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InternetWeek.com: Salon.com Leans On Open Source

Jan 23, 2002, 17:48 (5 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Mitch Wagner)
"Engineers have a saying: 'Cheap, fast, good. Pick any two.' But online magazine Salon.com thinks it got all three when it desperately needed a subscription system and decided to build, rather than buy, the software using Linux, open source development tools and Java.

Last year, online advertising, Salon's only real source of revenue, was drying up. So was investment capital. So Salon, which had until then allowed readers to view its ad-supported content at no charge, decided to launch a subscription program to bring in much-needed cash. Salon would continue to offer much of its content for free, supported by ads, while subscribers would get additional, exclusive content. Subscribers would also be exempt from having to look at ads.

Salon's IT department had only 90 days to build a system that would give readers appropriate access to Salon content based on their subscription status. In January 2001, Salon decided to outsource credit-card verification to CyberSource and build the rest of the applications in Java, Java Server Pages and Linux, using the MySQL database to store information and writing some components in Perl, said Benjamin Grant, Salon's vice president of technology."

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