Don Bosco Philippines South Province

Salesians of Don Bosco – Philippine South Province FIS

Open Source Software

Open source software is one of the best things in the free world (I mean independent world here) because its free!

Fr. Julian Fox, the previous provincial of the Aussie Salesian Province advocated the use of open source software. Looking up from his laptop when I asked him if he tried to use Microsoft Outlook in sending his austraLasia news in volumes, he pursed his lips and said “It’s against my principles”.

Fr. Julian, or Foxy as he calls himself, is one of the staunch supporter of the free software world. He gave me several reasons why we should migrate from proprietary (bought/licensed) software to open source:

1. For standardization – open source software developers ally themselves to international standards for inter-compatibility. You can be sure that data saved in internationally accepted data format will be supported in the future as it is now. Talk about archiving.

2. Morality – free softwares saves you from piracy. No fee, no piracy.

3. Practicality – this is important when you’re in an organization and everyone needs to use some software power. Volume licensing may be at a discounted price however the price remains high compared to free software.

These are really valid arguments if you are to ask me. I use some of these open source software too. However, I should note that proprietary softwares are “packed with more features” since the giant software companies have the financial resources to pour. But nevertheless the developers in the free software world are as talented and innovative. Talk about intercontinental collaboration!

So in choosing which software to use I often select through the price and feature criteria. If one is free that would suit my tech needs then it receives my favor. But free is still the best.


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