"The Open Source Way" (The Open Source Way) is a way of thinking about how people collaborate within a Community to achieve common goals and interests.
The first Values of collaboration, communication, open culture and code review among colleagues was born with the ARPANET in the 50's and 60's. However, in 1983, Richard Stallman established the Free Software movement under the GNU Project coming from the Free Software Foundation.
Within this framework, any project following this guideline had to be accessible to the public, and everyone could view, run, study, modify, distribute, and even commercialize the modified code as long as the project is complied with the free software license. In this way, a decentralized and collaborative software philosophy was born. Classic examples of software under this foundation include: Linux, Ansible, Git, LAMP, Kubernetes, Firefox, Chromium.
¿Free of Charge?
It is important to understand that Free Software does not mean “Free of Charge” Software, but “Free” refers to the user's Freedom to use the Software, it is not related to the cost.
Free Software vs. Open Source
In order to eliminate the pricing approach that caused confusion in the past, the concept of “Open Source Software” has been adopted with the aim of bringing the software to broader markets, under the premise that a Flexible Software under a Collaborative environment was equivalent to a Software with better features and more independent in terms of the provider that powers it.
The need to highlight business aspects in the context of Free Software then defines two tracks with well-defined perspectives:
- Free Software: constitutes the philosophical aspect subject to the concept of user freedom.
- Open Source: constitutes the methodological business and production aspect of Free Software.
However, neither Free Software nor Open Source Software make any reference to costs. Both can be distributed with or without cost in a legal manner, provided that the license to which it refers is completed and is in tune with those endorsed by the Free Software Foundation (FSF). Because their sharing values, they are collectively referred to as FOSS (Free and Open Source Software).
In this way, one of the first companies to launch a project firming up this Open Source approach was Netscape Corporation, based on Mozilla. In 1998, in a race to standardize terminology, the Open Source Initiative (OSI) reinforces and formalizes these denominations.
Free Software Values
Free Software premises enhance collaborative methodologies in many aspects. These can be summarized in the following premises:
- "Live" code: code in constant change and movement.
- Transparency: all changes to the software are exposed and can be tracked.
- Reliability: Open Source survives to the "authors", guaranteeing the regular and adequate revision of the software.
- Flexibility: It has the ability to adapt to a specific need with community support, and there is no obligation to use the code in only one way.
- Lower Cost: the code is free. When you purchase Freetech Solutions support, you pay for support, updates, security hardening, deliverable quality reinforcement, and interoperability management.
- Vendor Independence: The user is "free" to move the software anytime, anywhere, without relying on activation.
- Open Collaboration: communities always transcend the interest of a single group of individuals.
This is how at Freetech Solutions, the open community and the free exchange of ideas give the ability to unleash a high potential to build a product that is up to the demands of the market.
"Communities" are made up of people engaged in a collective learning process and shared domain, concern, or passion of interest in something they do and learn as they interact regularly. The principles that lay its foundations can be summarized as follows:
- "Community" rhythm, moving on quickly and with the necessary speed for an increasingly uncertain market.
- Focus on Value, as a key piece that justifies the investment of time in the project.
- Evolutionary design, flexible structure and adaptable to changes.
- Openness to dialogue between Engineers and Clients, Developers and Enthusiasts.
- Development of community spaces with their respective channels for decision-making and the elaboration of collaborative feedback.
- Openness to different levels of participation.
- Constant motivation of the community environment.
Energizing a Community requires an investment of effort and time, where the survival of a Project does not depend on the individuals that have created it.
Likewise, we understand that a good community is made up of transparency, prioritization of adequate communication channels for constant feedback, good documentation of collaborative processes, and decision-making by consensus with the adequate support of experts.
Freetech Solutions, as an enthusiastic company about the free software movement, is committed to sponsor and accompany attractive Open Source projects in the Contact Center segment, with the aim that its relative investment decreases or remains stable over time.
In turn, for the correct monitoring of the health of the communities of interest, OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) are established that allow the Corporate Leadership Team to establish a strategic vision of the projects it sponsors.