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BusinessWeek: Open Source Takes on Telecom

Jul 10, 2006, 17:30 (0 Talkback[s])

"In 1999, Mark Spencer needed a phone system for his startup, Linux Support Services. The company's aim was to provide technical support to businesses and programmers for Linux, an operating system for which the source code is free, making it an appealing alternative to Microsoft's (MSFT) Windows. But, Spencer was still a student at Auburn University and he had raised a mere $4,000 in startup capital. 'I thought I really needed to get a phone system, but they were simply too expensive,' he says.

"So he did what any programmer wise in the ways of open-source software would do: He created his own. Using a combination of Linux and C programming, he created an open-source telephone switch called Asterisk, and then made the software available for free to others who wanted to use it..."

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