Comparisons of Linux versus Windows (and open source to close source) just ain't what they used to be. In the old days, it was just one invective after another coming from both sides of the fence. But now, after a string of various reports (some of questionable nature) showing Windows and Linux in a virtual dead heat on issues relating to security and total cost of ownership, researchers are having their names dragged through the mud as well.
In the latest spat, which comes on the heels of a Yankee Group study concluding that "most U.S. businesses say there is very little difference between the cost of maintaining a Windows versus a Linux-based corporate computing environment," the Yankee Group's Laura Didio has been pulled into the fray. Said Didio, "There's an extremist fringe of Linux loonies who hang out on forums and are disrespectful and threatening because you disagree with them....That can hurt the Linux community."
Perhaps it's time for one of those celebrity deathmatches where they cage a bunch of Linux, open-source, Windows, and closed-source luminaries into a boxing ring until only one person (or team I guess) is left standing. I'm imagining some of the industry's most illustrious personalities in the ring. In addition to Didio, the most obvious candidates that come to my mind are Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, JBoss CEO Marc Fluery, OSI president-emeritus Eric Raymond, Sun president/COO Jonathan Schwartz, Bruce Perens, the Free Software Foundation's Richard Stallman, Apple CEO Steve Jobs, and SCO CEO Darl McBride. Oh, and Groklaw's Pamela Jones as referee (I'd do it, but I'd be afraid to be in the ring with that bunch). Any other suggestions? Atlantic City or Vegas?