I love my job as a website designer / seo consultant / joomla developer and the challenges it brings everyday, I love being in constantly changing industry as it gives those who easily adapt and adopt merging trends a clear advantage over organizations that embrace a corporate culture that revolves around a hierarchy where developers are dictated how their time is going to be spent. This always demoralizes web designers, developers, and programmers. As I frequent industry events and networking groups designers and developer are constantly griping about the policies of their superiors.
Its easy to forget the fact that web designers, programmers, developers, etc. are artists, and code is our clay. There are an infinitesimal array of things one could do with a little PHP and MySQL and while it is essential to focus on client projects, it is equally important to work on pet projects and experiment with new API’s, frameworks, languages, etc.
I remember a few years ago asking my former boss repeatedly why we couldn’t try a new open source content management system called “Joomla” At the time we were using this clunky outdated system called Dot Net Nuke and it never installed right and cost us many hours in productivity, hours that our clients were ultimately getting billed for. Is it really fair to the clients of these cube farms and web shops to pay extra for their inefficiencies?? And why shoot down your lead developer that eats, breathes, and sleeps in code when your just a number cruncher?
Fast forward to now and the largest blogging platform on the internet WordPress is an open source technology. The largest social network on the internet FaceBook, runs on servers powered by an open source operating system. The largest smartphone platform in the Unite States, Android. Is open source. Can anyone really deny the power of open source software any longer? A lot of these big agencies that once scoffed at the idea are scrambling to get up to speed now. Why? Because our Joomla, Drupal, and WordPress content management systems kill their proprietary sluggish, insecure, and outdated content management systems. In other words were digging in their pockets with a pick axe.
That’s what happens when we setup websites that are constantly updated with new features, has the ability to back itself up at regular intervals, ranks high on Google, and is easy and simple to update, and do it at a third of the cost.
It may be open source, but if it’s good enough for Harvard then its good enough for your business.
So what is open source anyway? Well according to Wikipedia…
“Open source describes practices in production and development that promote access to the end product’s source materials. Some consider open source a philosophy, others consider it a pragmatic methodology. Before the term open source became widely adopted, developers and producers used a variety of phrases to describe the concept; open source gained hold with the rise of the Internet, and the attendant need for massive retooling of the computing source code. Opening the source code enabled a self-enhancing diversity of production models, communication paths, and interactive communities.”