Interactions with Open Source Software: A Pilot Study on End Users’ Perception

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Abstract

Interest of scientific research on Open Source software and its development process is frequent. The number of articles available and the number of tracks or workshops on this topic in most relevant IS Conferences is high. The usability of Open Source Software has been scarcely considered until few years ago, probably due to the particular role that the user has in such a development environment. In Open Source software development, users and developers are not so different. Anyhow, the diffusion of the Open Source software outside the development community contributes to sharpen the distinction among these two groups that are no longer equivalent. This circumstance has contributed to increase the interest on usability of Open Source software. Nevertheless, studies on end-users in Open Source contexts are still young. This paper introduces a pilot study on end user’s perception of Open Source software. The aim of this pilot study is to identify how the end user perceives the Open Source software (in terms of Usability, Functionality, Reliability, Efficiency and Quality in Use).