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Re: [SLUG] Linux news on slashdot
- To: slug@xxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: Re: [SLUG] Linux news on slashdot
- From: Jamie Honan <jhonan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Thu Nov 30 09:33:28 2000
(BTW, anyone else finding slash less than satisfying these days?)
>Applix is begging that free officeware products are biting too hard.
>What about Adobe?
>I do not like seeing this sort of thing happen to Linux.
>Is there not enough demand or is it a case of the market being poorly
I think the demand is quite small.
Applix would have been very affected by StarOffice. Adobe's reasoning
is harder to guess.
Both these products (perhaps not so much frame), as is
WordPerfect, are mass market, boxed products.
I would be particularly interested in how well products such
as the KIA compiler and EDO and CAD tools go. These are expensive,
very limited market products.
>Personally, I always view Linux myself as a server side platform
>with the desktop being a more diehard application of the OS.
>Is this perhaps the same viewpoint as the "marketplace"?
I guess companies that get involved with Free Software have to be
fairly hard headed.
I feel that some have rushed in to try to take advantage of a
trendy movement, without looking deeply at the consequences.
For large corporations, the advantages are there. They leverage
enormous development advantages to quickly fill gaps in their
product lines. I'm thinking IBM here. At the same time, their
staff get to showcase and interact with development ideas that
otherwise take much longer to get up (or are headed to very
narrow ends). SGI similarly.
The results can be mixed. For example, I would have to say
a lot of people had expectations that Mozilla would 'beat IE',
in the sense that the wider community would wake up to the
impact of Open Source software. (This will never
happen with a media that sings the song of the highest bidder).
Indeed, Sun's `freeing' of StarOffice can be seen as drawing
a limit to their involvement (in the sense that the alternative
was to throw a lot of money at it to make a more competitive
In this particularly reflective vein, the failure of Ajuba,
home of Tcl/Tk, to make a commercial success of products and
services is also a marking point.
Perhaps there are several thoughts we can draw from this.
Failure is a constancy in the commercial software world. For
every hit product there are thousands that aren't.
Perhaps with the maturity of Linux we simply shouldn't be surprised
that commercial products fail in our area.
Another aspect of this failure is that although a product
or company fails, should you, the user, also be brought down?
What protections do we have? We don't have an independant
escrow system for commercial software. The only really secure
way is to use Free or OpenSource software.
Rachel asks specifically about Sun. I actually think that unlike
IBM and SGI, they don't have a well formulated company plan or
strategy to deal with either Free or OpenSource software.
Sure, individual units are very savvy and supportive, but this
isn't as pervasive as I think it needs to be for the long term.
For example, Sun's Java efforts would benefit enormously (technically
at least) by developing better links and feedback mechanisms with
the Free groups.
In conclusion, I would guess that we should expect some 'one hit
wonders', lot's of failures, but life to go on.
The road is bumpy and winding, but the journey is pleasant, with
exciting scenery and enjoyable company.
Thanks for reading this long post.