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WIKIBOOKS
DISPONIBILI
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ART
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BUSINESS&LAW
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TRADITIONS
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NATURE
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ARTICLES IN THE BOOK

  1. Academic Free License
  2. Adaptive Public License
  3. Advogato
  4. Affero General Public License
  5. Africa Source
  6. AKademy
  7. Alternative terms for free software
  8. Anti-copyright notice
  9. Apache License
  10. Apache Software Foundation
  11. APESOL
  12. Apple Public Source License
  13. Artistic License
  14. Association For Free Software
  15. August Penguin
  16. Benetech
  17. Benevolent Dictator for Life
  18. BerliOS
  19. Binary blob
  20. BK02
  21. Blender Foundation
  22. Bruce Perens' Open Source Series
  23. BSD licenses
  24. CeCILL
  25. CE Linux Forum
  26. Clarkson Open Source Institute
  27. Code Breakers
  28. CodePlex
  29. Collaborative software development model
  30. Collaborative Source license
  31. Common Development and Distribution License
  32. Common Public License
  33. Comparison of free software hosting facilities
  34. CONSOL
  35. Copycenter
  36. Copyleft
  37. Creative Commons licenses
  38. Debconf
  39. Debian Free Software Guidelines
  40. Debian Manifesto
  41. Desktop Developers' Conference
  42. Eclipse Foundation
  43. Eclipse Public License
  44. Enterprise open source journal
  45. European Union Public Licence
  46. Everybody Loves Eric Raymond
  47. Forum Internacional Software Livre
  48. Fedora Project
  49. FOSDEM
  50. FOSS.IN
  51. Fossap
  52. Frameworx License
  53. Free content
  54. Free Culture movement
  55. Freedesktop.org
  56. Freely redistributable software
  57. Freepository
  58. Free software
  59. Free Software Award for Projects of Social Benefit
  60. Free software community
  61. Free Software Directory
  62. Free Software Foundation
  63. Free Software Foundation Europe
  64. Free Software Foundation Latin America
  65. Free Software Foundation of India
  66. Free Software Initiative of Japan
  67. Free software license
  68. Free Software Magazine
  69. Free software movement
  70. Free Software Song
  71. Free Standards Group
  72. FSF Award for the Advancement of Free Software
  73. GCC Summit
  74. Gna.org
  75. GNAT Modified General Public License
  76. Gnits Standards
  77. GnomeFiles
  78. GNOME Foundation
  79. GNU Coding Standards
  80. GNU Free Documentation License
  81. GNU General Public License
  82. GNU Lesser General Public License
  83. GNU Manifesto
  84. GNU Savannah
  85. GNU Simpler Free Documentation License
  86. Google Code
  87. Google Summer of Code
  88. Go Open Source
  89. GRASS GIS
  90. Gratis versus Libre
  91. Groklaw
  92. GUADEC
  93. Halloween documents
  94. Hamakor
  95. Historical Permission Notice and Disclaimer
  96. Homesteading the Noosphere
  97. Hurd User Group
  98. IBM Public License
  99. IBM Type-III Library
  100. Intel Open Source License
  101. International Open Source Network
  102. Irish Free Software Organisation
  103. ISC licence
  104. Jargon File
  105. Jimbo Wales
  106. KDE Dot News
  107. KernelTrap
  108. LAMP
  109. LaTeX Project Public License
  110. League for Programming Freedom
  111. Leonard H. Tower Jr.
  112. libpng
  113. Libre Software Meeting
  114. Linus's Law
  115. Linus Torvalds
  116. Linux.conf.au
  117. Linux conference
  118. Linux Expo
  119. Linux Gazette
  120. Linux International
  121. Linux Journal
  122. Linux Kongress
  123. Linux naming controversy
  124. LinuxQuestions.org
  125. LinuxTag
  126. Linux User Group
  127. LinuxWorld Conference and Expo
  128. List of software that uses the MIT License
  129. LiveJournal
  130. Lucent Public License
  131. LXer
  132. MIT License
  133. MozBin
  134. Mozdev.org
  135. Mozilla Add-ons
  136. Mozilla Foundation
  137. Mozilla Public License
  138. MozillaZine
  139. MyOSS
  140. NetHack General Public License
  141. Netscape Public License
  142. NewsForge
  143. New Zealand Open Source Society
  144. NonProfit Open Source Initiative
  145. Non-proprietary software
  146. Nupedia Open Content License
  147. ObjectWeb
  148. Ohio LinuxFest
  149. Ohloh
  150. O3 Magazine
  151. Open Audio License
  152. OpenCola
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  154. Open design
  155. OpenDocument Format Alliance
  156. OpenLP
  157. Open outsourcing
  158. Open Security Foundation
  159. Open Software License
  160. Open-source advocacy
  161. Open Source Applications Foundation
  162. Open-source culture
  163. Open Source Definition
  164. Open Source Developers' Conference
  165. Open-source evangelist
  166. Open source funding
  167. Open Source Geospatial Foundation
  168. Open Source Initiative
  169. Open source movement
  170. Open source movie
  171. Open-source software
  172. Open source software development
  173. Open source software development method
  174. Open Source Software Institute
  175. Open source teaching
  176. Open source vs. closed source
  177. Open-sourcing
  178. O'Reilly Open Source Convention
  179. Organisation for Free Software in Education and Teaching
  180. OSDL
  181. Ottawa Linux Symposium
  182. Patent Commons
  183. PHP License
  184. Pionia
  185. Pionia Organization
  186. Proprietary software
  187. Protecting the Virtual Commons
  188. Public Documentation License
  189. Public-domain equivalent license
  190. Python License
  191. Python Software Foundation License
  192. Q Public License
  193. RealNetworks Public Source License
  194. Reciprocal Public License
  195. Red Hat
  196. Revolution OS
  197. Richard Stallman
  198. RubyForge
  199. Sarovar
  200. Savane
  201. SIL Open Font License
  202. Simputer General Public License
  203. SIPfoundry
  204. Slashdot
  205. Sleepycat License
  206. Software Freedom Day
  207. Software Freedom Law Center
  208. Software in the Public Interest
  209. SourceForge
  210. Spread Firefox
  211. Sun Industry Standards Source License
  212. Sun Public License
  213. Sybase Open Watcom Public License
  214. Tanenbaum-Torvalds debate
  215. Tectonic Magazine
  216. The Cathedral and the Bazaar
  217. The Freedom Toaster
  218. The Free Software Definition
  219. The Perl Foundation
  220. The Right to Read
  221. The Summit Open Source Development Group
  222. Tigris.org
  223. Tivoization
  224. Tux
  225. Tux Magazine
  226. Ubuntu Foundation
  227. Use of Free and Open Source Software in the U.S. Department of Defense
  228. Vores Ol
  229. W3C Software Notice and License
  230. Webgpl
  231. What the Hack
  232. Wizards of OS
  233. WTFPL
  234. X.Org Foundation
  235. Xiph.Org Foundation
  236. Yet Another Perl Conference
  237. Yogurt

 

 
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FREE SOFTWARE CULTURE
This article is from:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_outsourcing

All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Text_of_the_GNU_Free_Documentation_License 

Open outsourcing

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 


Open outsourcing is a Socioeconomic movement resulting from the marriage of the open source movement and the recent trend towards the international outsourcing of programming.

Open outsourcing makes open source technology more accessible to businesses and individuals by employing an inexpensive international labor force of programmers, often on a contractual piecework basis. Small businesses may not be technical enough to efficiently utilize open source resources in-house or large enough to hire a full time technician. Larger businesses with IT staff may lack technicians with specific skills or knowledge. Open outsourcing also reduces some of the risks associated with outsourcing by making the resulting code publicly available through open source licensing.

The combination of outsourcing techniques with open source business models has the potential to improve the software user's experience with both. That is, open source solves some of the problems commonly associated with outsourcing and outsourcing solves some of the commonly encountered challenges with employing open source.

Benefits of open source

  • No lock-in or long-term contractual obligation with a software vendor
  • Low or no cost for the license
  • You may modify the source code for your specific needs
  • No runtime fees
  • Quicker turn around time for fixing bugs

Challenges of open source

The challenges of using open source efficiently aren't solely those of technical naiveté, but are somewhat inherent in the entire open source movement. Despite recent progress towards greater ease of use in mature open source projects, many pieces of open software remain somewhat inaccessible to any but the technologically sophisticated. These problems include:

  • A lack of marketing to make potential users aware of the existence of mature projects
  • A lack of excellent documentation
  • Inconsistent or non-existent install scripts
  • Lack of knowledgeable and available support staff
  • Inconsistent and generally unknowable quality of projects
  • Developer-centric designs highlighting feature creep
  • Complexities of licensing and license proliferation
  • Fear, uncertainty and doubt

~~==How open outsourcing reduces the challenges of open source== Web sites devoted to connecting programmers with people needing programs make it easy to put a job before thousands of coders with a single posting. This turns the marketing problem of open source on its head, because some of those programmers are already aware of open source projects that may help in solving the problem. Other programmers will search for entire or partial solutions as they bid on a project.

The documentation problem is lessened because the programmers are either already familiar with the code in question, or can read the code itself to determine its function. They can also be employed to create documentation suitable for your needs.

These programmers are generally able and willing to create install scripts that make deploying the application easier, and in the case of web applications can even configure the web server. Special distributions of operating systems preloaded with software for a particular industry are becoming quite ubiquitous and outsourced programmers can assist you in finding or creating a special distribution for your industry.

Ongoing support can often be negotiated, however, this must be made very clear from the beginning of the process, or extra expenses can be incurred later.

The problem of basing a solution on an immature or bug-ridden open source project is reduced because the programmers are able to ascertain the current state of a particular project, or are willing to work on the project to push it further along in the directions you require, if you can afford those improvements.

In general, the issues with feature creep are not resolved by open outsourcing, but at least the features being developed are the ones you specifically require for your business. Being in the position of controlling the development assures that what you care about is advanced, rather than being at the mercy of volunteer programmers with their own priorities.

The complexities of licensing remain a challenge. They are most easily resolved by choosing ahead of time a compatible set of open source licenses you are willing to work with, then not using source from incompatibly licensed projects. The licenses with the most restrictive anti-commercialization clauses such as the GPL tend to also be those with the most available source code, so there is a trade off that must be weighed in selecting the kind of license to use. The most restrictive type of licenses do not typically present problems for end users of in-house software, but may present significant challenges if the software is for resale, especially if it is used within a larger proprietary system. One grey area is whether open source modified and run on a web server constitutes a change that must be submitted under copyleft agreements.

Real examples of open outsourcing

As an example of open outsourcing, there are hundreds of web site developers being hired on Rent-A-Coder using open source Perl and PHP scripts to create and configure proprietary web sites for web site owners who are generally non-technical. Estimates from Rent-A-Coder are that approximately 70% of all code buyers on their site are non-technical. It is believed that little of the code currently generated on Rent-A-Coder works its way back into the open source projects the original code came from, despite the fact that much of the code is licensed under the GPL, which encourages such code modifications be made public, but only requires it if the program is distributed.

The sociological impact of open outsourcing

When open source demographics are examined closely as in Steven Weber’s book The Success of Open Source, it is seen that the vast majority of current major contributors to open source projects are from wealthy Western world nations. The United States is the greatest contributor of open source in raw numbers, but the nations making the greatest per-capita contributions today are in Scandinavia. The third world represents hardly a blip. This is consistent with Eric S. Raymond’s observation in Homesteading the Noosphere that the open source movement comes generally today from a gift economy based upon abundance rather than an exchange economy based upon scarcity. Open outsourcing has the potential to balance this out allowing third world programmers to contribute more equally to the body of open source software in a way consistent with the scarcity of third world economies.

As steps are taken to insure that work done for pay with open source software results in a greater number of submissions back to the original core code groups developing these projects, the contribution of third world programmers to open source projects should grow. One of the greatest challenges to successful open outsourcing (as a movement) is making sure that programmers in the third world, as well as their Western patrons are aware of their responsibility to resubmit code changes and evolution to the original programs. Programmers participating in the movement are more likely to become familiar with these requirements than the business people hiring them.

Conclusions

In open outsourcing the concept that open source code must be created, specialized, installed, configured, maintained and improved on an exclusively volunteer basis is challenged. Business men as well as individuals can pay international programming rates for improvements they need to existing open source projects. Software users can find appropriate open source to meet their needs. They can get assistance setting up the software, and understanding it. Third world programmers are benefited by their exposure to open source projects, and the primarily western maintainers of open source projects may benefit from additional submissions to their programs.

Open outsourcing strengthens weaknesses to both the open source movement and the outsourcing trend by supporting the weakness of each system with the strengths of the other. It allows people with little technical skill, but with some money and desire, to contribute to both the economic growth of the third world and the body of open source software. Open outsourcing is beneficial to all parties involved. While proprietary software companies may fear these trends, it is more likely that they will simply grow the market for computing world wide.

External links

  • Outsourcing-Heaven.com - A complete guide to outsourcing as viewed from both a buyer and a coder's perspective
  • OpenOutsource.com
  • www.code-with-coder.com
  • Article on Open Outsourcing
  • An Outsourcing Company Employing this Model
  • Another Company Employing this Model
  • A site for posting open source bounties
  • A site for finding coders to do open outsourcing
  • Another site for finding coders
  • Article on Offshore Outsourcing and Open Source software
Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_outsourcing"