Is Open Source or Closed Source software better?

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There are a few key differences between open source and closed source software, but the choice between the two comes down to the use case.

Open source and closed source Software both have pros and cons for users, and which is better or worse is largely an individual determination. However, there are some important aspects of each type of software to keep in mind when deciding which one to use to achieve various goals. Open source and closed source software has been around for a long time, with open source receiving a label in 1998 and continuing to be used today with various licenses for different applications. Both types of software attempt to provide a specific service to the end user, but they achieve this goal in different ways.

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There has been a growing fascination with open source software given that it tends to be free. Additionally, some closed-source software collects and distributes user data, which is difficult to determine because the code is inaccessible. So what is the main difference between open source and closed source software? Well, open source software has source code that is publicly available to anyone who wants to see it. On the other hand, closed-source software does not allow public access to the source code and is only accessible to the company or people who develop the software.

Related: Should All AI Be Open Source and What Would Really Change?


So which type of software is better than the other? For this, it is best to look at specific examples and examine the advantages of each type of software and its disadvantages. Let’s first look at usage statistics for desktop operating systems. Windows has the most users, followed by macOS and finally Linux. Among these three, the first two are closed source and the third is open source, which shows that the preference of most users is closed source rather than open source when it comes to the operating systems of desk. But looking at mobile operating systems, Android has by far the highest market share with Apple’s iOS in second place. The Android Open Source Project (AOSP) allows anyone to use the source code of their devices, which is why several phone brands such as Samsung, OnePlus, OPPO, etc. have their custom Android-based software, and why it’s available on other platforms like Amazon’s Fire tablets. In contrast, iOS is closed-source and locked into the Apple ecosystem.


Where Open Source Software Shines


Another example of a preference for open source is web browsers. Google Chrome, the most popular web browser in the world, is based on the open source code of Chromium. Apple’s closed-source Safari browser comes in second by a wide margin. The main advantage of open source software is the ability to modify, edit and use the code as the user wishes. This may seem more useful to a developer than a user, but users benefit massively from the options offered by developers creating user-specific custom software from open source projects. Open source software is also, at least in theory, more secure than closed source software since any programmer in the world can review the code to find errors, exploits and issues in the code, which can then be promptly corrected and corrected.


Overall, it is up to the individual to decide which software is the best. Open source and closed source software have many advantages and disadvantages. Open source is rapidly being used more and more by large companies, such as Valve’s Steam Deck using a Linux-based operating system with a Proton compatibility layer that is open source, or AMD implementing open standards among his products. For the end user, open-source is preferable if free software, more customization and more transparency are important. Closed source is better for the user if they want something more stable, which has more Software support, and is more user-friendly.


Next: Meta’s New Open Source AI Can Translate 200 Languages

Source: ITI Technical College

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