Archives For open source

I stumbled upon this Web site called the Open Source Alternative. The entire point of the site is to identify open source alternatives to common commercial (or just not open source) applications. For example, if you need something like Visio, but don’t want to give Microsoft any more money, you can check out Dia. The site is pretty simple, well organized, and easy to navigate. It includes descriptions of the various software, including the operating systems they run on and user reviews. As a person that prefers using open source software whenever possible, it’s nice to have a resource like this available when my next need arises.

I StumbledUpon this page that lists 21 Lesser-Known Open-Source Applications for Windows. As a person that prefers to use open-source software and tries to avoid using Windows, I was intrigued by the listing. As the article points out, many people are already using open-source and cross platform software like the Firefox Web browser, Thunderbird email client, GIMP image manipulation software, OpenOffice Microsoft Office alternative, and the VLC video player. (Although, as an aside, while I do use Firefox as my primary browser, and often use VLC, I’ve never really thought that GIMP or OpenOffice were really comparable to the commercial alternatives.) The author does a good job of highlighting a mix of things, from utilities to multimedia to games. I expect I’ll try out ZScreen for my next book, as I always need to take screenshots on Windows (while testing code). If I used Windows regularly, I expect I’d love Launchy, as I love QuickSilver on my Mac. Being able to start applications without moving over to the mouse is such a timesaver. I also do use Filezilla on Windows, and recommend it in my books, as a good, free FTP application.

I don’t talk much about Windows, despite so many of you out there using it, so I thought I would pass this along.