Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 21st Jul 2012 23:06 UTC
In the News Okay, so this is entirely new to me. Sparrow is was an email client for Mac OS X and iOS (and Windows), which brought a decent Gmail experience to these platforms - as opposed to Apple's own not-so-good Gmail support and Google's Gmail iOS application which, well, is just a webpage. Google has now acquired Sparrow, and basically all hell has broken loose, to the point of Rian van der Merwe writing that 'we' lost "faith in a philosophy that we thought was a sustainable way to ensure a healthy future for independent software development, where most innovation happens".
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"the dangers of closed source"
by martini on Sun 22nd Jul 2012 02:57 UTC
martini
Member since:
2006-01-23

Thom, I liked this post.

It may even sound strange but I can not believe that there are not laws that regulate the software business.

Since the source code is secret, software companies can boycott competition.
- Software developers may include intentionally instructions that make the software of their competitors to run slower.
- Developers can include secret backdoors inside software to gain access to you system or personal information.
- Since the source code is keep as a secret, it is hard to find out that the software you are using is taking your personal information without your permission.

Hi-Jack Customers. Customers may be hi-jacked by the software authors.
- Software authors may force the customers to pay for software updates by removing the support of older versions of the software
- There is no way to keep the same software and select a different author to support it, since the software authors has the exclusivity of the Source Code.
- Authors may force the customer to buy newer of different kind of hardware devices to support newer versions of the software.

Abandonware is not consider legal.
- When the software is discontinued by its author, or the company that produces the software goes out of business, the customer is left “High and Dry”
- The customer does not know if it legal of not to keep using and installing new licenses of this kind of software on their business.
- The software does not has any more possibilities to be improved. This harms the customer that relies on this software for performing their business activities.

The worst thing is that we think this is normal. (Business as usual)

Solution??
Use Open Source Software.

But I dream with the day that governments will force Software manufacturers to:

1) All software binaries offered for free or a price should have the source code available for inspection for their customers. (The source code can be under any license the author wants)

2) When the Software reaches the end of life marked by its author, or has been X years since it was released, the binary and source code will turn public domain or open source software.

3) Use, modification, distribution and reverse engineering of software binaries will be legal for products that reached the end of life, that had been discontinued, or when the software company went out of business.

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