December 22nd, 2008 at 11:10 am
We’re big believers in open source code. If you’re not too familiar with what that entails, don’t worry, it’s not hard to understand and even better to use.
According to the Open Source Initiative:
Open source is a development method for software that harnesses the power of distributed peer review and transparency of process. The promise of open source is better quality, higher reliability, more flexibility, lower cost, and an end to predatory vendor lock-in.
Mozilla Firefox (web browser), Apache (web server), PHP (web site application language) and PNG (file format) are only a few prominent examples of the open source development model smoothing out online experience–so much better now than only ten years ago when most everyone had to count on Microsoft to play and display nice with others.
We develop using open source programming languages and software packages, in particular Zen Cart (user-friendly ecommerce shopping cart software), the aforementioned PHP (makes web pages dynamic, widely used), MySQL (fast, reliable, easy database used by Google, Yahoo, et.al.), and Drupal (consistently ranked as the very best content management platform).
It was cool to read this article on CNET over the weekend that none other than the U.S. Department of Defense agrees that open source is the hands down best way to go. Apparently the Pentagon is preparing guidelines to leverage even more open source into U.S. defense than they already have.
If there’s anyone left out there who would still tell you open source isn’t safe or advisable for your business because it’s not “protected” or not “legit” enough, what are they going to say when the CTO of a powerful agency within the USDoD declares the following?:
Open source brings to us the ability to have collaborative and agile development environments….Additionally, open source benefits the Department of Defense through…simplified licensing…and security….Security through obscurity just doesn’t work.
As CNET’s Matt Asay puts it, “if your country trusts your physical security to open source, isn’t it time to trust your business’ security to open source?”