Software is

Software is an encoding medium for ideas. Nothing more and nothing less. That is profound enough by itself. The idea of thoughts existing in an active manner independently from the skull of the thinker is revolutionary enough. What software is, is a fundamental immutable truth: someone must think a thought and encode it.

Ideologies decide whether this means that an idea is property the way a house or car is property or whether ideas cannot be owned. These ideological frameworks allow for commerce around software to operate, make money, and allow people to build careers. It is in the arena of ideology that OpenSource and Proprietary models combat.

This is a simple but important distinction. Software is thought. That is always true. It has all the properties of written thought and some of the properties of active thought. The idea that this form of thought can be bought and sold is part of an ideology. The idea that nobody can own thought is an idea that forms part of another ideology.

No matter what you believe on the subject of intellectual property it is still true that software is a form of expressed thought. That means that how we treat software at least in part informs how we treat expressions of thought and how we treat expressions of thought informs how we treat software. This is not something that I see reflected in modern legislation on the subject of property rights.