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Re: [SLUG] Is Linus killing Linux?
- To: slug@xxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: Re: [SLUG] Is Linus killing Linux?
- From: Dean Hamstead <deanh@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon Feb 19 12:38:01 2001
- Organization: PCL
- User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux 2.4.1-ac9 i686; en-US; 0.7) Gecko/20010105
So what's the solution? Of course it's to bring critical functionality
in house, even if that means you duplicate work that is being done
externally. This is what happened with Nvidia, for example, producing
inhouse kernel modules for driver support. If you can't afford to do
this, you are possibly screwed, and it doesn't matter whether you are
developing for Linux or Windows. I don't see where there's a substantial
criticism of linux in this point. You can also easily be USCWAP
developing for Windows.
The great thing about linux is if you do make a driver (or some form of
kernel addition), once its in you dont have to maintain it (or so i
hear). So grab the latest devel kernel, write a driver well and submit
it. Reiser managed to do it, surely something like a NIC or Video Card
would be substantially less difficult (no flames, just an example).
Nvidia is a good example i think, although i know 3com released GPL
drivers which were pretty poor as far as duplication (From AC's fingers
himself). I recall Rasterman listing reasons why nvidia chooses closed
modules. If you care, we have archives ;)
the problem here is that linus is a "central point of failure" - hes
good - but as anyone knwos -a central point of failure is bad.
corporations at least have lots of people and thus no central point.
they can re-assign mantinence when people go on holidays, its more
dependable for them. thats they point the article was making. they have
a very good point.
There are "central points of failure" in every company I've ever worked
for. But you make it sound like if Linus went under a bus tomorrow
(heaven forbid) that would be the end of Linux. I don't even think it
would be a terribly large hiccup. There'd be some reshuffling, but there
also would be if key people were lost in any commercial enterprise. In
fact I think Linux would be less vulnerable (in terms of work getting
done) to a failure like this than many private companies would be. Alan
Cox would presumably fill Linus shoes as an interim measure immediately,
and work would continue. There are "lots of people" working on linux as
well, and a bit of reshuffling wouldn't be such a big problem.
Gates is to MS as Linus is to Linux, (although linus hasnt sworn to
destroy his competitors). If Gates dies MS will go on, if (when) Linus
dies (and i really hope he doesnt) then i think the kernel devel people
would suffle around and get on with it. Linux is a kernel yes, but
theres more to a linux box than the kernel, many interlocking projects
run by many different teams.
Unfortunately an OS is now *everything* you see at boot time (thanks MS)
to the media and all the plebs out their anyway.
Comparing linux to competivite business is silly, since its written by
people who love it. No doubt other OS developers do also, but linux is
for the people, by the people. Companies can market and sell it sure,
but at the end of the day its reason for existance is Linus's desire for
an OS. If it isnt a feasible business model who cares? If it cant play
with the big boys or whatever... who cares? I know i dont.
These little raves which seem to get mass media prove nothing and
Linux's "fast movement" is simply because patches are available, authors
put up software "works for me, YMMV". Commercial vendors will sit on
their current product and make money out of it (whilst developing) then
release their next product when the graphs start to slump.
dont "reply to all please" one copy from to:slug is enough for me to read