World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Open system (computing)

Article Id: WHEBN0000039229
Reproduction Date:

Title: Open system (computing)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: RM-ODP, Virtual terminal, Hitachi TrueCopy, Sequent Computer Systems, Transparency (human–computer interaction)
Collection: Computer Systems, History of Computing, Open Standards
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Open system (computing)

Open systems are computer systems that provide some combination of interoperability, portability, and open software standards. (It can also refer to specific installations that are configured to allow unrestricted access by people and/or other computers; this article does not discuss that meaning).

The term was popularized in the early 1980s, mainly to describe systems based on Unix, especially in contrast to the more entrenched mainframes and minicomputers in use at that time. Unlike older legacy systems, the newer generation of Unix systems featured standardized programming interfaces and peripheral interconnects; third party development of hardware and software was encouraged, a significant departure from the norm of the time, which saw companies such as Amdahl and Hitachi going to court for the right to sell systems and peripherals that were compatible with IBM's mainframes.

The definition of "open system" can be said to have become more formalized in the 1990s with the emergence of independently administered software standards such as The Open Group's Single UNIX Specification.

Although computer users today are used to a high degree of both hardware and software interoperability, in the 20th century the open systems concept could be promoted by Unix vendors as a significant differentiator. IBM and other companies resisted the trend for decades, exemplified by a now-famous warning in 1991 by an IBM account executive that one should be "careful about getting locked into open systems".[1]

However, in the first part of the 21st century many of these same legacy system vendors, particularly IBM and OpenSolaris projects, based on their formerly closed-source StarOffice and Solaris software products.

See also

References

  1. ^ Ian Dickinson (1991-07-11). "Open Systems Strategy from IBM".  
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.