I was on a seminar few months back when I used Open Software for the first time. I had heard about the Open Software before though I hadn’t used. This day really was a good day for me. Had I not attended the seminar, I would just go on using the pirated Operating System. When I first knew that Linux was one of the most powerful operating system, which came complete free and an Open Source then few of my friends decided to do everything in Open Software which could be photos designing to website development. It was tough in beginning as there were no place where we could actually learn Linux.
We were guided by Sagar Chhetri and Hempal Shrestha, who are working as FOSS experts in Nepal. With their help we were able to use the Linux in an important way. That is how I got involved into it. In the seminar within, I was conned about the importance of Open Software to poor people like we Nepalese. I then knew that it was a kind of lottery like to us because we shouldn’t have to pay even a single coin for the softwares which were so designed that they could be used to do any kind of works as the closed softwares like Windows and others do. Open Software have very big benefit especially in a country like Nepal.
The first benefit is that, Nepal still being very little exposed to the IT field compared to the western world, most of the organizations don’t have much fund to buy systems like that of Windows Servers to make their system computerized, they can easily go for Open software which is completely free. Secondly, Organizations don’t have to keep upgrading their hardware to keep up with the heavy and resource hungry OS like of Windows. Open Software have a very good future in Nepal if it’s researched and implemented correctly and people give a serious thought about Open Software. Today, within this article, I have a lot to say.
Firstly, I would like to share that the total cost to buy an Original Windows OS and MS-Office package is equal to 1. 8 month’s average income of Nepalese people… and who dares to buy this? But if you want to go genuine without paying, what you have to do is just you migrate to Linux/Ubuntu/Kubuntu or any other Open operating system. Secondly, there is great risk of Viruses in Windows OS. You can even lose your all data you of your computer as I did. Later, after the data are destroyed, the only thing you can do is just you sit beside the computer and chew out Microsoft. But you don’t get this problem with an Open OS.
Your computer is always safe from threats of viruses until Linux or any Open OS is there in your device. Lastly, the best thing of this is you can modify and use Open software as you will. The source code is in front of you and you can study it, modify it and even redistribute the modified one. I have come to many people we have wrong conception about Linux that it’s hard to learn and use it in a daily basis like Windows. Initially, Linux was difficult, it didn’t have any Graphical User Interface, but now Linux is so developed that in the Western countries, people have started using Linux as their daily use, just like Windows.
Another issue that I found in non-Linux users is the compatibility of Hardwares found in the market. Linux today, supports most of the hardwares, and has the capability of Plug ; Play like that of Windows. Another most pointed out difference is that Linux is virus free. The best part of Linux is it’s free and the source codes are accessible by anyone. This means that a programmer can program the whole Operating system by the way he want it. Linux is not resource hungry, meaning, to operate it doesn’t need latest hardwares and need only a very few upgrades to work.
In the current scenario, the only reliable option would be using Free Open Source Software (FOSS) to country like ours. Unlike proprietor y software, FOSS applications, as evident by name are free to use, modify, distribute or even sell given that the terms and conditions mentioned in the license are well preserved. Some of the typical FOSS Applications are Linux Distributions, web scripting language PHP, web server APACHE, database management system MySQL, Postgres SQL etc. In the context of Nepal, we do not carry a long history of the usage of FOSS.
10 as its Desktop environment. So that Nepal got the actual benefits of NepaLinux and similar other attempts of localization, what is lacking is the general awareness in the people about FOSS. Unfortunately, ideas and concepts on FOSS have remained confined to few individuals and limited organizations working on the Open Source Program Initiatives of few organizations like the Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya in promoting localized FOSS applications and the usage of FOSS is short of wider collaboration and support from other organizations.
However, positive developments are going on recently in this direction. Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya has been running a bi-weekly talk program “Linux Ka Kura” since the 14th of May 2006. The talk program has been focusing on sharing ideas on FOSS, Open Source and Linux.
The postings on the talk program are available at http://nepalinux. org/content/view/21/41/. With all these good sides of Linux I guess any non-Linux users will think once that they should learn and know Linux better. I would be better if the curriculum of computer is designed to encourage the use of Open Software in Nepal.