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Integrated Marketing Services | Definition 6: THE AGE OF THE DEVELOPER


Posted by Tom Kirszenstein on Tuesday, November 17, 2009

I recently read that the White House has chosen an Open Source CMS (Content Management System) to develop their government Web site. This announcement caught my attention for several reasons--not only are many agencies moving their clients to open source and praising it's virtues, I also started using Drupal this past year and found it remarkably fast and easy to setup and maintain my own Web sites with quality results. Despite some criticism of open source over the years--more and more commercial (and government) developers are choosing it.

It's hard to argue against the benefits of free software, especially when results show that the software does what we expect, often exceeds expectations, and provides more opportunities for expansion than many proprietary products. While relative newcomers Drupal and Wordpress lead the pack for CMS offerings, open source mainstays such as Linux and Perl have been around for many years--not only surviving, but thriving over time. In a study by Amit Deshpande and Dirk Riehle of SAP Labs, LLC, Total Growth of Open Source results have shown that "the total amount of source code and the total number of projects double about every 14 months." Open source enables freedom for both users and developers to move & change quickly when needed, as well as providing more flexibility with software decisions such as to upgrade or not to upgrade. It's really no surprise that businesses and individuals are moving to open source at exponential rates.

Of course, Open Source has always been very much associated with Free, although there are other solid reasons to choose it beyond its cost. The pool of development resources is not limited to a specific company or provider, but instead is seemingly unlimited. As a specific open source project becomes popular, more and more developers start contributing, growing and adding to the code. Not only do they enhance the software to make it better for everyone, but they also create markets for their own support services. The better the code is--more people will use it-- and the more support is needed. Large developer communities have evolved around each software project, contributing to its growth, and administering its support. These open source communities are continually coming up with new innovations, powerful add-ons, extensions, and effective tools.


With so many open source choices available, even the……

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