Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Open Source cuts the mustard

In the Linuxville Cafe the conversation is lively, the food is great and the views are unnoticed. Everybody's got some device to click, pat, tap or talk to.

Of Course I only scratch the surface! When you go too deep there are droves of folks running out of here. Only the faithful remain and the two-bit gotta say something not terse person. But you know the Open Source crowd is a gaggle of winers and diners. We savor what we use and exercise our discriminating taste with that hint of distraction, “suit yourself”.

Oh to buy or not to buy commercial software? Shall I suffer the outrage of difference or the consequence of being labeled “not a professional” or “not a seriously engaged artist” because my software is a little light on the economic scale? or “Why isn’t his name brand the same as ours?” or “You know the Swoosh was probably made on an Adobe laced PC, that’s good enough for me!” An air of compliance drifts into the space. The do I measure up question is suddenly written on everyone's face.

At our table there was a commotion after that last overheard remark, laptops flipped open, a buzz of key clicks. Then we all turned toward the pro-ware protagonist with the laptops held aloft, a swoosh-stika on each display and a laughter that rippled across the room...."the tools man, not the brand, the tools!”

GIMP or the Gnu Image Manipulation Program
GnuPaint or gPaint
My Paint
Tux Paint
Xara Xtreme
And many more, some polished and some in various states of development, all up and running. All costing nothing but the time involved with it to learn the tools. In the end you create a file that's art.

All that professional stuff......, depends. Do you need to share files mid-project or work with others who use the same tools both in house or out? OR maintain a professional industry standard, OK. Examine your needs, then proceed. Tools and files are the secret to Open Source, no need to be hindered or limited. They don't make you an artist any more than pro-ware. So, bust your chops for nothing, then if you must go pro! If you are young and broke or old and broke (like me!), Open Source gets you in the game doing graphics. Ooh!, pass the wipes, mustard on the mouse is not cool.

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