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marcia
marcia

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Moving proprietary processes to Free and Open source processes

Working as a consultant mainly focused in Linux over the past couple decades, I have found there is a significant use of proprietary software in corporations.
After I left the FSF internship, I sought work where I could use Linux, preferably using only free software.
Realizing that this was not an easy task in the early 2000s, I still made the effort.

I was hired to write Linux essentials basically because after reviewing the chapters from Cisco, yes for some reason they were having Cisco write chapters, I found so many errors and so much plagiarism, they asked me to write it. For this job I dragged in my own Debian machine.
This was before Ubuntu. Porting software to Debian was easy but nobody really cared. Porting and cross compiling really wasn't a big issue.

However it wasn't until this past week that I realized how easy it was to convert a process, that been in place for years, with an open source process.

For the purposes of this particular process, we used a wysiwyg that was proprietary and cost a lot of money, windows, Excel for manually entering metadata, a few scripts ... Perl.

Yes I realize it's 2020!
We also were required to install strawberry Perl.

So basically it was all unnecessary and proprietary. Licenses for the wysiwyg from Adobe were in expense. I'm pretty sure they pay for Windows too one way or another.

In the end it took less than a day to figure out how to convert this process into:

Linux
An editor of your choice
A bash script to generate the manifest XML and zip the directory

If you work in a company that uses a proprietary software or incorporates proprietary processes, think about how you can simply convert this to an open source process.

Not only will this possibly make your life less frustrating, but also can save time and money.

Maybe you will encounter some resistance in some organizations. However, there's always virtual machines!

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