The term Open Source refers to software, whose source code is freely available and that a number of independant programmers work on.
Open-source software (OSS)
The Open Source Initiative lists further criteria for Open-source software (OSS), apart from the availability of the source code.
Criteria for open-source software
The circulation or sale of the software as part of a software distribution must not be restricted by the licence. The licence must permit the modification and derivative work on the software as well as subsequent distribution under the terms of the original licence. Furthermore, the licence must be technologically and product neutral and must not restrict software components of other distributions in any way.
Another feature is that open-source software such as bitfarm-Archiv Document Management do not involve licence fees. This is dictated by licence terms, such as the GPL (General Public Licence) or the AFPL (Aladdin free Public Licence).
Best-known representative of an open-source software is the operating system Linux with its numerous services and applications.
Modern form of software development
Today, open-source software is recognised as a modern form of software development. Since programmers can freely access the available products, the wheel does not have to be reinvented each time. This saves a lot of time and development resources, while retaining high quality standards. The developer company's economic advantage is the customer's economic advantage through the lack of licence fees.
Safeguarding the future
Open-source software also ranks among the TOP-places concerning safeguarding the future, since the use of universal standards and their distribution is being banked on. Thus, the customer can be sure not to end up in a "one-way street". Through the availability of the programme code dependency on one company and its continued existence is reduced. This is increasingly important in times when even larger companies disappear off the radar from one day to the next.