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March 26, 2010 5:29 PM quote 
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FloreantPOS is offline FloreantPOS
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 Our Initiative for Open source POS

Floreant POS is a Platform independent Touch Point of Sales application that targets to caters with different size of restaurants. FP project started 3 years back and since that time it has produced all the required functionalities. We have tested this system in a famous fine dining running 24 x 7 and has 4 touch screen terminals. Software is released free with source code and compilation instruction.

As of today FP can handle various complexities of dining restaurant , for example, multi-level menu, food grouping, modifiers, drawer pull, kitchen ticket, ESC/POS ticket printing and handle payment in credit card, debit card and cash, and has drawer pull report as well as reports printed in PC printer.

Key features are
  • Food server Touch screen activities : To Create, Edit, Merge, Split, Void, Reorder and Payout tickets. Can be used for sitting restaurants, drive through, carry out or home delivery. screenshot
  • Manager facilities : To operate Drawer Pull, Drawer bleed, Credit card Tips payment & reports in Receipt printer. screenshot
  • Kitchen Print : Route instructions to Kithen receipt printe. Track wastage and assign dedicated Kitchen printers for different terminals
  • Backoffice : Provides Friendly interface for managing Food Menu, Special Packages, Beverates, Modifers, Cooking instruction. Faciliates Forced beverage by Guest count and can deal with Shift wise pricing and festival discounts.screenshot
  • Cash terminals : Handles combination of payment types in Cash or different type of cards. Automatically calculate Discounts by percent and fixed amounts and accepts Giftcard and Coupon
  • MIS Reports : Ships with standard set of financial reports including Sales summary and detail report, Hourly income report, Gratuity (Tips) report, drawer pull and Credit card reports. screenshot
  • Robust technology : Client server POS powered by Java DB / Apache Derby, Java, Hibernate and JavaPOS API. Floreant POS has been tested on multiple terminals running in Windows, Linux and Mac 10.x

    We would like to know if you have any suggestion to make it better.
Last edited: April 11, 2010 1:51 AM by FloreantPOS
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April 2, 2010 7:16 PM quote 
DavidPGH is offline DavidPGH
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Looks cool... Is there an easy way to hook in an online ordering solution to Floreant POS?

April 11, 2010 1:53 AM quote 
FloreantPOS is offline FloreantPOS
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Yes. Its possible. We have plan to do in next quarter. Its backend database is directly connectable to PHP or JSP . So only thing is how you need it.

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April 12, 2010 9:39 AM quote 
posperson is offline posperson
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Open source software certainly has a place in the world of computers and information processing. But it should NEVER be used for any financial control functions.  Let's not forget the the primary purpose of restauarant POS is financial control.

The reason for this statement should be obvious. Open source, by definition, can be modified by anyone with the prerequisite programming skills. Do you want your computer literate bartender to be able to make every third tab disappear from your financial results?

 

April 12, 2010 2:51 PM quote 
FloreantPOS is offline FloreantPOS
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Quote (original post by: posperson)

Open source software certainly has a place in the world of computers and information processing. But it should NEVER be used for any financial control functions.  Let's not forget the the primary purpose of restaurant POS is financial control.

The reason for this statement should be obvious. Open source, by definition, can be modified by anyone with the prerequisite programming skills. Do you want your computer literate bartender to be able to make every third tab disappear from your financial results?

 

Dear posperson

I agree with importance of security in any Financial system but your advice regarding Open source product cannot be agreed.

In computer security System level security and Application level security are two different issues. If you let anyone directly access your computer and play around with any file, say delete it or replace it then anything can happen. Do you think the best ever Closed source product will ensure security of that wild environment?

Lets give a raw example. For the sake of brevity say SecuredPOS is the most secured closed source software. But in previously described situation no source code is needed to break the system. A clever programmer can create a Fake login screen and log passwords.  Or simply install a Key logger from a warez site or observe everything from Remote admin tool. So Its must that  System admin should ensure System level security.

If  someone has concept that open source executables are easily changed then its worng. All executables are practically impossible to change. Open source does not mean its OPEN BINARY that anyone quickly change the binary(well,  Some hackers can edit binary ..and crack.. they can do it to any close source apps.. you know even Nortol Antivirus has been patched by hackers..but thats diff chapter)

Now I am not sure why an evil employee will take risk as well  go into analyzing huge lines of java code to recompile the source code, but I accepted your story that he might download and compile original source code of Floreant POS  to disappear a button. (no idea what will be return of that huge effort ? if that evil guy needs to alter cash he would rather install keylogger to get admin pass) . Replacing editing and recompiled program can be easily detected. Restaraunt owner can take care of his custom codes and special settings.  I repeat if in your PC you have admin right open, you can be easily affected with closed source code. 

Open source app are actually more secured than closed source. You may get surprised linux is more secured  operating system than windows latest version. Because in user community open soruce is continously inspected by many many users, so any slightest chance is reported (in closed source you never know what tricks they did inside code) . Bugs are submitted and often fixes are provided by senior developers before open source could do that. Thats another reason many secured servers are running on Linux. In this specific case  Floreant POS    has been running in one restaurant in Dennys Food Chain. It was compared with branded Closed source product Par Pixel Point POS and they find it having enough security and control over cash. To include we have users different level of access - managers has own menu, Owner has special admin features and every sensitive cash transactions are logged.  In addition drawer pull and other accounting features with advanced reports provides gives huge protection against Fraudulent activities.

I know  there are mental barrier to accept open source for traditoinal software people.  This article will help understanding my points: http://www.dwheeler.com/oss_fs_why.html

Thanks again for your comment in this thread.

Last edited: April 14, 2010 8:53 PM by FloreantPOS
April 12, 2010 3:39 PM quote 
ViewGistics is offline ViewGistics
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If it's open source... anyone can make changes... if it is not open source... the program can not be altered.  You're saying the Open Source is open enough, but not open enough to be edited and therefore NOT a security risk.  You can't have it both ways.  Either it's Open Source or it's not.

With ALL the opinions in the world... Open Source POS code would be hacked to the extreme for good and evil purposes.  I would not want to be the owner using a such a program when it is edited to do harm.  There are thousands of trojans, worms, scripts and other which their sole purpose is to cause harm and fuk with people.  All built by wannabe programmers... it's their hobby to screw with people and cause app/user anxiety!

You are right, PC's are inherently a security risk.  No doubt, no dispute.  However, I would rather have a compiled version of code that is ONLY changed by those who know the code and they even make mistakes now an again.  Minor changes here or there may look good, but a part-time programmer will not know nor understand all the iterations which occur for a seemingly minor change.  The code will ultimately crash.

Why promote Open Source?  Do you programmers not want to be paid for your work?  What do you only want part-time editors making changes as their hobby?  It just doesn't make sense to me.  Please explain if I've got it wrong, but that won't change my opinion.

Robert Lehman

www.ViewGistics.com

April 13, 2010 12:02 AM quote 
FloreantPOS is offline FloreantPOS
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Quote (original post by: ViewGistics)

Why promote Open Source?  Do you programmers not want to be paid for your work?  What do you only want part-time editors making changes as their hobby?  It just doesn't make sense to me.  Please explain if I've got it wrong, but that won't change my opinion.

Robert Lehman

www.ViewGistics.com


Open source is an established business model.  Instead of selling software license, open source model sells  service (support, customization, modificaiton of reports etc). There are many successful projects who left their source open and still makes enough profit.

Traditional software business people may not understand how a company company can survive in this model?

Let me give answer with  a layman's example. Think

-Source code is like Recipe of a Cooking.
-Compiling means cooking and
-Binary Executable means final cooked food. 

Now Closed source (Traditional) companies are those restaurants who hides their recipe. Hide recipe because  they can make more profit and lock their guests. It sometime works when he get sure his recipe is unique ( like Coke ).

But we know there are already lots of Recipe books there and we can cook lots of delicous food without special recipe. Many many restaurants also run with common recipe and everybody know how they cook what food.  Those generic recipe restaurants still can make business. Why they can surive? Reason is market is so big that one player cannot capture the whole.  Guests can find food near his reach and whoever gives better supprot earns more money.

Close source works best when you have special formula that nobody can repeat (like Coke). But resturant or similar business process has nothing new and most of the software we write does exactly same. (like orange juice). 

Once source code was huge expensive. Now there are IDE, Wizard and tons of freely available snippets, that recuded cost of software. So its proven that hiding source code give little advantage. if I give the source code in public domain we will invite our competitors to work on same code but market will expand drammatically.Not sure if you could get some idea from that. I would be happy to answer specific questions because we have always faced those questions.

 

Last edited: April 14, 2010 10:08 PM by FloreantPOS
April 13, 2010 11:31 AM quote 
ViewGistics is offline ViewGistics
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Thanks for the effort Flo.  Perhaps I am old school in thinking that not every programmer is capable of producing flawless code.  In the early days when computers weren't so powerful... it took REAL skill to program.  Nowadays, programmers don't think twice about over-weight code.  Not every app/procedure is the same, just like a recipe there are minute changes which make one better than others.  Haven't you ever heard the old saying, "Too many cooks in the kitchen spoil the..."  Programming by committee is sure method to introduce sub-par programming techniques.  The app becomes a mish mash of patches and work arounds resembling a MASH unit and all for what?  To save money on development and rush it to market?   

I just can't get my mind around a bunch of programmer who have never spoken, with varying degrees of skill, and may only work on certain parts of an app... how they can make something which is efficient and without potental buggs and blue screen crashes. The world is FULL of people who have the "well that's good enough" attitude... and there will most definitely be a few of these who alter the code and proprogate  their ignorance and flaws to others to endure.

In contrast, close code is well maintained and well structured.  And, not every piece of the app is recreating the wheel... they also make use of libraries and well known and tested sub's.  This doesn't mean that every app is flawless.  However, when they have a problem the "target" isn't moving like in open source.  Also, if a flaw is found... the person responsible is held accountable whereas in Open Source... no body knows who that is.

Can open source produce good apps?  Yes, for certain applications.  However, I don't feel a POS is one of those applications.  There are too many iterations to thoroughly test programming by committee.  The flaws would be found during service and that is unacceptable.

Robert Lehman

www.ViewGistics.com

April 13, 2010 2:46 PM quote 
Maitre'D POS DLR is offline Maitre'D POS DLR
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Dear Flo-

I agree with Robert but it's important to understand the nature of the topic at hand. It's CASH CONTOL. You, or another "open source" fan said that if changing yesterday's posted sales "was a common" procedure.

I'm not trying to just be mean but if you are an expert and that is your view, please stop now. There are years and years of learning about accounting, cash control and THE LAW that are required before a business POS is even contemplated much less accomplished.

If the very basic rules of Generally Accepted Accounting Procedures are not even known much less followed where is the deep long-learned understanding of how to design a restaurant POS to maximize sales, increase income, lower costs?

Gone with the wind I suspect. Open Source is a joke. The "money saved" is a phantom.

Last edited: April 14, 2010 11:41 PM by Maitre'D POS DLR
May 1, 2010 2:59 AM quote 
GhosTech is offline GhosTech
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 Open Source, my only concern ... PCI DSS

I myself like open source, and think there can be potential in it.

Several major e-commerce sites (i.e. Amazon.com, E-Bay for instance) are entirely built on open source software (Apache, MySQL, Python, etc.) and do MILLIONS of dollars A DAY in transactions.  Thats ENTERPRISE LEVEL, not your mom and pop stores that most of the techs here service.

The inteligence community has been using open source operating systems such as black hat linux for YEARS since they have access to the source code and those guys are paranoid security concious freaks!!!

The Android phone by Google will according to industry analysts be the number 1 smart phone in a few years.  It is based on a form of embedded Linux.

My only concern will be, how will you address getting the application PCI DSS certified for credit card processing?  More than that, who will pay the bill for certifying the application and renewing it on a regular basis?  Who will take the liability IF the software is involved in a security breach?

Right now, depending on what Auditing company your dealing with,  it will cost a minimum of $5000 to hire a company to go through the code, maybe less if you shop around.  Then there is an annual registration fee and a few other expensive things I'm not even thinking about right now.

I guess, if you have VERY DEEP pockets, or a corporate sponsor who will vouch for you, then that will address liability.  Remember the Heartland security breach a while back?  Robert Carr, the founder of Heartland Payment Systems had to shell out Millions (or more) of his OWN MONEY to pay for the damage(read liability) caused by the security breach.

If you can find a way to address the liability and the financing related to PCI DSS, then we may have something interesting to work with. 

I know I don't have that kind of money :(

Just my thoughts,

 

GhosTech,

http://blog.bayareapossupply.com

Last edited: May 4, 2010 10:09 PM by GhosTech
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