Some Linux backers upset about selection of Silverlight to stream Obama inauguration events

Some Linux backers upset about selection of Silverlight to stream Obama inauguration events

Summary: While Microsoft cheers the selection of Silverlight for streaming the Obama inauguration events this week, some are upset that the Linux desktop is not a supported operating system.Microsoft's cross platform Silverlight browser plug in supports Windows and Macintosh.

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While Microsoft cheers the selection of Silverlight for streaming the Obama inauguration events this week, some are upset that the Linux desktop is not a supported operating system.

Microsoft's cross platform Silverlight browser plug in supports Windows and Macintosh. The Mono project's Moonlight 1.0 -- an implementation of Silverlight for the Linux desktop, and the only open source version -- is in beta testing but the final code won't be released for several weeks.  Moonlight 2.0, which incorporates many of the Silverlight 2.0 featutes, won't be out until late 2009.

Mono project chief and Novell vice president Miguel de Icaza said there might be a workaround -- but it’s not certain.

“I tried looking up the player on the Obama web site, and I guess the player has not been made public so I have no way of testing.   The streaming and media codecs should be compatible with Moonlight 1.0, but the "chrome" used to paint the player might be a 2.0 app," de Icaza wrote in an email response to ZDnet blogger questions. "If people compile Moonlight from SVN, they can get our 2.0 support that might be enough to work with this, but we have not officially released that yet."

Microsoft touts its Silverlight as an open source offering -- the source code is available on CodePlex -- but the license under which it is distributed is not open source.

One very upset open source backer posted his view on Slashdot over the weekend, and criticized the Presidential Inauguration Committee for not being inclusive.  

As there is no working Silverlight 2 capable alternative on these systems, everyone running Mac PPC, Linux and FreeBSD has been left out," the Slashdot reader wrote.  "Should the president of USA use [and/or] sponsor a convicted [monopolist's] not-so-popular plug-in instead of popular and/or free technologies?"

Topics: Linux, Hardware, Microsoft, Open Source, Operating Systems, Software, Software Development

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178 comments
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  • Poor babies (nt)

    (nt)
    croberts
    • There it is and baldly too

      croberts says only whiners see anything wrong with requiring
      payment of a Microsoft tax in order to view our history.
      DannyO_0x98
      • If you don't want to pay Microsoft then use a Macintosh.

        Problem solved.
        ye
        • Well, why not just use an open format that can be viewable by all???

          Is there any technological advantage to Silverlight, or, did MS just give away the streaming for free in order to make sure it would not work on all platforms?
          DonnieBoy
          • Then the question becomes

            should we all "suffer" a lesser package to include the few?

            Would that not be liken to the idea that since not everyone can operate a backhoe, therefor [i]everyone[/i] must dig holes with shovels?
            GuidingLight
          • Actually, the other alternativea are BETTER than Silverlight. It is just

            that MS wants to create situations where content is not viewable on all platforms. The question is, how much did MS pay in order to exclude other platforms?
            DonnieBoy
          • re: Then the question becomes

            [i]should we all "suffer" a lesser package to include the few?[/i]

            Not at all. MS should be free to offer Silverlight and partner with anyone it wants to provide content.

            The complainers referred to in the article are only talking about the federal government, which should not be allowed to partner with MS if it means you need Windows technology to access government data.

            I thought that was pretty clear. And it makes a lot of sense. If you were a hole-digger with a Mitsubishi backhoe shouldn't you have the same access to government work as someone with a Caterpillar backhoe?










            :)
            none none
          • You still didn't answer Joe's question....

            To remind you of where you claimed it: http://talkback.zdnet.com/5208-10535-0.html?forumID=1&threadID=56641&messageID=1071441&start=-9900

            "Actually, the other alternativea are BETTER than Silverlight."

            Now, one more time: Which ones?
            Hallowed are the Ori
          • The only reason you're getting it for free...

            Is because someone else was there before Microsoft and giving it away for free. How much did you pay for your operating system? It's under $400 because of Open Source. You can preach all you want about why people "choose" to use Microsoft but if they were the only game in town you would pay dearly for the privilege of having a computer and being connected to the MicrosoftNet.
            kozmcrae
          • Silverlight appears to be open.

            It's just that the community hasn't created a fully working player yet.
            ye
          • And, how convenient. MS can keep churning out versions to make sure that

            it does not always work on all platforms, or not all features are supported.

            Again, the fox guarding the chicken coup.
            DonnieBoy
          • HAHAHAHA

            Wait are you saying the global open source community couldn't keep up with the small Silverlight team at microsoft?
            Johnny Vegas
          • No, we are saying that MS can work behind the scenes on new versions, and

            release them whenever they want, without proper documentation, in order to create compatibility problems. MS would have the same problem keeping up with another group that controlled a standard, and used tricks to cause compatibility problems.

            The global open source community has created codes that are much better than anything MS has to offer.
            DonnieBoy
          • And this is different from Adobe how? (nt)

            .
            ye
          • Adobe could use the same tricks to create compatibility problems, but, for

            right now, Adobe doe not have an OS monopoly and can not benefit from such tricks.
            DonnieBoy
          • @ye: Past behavior is a good predictor of future behavior

            And it should help you find the differences.
            InAction Man
          • @DonnieBoy: OS monopoly is irrelevant.

            What is relevant is the FOSS community is the one to blame. Put the blame where it belongs and maybe the community will get their act together.
            ye
          • YE: since when was it the responisbility of the open source community to

            play all of Microsoft's games? Nobody can control the schedule of versions and documentation for MS products. The open source community has no way to keep MS from abusing their monopoly and creating incompatibilities.
            DonnieBoy
          • @DonnieBoy: What games? You haven't demonstrated they exist.

            [i]since when was it the responisbility of the open source community to play all of Microsoft's games?[/i]

            All I've seen from you is wishful thinking.

            [i]open source community has no way to keep MS from abusing their monopoly and creating incompatibilities.[/i]

            The same applies here. I see no abuse of monopoly. Just the inability of the FOSS community to take advantage of the technology.
            ye
          • Ye: that is like saying it is ok to let a fox guard a chicken coup, as

            just because foxes have eaten chickens in the past, no reason to believe they will do so in the future.

            THE PROBLEM IS THE MS BENEFITS FROM COMPATIBILITY PROBLEMS.
            DonnieBoy