These days I am usually shouting “Free and Open Source Software (FOSS)” – and my friends and colleagues pointed their finger at me. so why I am shouting with all these non sense words? Let me explain a bit, have a cup of coffee and give me some minutes. These points are totally from my perspective. And I really don’t care if that fits for you.
First of all, I am also a closed source developer what I have to do for my living. I work for companies who definitely don’t want to publish their intelligent properties. I also work in paid projects where I just deliver the output and I don’t care what my client do with that piece of code, sole copyright belongs to them. Beside this, I have some time which I study in home and spend in research and development. Most of the developers follow this typical routine in their personal life, I guess.
Now comes the point, so why would I go for free and motivate people to use FOSS?
1. I feel pity when I see that I am using my potential solely for commercial purpose and the community gets nothing from me. I have my strength and skills to develop some cool applications which I must use for community, and I have to do that for free. So I develop free solutions, some of which are free and some open source under LGPL or CC.
2. I feel mentally happy when I contribute in open source communities and people use my code which helps them somehow (I don’t know every possible use of my code) and It inspires me a lot when I receive comments from them, or when I see the download counter increases.
3. I personally don’t like using pirated software. I like much more to pay to developers for the great works they done for us. But unfortunately I live in such a country where I am not capable of paying for licensed software. Sometime I wish to pay but due to the lack of support from payment gateways, I wouldn’t be able. So instead of using pirated solutions, I search for FOSS alternatives. If I find any (even with less features) I prefer using that instead of a paid solution (or pirated solution). For example GIMP is not a full replacement of Adobe photoshop and it has less features when compared to photoshop. But If i were capable of paying 65000 Tk for photoshop (or anyone buys me that 😀 ) I would definitely use Photoshop instead of Gimp, because of its amazing flexibility. But as I cant, I prefer using Gimp as a replacement of Photoshop or Inkscape as a replacement of Illustrator. And that is the only reason I want to work with Linux. I am a extreme fan of winXP for making life easier but as I am concerning day by day, I would like to shift to linux completely.
4. I feel great when I see that some developers are kind enough so that they share their intelligent properties at totally free of cost. I personally always congrats them and i think i will also get such comments in return when I will be one of them. This inspires me to be a FOSS developer.
5. I like to learn. FOSS, specially OS (open Source) helps me to learn how developers develop that amazing solution so that I can incorporate that into my upgrades or my personalized versions.
6. and Finally, not making this post too long, I don’t understand why I have to pay for solutions like Microsoft Office when I have it’s alternative. I am not a hyper advanced user of office solutions. In daily life I use just basic features which you do even with wordpad with some extra effort. Then Why I have to use MS Office? I have my alternatives like OpenOffice or abiWord (well, I prefer open office), moreover as a plus I get some cool features like PDF creation which I cant get in MS word until I buy some commercial add ins (well, PDFCreator is a Free solution if you don’t want to spend a single pence). I always try my best to find an FOSS alternative, If I cant find it, I would better like to skip using that software.
So I am not a Mad, Dumb headed psycho who just scream for FOSS out of nothing. I scream for my personal ethics and for my personal satisfaction. I use FOSS and motivate people to using that. Nothing more.