An article on CodingHorror.com about some of the annoyances of software registration prompted me to have a look at one of the earlier articles on the site, about supporting the little guys when it comes to software (especially free software).
I have to say, I absolutely love FOSS (Free and Open Source Software). I know that there is absolutely a place for commercial and propietary software development (much free stuff is supported financially by commercial ventures). However, we must always remember that computing started out as a totally free and open platform, and it could not get to where it is today without the spirit of sharing and contribution. And likewise, it cannot move on without it. Business models may need to change, with Moodle and MySQL being a small and a large example of different ways of combining FOSS with business.
Having come reeling out of undergraduate studenthood debt last year, and shortly to be entering postgraduate financial strapped-ness, I can’t afford to fork out for software at the moment, so I can’t really donate much… but I still try to where possible.
I won’t ramble on any more for now… but I will remind you all to support the little guys in software. FOSS often accounts for some of the best software out there… and it can’t happen without support… so get supporting! 🙂