What is Open Source?

What is Open Source?

What is Open Source? - Tobie Langel, UnlockOpen. Open source is a deep part of software engineer culture. Yet we struggle to define it clearly. Depending on who you ask, open source is anything from a set of practices and norms to a simple software license.

What is Open Source? - Tobie Langel, UnlockOpen

Open source is a deep part of software engineer culture. Yet we struggle to define it clearly. Depending on who you ask, open source is anything from a set of practices and norms to a simple software license. What arguably feels like a fairly pedantic discussion turns out to have real world impact. In the last couple of years, our community has been shaken by high profile projects adopting much more restrictive licenses, which some have started to call faux-pen source. This licensing shift isn't so unexpected when you consider it through the perspective of norms and practices rather than the fairly narrow one of licensing. Approaching open source through this broader and more intuitive lens gives us much better tools to understand the whole open source ecosystem, foster behaviors that are beneficial to its community, and consistently predict bad outcomes early. We should adopt it.

open source

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