Open Source and Proprietary Systems Essay

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ORGANISATIONS SPEND CONSIDERABLE SUMS EACH YEAR ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY / INFORMATION SYSTEMS. WHEN DECIDING WHAT TO PURCHASE, SHOULD ORGANISATIONS ADOPT OPEN OR PROPRIETARY SYSTEMS?

Nwankwo Chukwuma

Management of information technology systems

(MITS)

Management information systems

Jason Whalley & Viktor Doerffler

November 2012.

OPEN OR PROPRIETARY SYSTEMS

Introduction

Information technology has had a great impact on businesses and organization in the past years and the implementation of information systems has become somewhat a key factor in organisations communication, information sharing and growth. Open systems or proprietary systems are becoming a huge debate with regards which one to purchase. This essay is going to talk about the development of open and proprietary systems , development of business organizations adoption of each systems, the advantages and disadvantages of the both systems, how the systems has affected organisations with some examples. Then I would look at both systems based on their advantages and disadvantages with regards their price of implementation, development and support service, ease of usage and affordability.

Information systems for organisations have been provided mostly by proprietary software (sometimes called closed systems), vendors. Until the recent adoption of open source systems, proprietary software system has been widely used but has recently come under a serious competition from the open source system. Organisations spend huge amount of cash on their information systems to gain effective and efficient benefits. Goode (2004 p 1.) said, ‘Firms ostensibly perceive value in their hardware and software and are prepared to pay substantial acquisition and maintenance costs to gain efficiency and effectiveness benefits’.

The question is, Why would a company want to spend so much money on information systems, what is the importance of information systems for an organisation, if in recent days it has become almost paramount for organisations. It would surprise you to know that some companies don’t rely or I would say efficiently use information systems and could still be found using outdated ones for its operations. For some reasons it could be the fact that they function to a standard that the company is very comfortable and okay with. The importance of information systems in organisations is becoming more of a requirement than an option, because information systems enables better communication, sharing and storage of data and keeps the company relationship with its customer, supplier and external environment, since information is almost as valuable as any physical or liquid asset a company owns I think it should be treated as such or even more. Therefore the need for information systems is very essential for organisations.

Open source systems or proprietary systems. Open systems are systems that are systems in which the source code is given out for free which means it can be developed and modified to the user wants or needs, and it’s also available at a low cost. Linux is a popular example, software made under this this systems are called open source software. Proprietary systems, called also called closed systems are the systems that don’t give out their source code and license their software for a fee to the user, sometimes called commercial software, windows is a popular example. One would think it should be easy for a company to decide the system to use based on the fact of cheaper cost, since most companies look to always yield profits by reducing whatever cost they can. But that’s not always the case because companies differ and there are others factors involved which we would look into as we progress.

ORGANISATIONS, OPEN…