QuoteThe proprietary world feels the need to rebuild everyone else's software in order to create walled-garden ecosystems. Unfortunately, the open-source world builds even more variants of the same products, though for different reasons.
Are we the world's least efficient market? Imagine what would happen if we could all pull behind a few credible alternatives, rather than inventing 585 of them?
QuoteHowever, he also warned that the prospect of moving from being Windows-centric to supporting over 200 flavours of Linux could sound unnecessarily daunting. Therefore, educating vendors, particularly smaller manufacturers, about what’s actually involved in going open source is essential to combating misunderstandings. "They don’t understand that once you’re in the upstream kernel you’re ok," he said. Hohndel pointed out that companies were also often misinformed about the legal risks of going open source, or were afraid of damaging their reputation. Another concern cited by hardware companies was a fear that their products would be damaged.
QuoteMassachusetts today released draft specifications that would allow state workers to continue using Microsoft's Office Open XML (OOXML) format. The latest proposal comes about two years after state IT officials kicked off a raging political battle by unveiling specifications that would have required state workers to use applications that support only "open" technologies like the OpenDocument format (ODF). "Open XML does meet our established criteria for an open standard," said Bethann Pepoli, the state's acting CIO, in an e-mail to Computerworld. "There is industry support for Open XML and we believe that by adopting the standard we will be able to accelerate the pace of migration to XML document formats."
QuoteWhen Novell and Microsoft announced their patent deal, the Free Software Foundation was quick to say it would move to prohibit such arrangements in a future version of the General Public License (GPL), the most widely used open-source license. The most recent draft seeks to prohibit all future deals of that nature and potentially past ones, too. The timing of Microsoft's pronouncement is telling, Radcliffe said, "particularly when you think that GPL version 3 is still in draft. I don't think that is a coincidence," he said.
QuoteThese document format standards matter a great deal financially, because they can influence which software products companies choose to buy. Microsoft Office Open XML is the default document format for its Office 2007 suite, which was recently released to businesses and is set for consumer availability on January 30. Alternative OpenDocument is the default for the open-source suite OpenOffice.org and the preference of Microsoft rivals IBM, Novell and Sun Microsystems. The emergence of dueling standards has ratcheted up the competition in Microsoft's home turf--a situation that should benefit end users who care about accessing documents in the future, said Andrew Updegrove, an attorney at Gesmer Updegrove and author of a blog that follows international standards.
QuoteTaking the customer viewpoint, he said: "If the National Australia Bank wants to implement virtualization and it's not stable, you can imagine what they will tell us." Instead of trying to play catch-up with rival Novell and simply shipping Xen as included software with its operating system, Red Hat will attempt to build a full virtualization platform around the product in the next version of its Red Hat Enterprise Linux server software, due to be released in December.