“Proprietary vs. Off-the-Shelf … when do you customize (software/hardware) vs. buy the product everyone else uses?”
Our goal is to meet the customer objectives. If commercial software fulfills this, we follow that path. The advantage of a commercial platform is a team committed to product development and the after-the-sale support. The manufacturer of the platform has made that their business focus. However, depending on the needs, a custom platform may be required. We often find ourselves involved in projects based around commercially available software but requiring additional development to meet desired outcomes. This model seems to be more popular as client expectations expand.