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Google built Hangouts into its services as a replacement for the Google Talk messaging service, but Hangouts adds voice and video calls. It's unique for this roundup in that it doesn't require an installer, it just works in your browser (though getting the Chrome Extension is recommended). It's perfect for talking to other people on Google—you can get up to nine people in a video chat, all for free.
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer stated in 2001 that "open source is not available to commercial companies. The way the license is written, if you use any open-source software, you have to make the rest of your software open source." This misunderstanding is based on a requirement of copyleft licenses (like the GPL) that if one distributes modified versions of software, they must release the source and use the same license. This requirement does not extend to other software from the same developer. The claim of incompatibility between commercial companies and Free Software is also a misunderstanding. There are several large companies, e.g. Red Hat and IBM, which do substantial commercial business in the development of Free Software.
The FSF list is not prescriptive: free licenses can exist that the FSF has not heard about, or considered important enough to write about. So it's possible for a license to be free and not in the FSF list. The OSI list only lists licenses that have been submitted, considered and approved. All open-source licenses must meet the Open Source Definition in order to be officially recognized as open source software. Free software on the other hand is a more informal classification that does not rely on official recognition. Nevertheless, software licensed under licenses that do not meet the Free Software Definition cannot rightly be considered free software.
Most free software licenses are based on copyright, and there are limits on what kinds of requirements can be imposed through copyright. If a copyright-based license respects freedom in the ways described above, it is unlikely to have some other sort of problem that we never anticipated (though this does happen occasionally). However, some free software licenses are based on contracts, and contracts can impose a much larger range of possible restrictions. That means there are many possible ways such a license could be unacceptably restrictive and nonfree.
Certain kinds of rules about the manner of distributing free software are acceptable, when they don't conflict with the central freedoms. For example, copyleft (very simply stated) is the rule that when redistributing the program, you cannot add restrictions to deny other people the central freedoms. This rule does not conflict with the central freedoms; rather it protects them.
Fees are usually charged for distribution on compact discs and bootable USB drives, or for services of installing or maintaining the operation of free software. Development of large, commercially used free software is often funded by a combination of user donations, crowdfunding, corporate contributions, and tax money. The SELinux project at the United States National Security Agency is an example of a federally funded free software project.
The economic viability of free software has been recognized by large corporations such as IBM, Red Hat, and Sun Microsystems. Many companies whose core business is not in the IT sector choose free software for their Internet information and sales sites, due to the lower initial capital investment and ability to freely customize the application packages. Most companies in the software business include free software in their commercial products if the licenses allow that.
Another playbook from the last few years, marketing automation, has proven harder to make work for businesses as more companies look to invest in messaging bots to drive more personal connections. These changes mean marketers need to invest time to make their marketing work. Trends show it is only going to get more difficult to keep producing leads using the playbooks from yesterday.
Many people new to free software find themselves confused because the word "free" in the term "free software" is not used the way they expect. To them free means "at no cost". An English dictionary lists almost twenty different meanings for "free". Only one of them is "at no cost". The rest refer to liberty and lack of constraint. When we speak of Free Software, we mean freedom, not price.
The first formal definition of free software was published by FSF in February 1986. That definition, written by Richard Stallman, is still maintained today and states that software is free software if people who receive a copy of the software have the following four freedoms. The numbering begins with zero, not only as a spoof on the common usage of zero-based numbering in programming languages, but also because "Freedom 0" was not initially included in the list, but later added first in the list as it was considered very important.
FileHippo is a pretty solid repository of freeware and shareware apps to be found for Windows and Mac. On the Windows side, you can find updates to third-party utilites by running this utility, which replaces its old Update Checker. It compares what's available on FileHippo.com against what's installed on the PC and helps download the latest version (via FileHippo.com, of course).
LastPass is great, but LogMeOnce Password Management Suite Premium is good enough to earn its own 5-star rating. And don't let that word "premium" fool you, this software for logging in is free, albeit with some paid upgrades available for $1/month. LogMeOnce's claim to fame is to be utterly "passwordless." While you can go with a master password, the selling point is to use your smartphone (or tablet, whatever you always have with you) as an authenticator—primarily by using the fingerprint reader built into most modern smartphones (photo login is a paid feature). It's browser-based so it works the same on all desktop systems.
Proprietary software on the other hand tends to use a different business model, where a customer of the proprietary application pays a fee for a license to legally access and use it. This license may grant the customer the ability to configure some or no parts of the software themselves. Often some level of support is included in the purchase of proprietary software, but additional support services (especially for enterprise applications) are usually available for an additional fee. Some proprietary software vendors will also customize software for a fee.
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