large corporate conglomerates such as MS.
- The governments attituide and support (have historically funded and supported Open Sources)
- Partnerships. Other larger SW developers supporting the Open Source environment as a reaction from MS

Inhibitors


- The world domination of MS as the champions of setting standards
- Governemt support
- Funding
- Lacking industry/hardware support: Large producers/vendors do not invest in making their products Linux compatible.

Paradigms


- While MS may be much more spread in number of users and recognition, the Open Source environments are cheaper (opinions vary a bit in the longer run, though) and ironically,often more reliable.
- Is there any serious and sustainable alternative to the monopoly power of MS?



Timing

- In early '90's, the government did no longer support or fund the open source and by seazing this effort, the Microsofts of the world had more free access to set own proprietary standards.
- 1991. Linux is born in Helsinki, Finland, by a student called Linus


Web Resources


Open Source
Linux trends
Open Source
expert thoughts


- Lars Chr. Eriksen


Driving Forces

Technology

  • Unix, Linux
  • The legal foundation of the Open Source movement: the GNU General Public License