Article written by AnexTek, a technology blog
The case against Symantec in 2013 for failure to provide source code protection which was later tossed out by the courts brought the concept of source code to every ones attention. Source code is a listing of commands assembled into an execution file to run the computer. Programmers use source code and object code for “before” and “after” versions of a computer program.
Programmers write commands in a series using programming language such as C and save them in a file. The content of the file is known as source code or source program. It is a sequence of instructions that the processor can understand. It is the most permanent portion of the program. However, the programmer must also translate it to machine language for the computer to understand. Source code is the only section that can be read by humans. The source code is harder to read and manipulate and therefore, provide the assumed safety.
Software we purchase at a store comes in a form of compiled object code and source code is not included. It is same as the machine code. This is because the developer wants to keep the ownership of the program and for fear of manipulation by others. This is why Linux and others are promoting open source so that others can improve upon someone else’s work.