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-   -   How do you feel about open source versus freeware? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/general-10/how-do-you-feel-about-open-source-versus-freeware-4175498336/)

maples 03-15-2014 07:59 PM

How do you feel about open source versus freeware?
 
I thought it would be interesting to see how people here think about open source versus freeware. I'm really new to Linux, and if it wasn't for the people here, I'd still be wondering what a partition is.

Feel free to rant, elaborate, recommend things, etc. (but then again, it's not my forum :) )

frankbell 03-15-2014 08:11 PM

I have used the Opera browser for years, and it's not open source. I also recommend various freeware applications for Windows users, such as Foxit Reader in lieu of Acrobat Reader.

You have to work and play in the real world.

Aside:

Today, I had my first encounter with the new Opera on my daughter's Windows box. It was . . . disturbing. I think I now understand this.

cwizardone 03-15-2014 09:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by frankbell (Post 5135291)
...Aside:

Today, I had my first encounter with the new Opera on my daughter's Windows box. It was . . . disturbing. I think I now understand this.

My are aren't you the diplomat?

:D

bcwagne 03-16-2014 12:07 AM

I'm afraid I'm one of those who uses open source, freeware, and even some paid/closed/non-free(libre) apps. MS Office being the most notable among those. I admit I haven't tried LibreOffice since the break away from OpenOffice, and it might be better now, but I just couldn't stand OpenOffice. It just didn't work well for me.

I like the idea behind OSS, but the application leaves much to be desired. In order to get content production done and out the door, I use what works, and more often than not, that means being somewhat more pragmatic than I'd like. Also I'm a poor student, and the school gives a VERY hefty discount on MS/Adobe products, to the point that it is worth it to use them rather than have to fight with formatting issues in the OSS alternatives.

Although for programming I use the GNU stack, and it works well.

s.verma 03-16-2014 08:53 AM

In theory I recommend using open source software to me (and other than me) instead of closed source/proprietary apps.
But in practice I do never hesitate if there is some closed source application available whose open source alternative is either not available or is not developed up to mark so far.

I have used Windows XP/7 with MS Offices etc. for my college works and still sometime uses them. In daily life (majority of time) I use linux+GNU+Open_Source+Some_Closed_Source(if required).

metaschima 03-16-2014 11:31 AM

I would have liked another option, but I do use FLOSS almost exclusively. Right now I'm not using anything closed-source. The only thing I sometimes use in flash player because I have to for some things, but this is rare. Hopefully shumway or something like it will make the accursed plugin obsolete. I guess it probably will be replaced by HTML5 + DRM, which isn't any better.

There are definitely reasons to stay away from it:
http://it.slashdot.org/story/14/02/1...ed-for-7-years

sundialsvcs 03-17-2014 09:10 PM

Well, first of all, "open source" is not free!" :eek:

Linux ... Apache ... MySQL ... SQLite ... PHP ... Perl ... Ruby ... [ etc ... ]

ALL of these things that we oh-so depend on ... ALL of these things are not "free!" Every single one of them has been valued in the millions of dollars, even though they are "open source."

These valuations are real. And, conservative.

There is no such thing as "freeware."

Computer software is not (!!!) "free." Fact is, it's probably the most-expensive thing that there is.

Many years ago now, the computer software industry realized that the only way that it could actually make money, doing what it is doing, is: "a rising tide lifts all boats." Instead of paying a closed group of developers to work on a closed body of source-code (and trying, vainly, to pay for the whole thing by means of licenses ...), do the exact opposite: open-up the source-code, open-up the effort, and do it all under the auspices of legally-recognized licenses which stipulate that the work-product thus produced can never be closed."

It was ... and still is ... a truly radical commercial concept.

And, as for "the boots-on the-ground commercial success of this idea," simply grab that electronic thing that is right-now in your pocket. :) All of the recent advances that we now enjoy in the field of personal electronics are directly attributable to: "cooperative development == open source."

"Cooperative development," today, has nothing more to prove, to anyone in the world. It works. Commercially. Profitably.

... and, thanks to legally well-tested licenses, it will forever remain so.

All of us share in the benefits of software, when we silently and equally absorb its (terrible!) costs, and when we mutually agree that no one will (or, can ...) ever erect "PRIVATE PROPERTY" signs. There's simply no other way by which any of us could hope to do what, today, we do.

Randicus Draco Albus 03-17-2014 11:52 PM

I agree with sundialsvcs' point. What is freeware? I have never seen that reference before. Open source, free software, FLOSS, but never freeware.

As for the poll.
Quote:

I use Windows, but only use open source applications.
How the hell can someone use Windows without using any closed source software?

cwizardone 03-18-2014 12:37 AM

^^
Almost every open source application I use is available for windows. Open source developers know to write for the 800 pound gorilla (m$-windows), as it gives them the greatest possible audience, i.e, exposure for their "product."

s.verma 03-18-2014 03:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 5136447)
Well, first of all, "open source" is not free!" :eek:

Linux ... Apache ... MySQL ... SQLite ... PHP ... Perl ... Ruby ... [ etc ... ]

ALL of these things that we oh-so depend on ... ALL of these things are not "free!" Every single one of them has been valued in the millions of dollars, even though they are "open source."

These valuations are real. And, conservative.

There is no such thing as "freeware."

Computer software is not (!!!) "free." Fact is, it's probably the most-expensive thing that there is.

Many years ago now, the computer software industry realized that the only way that it could actually make money, doing what it is doing, is: "a rising tide lifts all boats." Instead of paying a closed group of developers to work on a closed body of source-code (and trying, vainly, to pay for the whole thing by means of licenses ...), do the exact opposite: open-up the source-code, open-up the effort, and do it all under the auspices of legally-recognized licenses which stipulate that the work-product thus produced can never be closed."

It was ... and still is ... a truly radical commercial concept.

And, as for "the boots-on the-ground commercial success of this idea," simply grab that electronic thing that is right-now in your pocket. :) All of the recent advances that we now enjoy in the field of personal electronics are directly attributable to: "cooperative development == open source."

"Cooperative development," today, has nothing more to prove, to anyone in the world. It works. Commercially. Profitably.

... and, thanks to legally well-tested licenses, it will forever remain so.

All of us share in the benefits of software, when we silently and equally absorb its (terrible!) costs, and when we mutually agree that no one will (or, can ...) ever erect "PRIVATE PROPERTY" signs. There's simply no other way by which any of us could hope to do what, today, we do.

Dear sundialsvcs,
I could not get it. Although one can sell the source code and hence open source is not synonymous with free (price). But in practice we usually get them as a freeware product. I am using open source and I haven't paid for anything.

So how open source code is not also free in terms of price in practice?

cascade9 03-18-2014 04:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 5136447)
There is no such thing as "freeware."

There most certainly is 'freeware'.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeware

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randicus Draco Albus (Post 5136491)
What is freeware? I have never seen that reference before. Open source, free software, FLOSS, but never freeware.

Did the link explain it?

I've had a few hilarious exchanges that touch on freeware/FLOSS with some fairly ignorant people on other forums. The standout was when someone basicly ranted about the 'death of freeware' because of parted magic going to 'fee to d/l'.

Quote:

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 5136447)
Instead of paying a closed group of developers to work on a closed body of source-code (and trying, vainly, to pay for the whole thing by means of licenses ...), do the exact opposite: open-up the source-code, open-up the effort, and do it all under the auspices of legally-recognized licenses which stipulate that the work-product thus produced can never be closed."

It was ... and still is ... a truly radical commercial concept.

Well, maybe 'radical' if you come from a commercial background.

sundialsvcs 03-18-2014 06:11 AM

We all "come from a commercial background," because we do things in order to get paid money to do it.

"Cooperatively-developed software" is a commercial endeavor into which hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of development and maintenance effort has been, and is being, poured. Nothing's "Free."

We're doing things this way because it works, when no other business model did.

cascade9 03-18-2014 06:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 5136655)
We all "come from a commercial background," because we do things in order to get paid money to do it.

Ideology.

Sciencetific research has worked in a very different way for centuries. You cant just say 'look, here a box, it converts lead into gold' and call it science. Just because modern software has evolved in a more commericalised system than science did doesnt mean that 'closed systems' where you cannot see or find out what is actually happening is the norm.

Quote:

Originally Posted by sundialsvcs (Post 5136655)
"Cooperatively-developed software" is a commercial endeavor into which hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of development and maintenance effort has been, and is being, poured. Nothing's "Free."

We're doing things this way because it works, when no other business model did.

So, there is 'hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of development and maintenance' on closed source OSes, programs, etc., which last I checked were doing quite fine thank you, but the closed source business model doesnt work? Shenanigans.

In the long term, IMO, open source is much better, but the rise of open source doesnt mean the closed source business model is dead.

sundialsvcs 03-18-2014 08:45 AM

No, no, quite obviously the closed model does work. But cooperative development gave us ... Linux, Apache, MySQL, the core of OS/X, Android ... the list goes on and on and on.

We wouldn't be where we are today in the computer industry were it not for this business model and the products it has produced. Instead of putting up fences and charging for tickets to get in, we did exactly the opposite ... and mandated that "tickets could never be required by anyone." In this way, we created a rising tide that lifts all boats.

It's not the right business model for many things; even, for most things. But, in the situations where it is appropriate, I submit that it has enabled us to do things that otherwise would never have been feasible.

mostlyharmless 03-18-2014 03:14 PM

I'm not sure the poll answers really cover my preferred response, which would be

"I prefer to use open source, but I'm willing to use closed source, including Windows, if there isn't another option."

"Freeware" as in free like beer, is another question entirely. Closed source freeware can be fine, proprietary graphics drivers probably being the most commonly used. Open source but not freeware, if that is a category, would presumably mean, for example RHEL. Or you can voluntarily support your favorite projects, which I strongly encourage.


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