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About "FOSS" - Free & Open Source Software

Giving credit where credit is due... note

Free and open-source software (FOSS) is computer software that can be classified as both free software and open source software. That is, anyone is freely licensed to use, copy, study, and change the software in any way, and the source code is openly shared so that people are encouraged to voluntarily improve the design of the software. This is in contrast to proprietary software, where the software is under restrictive copyright and the source code is usually hidden from the users.

In general,  "Open source is a development method for software that harnesses the power of distributed peer review and transparency of process. The promise of open source is better quality, higher reliability, more flexibility, lower cost, and an end to predatory vendor lock-in." (OSI)

Specifically, open-source software (OSS) is computer software for which the source code and certain other rights normally reserved for copyright holders are provided under a software license that meets the Open Source Definition or that is in the public domain. This permits users to use, change, and improve the software, and to redistribute it in modified or unmodified forms. It is very often developed in a public, collaborative manner.

10 Questions To Ask When Evaluating "Open Source"

A list of ten questions to ask when evaluating open-source software for use in your small business operations.