Larry Myers

Daily Note

May 15, 2024

I am a pragmatist when it comes to software. While I prefer open source software, some of the best solutions involve closed source proprietary software. I do not think is is wrong to use them, especially when they are the best tool for the job. I am more dogmatic when it comes to open data and data formats. As a software engineer I can build my own tools for manipulating and processing data. Those tools may not be the best available in the market, but they will do the job. But I cannot engineer my way out of a situation where the data is unavailable or in a format that I cannot parse.

When you are making a choice concerning software, have a strong preference for software that uses well documented data formats, and makes that data accessible to you on demand. If you put effort into something that results in data, and you do not have the freedom to access and use that data how you see fit, you likely need to explore other options.

We do not get locked into software, we get locked into ecosystems that do not allow us to access our own data.