Entrepreneurial culture is in fashion. Cloud-based services too.
If my email inbox is representative, we could say that the emails announcing the appearance of a new solution that will revolutionize startup productivity are the new "enlarge your penis"
I recognize that many of these services are really helpful, saving time as well as accessing professional quality resources for a fraction of the cost. But, they have all the downsides of proprietary software added to the security risks of online services. Por what is useful to take into account the alternatives that open source offers us.
Table of Contents
Some tools for entrepreneurs. Its usefulness
You should start by defining a few concepts to make the sense of this article clear.
In a context where the mass media devalued words, the term entrepreneur is used to refer to those people who have money and no one knows where they got it from. That is why it was necessary to invent another; entrepreneur (entrepeneur).
An entrepreneur is a person who starts a business with limited resources (it can be in parallel to a rented job or instead of it) with the aim of making it their main source of income.
Although the collective imagination tends to associate being an entrepreneur with initiatives that involve the use of high technology that generates enormous changes worldwide (Facebook, Tesla) bySome specialists believe that any proposal that seeks to generate value from offering an innovative solution to its clients' problems can also be considered within the category.
In that sense, people who started to make masks with homemade materials and sell them online can be considered entrepreneurs.
The word startup is also often linked to technology companies, but its use can be extended to those ventures that have the objective of becoming a large company.
I ask you to keep in mind that my use of the word alternatives it has to be taken relatively. If you are busy launching your company, it might make more sense to hire a collaborative work solution than to start your own. At least until you have solved the most important problems like raising capital.
You also have to consider compatibility with customer and vendor tools. I knew someone who rejected requests for quotes that were not in free file formats. The last thing I knew, he was now driving a taxi.
In general, this is no longer a problem if we refer to written documents, but it is in communication platforms. If your customers use WhatsApp and Zoom to communicate with your competitors, it is not a good idea to tell them that you either install Nextcloud Talk or nothing.
In other words, we must put aside ideology and personal preferences trying to focus on the extent to which our choices of tools contribute to the achievement of our goals as entrepreneurs
Advantages of open source alternatives
Having said this, I want to make it clear that yesWhenever possible, open source solutions should be chosen, both hosted locally and in the cloud.
The reasons are as follows:
- Ownership of the contents. Online tools are a black box and we don't know who else has access to our work. On the other hand, if these services are not accompanied by commercial success, we may lose our job.
- costs: The best benefits of online services are paid, the more we need the more we will have to pay. With open source solutions, although we have to pay more at the beginning, as we need more features, the differences in costs disappear
- Flexibility: The plans of online services are rigid, if you need a feature that is not in a certain plan, you should hire the next one even if you do not need anything more than what it offers. In open source solutions, they can be configured to incorporate the capabilities that are needed.
In the next post we are going to analyze open source alternatives to different online services focused on entrepreneurial activity.