At the outset, web designing emerged as an easier and simple way of exchanging information. It was a better means of communication and had better networking benefits compared to the commercial reasons. Later on, the Web became an avenue for making profits, and the information space that was prior for providing free exchange thus changed to a space for commercial transactions.
The open source movement first emerged when major players met and decided to begin the initiative of licensing to protect software developers. The movement was therefore a licensing measure meant to make source codes available to others beside the author through leasing.
There was also need to allow programmers to distribute their software freely and enable people to modify source codes. The current web-based software developers such as PHP, Firefox, WordPress and Linux are thus major contributors to development of modern websites. Open source has consequently had a direct influence on web development and browsing such as flexibility and innovative development initiatives in addition to providing network solutions.
Development of ‘open source’ receives very little attention especially official concerns by the initial founders for its development. The initial organizations to benefit from the open licensing systems directly included the Department of Defence (DOD), Research Agencies, and the Lab researchers such as National Laboratories (Reece et al, 92). These organizations were the most viable producers, users and beneficiaries of the licensing operation.
The firms also provided the platform for major advances such as the firewalls, and other network security tools. Open licensing therefore caused firms to merge ideas and integrate development of operating systems and related software to high-tech but inexpensive software/hardware supercomputers to replace the original Pentium-based systems.
Although departments such as the DOD or Space Agencies may have developed or initiated most of the research into open source, in overall, today’s beneficiaries include commercial agencies. Commercial enterprises such as Netscape, Red Hat, Cygnus, MacAfee and Caldera were quick to realize the opportunities offered by web-based methodologies and begun to offer the open source arrangements.
Other firms that latter on came in support of open source included the hardware developers such as Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, Sun Microsystems and IBM (International Business Machines) among others. Consistent with VanDyk, the concept open source emerged from software engineers, but today the entire movement is made of technologically motivated individuals (9). They focus more on technological productivity as opposed to economical benefits.
Although the initial authors retain all the rights of their code, restrictions are less and simpler to allow others to utilize the code. Today, different countries have constitutions supporting the freedom of speech. Users never thought programs would be freeware in a manner comparable to the way verbal communication is an inalienable right today. Redistribution of software code does not face unnecessary restriction, since developers found that ‘open source’ is an effective way of finding and correcting faulty codes.
Open source also encourages reliability and quality of software due to the independent reviews and the rapid dynamic nature of the web-based programming. According to Van Reijswoud, the simplified way of defining ‘open source’ may appear more pervasive compared to technical definition (230).
The open form of licensing allows any individual developer as well as a corporation to give others freedom to change competence and quality of a code, at the same time retain ownership as long as the beneficiaries agree to equally share the code with others under similar terms of agreement.
This form of web development allows development of new web programmers particularly among users who wish to make their contributions on success and quality of products. Web development has therefore advanced to allow better distribution of expertise through refinement of existing codes. Experts are also able to provide new services through innovation and inspired creations.
The new trend of user-developer enhances development of diverse and advanced modern websites. Open source therefore allows a progressive form of dynamism that is almost impossible to achieve given any other condition that developers may find (Meeker, 38). There is a revolution on the way the software engineering industry has developed in terms software quality and ability to assist beneficiaries from the developments.
Current success of the internet is for the reason that there is direct success of the open source form of web development. Success of World Wide Web therefore indicates the evolution and power of open content. According to Richter, ‘open source’ is a form of licensing that affects development, distribution and use of software, thus causing direct change on corporations (281). It assists to focus innovation of information technology to ensure generation of profits.
Pragmatism demands that people share ideas and beliefs as opposed to involvement in scientific formulae. Open source has therefore been on constant demand among human needs indirectly, since proponents hold up to strict scrutiny of applications. Scientists allow extensive source code usage and analysis, which often means critical review of design, functionality, structure and content.
In line with Allen et al, programming involves more that art or design work, it has a foundation of functionality and practical knowledge (81). Technology maturity has thus caused spreading of knowledge and enhancement of techniques. Programmers are ready and more willing to have their codes examined, verified and used by others. Allowing others to use the code is mostly based on utmost good faith that the favour will be replicated or returned as opposed to financial benefits.
Employers of excellent source-code providers such as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sun Microsystems, IBM and other corporations also have a direct benefit of fame, recognition and demand for goods or services. Their products are a direct reflection of business personality, capabilities, and the collaborative nature.
The use of ad hoc organizations has assisted in great developments, for instance the Apache Group were able to build up the most popular server “World Wide Web”, without ever convening. Working partners such as the Berkeley Software developers’ in-charge of commercial firewalls have employees working from various locations and collaborate electronically. Open licensing therefore allows organizations to pull web-based initiatives together and ensure survival of best products without disenfranchising anyone.
Programmers are becoming smarter to ensure production of the best and greatest codes compared to potential competitors. The easiness of obtaining the source code is also a great inspiration and a guide for many initial code developers especially web designers. An author of a code can find feedback such as suggestions or criticisms from other users and this is vital for systems productivity.
Companies such as Microsoft can also be able to find the open-source teams and expand their capabilities indefinitely since such measure is global and allows full-time international interactions. In line with Koch, open source enables a firm to ensure continuous use, maintenance and enhancement of a product (5). They must be able to integrate change on future developments to ensure competitive investment. The systems are able to harness sustainability, through collaboration of users and developers.
Although code developers are eager to maintain a reputation in the industry, open source may compromise need to recognize ownership of the original version of code. Indiscipline among users and lack of tight security measures to protect originality leads to existence of multiple versions of a code. With such scenario arising, it is extremely difficult to give credit where it is due. The uses are supposed to benefit from enhanced applications and related financial benefits, while the initial developer gets recognition.
Software developers have often engaged and appreciated the open source form of programming due to easiness on implementation of aspects that initially seemed to conflict such as reliability, innovativeness and interoperability. Internet community ought to value creativity and efficiency and ensure that accomplishments are not redone/duplicated but rather improved.
Good open source software incorporates other common data formats, and these forms of reuse and refinement have previously enhanced development of quality and unique software. There are various debates based on open source especially envisioning future prospects of the field of sharing codes. The current research studies on the matter provide only a glimpse of the facts and fail to expound on the possible pedagogy and technological changes.
Today there is a unique but exiting era and as Canne puts it, “the perfect e-storm is becoming less cloudy and ominous” (151). The writer emphasizes the importance of maintaining the idea of open licensing. Founders such as CISCO termed open sources as the greatest investment a company and consequently the government can make.
Open source applications are thus the basis for implementation of the Internet, as well as mail servers. Ideas of the programmers provide chances for improvement, scaling and reutilization of code to achieve new goals. Various internet protocols such as TCP/IP are a long lasting communication and sharing rules still in use on any network today.
Allen, Chris,. Balkan, Aral,. Grden, John,. Arnold, Wade,. & Cannasse, Nicolas. The Essential Guide to Open Source Flash Development. New York, NY Apress. 2008. Press.
Canne, Torre. Product-Focused Software Process Improvement: 12th International Conference, PROFES 2011: Lecture Notes in Computer Science / Programming and Software Engineering Series. Vol. 6759. Italy: Springer ltd, June 20-22, 2011.
Koch, Stefan. Free/open source software development. Pennsylvania, PA: Idea Group Publishers. 2005. Press.
Meeker, Heather J. The open source alternative: understanding risks and leveraging opportunities. New Jersey, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Inc. 2008. Press.
Reece, Monique., Shah, Rawn., & Tasner, Michael. How to Innovate in Marketing (Collection). New Jersey, NJ: Ft Press Delivers. Press.
Richter, Susanne. Critique for the Open Source Development Model. Germany. GRIN Verlag. 2007. Press.
VanDyk, John, K. Pro Drupal development. Second Edition. New York, NY Apress. 2008. Press.
Van Reijswoud, Victor. Free and open source software for development: exploring expectations, achievements and the future. Milan Italy: Polimetrica s.a.s. ltd. 2008. Press.