The open source software filling with innovation and vitality 1. Introduction With computer’s development, the software of the computer is more powerful. The software can be divided into two parts which are free and fee-based, and also can be classified with the closed software and the open source software. In order to understand the features of the open source software, and know the reason why the software can be filled with vitality and innovation, which attract a lot of technicists devoting themselves.
This paper will give a deep analysis of the open source software in nearly all ranks. This essay mainly includes four parts. Firstly, giving an introduction to the definition of the open innovation and the open source movement and what is the Linux and the history and development of the Linux. Secondly, enumerating some wide use of the open source softwares and taking Linux for example to analyze strengths of open and innovation source software. Thirdly, the author will discuss the challenges and the future of the open source and innovation software.
Finally, the author makes a conclusion for the value of the open source and the open innovation. After reading this essay, it’s my target to make you have a better and deep understanding of the concept of open source and open innovation, attempt to make use of the open source software such as Linux operating system, realize the great value of the open source and open innovation, and also be aware of some challenges of the open source and open innovation as well as its future. 2.
Open innovation,open source,history of Unix and Linux Henry Chesbrough who is a professor and executive director create the term of open innovation, in his book Open Innovation: The new imperative for creating and profiting from technology, though the idea and discussion about some consequences (especially the inter firm cooperation in R&D) date as far back as the 60s (Chesbrough, 2003). With the development of technology and knowledge, new creation of the products begins to face challenges. In order to create new alue, we must established extensive connection with the outside world widely, realize the complementary advantages in the knowledge dissemination and sharing to speed up inner innovation. In software, for example, companies such as SAP and Microsoft have started to build research labs on university all over the world to improve the integration of outside-in innovation to create new commercial benefit. Even Apple that is so strong no matter from any ways had to open up its proprietary technology to appeal to the high-tech users.
There are some outstanding examples in the electronic industry which are Philips’ open innovation park, Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center, Siemens’ open innovation program and IBM’s open source initiatives. Today, open innovation has been driven by many computer software suppliers on a strategic level. Nowdays the open source software that needs more creative can appeal to people to use. Due to open innovation, we can concentrate the inner and outer power on developing the creation or innovation.
The open source movement is a profound movement of individuals who support the use of open source licenses for some or all software. Open source software is made available for anybody to use or modify, as its source code is made available. Some open-source software is based on a share-alike principle, whereby users are free to pass on the software subject to the rule that any enhancements or changes are just as freely available to the public, while other open-source projects may be freely incorporated into any derivative work, open-source or proprietary(Eu. conecta, 2011) .
The open source software allows users to use some or even all software by giving them authorization. What is more, sometimes, the source code is also available to users. That makes it possible for users to read and modify the source code. Usually, any individual can changes and modify the code and make available to public, and other users can download his/her code, read his/her code, discuss with the writer, and enhance the code. By doing so, the source code can be optimized and consequently the software will be more powerful and a stabilized system because of some users’ creative ideas and critical thinking.
The open source is a profound revolution by taking the advantage of users’ participation(Eu. conecta, 2011). Nowdays the security of software is more and more concerned. Though the open source, we can solve the problem of security by a mass of programmers. With the open innovation and open source movement developed, there are a vast of professional and perfect softwares happened. For example, Linux and Unix, Unix operating system that many of the cooperative programmers make efforts in the 1970s is the most successful program that could run on different computer device.
A free version of Unix operating system can be attempted to build by the developers in 1986. There is a project called GNU that stand for “Gnu’s not Unix” allowing programmers to contribute to the development effort regardless of individual or commercial interests. The most important thing is that the operating system is free for user. The GNU is very famous as a copyleft agreement including four points. The first is that software can be copied and distributed under the GNU license. The second is that products that are obtained and distributed under this license may be sold.
The third is that user can alter the source code, but if they want to distribute or publish the source code, they must make the software work under the GNU license. The third is that without a GNU license, the source code could not work , through an individual can modify, distribute and publish the source code. The fourth is that we can develop the assistant technology for the open source software which don’t include core licensed under the GNU license. It’s not published as the Linux kernel created by a young student who is called Linus Torvalds until in1991.
He gave programmers his code so they can contribute to revise and develop the code. Linux becomes into an advanced and powerful operating system, because a mass of programmers analyze the code and write development that Linus included into Linux. With the Linux improved rapidly, there are a series of versions of Linux delivered that can meet different needs. 3. The strengths of open and innovation source software In this section, the author will talk about the wide use of open and innovation source software and its strengths and profound impact to modern society and some traditional fee-based software.
It is hard to realize something until we stop for a while and look at how different it is from the software that we know. The open and innovation source software have some incomparable advantages that conventional paid software can’t match. The author will take Linux for example to discuss the strengths and impact of open and innovation source software. Firstly, the open source movement is the collaborative nature that allows smaller companies to take part in the global economy. The smaller companies or individuals can have rights to access to create, organize, or distribute the software.
It’s an equal opportunities for people around the world to participate in the movement. So the movement has attracted more and more involved. There are over 120,000 programmers all over the world who are distributed internationally and support Linux as a means of reducing the large companies’ technical domination (Ceraso, A. , & Pruchnic, J,2007) . It is computed that only 5-10 percent of code of the Linux kernel remains compiled by Linus Torvalds. The collaborative nature create the culture of sharing, which is pervasive in the programming project.
Programmers in those project help each other, make progress together to complete the programming. Secondly, the creation of open source software is not individual so that we can reduce the cost. The Research and Development of Linux operating system is made efforts by volunteer labor that is worth about two billion dollars (Kusnetsky and Greg , 1999). Companies like Microsoft that develop the windows operating system spend about $80-100 million per year. Technologists are addicted to the code of Linux programming due to their hobbies or personal interest.
The programmers don not care the money and time so that they can devote themselves into it with their professional responsibilities. Individuals who have keen interest in coding and software creation or distribution promote the development of the open source software, which is not different from the proprietary software which is motivated by the money gain. Sometimes the developers want to get satisfaction and a reputation from other programmers by contributing to the open source code. Others want to receive such as good job offers, shares in programming values and so on.
Thirdly, system administrator in the development of open source software will have control in the risk of deploying the tool. It is similar to in a corporate organization that Linux has a leadership structure. Linus Torvalds is a header in the Linux community who is a respected manager that can control the progress of programming, and his thoughts are considered final. Torvalds can appoint some programmers to be responsible for managing specific part of the project, and in reverse the programmers can guide other coordinators.
However, this leadership structure only is suited to the Linux kernel; it does not apply to program such as system utilities. Fourthly, there is a major advantage in the open source code that is the ability for a mass of various people to edit and fix problems and errors that have occurred. The advantage is that programmers make improvements to open source software and will give meaningful feedback to the original programmer. The feedback benefits the entire project. Because of the feedback, the open source softwares become more and more powerful, riskless, high-quality.
Fifthly, open source programs divide into small teams of programmers that work independently to settle specific problems. Those teams are parallel development that can make it possible for 435 Linux projects to be underway (Sullivan, 2011). Parallel debugging can improve the efficiency of individuals working on the project. Parallel debugging can feed back quicker modifications than traditional development. For example, Linux is attacked by the TearDrop IP because of some bugs, but Linux programmers repair it in less than 24 hours (Sullivan, 2011). Sixthly, open source software has the feature of the long-term sustainability.
The open source software is different from the proprietary softwares, which is not driven out of business in the short-term. The open source software will be still developed all the time so long as the programmer can keep the sufficient interest and skills, even the user always has the choice to work in the house, maintain the running of the software and support to continue the programming of the software. It can have been seen the strengths of open and innovation source software. Better quality, higher reliability, more flexibility, lower cost, and an end to predatory vendor lock-in are the targets of the open source software.
It is important to maintain the open source definition that creates a trusted group that connects all users and developers together. Just because of the strengths of open and innovation source software, expect for the Linux or Unix operating system, there are some other excellent softwares such as apache that is successful server software and scripting programming language on the web, Mozilla that is a excellent web browser like IE and mysql that is very popular database management system, giving people different experience and meeting the diversity of requirements. These softwares also have been extremely successful. . Challenges of open source and innovation software Even though the open source and innovation softwares have gained great success in many areas, but there are still challenges facing in front. One challenge is the quality of the open source and innovation software. Previous research has shown that the size of software module have a certain relationship with software defects. For example some scholars think that there is an U-shaped relationship between software modules and software defect, therefore, the software module wants to be moderate, too big or too small scale will lead to defect increased.
Despite criticism of scholars views, but the size of the software modules should be paid attention to control In the software development to ensure software quality,which recognized by most of scholars. However, the above conclusion is based on the non-open source software, and is not suitable for quality control of the open source software, because the module of the open source software usually is constantly changing the old module, adding a new module or deleting constantly in the process of evolution of software development.
Koru AG, Zhang Dongsovg, LiuHongfang take Mozilla for example to prove that there is a relationship between the size of of module of the open source software and the defects of product, and the results still show that l with software quality has a direct relationship with the scale of the software. Although there are a large number of experts auditing the open source software quality on the surface, but in fact, there are a small number of relatively fixed experts auditing the quality periodically,even some softwares don’t have a quality audit, which is one of reasons that the quality of open-source software is doubted.
Another risk is the legal risk of business development using open source. First, there is a problem that copyright of Open source software is unknown. Open source software often has a very complex origin because of its special patterns of development. Open source software has a massive pool of programming expertise all over the world to develop. For example, there may be a few people, more dozens, or hundreds of people contributing to the programming of open source software. Over one thousand people are needed in large projects such as Linux operating system (Langley, 2007).
But the participants have a variety of backgrounds, as a result, It is difficult to ensure that their codes don’t have problems. This kind of confusion property rights of knowledge and complex situation makes a lot of open source software have a risk of infringement all the time. For example, Linux was suspected of violating the copyright of Unix programming code belongs to the company of SCO. For the problems of infringement ,license of open can’t provide any special terms or other promises to ensure that the programmers who devote to projects don’t violate the intellectual property of others.
Due to these licenses that do not provide any liability protection, there is a risk of open source software for commercial development. Second, There are other problem such as the infringement of patent rigth and trademark right that we should pay attention on. 5. Commercial value and trend of open source and innovation software In this part, we will discuss the open source software’s economic value and predict its future. On one hand, a lot of commercial software companies are always paying attention to the rapid development of open source software.
Due to the massive excellent open source software projects and high quality codes, if the resources can be directly used, business company can save a lot of cost. The company of Business software develops commercial software based on the open source codes, which is flexible to decide based-fee or free when it is used for commercial purposes. For individuals, it is still free to use the commercial software, of course, Except commercial purposes, at the same time, these companies can provide technical service’s support.
This flexible business model is more and more welcomed by more and more business software company. On the other hand, launch of android makes people be full of expectation for the open source software. Because of the open source software portability, custom pattern of Linux is a breakthrough of the industry model. Custom pattern of Linux because of the current Linux operating system that has deficiencies at performance, stability, and grasping the user needs ,can meet the user’s requirements. Though we discuss the commercial value of open source software, we can predict the trends of the open source software.
In the future, the suppliers of open source software will have a closer relationship among themselves. Due to the development of the industry, the model of self-reclusive development do not clearly conform to the trend of the times, high requirements of the software in the future promote manufacturers of open source software Seeking a deeper cooperation among themselves, which provides effective means to compete with the large proprietary software vendors for the supplier of open source software. The overall open source solutions are easier than traditional solutions on the deployment and maintenance.
From hardware to software infrastructure, enterprise customers will know and experience the effective cost of overall open source solutions. Grasping the good opportunity of open source software will have a better future. 6 . Conclusion Now the software’s feature is more complex and the work of software’s programming is more lager, the open source software occupy a lot of advantages such as its collaborative nature which can offer customizability and, as a result, promotes the adoption of its products, the open innovation which is not proprietary, resulting in lower costs and so on.
Now software is built more complicated and the work of programming is more lager than ever. Because the open source software is not proprietary, that means taking the advantage of collaboration and customizability could lower the cost and make the software system stronger. From the introduction above, It can have been already cleared the definition of open innovation, the open source movement and the history of Unix, Linux operating system. Though the deeper analysis, it can be known the reason why the open source softwares become more and more popular is that powerful strength of open source software.
Just because of this, there are some excellent software such as Linux, apache and mysql giving people different experience and meeting the diversity of requirements. These softwares also have been extremely successful. For now the use of open source software in some areas is limited, but its value will dig out driven by the maturity of technology and idea. However, there are also challenges. One difficulty is the promise of the quality of the open source software. And another difficulty is the legal risk of business development using open source.
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