What open source means for the Average Joe or Jodi

Marc Mcilhone | African Brains | August 27, 2013

Ask just about any person you meet whether they are using open source software (OSS) and the chances are good you will be met by a blank stare. Yet, people might be surprised when you tell them that they are either using it on the mobile device they own or on their social media platform of choice.

The growth of Android and the popularity of sites like Google, LinkedIn and Twitter all mean that people have come to rely on OSS in some way in their daily lives. But, does this even matter? Well, it depends on who you speak to.

... the majority of people do not really care how the software they are using came to be. But think about the concept of collaboration. This has been around for centuries. There is an often used saying that it takes a village to raise a child. Well, it is true even to this day. The power of a community, in whichever shape or form, is essential for the success of anything. If people do not work together, but in isolation of one another, then things will not happen nearly as effectively, and the chances of failure are increased.

Collaborating on things means that people build something together and collectively act better than a single entity. Look at the growth of Android. Part of its success has been its ability to adapt to change much faster than the other proprietary systems, and has seen it become the dominant mobile platform globally...