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.
Gale is an e-research tool offered by Cengage Learning. It's designed mainly for schools and educational research, but can be quite helpful in generating sales lead lists as well. Gale publishes over 600 databases, both in hard copy and online. These databases include both business information and collections of articles on various subjects. The article lists are particularly useful when you're collecting lists of publications related to your industry.
If you’re in a jam, and you need leads quickly, I don’t know of a better source than social media. I got kicked off Facebook for 30 days and I’ve been closing sales from Instagram and LinkedIn like I never missed a beat. Social media is the new age way of networking for prospects. If you’re not using social media and you want more training on how to crush social media selling, sign up at www.breakfreeacademy.com/entourage
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The best thing about some of these companies is that you don't have to "Like" them on Facebook, send messages on Twitter, or complete surveys. With the companies I've listed first, simply sign in, input your mailing information, and wait for the free sample to show up in your mail). It will take less than 15 minutes sign up and up to six weeks for samples to arrive.
Apart from these two organizations, the Debian project is seen by some to provide useful advice on whether particular licenses comply with their Debian Free Software Guidelines. Debian doesn't publish a list of approved licenses, so its judgments have to be tracked by checking what software they have allowed into their software archives. That is summarized at the Debian web site.
A report by Standish Group estimates that adoption of free software has caused a drop in revenue to the proprietary software industry by about $60 billion per year. In spite of this, Eric S. Raymond argues that the term free software is too ambiguous and intimidating for the business community. Raymond promotes the term open-source software as a friendlier alternative for the business and corporate world.
Skype is synonymous with video conferencing. Now run by Microsoft, there's a reason our Editors' Choice review says it's "a highly polished, hugely functional service that runs on every platform you can think of and offers more communication options than any of its competitors." (Skype did, however, kill support for apps on smart TVs.) For free, you can make unlimited video calls between Skype users, even with groups of users. Plus, the translation ability is straight out of science fiction.
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