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MicroTimes: Open Source Freeware Fills The Bill

[ Thanks to Sam
Taylor
for this link. ]

“Welcome to the first installment of Open Sources. In this
column I’ll keep you abreast of open source freeware developments
in both the technical and the business arenas. Many essential
technologies that run the Web are freeware, with the source code
available to all as a download…”

“Some have licensing restrictions, but in general, if you don’t
sell the software to somebody else, you don’t have to pay for it.
These software development tools offer high quality and capability,
as well as functionality that you often can’t get even in
commercial tools. The popularity of these tools reflects their
power. Perl is an extremely popular language for CGI scripts; a
recent survey showed Apache was the most widely used Web
server.”

“These aren’t just toys for hobbyists. If your business is on
the Internet, you need to know about this stuff. Where did all
this software come from, and why is it generally of such high
quality? The tradition of developing software packages and giving
them away in source code started with minicomputer developers,
going as far back as the MIT hackers on the Digital Equipment Corp.
PDP series in the 1960s.
(PC hobbyist developers in the 1980s
tended to make their products shareware, asking for financial
contributions from their users, and to distribute their packages as
binaries, so the users couldn’t make their own modifications.)”

Complete
Story