Open-source is not the future!
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Thread: Open-source is not the future!

  1. #1
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    Open-source is not the future!

    The open-source community has announced for quite a few years now that they will hit the mainstream. I think not.

    I don't wanna be an ass, so I'll say some positive things about open-source: It's free, and many times you can get wonderful software, sometimes better than that you pay for. It's customizable, if you're a programming wizard you can make changes the way you like them. And the wizards are nice people, if you ask them kindly, maybe they'll create that driver you couldn't find on the net.

    So what's the problem? To create good software, being a good programmer isn't enough. Open-source is software created by hackers for hackers. It's difficult to get it up and running. The user-interface is often so difficult, the mainstream won't understand. There's no place you can call if something goes wrong, except maybe post questions on AntiOnline. (Lotsa clever guys there )

    What I'm saying is if you're gonna make software you'll need an organization behind you. Someone to interact with the users, to find out what the user's need (cuz developers DON'T KNOW). You're gonna need people who investigate the application's usability, so that users are able to actually use the application (cuz developers DON'T KNOW **** about usability). And you're gonna need somone who can help users after the software is released.

    Most people don't work for fame and glory, they want cold cash. The organization isn't gonna come to life without a decent cash-flow.

    Sorry people; money talks open-source walks.
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  2. #2
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    Arrow

    I not going to debate your overall point (whether or not open source software will hit mainstream) because that is all speculation, but I am going hit some of the points you made.

    "Open-source is software created by hackers for hackers" - this is steadily changing. You can't tell me the KDE programmers are creating their GUI for hackers. Ask 100 hackers whether they would rather use their good old vi or use a GUI equivalent and 99 of them would say vi.

    "There's no place you can call if something goes wrong", "you'll need an organization behind you" - Purchase any Linux package at a store and you get support. Exremely good support in fact. You can't call up MS and ask them why your sound isn't working even though you purchased Windows, but you can call up RH/Mandrake/etc. Even smaller projects like MySQL are supported by both the programmers that create it and other various companies.

    Companies like Mandrake are looking at usability where it should be improved. There is a big distinction there. Not everything needs a fancy GUI.

    "Most people don't work for fame and glory, they want cash. The organization isn't gonna come to life without a decent cash-flow" - I agree that the large percentage of programmers would choose money over fame and glory. Hell, I think very few actually want "fame and glory" - how many programmers in the world are actually considered famous? Bill Gates (not even really a programmer) and maybe Linus. The thing is, I think enough extremely good programmers would rather choose working on a big, challenging, interesting project rather than pumping out BS for a large company. Plus, the thing is, getting your name in the credits for an open-source project leads to more money. It means you are a dedicated, intelligent worker.
    \"If you torture the data enough, it will confess.\" --Ronald Coase
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  3. #3

    Post Open source is the future

    " The open-source community has announced for quite a few years now that they will hit the mainstream. I think not. "

    I disagree. Many business and large corporations are looking for an alternative to windows OS, web server, and database. Linux is not intenden for the "mainstream" people that just use their computer to look at porn and read their emails. Linux was created with intelligent individuals in mind, not "mainstream" people and your every day user.

    "...projects like MySQL are supported by both the programmers that create it and other various companies. "

    Ah, SQL. What a wonderful language. Oracle is Microsoft's
    arch-rival in competing with who has the better structured query language database.

    "So what's the problem? To create good software, being a good programmer isn't enough. "

    Why isn't it? If a truely good programer designed the OS or DB or whatever to near perfection (everything has its flaws) then there would be no need for technical support and people bothering them with annoying questions. Why dose my [inster OS,DB,or what not] work when i try to [insert function here]?
    "Open-source is software created by hackers for hackers" I would like to add something to that statement. Open source was created for "security minded and (semi) intelligent individuals"

    .."you're gonna need somone who can help users after the software is released. "
    Back to my previous statement:
    If a truely good programer designed the OS or DB or whatever to near perfection (everything has its flaws) then there would be no need for technical support.

    "Most people don't work for fame and glory, they want cash. The organization isn't gonna come to life without a decent cash-flow.

    Sorry people; money talks open-source walks."

    And I don't see a threat there. what's wrong with working towards an honest buck? Also, open-source must have some sort of cash flow, although i'm not sure from where/who. You seem to have ended your quote incorrectly. It goes as follows:
    "Money talks and BULLSHIT walks"

    I don't wanna be an ass, so I'll say some positive things about windows...

    Remote_Access_
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    Originally posted by ivan37
    You can't tell me the KDE programmers are creating their GUI for hackers. Ask 100 hackers whether they would rather use their good old vi or use a GUI equivalent and 99 of them would say vi.
    Adding a GUI interface to a product doesn't make it usable for mainstream users. It is still too difficult, so it needs to have other functionality added/changed as well.


    Purchase any Linux package at a store and you get support. Exremely good support in fact. You can't call up MS and ask them why your sound isn't working even though you purchased Windows, but you can call up RH/Mandrake/etc.
    Red Hat and other Linux packages are great products and will have their market shares. Because it will be used by it-professionals who choose customizability over useability.


    Companies like Mandrake are looking at usability where it should be improved. There is a big distinction there. Not everything needs a fancy GUI.
    I don't understand exactly what you mean. My point is that users got to understand how to use a product, or else the product will loose market-shares. There's no point in putting good functionality into a product, if users don't understand how to use them. And a fancy GUI has nothing to do with good UI. It might be more pleasant to look at, but the real question is: "Can the users do their assignments with this product, withing a reasonable amount of time?" If you say 'no' to that, you don't have a good, usable product.

    Plus, the thing is, getting your name in the credits for an open-source project leads to more money. It means you are a dedicated, intelligent worker.
    This is a good point, en probably a way for open-source to recruit people to their projects.

    Originally posted by Remote_Access_
    I disagree. Many business and large corporations are looking for an alternative to windows OS, web server, and database.
    The web-server and database, agreee. These are handeled by professionals. The normal worker's desktop computer, I disagree. X-windows in it's many forms I believe can't compete with the windows platform, because it's to difficult to use. Working on a difficult system slows down the user, and a slow-working user will be more expensive for a company than buying a useable system.

    Hey, I'm not sure about this one. If any of you guys know about testresults (ex. windows vs. Gnome), which interface is the faster to use for novice users. Post a reply, please!


    Oracle is Microsoft's
    arch-rival in competing with who has the better structured query language database.
    Oracle is a truly great product. It's not open-source, though.


    If a truely good programer designed the OS or DB or whatever to near perfection (everything has its flaws) then there would be no need for technical support and people bothering them with annoying questions.
    If you want many users to use a product, this is not a good plan. It' takes more than a good programmer to create a good product. Actually, user interaction is the very key to making good products. Only the users know how they want a product to be like, and usually they are not able to tell you. (They actually don't know what they want, but they know what they don't like about their exsisting system). Getting to understand the user needs is a long, difficult, money consuming process.

    Also, open-source must have some sort of cash flow, although i'm not sure from where/who.
    I don't know either. I suppose one option is to create non-open-source products for the open-source OS. I mean, give away the OS, and then earn money on supplementary products. Like RedHat started selling word-processors for their RH Linux. I think that is an interresting thought, and perhaps the only way to get rid of the MS monopoly. With such a strategy the companies are still able to make money. (And I know this last part contradicts the header in my post)
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  5. #5
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    Re: Open-source is not the future!

    Originally posted by proactive
    The open-source community has announced for quite a few years now that they will hit the mainstream. I think not.

    I don't wanna be an ass, so I'll say some positive things about open-source: It's free, and many times you can get wonderful software, sometimes better than that you pay for. It's customizable, if you're a programming wizard you can make changes the way you like them. And the wizards are nice people, if you ask them kindly, maybe they'll create that driver you couldn't find on the net.

    So what's the problem? To create good software, being a good programmer isn't enough. Open-source is software created by hackers for hackers. It's difficult to get it up and running. The user-interface is often so difficult, the mainstream won't understand. There's no place you can call if something goes wrong, except maybe post questions on AntiOnline. (Lotsa clever guys there )

    What I'm saying is if you're gonna make software you'll need an organization behind you. Someone to interact with the users, to find out what the user's need (cuz developers DON'T KNOW). You're gonna need people who investigate the application's usability, so that users are able to actually use the application (cuz developers DON'T KNOW **** about usability). And you're gonna need somone who can help users after the software is released.

    Most people don't work for fame and glory, they want cold cash. The organization isn't gonna come to life without a decent cash-flow.

    Sorry people; money talks open-source walks.
    It sounds to me that u just tried linux and couldn't figure it out and therefor u direct ur anger at opensource... bad choice....
    Linux with it's graphical interface is very easy to use! But probably think it's pretty difficult, which many does... and why? Well because u've been using windoze all ur lives and have forgotton how hard it actually was to learn when u started playin' around with 'puters. Now that u know how windoze works it easy, it's the same with linux!
    It's so typical... just because ppl can't figure linux out the first time they try it they think it isn't userfriendly.... well that's because it isn't windoze! it's something else, it's like u've learned to speak german when u were small and know u need to learn french (this might be a bad example since frenche probably is harder to learn then linux ).... u have to educate urself! u can do everything from X-windows in linux, u don't even have to know how to open a term window to use linux.... that's history, of course many hacker prefer to use linux without the graphical interface (I for one), but that's just because we know howto do it! and it's faster! but it's necessary any longer, and the typical PC user that sits at work writing reports doesn't need to learn how to install linux (which actually is the only part that sometimes can be tricky)...
    Well i could continue to write about this and opensource all night, but i wont.... but remember nothing is easy at first, it takes time to learn how linux works, but it doesn't take longer than to learn windoze ('cause MS don't give a **** about u! they just want their bloody money!).
    zion1459
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    Re: Re: Open-source is not the future!

    Originally posted by zion1459
    It sounds to me that u just tried linux and couldn't figure it out and therefor u direct ur anger at opensource... bad choice....
    Actually I have used Linux for programming, but I've stopped using it cuz it don't fit my needs (I have to use MS programming tools in my work). But I will use it again whenever I think it's the right platform.....

    And I agree with you that everything needs practice. My point is that the easier solution is always better (and at this point MS have the better products for novice users). And they will continue to have.

    I'll back my words with this quote from Danish usability guru, Jacob Nielsen (Take from The Register):


    On Linux desktops...
    Will Linux desktops innovate? No. I don't think of that as being the solution: because it's open source.

    It doesn't lend itself to coming up with new paradigms. The one thing it's very good thing at is designing software for other hackers, for other nerds, really.

    That's their skill and that's their strength - there's a thousand nerds to look at it. If something doesn't work it's going to be a debate on the mailing lists and it's going to be fixed.

    But that's a bad method for complex decision management or business professionals or this next generation of home users, because that requires a very different project management approach, a clear vision.

    They're great programmers and that's very nice, and it generates good stuff for that environment, but it's a little sandbox.

    For example they're so proud once they've ported [sic] PowerPoint. But that doesn't give us a new way of doing presentations.

    To do that you 've got to follow business people around all day and study them and ask them what they need.
    And by the way, Jacob Nielsen has a very interesting homepage at UseIt.com. He's specialized on web usability.
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    proactive, I agree with what you are saying, but I disagree with the name of your post. "Open source is not the future" should be replaced with "free software is not the future". Open source does indeed play a role in our futures. One day we will be able to buy(yes we will still pay) software, and if we to want make necesary changes or improvements ourselves we can, or the designer of the OS can provide them for us at a price. I am a programmer and I know the problems with giving your source away, including people making similar, or exact replicas using your ideas, and renaming them. That is why I believe that there should be a time limit. Two years after public release, the source should be made available to those who purchased the software. I know this isnt a perfect idea, but there has to be a way to get the benefits of open source without costing companies money. Wouldnt it be nice if microsoft gave us the source for Windows 98 now. I could imagine programmers fixing all that crap inside it and making it a secure stable OS. Then again that might hurt sales of XP by giving consumers a reason to keep their current OS. This would cost microsoft money, and would keep programmers like me out of a job. The problem with the issue is that you cant find a solution that favors both sides. So the side with the most money, the businesses, will win in the end.
    Wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things.
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    Originally posted by ThePreacher
    proactive, I agree with what you are saying, but I disagree with the name of your post. "Open source is not the future" should be replaced with "free software is not the future". Open source does indeed play a role in our futures. One day we will be able to buy(yes we will still pay) software, and if we to want make necesary changes or improvements ourselves we can, or the designer of the OS can provide them for us at a price. I am a programmer and I know the problems with giving your source away, including people making similar, or exact replicas using your ideas, and renaming them. That is why I believe that there should be a time limit. Two years after public release, the source should be made available to those who purchased the software. I know this isnt a perfect idea, but there has to be a way to get the benefits of open source without costing companies money. Wouldnt it be nice if microsoft gave us the source for Windows 98 now. I could imagine programmers fixing all that crap inside it and making it a secure stable OS. Then again that might hurt sales of XP by giving consumers a reason to keep their current OS. This would cost microsoft money, and would keep programmers like me out of a job. The problem with the issue is that you cant find a solution that favors both sides. So the side with the most money, the businesses, will win in the end.
    it has to be free! that's the idea behind open-source... the idear was that all the code was free so any1 could improve the original version. open-source is the only way to make the absolute best software. and yes it would be nice to be able to earn money on open-source progs, but how? if the source is free, then every can just compile it themselves... we (the developers) will simply need to find other ways to earn or money... take RedHat for example, they earn a lot of money, but still their product is free... The same goes for Mandrake, FreeBSD, and all the others... it is possible, but the money have to come from somewhere else then from the pure profit of the product.
    zion1459
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    Yeah, I totally agree ThePreacher that my post heading was bad. But there is today some recemblance between open-source and free softwaer, for reason that you point out.

    Your viewpoints are interesting, and the time-limit consept is a good idea. But I suppose it would be difficult making software companies agree to something like that. Perhaps sometime in the future the technology will advance so much in two years, that two year old software will be interesting for educational purposes only. Then the companies will think that relasing the source of old projects will generate good programmers for them to employ.
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  10. #10
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    Originally posted by proactive






    Adding a GUI interface to a product doesn't make it usable for mainstream users. It is still too difficult, so it needs to have other functionality added/changed as well.


    Please elaborate so I can shoot you down.

    Seriously though, where do you see linux falling short in the functionality department?







    Red Hat and other Linux packages are great products and will have their market shares. Because it will be used by it-professionals who choose customizability over useability.


    Nope. Remember, everything has a learning curve, including Windows. The only difference is that Windows has been the only serious contender in the marketplace for so long that pretty well everyone who can use a computer is used to it.







    I don't understand exactly what you mean. My point is that users got to understand how to use a product, or else the product will loose market-shares. There's no point in putting good functionality into a product, if users don't understand how to use them. And a fancy GUI has nothing to do with good UI. It might be more pleasant to look at, but the real question is: "Can the users do their assignments with this product, withing a reasonable amount of time?" If you say 'no' to that, you don't have a good, usable product.


    Lol, now you're making the argument that we shouldn't put any good functionality into a product because it will require people to learn something? Thanks for completely shooting down your argument.

    It seems to me that you're arguing that Linux is not Windows, and that you believe that switching between two OSes should have a nonexistant learning curve. I don't think there's a single person here who would disagree that linux is not Windows. However I believe many of them will disagree with the idea that switching OSes takes 0 learning on their part.


    The web-server and database, agreee. These are handeled by professionals. The normal worker's desktop computer, I disagree. X-windows in it's many forms I believe can't compete with the windows platform, because it's to difficult to use. Working on a difficult system slows down the user, and a slow-working user will be more expensive for a company than buying a useable system.
    Hahahahahahahaha. Hehehehehehehehe. Hohohohohohoho.....
    You're describing my experiences with Windows where I work:
    "because it's to difficult to use. Working on a difficult system slows down the user, and a slow-working user will be more expensive for a company than buying a useable system."





    Hey, I'm not sure about this one. If any of you guys know about testresults (ex. windows vs. Gnome), which interface is the faster to use for novice users. Post a reply, please!
    Speaking from personal experience I've been able to get an older person with some windows experience running on a RedHat Linux 7.1 box (and by running I mean functional, able to print, do up presentations, etc.) with StarOffice 5.2 in about a week's worth of after-work training.

    The only reason she doesn't continue to use Linux is because StarOffice just wasn't there yet, which is a very valid point. StarOffice 6 will hopefully address those issues, I just haven't had time to look at it.




    If you want many users to use a product, this is not a good plan. It' takes more than a good programmer to create a good product.
    To be quite honest, I think you're wrong. If a programmer is capable of doing a thorough needs evaluation, then a single person CAN create a good product.


    Actually, user interaction is the very key to making good products. Only the users know how they want a product to be like, and usually they are not able to tell you. (They actually don't know what they want, but they know what they don't like about their exsisting system). Getting to understand the user needs is a long, difficult, money consuming process.
    Yep. Unfortunately, my experience has taught me that the only input you'll be getting is from Power Users. The average 'User' tends to simply go about their day, maybe be a little frustrated at a bug, etc., but they just rush past things in an effort to work.





    I don't know either. I suppose one option is to create non-open-source products for the open-source OS. I mean, give away the OS, and then earn money on supplementary products. Like RedHat started selling word-processors for their RH Linux. I think that is an interresting thought, and perhaps the only way to get rid of the MS monopoly. With such a strategy the companies are still able to make money. (And I know this last part contradicts the header in my post)
    There's nothing that says you have to be open-source to do stuff for Linux. Two examples off the top of my head:
    RealServer Basic: Real hasn't opened the source or anything, just a downloadable installer, etc..
    StarOffice 5.2: Staroffice is not open source, but it uses some open-source code which is available for download.

    There's more too, like all the games Loki had before they went under.
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