• Why Open Source Code is a Great Career Prospects for Students

    Mar 12, 2012

    The root of most of the services, technologies and innovative products can be traced to FOSS (free and open source software). Though Hollywood producers may have taken a lot of liberty in their interpretation in the movie The Social Network, it is true that colleges still continue to be in the spotlight for many recent invention, most of them being powered by FOSS.
    Some of the top entrepreneurs today are using FOSS as their stepping stones. Instead of writing every aspect of the program from the start, they use the liberally available FOSS and channelize their creativity putting them together to give rise to something useful.
    In addition to being the base of many inventions in the recent past, FOSS is also an excellent source of training. Developers are aware of the fact that in order to improvise certain programs, it is important to read them first. Reviewing the FOSS programs that are available on community forums will expose them to a wealth of information.
    FOSS is not just a simpler way for programmers to complete their tasks; it is also the stepping stone for many students to establish successful careers.
    There are a number of advantages associated with working in a FOSS community. The premier benefit is that it allows you to experience the feel of working with people from many parts of the world, which is as close to reality as possible. A large number of successful projects today are a result of collaborated team effort from people across various parts of the world. You can enhance your social skills and improve your communication by working within such teams.
    Working with a team that comprises of mature and experience members will help you improve with the help of timely constructive feedback. You can give exposure and learn various aspects such as configuration management tools, packaging issues, testing, regulated automated bills and version control. All these skills are the most essential for those who intend to pursue a career in the field of professional software development.
    Networking and Experience
    There can be nothing better than a vast network of contacts to simplify the task of finding jobs and improving career prospects. Since FOSS projects, by default, have a vast network of people working together, finding big opportunities is more likely.
    Showing your exposure and participation in many FOSS projects can give you an upper hand over your competitors. This can also work as a proof for your work experience. Unlike your work at other companies that is considered to be company property, work on FOSS can be shown without any apprehensions.
    Working the FOSS projects give students the work experience they could not get otherwise. In addition to be a great opportunity to network with people, this paves way for a great opportunity to meet up with people who have made a mark in this field.
    A number of universities today are slowly understanding the benefits that FOSS offers students. While US Berkeley has an online course to help students learn about this, Oregon State University and Rensseler has specific centers for students to learn and work on FOSS. Employees are also becoming increasingly aware of the relationship between FOSS projects, employment opportunities and students. Google has a specific program called the Summer of Code where students can bid for summer work positions that are proposed by many leading companies.