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Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS) - Everything You Need to Know

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GNU

One thing is sure; FOSS has taken significant strides over the way since the 80s. Apparently, FOSS has been around since the 1950s, when purchased hardware was run by free specialized bundled software.

Until 1985, Richard Stallman founded the Free Software Foundation that was meant to support the Free Software Movement. FSF committed to Free Software, the one that users could use for free, modify, sturdy, and even share.

According to Stallman, the main difference between open source and free software is the fact that “open source is ideally a development methodology, while free software is merely a social movement.”

A year later, FOSS came into the limelight based on four freedoms. The four freedoms of free software were established solely as a result of the free software movement, and they denote what exactly constitutes free software.

Here are the freedoms;

Freedom 0 – this is the freedom that allows you to use the program for any purpose; you simply run it as you wish.

Freedom 1 – it is the freedom to accessing the code. It means that you can study how the program works. Interestingly, you have the freedom to change it to do your computing just as you wish.

Freedom 2 – this is the freedom to redistribute the copies to others to help them.

Freedom 3 – it’s the freedom to distribute your copies of modified versions to others. That way, you give the entire community the chance to benefit from the changes you made. A precondition for this is accessing the source code.

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