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Week 3 Individual

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By Virit
Words 532
Pages 3
Open and Closed Source Systems
For this paper, I choose option 2, which is to explain and compare Open and Closed source systems. Software is identified in two forms, source and binary. Source is the form in which users write software. This is where Open and Closed source systems/software come in. While they both deal with the way systems are accessed, and the software, and the rights and restrictions of that software, they are complete opposites when it comes to what each (Open and Closed) does and protects.
Open Source systems and software are those in which the software has no real restrictions on what a user may do with the software. The most common names for Open source systems are free software, Public Domain Software, GNU software and copylefted software. When this type of system or software was first brought to the public most commercial software vendors and users ignored it, claiming it was a fad, and would quickly disappear. Unfortunate for them, Open source systems and software have actually become one of the most prevalent forms of software available to the public, and a lot of “techie” companies and users use it, due to the fact that the source code is open, therefore, the software can be changed and used as the user sees fit.
Closed source systems and software are the complete opposite of the Open source systems and software. Closed source systems and software that is sold by commercial vendors and users is sold with the source closed, and in binary form, hence the name “closed source.” Since binary prevents users from seeing how the system or software works, the user is unable to change or modify any part of the system or software.
This is also where copyright clauses and laws come in when dealing with Open and Closed source systems and software. Software that is sold as “closed source”, is also sold with copyright clauses and laws that says you can not in any way, shape, or form, freely copy or give away or sell the software. This prevents users from copying software and then selling it as their own. This also prevents other companies from doing the same. Open source systems and software, however, is the opposite, it is given away or sold in source form. This allows the users to see the coding and how the system or software works, and therefore, they are able to modify, give away, or use parts of the system or software in other systems or software.
When doing research for this assignment, I noticed that each of the common operating systems and platform media devices/networks use different source systems and softwares. When it comes to the most open operating system, Linux definitely wins, being open across the board, followed by Windows, the median of the three, and finally Macintosh, which is the least open. The following chart provides a more in-depth view of how open each operating system is. Linux Windows Macintosh
Demand-Side User (End User) OPEN OPEN OPEN
Supply-Side User (Application Developer) OPEN OPEN OPEN
Platform Provider (Hardware/OS Bundle) OPEN OPEN CLOSED
Platform Sponsor (Design & IP Rights Owner) OPEN CLOSED CLOSED

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