Some sites provide a few anecdotes on why you should use FLOSS, but for many that’s not enough information to justify using FLOSS.
Instead, this paper emphasizes quantitative measures (such as experiments and market studies) to justify why using FLOSS products is in many circumstances a reasonable or even superior approach.
But although most people understand the need to compare proprietary products before using them, many people fail to even consider FLOSS products, or they create policies that unnecessarily inhibit their use; those are errors this paper tries to correct.
This paper doesn’t describe how to evaluate particular FLOSS programs; a companion paper describes how to evaluate FLOSS programs.
This paper also doesn’t explain how an organization would transition to an FLOSS approach if one is selected.
Open Source Software / Free Software (aka OSS/FS), also described as Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS), has risen to great prominence.
You may also be interested in the discussion group for quantitative numbers about free / libre / open source software.
As noted above, the goal of this paper is to convince you to consider using FLOSS when you’re looking for software, using quantitive measures.
The 2004 report of the California Performance Review, a report from the state of California, urges that “the state should more extensively consider use of open source software”, and specifically references this paper.
A review at the Canadian Open Source Education and Research (Can Open ER) site stated “This is an excellent look at the some of the reasons why any [organization] should consider the use of [FLOSS]...
[it] does a wonderful job of bringing the facts and figures of real usage comparisons and how the figures are arrived at.