Now ask your students that if you stole their computer or spilled a hot cup of
co&ee on their computer right now how much information would they lose?
Encourage your students to create a backup strategy.
Open Source on a Large Scale
Initially, open source was used deep within IT departments. These groups
have the technical prowess to manage and evaluate such technologies,
understanding where they should be widely deployed, and where they should
have limited use. The use of open source is not limited to a few companies
that want to be on the edge. Companies that are using open source, such as
Linux, for commercial applications include Winnebago Industries, Merrill
Lynch and Co, and L. L. Bean.
Fundamental issues with open source software development
While vast numbers of the current technology community members are
proponents of open source, there are also people on the other side of the
debate. The most obvious complaint against open source software involves
intellectual property rights. Some software development companies do use
the copyright and patent rights provided for software developers as their
primary source of income. By keeping their software source code hidden,
they can demand fees for its use. While most software is written for internal
use, the fees from sale and license of commercial software are the primary
source of income for companies which do sell software. Additionally, many
companies with large research and development teams often develop
extensive patent portfolios. These companies charge money for the use of
their patents in software, but having software be open source means that
there is a potential to have a nearly in#nite number of derived software using
patented technology, unbeknownst to the patent holder.
Another common argument, one that is more difficult for open source
advocates to contradict with hard facts, is that closed source development
allows more control over the final product. The theory behind this argument
is that open source software is primarily a volunteer e&ort, while
closed-source development is typically a salary-driven e&ort. By having the
monetary resources to fund developers and management, and the ability to
force development in a given direction, closed source proponents argue that
development can be more e:cient and more focused.
The legal risks of adopting open source software may not be con#ned to
intellectual property problems. "Open source" describes a belief that
software is best written in an open collaborative process in which the
resulting product is freely available to others to use, improve, and distribute.
Early proponents of open source based it on moral principles of free access,