I think open source is great. Open source doesn’t necessarily mean that the software is free but 99% (just my guesstimate) of them are free. I use some great open source software on a daily basis, and I really appreciate those companies and individuals who contribute their time, energy and even some money to make it possible.
Let’s imagine a situation where a developer created a very useful piece of software. The software doesn’t have any proprietary data but it’s a reusable piece of software. When it happens, companies should make it open source or at least have a policy that allows developers to do it.
The first reason is to give back some to the world. I know many companies utilize open source software for free. If you come up with a good shareable software, why not give back a little?
Moreover, what if the developer who created the software leaves the company? It’s very possible in this fast pace industry. As a matter of fact, I just left my company yesterday for another opportunity. If that happens, the possibility is that the software is left unmaintained and forgotten. If you open source the software, not only it can be improved and maintained by the developer who created it, but also more people can jump in to make it even better. It’s beneficial not only to the world but also to the company and the individual who created the software.
Yeah, I can already hear some people say, “The developer used the company paid time, so the software belongs to the company!” Sure, I can understand the argument and I’m not saying that you should open source your proprietary software, but some shareable tools which won’t affect your business.
I intend to publish a piece of software as an open source software on GitHub. That’s all I’m going to say right now.