What Is Source Code?
Source code is a collection of text-based instructions written in a high-level programming language that forms a computer program.
It consists of words, letters, symbols, and other elements that define the logic and behavior of the program.
Compilation and Execution
For a computer to execute a program, the source code must be translated into a machine language that the computer can understand.
This translation is performed by a compiler or an interpreter, making the program executable.
Programs can be run by executing their compiled form, using an interpreter, or directly executing the source code for more complex tasks.
Source Code and Open Source
It is a readable text that humans can understand.
In contrast, open-source software is developed in a collaborative environment where the source code is freely available to the public.
Open-source software allows users to view and modify the code, fostering transparency, innovation, and collaboration among developers.
Open-source software, free/libre open-source software (FLOSS), can be copied, modified, distributed, and shared because its source code is accessible to everyone.
This distinguishes it from closed-source or proprietary software, where the source code is unavailable to users.
Why Is It Important to Have Your Source Code?
Holding your source code provides several significant benefits.
It allows you to make changes and modify your program, ensuring flexibility and customization.
It also ensures the best possible protection of your product, as you can implement security updates and fixes directly.
Your source code is crucial when transferring a license to a new owner or creating software backups.
It gives you ownership and control over your app or website, reducing dependency on the development firm that created it.
Furthermore, having access to the source code enables you to understand the inner workings of your software and make informed decisions about its maintenance and future development.