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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2000

Steven Kirby

The Linux operating system has emerged as a competitor to both Microsoft Windows and commercial implementations of UNIX. Linux provides a robust, stable computing…

Abstract

The Linux operating system has emerged as a competitor to both Microsoft Windows and commercial implementations of UNIX. Linux provides a robust, stable computing environment on a variety of architectures including Intel X86, SPARC, and Alpha. A significant number of desktop and server applications have been ported to Linux. The number of companies willing to provide fee‐based technical support for Linux continues to grow. When combined with Linux’s low initial purchase price, such factors offer a compelling reason for libraries to consider Linux as an alternative to commercial operating systems.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

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Book part
Publication date: 23 November 2011

Marc-David L. Seidel and Katherine J. Stewart

This chapter seeks to enhance organizational theory's current typology of organizational architectures to explain a flourishing modern architecture that has developed…

Abstract

This chapter seeks to enhance organizational theory's current typology of organizational architectures to explain a flourishing modern architecture that has developed utilizing the inexpensive communication paths created by technology such as the Internet and wireless networks. As communication and coordination costs have dropped, new organizing methods have grown that are difficult to understand using the traditional organizational architectures. In this chapter, we introduce a new community architecture, the “C-form,” which is categorized by (1) fluid, informal peripheral boundaries of membership; (2) significant incorporation of voluntary labor; (3) information-based product output; and (4) significantly open sharing of knowledge. Although the domain of open source software (OSS) is frequently cited as an example of such communities, we argue that the form expands well beyond the domain of software to a wide variety of information-based products. Drawing on a culture frame, we develop an initial set of principles of C-forms and finally explore the implications of the C-form for the modern organizational world.

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Communities and Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-284-5

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Article
Publication date: 29 February 2008

Margaret S. Elliott and Walt Scacchi

The paper has three purposes: the first is to provide a deeper understanding of the ideology and work practices of free and open source software development, the second to…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper has three purposes: the first is to provide a deeper understanding of the ideology and work practices of free and open source software development, the second to characterize the free software movement as a new type of computerization movement and the third to present a conceptual diagram and framework with an analysis showing how the free software computerization movement has evolved into an occupational community.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative data were collected over a four year period using a virtual ethnography in a study of free and open source software development and, in particular, a study of a free software community, GNUenterprise, located at www.gnuenterprise.org, which has the goal of developing a free enterprise resource planning software system.

Findings

It is concluded that the ideology of the free software movement continues to be one of the factors which mobilize people to contribute to free and open source software development. This movement represents a new type of computerization movement which promotes the investment of time in learning a new software development process instead of investment of money in the acquisition and use of new technology.

Research limitations/implications

The research findings are limited by a detailed study of only one free software development project.

Practical implications

This paper is of significance to software developers and managers of firms who wish to incorporate free and open source software into their companies.

Originality/value

This research presents an original conceptual diagram and framework for how computerization movements have emerged into an occupational community.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 21 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2000

Scott McLaren

You would have to be practicing librarianship on a desert island not to know at least a few colleagues who hate Microsoft. In 1991 a glimmer of hope, which has since…

Abstract

You would have to be practicing librarianship on a desert island not to know at least a few colleagues who hate Microsoft. In 1991 a glimmer of hope, which has since become a steady light, began to shine for many who take, if not technical then at least ideological exception to Microsoft. That light, called Linux, is now all the rage in computer and technical‐oriented publications. Unhappily, Linux’s greaest strength is also its greatest weakness. It will fail precisely because it does not have the one characteristic that causes so many to hate Microsoft Windows: a huge corporation backing it up.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2005

Yoshiharu Asakura, Gen Okuyama, Yoshitaka Nakayama, Kazutoshi Usui and Yukikazu Nakamoto

A unified application management framework for Linux and Java applications on mobile phones is presented. Although Java‐based applications for mobile phones are in strong…

Abstract

A unified application management framework for Linux and Java applications on mobile phones is presented. Although Java‐based applications for mobile phones are in strong demand, the complexity of interaction between these platform independent programs and the core functionality of mobile phones has made software development difficult. The unified framework presented here provides uniform application state management and inter‐application communication between Java based and operating‐system specific applications, allowing native Linux applications to be directly replaced with the equivalent Java application. The framework is described in detail and a trial implementation of the system is evaluated.

Details

International Journal of Pervasive Computing and Communications, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-7371

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Article
Publication date: 13 February 2009

Eric P. Delozier

The purpose of this paper is to describe the GNU/Linux operating system, with special attention to its use as a desktop computing platform in libraries.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the GNU/Linux operating system, with special attention to its use as a desktop computing platform in libraries.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper describes the connection between libraries and the open source communities. It provides a model for an open source desktop computer that incorporates the needs of libraries. Specific topics covered include the graphical desktop, office productivity, electronic mail, web browsing and viewers, and public access computing.

Findings

It is possible to model a desktop computer around open source software, however the ultimate decision on whether to proceed must be measured against potential costs, governing policies, and organizational cultures.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the improvement, growth, and development of the library and open source communities.

Details

OCLC Systems & Services: International digital library perspectives, vol. 25 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1065-075X

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Book part
Publication date: 16 September 2017

Kevin J. Boudreau

Rather than organize as traditional firms, many of today’s companies organize as platforms that sit at the nexus of multiple exchange and production relationships. This…

Abstract

Rather than organize as traditional firms, many of today’s companies organize as platforms that sit at the nexus of multiple exchange and production relationships. This chapter considers a most basic question of organization in platform contexts: the choice of boundaries. Herein, I investigate how classical economic theories of firm boundaries apply to platform-based organization and empirically study how executives made boundary choices in response to changing market and technical challenges in the early mobile computing industry (the predecessor to today’s smartphones). Rather than a strict or unavoidable tradeoff between “openness-versus-control,” most successful platform owners chose their boundaries in a way to simultaneously open-up to outside developers while maintaining coordination across the entire system.

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Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Platforms
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-080-8

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2003

Daryl Martyris

Every year thousands of computers deemed obsolete by companies upgrading to newer models are kept out of landfills by organizations like World Computer Exchange (WCE)1…

Abstract

Every year thousands of computers deemed obsolete by companies upgrading to newer models are kept out of landfills by organizations like World Computer Exchange (WCE)1 which recycle them to schools in developing countries. It is possible to set up at a very low cost, clusters of recycled PCs, using Linux software to substantially reduce the cost of establishing school‐based community Internet centers. In the case of such an implementation in Goa, India by a WCE partner‐NGO the key to its success has been collaboration between the NGO and the private sector to encourage the growth of local Linux support skills and with the government sector ‐ the Goa State Education Department ‐ to ensure the acceptance of Linux in the curriculum, and the provision of teacher training. The Goa Schools Computers project (GSCP)2 project provides an example of how low initial costs of infrastructure and linkages between different stakeholders can result in cost savings of up to 60% over a conventional community Internet center thereby increasing their chances for financial viability.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

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Book part
Publication date: 27 April 2004

Josh Lerner and Jean Tirole

There has been a recent surge of interest in open source software development, which involves developers at many different locations and organizations sharing code to…

Abstract

There has been a recent surge of interest in open source software development, which involves developers at many different locations and organizations sharing code to develop and refine programs. To an economist, the behavior of individual programmers and commercial companies engaged in open source projects is initially startling. This paper makes a preliminary exploration of the economics of open source software. We highlight the extent to which labor economics, especially the literature on career concerns’, can explain many of these projects’ features. Aspects of the future of open source development process, however, remain somewhat difficult to predict with off-the-shelf’ economic models.

Details

Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-265-8

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2003

R A Spinello

According to its supporters open source software is more secure and reliable than proprietary code, and even tends to foster more innovation. Its technical superiority can…

Abstract

According to its supporters open source software is more secure and reliable than proprietary code, and even tends to foster more innovation. Its technical superiority can be linked to the ongoing peer review process which typifies the open source model. In addition, programs such as Linux offer a potential challenge to the hegemony of Microsoft. Open source holds out the possibility of restraining platform leaders such as Microsoft from acting opportunistically. Some even argue that the open source code model is ethically superior to the proprietary model because of its transparency. Given these economic and social benefits, should government policy makers intervene, by tilting the playing field to open source programs? Would such government intervention truly be welfare‐enhancing? Before answering that question we note that some of the presumed technical and economic benefits of open source software are open to question. At the same time, the claims of moral superiority or social desirability are inflated and discount incentives necessary for software development. But even if this software were technically and morally superior, there is still no basis for government intervention. Our position is simple: the invisible hand of the market and not the visible hand of government should decide the fate of open source code. There is no identifiable market failure for the government to fix nor is there any plausible policy justification for giving open source software preferential treatment.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 1 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

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