Rediscoving my love for Open source software

I first discovered the concept of ‘open source’ software through the operating system Linux back in 1998. I had played with ‘free software’ before on various windows boxes but never really considered ‘open source’ as a development methodology.

I spent a lot of time installing various Linux distros, from Redhat (as it was then) to more recently the stunning Ubuntu Linux. I was also involved convincing editorial colleages for our in house magazine to stick the OpenCD on to a special edition a few years ago.

I have been lucky enough to have meet RMS himself, along with other advocates in this space.

So I am someone who gets open source.

However, more recently my passion for open source has been trumped by OSX (itself an OS based on free BSD). I still play with distros of Linux from time to time, but OSX is, without doubt, my platform of choice. I think the reasons why are obvious. But if pushed, there are two fundamental reasons why I use it:

1. Robustness
2. Elegance

But that’s not the purpose of this post. It simply provides a context.

The Joys of Open Source

As you will know I recently installed the excellent WordPress on my webserver. It now drives my blog. I am also developing a Joomla based CMS website at work.

I cannot begin to praise the quality of both systems enough. It staggers me to think that thousands of developers work tirelessly to develop, improve and fix code for these, and many other applications. They ask for nothing more than for us to use the software. The quality of technical documention is outstanding and technical support is everywhere.

I do not consider myself a web developer. Yet I have not struggled to install, develop and hack these applications. It is credit to the quality of the software – not my expertise.

As I develop, in particular the Joomla site, my gratitude and thanks to all those coders grows.

For the record I take my hat off to you all. And offer a genuinely, heart felt, thank you!