Two stories in today's news, which seem quite different, are easy to connect with one sentence.Unix vendors are abandoning proprietary versions for Linux.
Linux and Open Source
The latest news and views on all things Linux and open source by seasoned Unix and Linux user Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols.
Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols
Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, aka sjvn, has been writing about technology and the business of technology since CP/M-80 was the cutting edge PC operating system. SJVN covers networking, Linux, open source, and operating systems.
Paula Rooney is a Boston-based writer who has followed the tech industry for more than two decades.
Activists at the World Social Forum in Brazil, headlined by John Perry Barlow, celebrated open sourcethis week. "Brazil spends more in licensing fees on proprietary software than it spends on hunger," said Barlow.
Pressed by the EU to create a server license allowing interoperability with other systems, Microsoft delivered a license that specifically prohibits it with open source, ZDNet reports today in the UK. Microsoft agreed with an interoperability license to comply with an EU antitrust decision, which it still seeks to overturn.
The law has been a key ingredient in corporate competition for generations.Big companies always have better lawyers than small ones.
When people think "open source," they usually think software. John Buckman, however, has been applying some of the open source philosophy to music using the Creative Commons licenses, and it seems to be paying off.
Matt Moen at Newsforge has been busy lately trying to get Windows viruses to work on Wine, an open source version of the Windows API designed to let Windows programs work on X-based operating systems.Before you ask "why," consider that a Windows virus might be a good compatibility test.
When I think of media creation tools, I usually think of the Mac OS.Silly me.
Oregon, home to the Open Source Development Labs and Linus Torvalds, wants to rustle up some of you open source cats.Actually, they just want some open source start-ups to move there.
Sun's anti-climactic announcement Tuesday (they could take a few lessons from Apple here) for DTrace and the OpenSolaris release contained one minor surprise -- Sun's offer of 1,600 patents for use by the open source community, or at least those who are using OpenSolaris and Sun's CDDL. While it's nice to see Sun and IBM trying to out-nice each other to prove their commitment to open source, the main problem remains: Software patents are an inherent threat to software innovation.
Yesterday I introduced speculation that programs like Firefox, Thunderbird(left), Open Officeand the Chandler project may be more of a threat to Windows than Linux. These open source Windows applications could, in time, help take share from Microsoft Office.