Better Security, Faster Browsing… The Open Source movement

If you have been following the open source movement (wikipedia page), you’re probably very excited about the products that are coming out of it. In short, open source means that the product is free, peer-edited, and often times better than its cost-based counterparts. Take Firefox for example; Firefox is a web browser that runs faster than Internet Explorer, has a far superior security system (fewer exploits and viruses) than Internet Explorer, and this was all created by a not-for-profit foundation called Mozilla with the help of thousands of volunteers. You can click here to install .

That is just a small example that you can install today; I use Firefox exclusively. Other examples include Linux (a free operating system that rivals Windows), WordPress and Mambo (free web design, blog, and content management systems), and OpenOffice (free documents, spreadsheets, presentation, and easy collaboration). The reason I’m posting about this is because the movement is huge. Open source is targeting large markets like web browsing and operating systems, but also small niches like shopping carts and message boards.

Here is some open source software that you can use for your program:

  • Open WorkBench (used by over 100,000 PMs) – this is free project management software… but you’d never guess it was free
  • Google Apps – This is Google’s counter to Microsoft Office. I love this because it makes sharing super easy, and you always have access to your documents, no matter what computer you are on.
  • Twiki - This is a wiki designed for enterprise use. A wiki is an incredibly powerful way to share knowledge in your organization.
  • Hopefully one day I can add a data quality and profiling tool here, as well as a good meta-data repository

I hope you’ve learned a little bit about the Open Source movement. I’m a big believer and supporter in this methodology. If you are new to it, give Firefox a try, I bet you won’t go back to Internet Explorer!

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