Tuesday, August 6, 2013

10 Reasons not to Choose a Particular Open Source software

We’re all Software Engineers of one type or another. Most of us have one thing in common, though: We’re lazy. And we know that someone else was less lazy and has already solved that tedious problem that we’re on. So we search for Open Source software.

But the problem with Open Source software is: There are millions of options for about every problem domain. Just look at web development with “modern” JavaScript. Which tool to choose? Which one will still be there tomorrow? Will it work? Will I get maintenance? New features? Plugins from the community?

While it is not so easy to find the right tool among the good ones (commons or guava? mockito or jmock? Hibernate or jOOQ or MyBatis?), it is certainly easier to rule out the bad ones.

Here are some things to look out for, when evaluating an Open Source software (in no particular order)
  1. NullPointerExceptions, ClassCastExceptions
  2. Community Discussing Bugs instead of Features, Strategies, Visions
  3. Poor Manual, Poor Javadoc
  4. No Semantic Versioning
  5. Unorganised Appearance
  6. Vendor Side-Project evolving into an Offspring Product
  7. Generics are Poorly (or Overly) Adopted
  8. Vendor Cannot Handle Objective Criticism or Competition
  9. Vendor has no Commercial or Marketing Interests at All
  10. No Traction Anymore
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