Geoff Zeiss

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« Eastern Utility Forum | Main | Field Force Automation and the Aging Worforce »

March 04, 2006


Geospatial guru in Alberta

Nice article.

In my experience it all boils down to the FUD factor - fear and uncertainty. People commonly have a perception that if something is free there must be something wrong with it.

Also in the GIS community, people are use to one platform (paying lots of money for poor interoperability and complete dependence on a vendor) and these same people also form major allegiances to this platform (this forces them to put their blinders on) and are afraid to change for many reasons:
- social
- political
- perception

The one aspect that most people do not realize that open source software is contained in almost all proprietary or closed software packages. For example, ArcGIS and Autodesk Map use the Independent JPEG Group’s open source and free JPEG image compression libraries. Google, a tool everyone uses almost every day in their daily tasks is built almost entirely using open source technologies, the list goes on and on.

Some nice resources are:

The Myths of Open Source

An excellent book that covers the open source movement and what it really means
Innovation Happens Elsewhere.doc

I find the release of MapGuide to the community ground breaking and will have major impacts on the GeoSpatial community.

A perfect example of where this all may go is to look at the eclipse foundation (

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