[jboss-user] [The Lizzard's corner] - Re: Are Open Source Software Tools Better than Commercial?

jwenting do-not-reply at jboss.com
Wed Sep 13 08:43:31 EDT 2006

There doesn't have to be a problem, yet I do in my own experience notice that those OS tools that have (large) corporations behind them are generally far superior to those that don't.
Not just stability (will it be actively maintained in a few months and will there be support when and if I need it) but overall software quality and especially documentation quality are a lot better when there's corporate oversight rather than a bunch of hobbyists (who might well hold jobs writing other software) working together.

Because let's face it, maintenance programming and documentation writing are among our least favorite activities as programmers and when there's noone telling us to do it those activities tend to get sidestepped or rushed.
And there's the crucial fault with many OS projects that don't have corporate sponsorship where contributors are making a living writing that stuff for those sponsors (and are thus told to do that documentation and maintenance or loose that income), they tend to add a lot of shiny new features without serious commitment to stabilising what's already there (and documenting it).

Of course there are also poorly documented and maintained non-OS products, but the percentage is lower.

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