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Going Open-Source for a Year – Could You Do It?

Posted on June 10, 2013 10:00 AM by Rob Williams
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Last fall, videographer Sam Muirhead decided to take on the challenge of going “open source” for an entire year. To many, that may just sound like dropping Windows or OS X and adopting Linux, but for Sam, that was just the beginning. He wanted to go open source in life, not just with the digital bits.

“Open source” at its heart refers to the sharing of information. If you create something and want others to benefit, you can “open” it to the community. Others, then, could take your information, tweak it or improve upon it, and feed that back into the pool. The ultimate goal is to create great things together, without some company mandating everything. Open source is regularly associated with “freedom”.

Sam Muirhead Open Source

Well, in his year thus far, Sam has learned how to do many things for himself, all with open source information. He’s created his own hat and scarf for the winter, soap, toothpaste, wine, and has even taken up the absolute chore of experiencing open source beer. Oh, how I pity him.

Of course, it’s not entirely possible to go 100% open source in the grand scheme, but Sam has significantly integrated open source into his lifestyle. Try finding an ISP that’s open source, for example… it’s not going to happen. Or open source movies that can compete with those in the cinema. Or music… an area where I’d fail in the open source test immediately.

Of all these things, Sam’s most painful side-effect of going open source has been missing out on movies, so as soon as his year is up, he plans to make a B-line to the cinema.

Could you go open source, even just for a year? A month?

You can read all about Sam’s adventures at AYearofOpenSource.net.


  • JD Kane

    I’d probably fail at this experiment right away, to be honest.

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