Open Source News
January 29, 2004
The Rebel Alliance
"It's a question of ethical choices," says Riverdale's Nelson. "In a school, it's public money. How should it be spent? Is it ethical to buy software instead of hiring an art teacher? Me, I want an art teacher--not the Microsoft help assistant dancing on every student's desktop.
and "Our motto is, 'It's free. It works. Duh.'" I wonder how much Westat would save if it made the switch.
UK knighthoods for foreigners
An informative and humorous article in The Register about Bill Gates receiving an honorary knighthood.
Bruce Perens expounds 'Open Source State of the Union'
NewsForge covers Bruce Perens' Open Source State of the Union speech at LinuxWorld. "Perens feels the biggest challenge to open source going forward is software patents. In the U.S., 50% to 95% of software patents should not be granted, he said, because they are not inventions and are written extremely broadly. He expects that after SCO suit is over, we'll see a number of patent lawsuits brought against Linux."
IBM: 'Who Says Penguins Can't Fly?'
eWeek covers a LinuxWorld keynote by IBM's Ross Mauri. "Now, however, Linux seems to be everywhere, according to the IBMer. "I can't think of a place where Linux hasn't been successful," he evangelized, citing implementations ranging from supercomputers down to embedded systems. Supercomputing applications really started to come to the fore during the second half of 2003, he noted. "Linux clusters are the biggest segment." Mauri delivered quick case studies of organizations using Linux across fields that include communications, health care, pharmaceuticals, education and multimedia entertainment."
Postcard from Penguin Land
OSAIA Releases a Letter Purportedly from SCO to Congress Attacking Open Source and the GPL
Groklaw has posted a set of comments on SCO's letter to Congress. "The letter is offensive in many ways, and there are several obviously untrue things in it, but the most egregious is the assertion that open source is a security risk. If Linux is a security risk, why is there a National Security Agency version of Linux, Security Enhanced Linux?"
The Most Hated Company In Tech
Business Week has a lengthy article on the SCO case. "But who stands to gain the most from an SCO win? Microsoft. Linux is the primary force standing between Microsoft and domination of the computer world. The software giant is happily fanning customers' fears with an anti-Linux campaign while pumping money into SCO." (See also this interview - Linus Torvalds: SCO Is "Just Too Wrong" with Linus Torvalds that goes along with the article.)
Microsoft Files for XML Patents
The LinuxWorld News Desk reports on an interesting patent move by Microsoft. "In what is being interpreted as either a preemptive move against IBM's plan to migrate to Linux on the desktop, a direct challenge to software vendors who want to interoperate with Word through XML, or just a more general confirmation that it is worried about Open Source, Microsoft last week filed - in the European Union and New Zealand though not in the US - for various XML patents."
Linux in the Ministry of Finance in Poland
Linuxnews.pl covers a large Linux deployment in Poland. "Deliveries of diskless net endings (Linux ones, of course) for the Ministry of Finance have already begun. In total, 12.210 terminals (Linux, Xfree, rdesktop, etc.) will be delivered. ComputerLand, a polish company, takes care of supplying required parts while DTK Kraków makes endings complete. It is the biggest delivery of such devices in Poland and, if we include one-time orders, one of the biggest in the world".
Decatur Jones' Cornett: Desktop Linux Will Affect Microsoft Faster Than Expected
Groklaw reprints a report by Decatur Jones analyst Dion Cornet, who was struck by what he saw at LinuxWorld. "More importantly, corporations are looking to switch from Microsoft, not so much to save on licensing fees, but to potentially enhance the security of their IT infrastructures. This week’s MyDoom virus only serves to reinforce such thinking."
Wikipedia Shows Power of Cooperation
Dan Gillmor looks at Wikipedia for his Mercury News (and beyond) column. "Similarly, a Wiki draws strength from its volunteers who catch and fix every act of online vandalism. When the bad guys learn that someone will repair their damage within minutes, and therefore prevent the damage from being visible to the world, they tend to give up and move along to more vulnerable places."
MySQL AB has announced the availability of the commercial MySQL Administrator. "MySQL Administrator is a powerful visual administration console so you can now easily administer your MySQL environment and gain significantly better visibility into the how your databases are operating. MySQL Administrator now integrates database management and maintenance into a single, seamless environment, with a clear and intuitive graphical user interface."
Free Advice for Sam Palmisano on IBM's Desktop Options.
Sun's Jonathan Schwartz has posted an open letter to IBM on how IBM could move over to Linux desktops. "You're probably familiar with Sun's Java Desktop System - it's the most popular Linux desktop on the market today, featuring Sun's Java Virtual Machine, the award winning StarOffice productivity suite, Mozilla browser, Gnome windowing environment, and support from Real Networks, Macromedia and Adobe.... To help IBM with your transition, we can offer a desktop for every one of your employees - with a free right to use the desktop at home - for $50/employee. Consider this a formal quote from Sun. But only if you're willing to buy in volume."
weather.com using Linux
Here's a press release from weather.com expressing their satisfaction with their new Dell systems powered by SUSE Linux.
ActiveState Perl Haiku Poetry Contest
"Tell us why you love Perl in the ActiveState Perl Haiku Poetry Contest. Demonstrate your ingenuity in the poetry world's most succinct and elegant format - haiku - with the programming world's most powerful and versatile language for text-Perl."