The 5 Best Open-Source Tools for Programmers

Open SourceOpen source is definitely hot in 2013, and it looks like it will grow even faster in 2014. As more companies start to incorporate open-source technologies into their business operations, more job opportunities should open up as well. In fact, at the recent OsCon Open Source Conference in Portland, one blogger found that nearly all the companies in attendance were looking to hire people to fill open-source jobs.

If you’re a stay-at-home programmer, you have myriad opportunities for applying to open-source programming jobs. An at-home career of this type requires the fastest Web speeds available, so make sure you check into using fiber optic technology. You can check setups in your area at—FiOS is the fastest, most reliable data transmitter of fiber optics.

Because of this rise in open source, more attention is being paid to the companies shaking things up and making great strides in the open source movement. The Bossie Awards highlight and rank those companies with the best open-source software application development tools. Its most recent list of open-source movers and shakers came out a few weeks ago; let’s take a look at the companies they deemed worthy to watch.


Bootstrap enables developers to create modern, reliable, mobile-ready websites for clients. Bootstrap’s original Legacy 2.3.2 version was a big hit with developers, and its more recent 3.0 format is even better. Bossie reviewers note that Bootstrap is so good, it makes it difficult to use another open-source program after you’ve used it. Bootstrap holds a key place in the makeup of the Web.


Web designers love CSS language tools. Programmers do not, writes Bossie reviewers. To work around this, the team at LESS came up with a JavaScript library system that acts as a dynamic stylesheet language, a cornerstone of sorts for language tools. LESS is indeed more, forming a commonly used library that filters down to native CSS.


Backbone.js is one of the leading open-source library tools for powering JavaScript Web apps. It offers models with custom events, a voluminous API for number functions and works with your API via a connection with the RESTful JSON interface. Overall, Backbone.js simplifies the way programmers can incorporate views, events and models. Leading sites like Pitchfork, Gawker Media and others work with Backbone.


Take your HTML further with Angular JS, a great tool that helps developers extend HTML vocabulary for applications. This open-source tool lets you make dynamic HTML out of static HTML. This creates a readable, expressive environment. Benefits of using Angular JS include localization, validating forms without writing massive amounts of JavaScript code and controls for data.


Originally designed with the mobile experience in mind, Enyo is a prime mover in Web development across several platforms like mobile, tablets, smartphones and more. It uses objects within a JavaScript framework. These tools help extend and build apps for HTML5/CSS running in desktop and mobile browsers. For developers, it’s easy to use, with a wide variety of pickers, progress bars, sliders and more.

About the Author: Jake Miller, Jake’s a software engineer by day and a gamer by night. He still has his original Xbox 360 from launch day and it hasn’t red-ringed yet.
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