Can free software meet my needs?
Many of us are familiar with free software and applications, but can they really help us achieve personal or business needs?
The simple answer is YES, most definitely, free software can solve many problems and address many needs, but there are some gotchas to watch out for.
This series of Tips and Tools
In this series about free applications and software we will uncover the myriad of sources, many of which you may not even be aware of, we will consider the traps and gotchas that sourcing free software can throw up from the complexity of selecting the right software through to the security practices, required to protect you from malware and other risks.
Lets first consider at a high level the diverse platforms available on which to run free software. It is not until you understand all the platforms available, that you can realise the full potential and scale of free software available. We will cover these platforms in more detail in future posts, but this tip can tell you where to start looking; (in no particular order)
- SmartPhone Application Stores Android, iPhone, Windows Phone and other providers
- Desktop applications for your Windows, Linus or MAC
- Programming language specific software like multi-platform Java applications
- New Desktop application stores such as the Windows Store
- Hidden browser features, eg type “timer for 5 minutes” in a Chrome browser address bar
- Browser Applications and Plugins such as in FireFox and Chrome
- Online applications and feature sites like timeanddate.com or the more accessible www.thetimenow.com
- Locally hosted WebSite application software
see Internet Hosted
- Internet hosted Website Application software like softaculous.com, Installatron or Fantastico scripts
- Features and plugins for Website Application software such as WordPress can be customised to special needs
- Cloud provisioned Website applications like WordPress.com
- Software Virtualisation platforms such as Docker
- Portable applications platforms like PortableApps.com for Windows.
Almost all the above platforms are available to us all, with only a little “guided setup” effort. We will address each of these platforms in later posts, along with some not listed here because they need special attention, needless to say, we predict they will “blow your mind”.
A lot more to follow
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