Issue No. 01 - January/February (2004 vol. 21)
Brian Fitzgerald , University of Limerick
Tony Kenny , Beaumont Hospital
<p>Up to now, most open source software (OSS) deployments have been in invisible infrastructure applications running on back-office servers (GNU/Linux, Apache, and so on). Beaumont Hospital in Ireland recently started developing its overall information systems infrastructure by deploying more visible desktop and front-office OSS applications in addition to GNU/Linux and Apache. In a two-phase OSS implementation, Beaumont will save over 30 million euros over five years. These details are useful in that few studies have thus far quantified the savings from OSS deployment. Also, in many cases, the extra functionality available in OSS systems allows for a richer feature set. Much has been written about the motivation of individual OSS developers; in this case, the primary drivers behind an organization?s decision to implement OSS solutions are principle and pragmatism. A company can contribute back to the OSS community in its own unique way, by distributing applications developed from its particular domain of expertise, rather than making contributions to the code base of Gnu/Linux. The former type of contribution can have a significant boot-strapping effect in that it creates OSS applications in many domains that otherwise would have been unlikely candidates.</p>
open source software, information systems infrastructure, information systems development, information systems implementation
T. Kenny and B. Fitzgerald, "Developing an Information Systems Infrastructure with Open Source Software," in IEEE Software, vol. 21, no. , pp. 50-55, 2004.