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The Scariest Things in Open Source

Nov 02, 2008, 14:02 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Steve Lake)

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"Another that is directly related to this would be proprietary formats. Things like mp3, asf, doc and others. Proprietary formats create innumerable problems, and cause more grief than they solve. Problems include lack of support (or proper support), limited usage (ie, only certain programs are allowed to use them), version incompatibility (ie, the format used by 1.0 may not work in 2.0 and vice versa), DRM, vendor lock-in, loss of information and more. Open formats avoid all or the majority of these problems and ensure long term accessibility of your data.

"Another scary thing for those in Open Source would be patents. Honestly, thanks to the legal work done by so many in the FOSS world (big props to you guys), patents have more or less become a huge paper tiger. They still scare a lot of people, but in the end, all the saber rattling by the big boys (Microsoft, Oracle, Apple, Intel, etc, etc) have more or less rendered patents as nothing more than dead trees splattered with ink."

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