Developer’s Corner with Rahul Mahida: Open Source Software
Developer’s Corner is a segment from DOOR3 featuring ideas, thoughts, and opinions from our very own developers. Last month, we had a brunchinar with one of our partners, eZ Systems. During the Q&A, I sat down with one of our Open Source Front End Developers, Rahul Mahida and we discussed Open Source Software solutions through 3 simple questions.
Gerrit: What makes open source software scalable?
Rahul: The scalability of Open Source Software comes from its inherent nature as something that is built to be of use to a large number of people with different needs, and as something that is built and extended by a large number of people. As such, good Open Source Software cannot afford to be written in a way that is limiting in its functionality or in its language syntax. It must always be kept up to date with the latest in technologies and trends. What this all leads to is higher quality code that can scale as the platform grows in size and complexity and can be extended (often pretty easily) by developers to fit any functionality or business need.
How does having a large pool of contributors affect Open Source Software?
Because there are a lot of developers that work on making Open Source Software scalable and extensible, this wide array of developers provide a wealth of information and knowledge to the platform and to the users using the platform. A good way to think about it is that it’s not just the code that is open source, but the community around the platform as well that is built up by its developers and its users. They provide documentation, help, and code. This comes in many forms as enterprise support given by the platform developers and from other companies, or from other developers and users who give back to the community themselves by providing help directly. This extends to the codebase of the platform in the form of extensions and modules that can extend the functionality of the platform and be used by anyone (often for free); and because it’s Open Source Software, it’s usually in a way that is easy to implement for others, many times being just a plug and play drop in.
What from a security perspective makes Open Source Software unique?
A common misconception about Open Source Software is that it is inherently not secure and unsafe. This is not true at all. It is built using the same types of languages and tools as any other platform and can be just as secure. And with so many people using the software and building the software, solid security is a high priority item and will surely be a part of any quality OSS platform. The security landscape is also always changing and OSS is good to have in those times as the ease of extending the platform and the extensions provided by the platform and community means that staying up to date with the latest security standards is easier and faster to do.
*Gerrit Veeder is Head of the Marketing Department at DOOR3. We want to hear your thoughts on Open Source Software. Comment on the section below.