Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 12th May 2007 21:40 UTC, submitted by dylansmrjones
Microsoft "The Free Software movement is dead. Linux doesn't exist in 2007. Even Linus has got a job today." Controversial statements from the head of Microsoft's Linux Labs, Bill Hilf. Speaking on the last leg of a tour of Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand, Bill Hilf, more formally known as Microsoft's platform strategy director, was in the region to 'be descriptive and intelligent in giving people an understanding of open source and debunk a lot of the mythology around open source'.
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hmm
by Mellin on Sat 12th May 2007 21:50 UTC
Mellin
Member since:
2005-07-06

one more flame war thread ?

Edited 2007-05-12 21:51

Reply Score: 4

RE: hmm
by raver31 on Sun 13th May 2007 14:29 UTC in reply to "hmm"
raver31 Member since:
2005-07-06

It cannot be a flame war, it will all be one sided with Windows users able to put up their points...

But, Linux users like myself will not be able to say anything, becasue Linux does not exist, therfore our computers cannot boot and put us onto the internet to read the post.

Damn

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: hmm
by Mellin on Mon 14th May 2007 18:50 UTC in reply to "RE: hmm"
Mellin Member since:
2005-07-06

luckly i have a mac that i can use ;)

Edited 2007-05-14 18:51

Reply Score: 1

Biased?
by Laurence on Sat 12th May 2007 21:53 UTC
Laurence
Member since:
2007-03-26

The words 'straws', 'at' and 'clutching' sping to mind when reading that article.

Edited 2007-05-12 21:54

Reply Score: 5

...
by Hiev on Sat 12th May 2007 21:55 UTC
Hiev
Member since:
2005-09-27

That's really far from reality, specialy now that after years trying to use Linux I finally feel like using Linux as my only OS, Ubuntu and GNOME made it possible.

Reply Score: 5

Wow.
by shykid on Sat 12th May 2007 21:58 UTC
shykid
Member since:
2007-02-22

Linux doesn't exist in 2007.

I don't know if this is funny because it's blatantly misinformed FUD, or because that has always been Microsoft's stance on Linux--until nearly 2007 when that whole Novell deal thing went down.

Edited 2007-05-12 22:01

Reply Score: 5

RE: Wow.
by hobgoblin on Sun 13th May 2007 00:48 UTC in reply to "Wow."
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

linux still dont exist. thats novell, not linux ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Wow.
by alexandru_lz on Sun 13th May 2007 10:30 UTC in reply to "Wow."
alexandru_lz Member since:
2007-02-11

Actually, I think it's funny because judging from the reviews and sales, Vista doesn't really exist either (or at least not half as much as XP).

The guy has the lwawyer's logic. Linux developers have a job and major companies both use and develop for Linux (see Intel's PowerTOP thread above). Therefore, Linux doesn't exist.

Cool.

Reply Score: 2

Another Bill *sigh*
by deb2006 on Sat 12th May 2007 22:00 UTC
deb2006
Member since:
2006-06-26

Ok, dude - you haven't understood a bit about open source but you boast in having all the answerers. If I were your boss I'd fire you immediately, because you are spreading FUD (and that's not even good for MS, simply because most of it are lies).

Reply Score: 5

RE: Another Bill *sigh*
by ArchVile on Sun 13th May 2007 01:06 UTC in reply to "Another Bill *sigh*"
ArchVile Member since:
2006-07-23

He obviously hasn't understood anything about open source. Who ever said open source is about not making money with software?

In essence, open source is about making your code public, and that's exactly what the name says. The "free" in FOSS should be taken as requiring open standards, so everyone is free to write code which makes use of them. Then you get all your interoperability for free, you genious of a "strategy director"!

Those who advocate FOSS software don't advocate it because it doesn't cost money, but because they are convinced it's the more effective and secure development model (as demonstrated by open OSes), and that no individual or company should gain a market monopole by making their standards non-free (like MS) and applying an EEE stragtegy (like MS).

How one makes money with software is completely independent of the development process. And all the companies that guy names are proofs that one can make money with FOSS. Linux exists in 2007 BECAUSE all these developers earn their money with it!

They should really step back and think... RedHat and others make money with open and (despite its complexity) rock-solid software which is released on time, they never get into trouble with the EU commission over market domination issues, etc. And they (at MS) are struggling with an unmanageable bloat of an OS, with ridiculously delayed releases, security issues which in theory they all have to discover and fix themselves, with legal troubles, etc.

Although "MS still exists in 2007", their development and business models definitely come from 1980.

Reply Score: 5

what a sad idea
by daveyfromjersey on Sat 12th May 2007 22:00 UTC
daveyfromjersey
Member since:
2007-05-12

I think a world without open-source is such a sad idea. It's basically saying there has to be money behind something to have innovation. I think more and more people are seeing they have more choices other than Vista for example. They have more choices other than Windows Media Player or Outlook Express. I think Microsoft is scared because in a lot of cases, these open-source progs are better than what they've been working on for decades. What a thick-headed thing to say...

Reply Score: 5

Sheesh....what a joke! :-D
by obsidian on Sat 12th May 2007 22:22 UTC
obsidian
Member since:
2007-05-12

Wow.... MS are *really* getting desperate...... :-)
"Free Software" dead? It has never been healthier!
Witness the *dozens* of companies, cities, states and even governments switching to open-source software.

I run both Linux and OpenBSD, and regardless of anyone's views on those, the fact that MS can't make an OS which even *remotely* approaches their quality speaks volumes. The """quality""" of MS' so-called "operating systems" is not even in the same universe as open-source ones.

A tiny sample of really neat OSS projects: Haiku, Voyager (OS/2 clone) and the great up-and-coming MonaOS too -
http://sourceforge.net/projects/monaos

I'll also mention the great little IDE called Geany -
http://geany.uvena.de

... and the very-cool public-domain "yeanpypa" parsing library written in Python. That lets you write parsers/interpreter directly in Python code using a very-similar-to-BNF syntax. Very much like C++'s Boost::Spirit (which it is inspired by) -
http://www.slash-me.net/dev/snippets/yeanpypa/documentation.html

Sheesh... this guy must have the easiest job in the world. Wander along to MS each morning, collect a fat pay-cheque and spread FUD!

Edited 2007-05-12 22:28

Reply Score: 5

1 divided by 0 = 5
by Claye on Sat 12th May 2007 22:26 UTC
Claye
Member since:
2007-05-12

okay so their argument sumed up:
- some developers have jobs
- some programs are cross plateform
- some programs/projects are funded by corporations

the conclusion:
Linux is dead?

makes about as much sence as 1/0 = 5
:)

Reply Score: 5

RE: 1 divided by 0 = 5
by hobgoblin on Sun 13th May 2007 00:50 UTC in reply to "1 divided by 0 = 5"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

its the free part they want to attack. problem is that they see one kind of free and the community see another, so they are attacking the wrong kind of free...

Edited 2007-05-13 00:51

Reply Score: 4

Yech.
by Buck on Sat 12th May 2007 22:28 UTC
Buck
Member since:
2005-06-29

If it doesn't exist, who are you preaching to? Wndows users that stranded from the One True Path?
And "complex balance between innovation and standardisation" is priceless. Tell you what, the world isn't ready for the breakneck pace of Microsoft innovation. It has better stop.

Reply Score: 5

Desperation.
by Mukunda on Sat 12th May 2007 22:32 UTC
Mukunda
Member since:
2006-11-05

Hahaha it's sounding like Microsoft are becoming desperate now, what was that saying of Gandhi's? Something like, first they ignore you, then they mock you, then they fight you, then they lose... It sounds like Microsoft are stepping in to the fighting stage now. I don't think there is much they can do to survive, the empire is going to crumble eventually.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Desperation.
by obsidian on Sat 12th May 2007 22:39 UTC in reply to "Desperation."
obsidian Member since:
2007-05-12

what was that saying of Gandhi's? Something like, first they ignore you, then they mock you, then they fight you, then they lose..

Pretty close! I believe it's "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win".

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Desperation.
by karl on Sun 13th May 2007 00:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Desperation."
karl Member since:
2005-07-06

Don't shoot me for being pedantic ;)

"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." by Mahatma Gandh

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Desperation.
by diegoviola on Mon 14th May 2007 03:19 UTC in reply to "Desperation."
diegoviola Member since:
2006-08-15

You can read more about Ghandi quotes here ;)

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Mahatma_Gandhi

Reply Score: 2

re
by Oliver on Sat 12th May 2007 22:35 UTC
Oliver
Member since:
2006-07-15

>Even Linus has got a job today.

Yes and even Linus eats something every day. Gosh what a moron. Microsoft is already dead if they are in need of such nonsense sayings.

Reply Score: 5

RE: re
by butters on Sun 13th May 2007 03:01 UTC in reply to "re"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

Linus has had a job since not long after he finished his masters thesis at the University of Helsinki ("Linux: A Portable Operating System"). He was first employed by Transmeta in 1997. Red Hat and VA Linux gave him stock options that made him a multimillionaire by 1999. He probably doesn't need his paycheck from the Linux Foundation in order to eat, but he certainly deserves it. Realize that Linus still plows through diffs on a daily basis, which is not even as glamorous as it sounds.

Reply Score: 5

utter drivel
by qwerty2k on Sat 12th May 2007 22:38 UTC
qwerty2k
Member since:
2007-04-08

such utter drivel about not needing standards etc and how the world doesn't need the odf standard etc, laughable really.

Reply Score: 5

Someone fell over his own hyperbole
by AdamW on Sat 12th May 2007 22:41 UTC
AdamW
Member since:
2005-07-06

"When I talk to open source developers, at least half are talking about Windows, from SugarCRM, MySQL, PHP. Every single one,"

Wait, first it's "half", then less than ten words later it's "every single one"? Either he got misleadingly quoted or he fell over his own hyperbole...

Anyway, didn't we (Linux people) used to suck because we were all hippies and no-one would pay us? And now we suck because we have jobs? I'm so confused! I think I'll suggest we start running 'tie-dye Fridays' at the office...

Reply Score: 5

Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

Anyway, I don't take SugarCRM, MySQL and PHP as representative to the whole free software movement. They are highly overrated, in my opinion.

As a free software developer, what should I talk about with Microsoft other than Windows anyway? It's the only topic you can get constructive responses from them.

Reply Score: 2

The resemblance is striking!
by korpenkraxar on Sat 12th May 2007 22:42 UTC
korpenkraxar
Member since:
2005-09-10
RE: The resemblance is striking!
by Havin_it on Sun 13th May 2007 11:31 UTC in reply to "The resemblance is striking!"
Havin_it Member since:
2006-03-10

Are you surprised? Remember who employed him...

http://www.muppetstore.com/pics_big/400.jpg

Now, who's got a recommendation for Ballmer?

Reply Score: 2

brewmastre Member since:
2006-08-01

Now, who's got a recommendation for Ballmer?


http://www.muppetstore.com/pics_big/B0002GN3NS.jpg

Reply Score: 1

Death is Dead!
by ido50 on Sat 12th May 2007 22:45 UTC
ido50
Member since:
2006-02-06

Death is Dead! Long live Death!

Reply Score: 2

If it's true
by giraffe on Sat 12th May 2007 22:45 UTC
giraffe
Member since:
2006-10-13

that "linux doesn't exist in 2007", then why has Microsoft been paying so much attention to it lately?
They shouldn't have anything to worry about, hmmm?

Reply Score: 5

and furthermore...
by AdamW on Sat 12th May 2007 22:47 UTC
AdamW
Member since:
2005-07-06

Shooting down the rest is like shooting fish in a barrel, anyway.

The bit about the input system - well, there was a rather famous series of videos of someone not remotely related to Microsoft doing that last year. Microsoft in stealing idea and presenting it as their own shock, hold the front page! No, wait, that goes on page 15 with the rest of yesterday's news. Secondly, it's a straw man: the EU hasn't told Microsoft to 'open up' anything like experimental input systems, and no-one's even asked them to. Thirdly, it would be extremely straightforward to standardize, because we *already* have USB input standardization and no matter how jazzy the human interaction side of things is, as far as representing the input to the computer goes, it's just the same as any other input device.

Honestly, you'd think Microsoft would be able to do better than this.

Reply Score: 5

raynevandunem
Member since:
2006-11-24

I think he has a point concerning MS's relations with the open source movement.

Microsoft has always treated open source software as a business asset to be sold, not as a service to be provided.

This is the exact same line of reasoning followed by Novell, Red Hat, Linspire, and most other commercial distributors.

HOWEVER, I get the feeling that he's implying that these commercial vendors constitute the majority of distributors; and that most developers of applications used in the vendors' respective distribution are being paid an income by these companies.

He's wrong in both cases.

So this is what I criticize about his statement as the head of Microsoft's OS Lab: why, is it that they have such an obviously myopic view of open source software - or, for that matter, software in general - that limits them to speaking of and regarding it as far as their commercial competitors are concerned?

When they speak of Linux in their "Get the facts" campaign, they're really using "Linux" as a code word for "Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server" (and mention Novell in some ads); they don't even mention Red Hat, or Canonical, just Novell, a company with whom they have history.

All I'm asking for them to do is this: LIGHTEN UP.

Stop confusing an entire ideology for a single company. Stop saying stupid stuff in your marketing speak to piss off the already-disillusioned.
Just stop, sit down, take a breather, and clear your head.

Or at least just specify who you're aiming for, so that the other open-sourcers can get out of the shooting range.

Reply Score: 5

hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

i think this goes as far back as the famous open letter from bill gates to the hobbyists:

http://www.blinkenlights.com/classiccmp/gateswhine.html

yep, it was the first link when i typed in "bill gates letter" on google ;)

Reply Score: 2

ml2mst Member since:
2005-08-27

<off topic>

We have written 6800 BASIC, and are writing 8080 APL and 6800 APL, but there is very little incentive to make this software available to hobbyists. Most directly, the thing you do is theft.


Oh yeah, Microsoft "wrote" BASIC, like they "wrote" MS-DOS, *sigh*

</off topic>

If someone says Linux is about Love, Peace and Harmony, I would tell them to do their research.


So should Hilf, seems he forgot that all those "evil" commercial companies provide a free (as in gratis) version of their distribution.

Whatever, he probably just forgot to take his medicine :-)

Reply Score: 3

Microsoft, when will you learn...?
by irbis on Sat 12th May 2007 23:10 UTC
irbis
Member since:
2005-07-08

Did I understand that the guy is trying to claim: "free software = freeware"? That is, of course, not true at all. It seems to be an intended misrepresentation or else the man hasn't done his homework at all like read the IT news for the recent 10 years or so. Open source and free software can be as commercial as closed source software (and, on the other hand, there's also lots of closed source freeware that doesn't cost a penny). So being paid and working in a company as an open source (like Linux kernel) programmer has always been perfectly ok within the open source / free software community.

What Microsoft doesn't seem to learn is that it is just that kind of FUD against their competitors - that is plentiful in that article too - that is turning more and more people away from them - me included. Morals and truth do matter in business too. Usually lies and FUD are going to hit your own legs in the end.

Of course, Linux and open source / free software people may often not be perfect angels either, and, for example, some of them may have sometimes been using too harsh words about Microsoft too. I don't like that either (base your criticism on clear facts, don't just badmouth others) although I can understand why some people may be very frustrated with Microsoft and may thus sometimes overreact.

I have nothing against Microsoft or their products in themselves. The usability of MS Windows has usually been quite good (although their product security has been somewhat poor at least until recent times). But to my regret I must say that I've just learned from many, many stories on and on not to trust Microsoft and their words very much anymore. It has, of course, also influenced me in my IT buying decisions...

Microsoft should learn how to do more cooperation instead of just trying to kill everyone who competes with them. Then people, governments and also other companies, might learn to trust and like them again...

Edited 2007-05-12 23:29

Reply Score: 3

Re: Claim
by aGNUstic on Sat 12th May 2007 23:22 UTC
aGNUstic
Member since:
2005-07-28

The mind of a delusional company is a marvel to behold. Good-bye McSoft.

Reply Score: 2

Bagdad Bob
by polarbear on Sat 12th May 2007 23:22 UTC
polarbear
Member since:
2006-06-13

"There are no American infidels in Baghdad. Never!"
"Their infidels are committing suicide by the hundreds on the gates of Baghdad. Be assured, Baghdad is safe, protected."

Reply Score: 5

RE: Bagdad Bob
by IanSVT on Sat 12th May 2007 23:30 UTC in reply to "Bagdad Bob"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

That was my first thought. Also this, from Saving Private Ryan.

[Listening skeptically to German propaganda coming over a loudspeaker]

Captain Miller: "The Statue of Liberty is kaput" - that's disconcerting.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Bagdad Bob
by Cass on Sun 13th May 2007 00:36 UTC in reply to "Bagdad Bob"
Cass Member since:
2006-03-17

Haha, That guy was brilliant, whatever happened to him, the Troops should do everything in their power to find him and give him a job on prime time ... he was and still is the best part of that affair ..... +1 for you fella !

Funny i was just speaking about him the other day !

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Bagdad Bob
by japh on Sun 13th May 2007 17:55 UTC in reply to "RE: Bagdad Bob"
japh Member since:
2005-11-11

well, lying may be funny when it's that silly, but I doubt he's a nice guy.
The Swedish police was after him for murder of an Iraqi dissident i Stockholm.

Just because he acted silly on TV doesn't change who and what he worked for.

Reply Score: 3

Linux doesn't exist?
by Supreme Dragon on Sat 12th May 2007 23:24 UTC
Supreme Dragon
Member since:
2007-03-04

The creators of the worst OS, now give us the worst FUD.

Reply Score: 3

somewhat
by Gzzy on Sat 12th May 2007 23:29 UTC
Gzzy
Member since:
2005-11-21

So this is what I criticize about his statement as the head of Microsoft's OS Lab: why, is it that they have such an obviously myopic view of open source software - or, for that matter, software in general - that limits them to speaking of and regarding it as far as their commercial competitors are concerned?


Probably because the crowd he was adressing has that mindset. I highly doubt that any Linux distro that provides any kind of real competiton to Microsoft is not commercial with the possible exception of Debian. Furthermore you have to consider that he wasn't addressing the OSNews/Digg/Slashdot crowd but probably a crowd of corporate IT people.

This is the exact same line of reasoning followed by Novell, Red Hat, Linspire, and most other commercial distributors.

HOWEVER, I get the feeling that he's implying that these commercial vendors constitute the majority of distributors;

I'd be willing to bet that the vast majority of corporate/business Linux usage takes place on commercial distros. When I worked in IT for large Fortune 500 companies all I saw was like 90% Red Hat and a smattering of SLED/SLES installs. Very few were running anything else and NO ONE uses any of the non-corporate distros for anything with the exception of Debian.

Reply Score: 4

RE: somewhat
by hobgoblin on Sun 13th May 2007 01:07 UTC in reply to "somewhat"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

thats because, like microsoft knows, big corp loves to have someone to call when things go wrong. someone to blame.

both red hat and microsoft makes money selling 24/7 support contracts to corps. so that when the it department gets in over their heads, they can call up some consultant and have it sorted out for them.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: somewhat
by butters on Sun 13th May 2007 14:04 UTC in reply to "RE: somewhat"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

both red hat and microsoft makes money selling 24/7 support contracts to corps.

Not really, and this issue is at the center of Microsoft's dilemma going forward. Red Hat and most other modern IT vendors make most of their money selling services. Microsoft makes most of their money licensing software. They farmed most of their corporate support out to OEMs and consultancies, and as the software industry becomes more and more service-oriented, Microsoft still has its cash cows hitched to the idea of licensing revenues.

But if this is their problem, then Hilf's statements don't indicate that they realize it. He fixates on the fact that commercial Linux distributions usually have associated up-front fees. But this really amounts to purchasing a one-year entitlement for the standard level of service. If you don't want any premium service, there are community spins of the same source code that are completely gratis.

I've suggested before that Red Hat and other commercial Linux vendors should offer their official, branded distribution with no premium support and no up-front fee. Of course, they would strongly encourage corporate customers to buy a support contract, and the vast majority would. Linux vendors need to be explicit about the fact that the value is in the service. This is so important to emphasize given the common misconceptions concerning the "free" in free software. Linux vendors too young to have a shrink-wrap heritage, such as Canonical, identify with this idea much more strongly than many of the older vendors.

Commercial Linux vendors will live or die based on their service offerings. As we've seen with Oracle's ill-conceived Unbreakable Linux product, customers trust established Linux distributors such as Red Hat to provide superior service. They're willing to pay a premium to get service from a vendor that lives and breathes Linux. Other IT giants will challenge the Linux establishment with their own service offerings based on the same underlying distributions. The best service providers will come out on top.

Reply Score: 3

Head deap in the sand
by unoengborg on Sat 12th May 2007 23:46 UTC
unoengborg
Member since:
2005-07-06

The fact that open source developers now have jobs at IBM, Red Hat, Novell and others, is a sign that Linux is succesful.

As many others here have pointed out there is nothing wrong in making money from free software. The problem to Microsoft is that they are far ahead of Microsoft in converting to a service oriented business model. Microsoft will be forced to go there too in the near future, as OSes, Office Suits and databases will be commodities that nobody will be prepared to pay for.

Naturally open source companies like MySQL and others talk about supporting windows. This no indication that windows is supperior in any way. It is an indication that there are a lot of windows users to sell support to. The money of windows users are as good as anybody else's.

Expanding into Windows territory is actually the best way for free software to beat Microsoft. If a lot of windows users run cross platform free software, that will lower the barrier to switch to an OS with lower licensing costs. Having free software competing with schrink wrapped software on the windows platform forces the providers of such software to lower their prices.

As a result the value of the windows market will diminish, and as a result some companies may consider widening their offerings. With toolkits like Trolltech QT it is very easy to support Linux, MacOS as well as windows. The ongoing work on standardization of the basics in Linux will make it even easier.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Head deap in the sand
by anda_skoa on Sun 13th May 2007 15:26 UTC in reply to "Head deap in the sand"
anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

[q][As many others here have pointed out there is nothing wrong in making money from free software./q]

True and I am sure he knows this as well.

However, by creating the image that the "Free software movement" is somehow opposed to "commercial firms" he implies that anyone who has been participating in the former but is now employed as "failed" in one way or another, a bit like if people participating in the Free Software world are followers of an order that does not allow individuals to own property and those that do are being outcast.

Unfortunatly, while we all know that this isn't the case, those people he has been talking to or some if those reading the article, might not.

Reply Score: 3

Issues...
by kaiwai on Sat 12th May 2007 23:48 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

I have some issues with the replies, and for these reasons:

1) The Free Software Foundation isn't some sort of anti-business, anti-freemarket, anti-make-money-off-software organisation - I've yet to year Stallman or any one of the other official spokespersons for the organisations come out and declare that their mission operandi is to destroy all software company's.

This is about Microsoft using its voice in the IT marketplace to some how declare that unless your product is closed source, you have no product at all - and so therefore, because FSF advocates free (libre) software, it some how is destroying value because the code isn't kept secret.

It is based on this notion that value of a product is only derived from the fact that no one has the source code, and people are purely paying for just the code itself (in binary form) and nothing else.

That is sort sighted to say the least - talk to any company as to the reason why they purchase software, rather than use a freeware/shareware or simply download and compile it, and they'll tell you that they want more, they want services like maintenance, support, consultancy - the value added that are sometimes bundled with proprietary applications.

All free software is doing is unbundling the software from the services and giving not only the end user a lot more freedom as to where they acquire those services from, but allows businesses to compete in a whole new way - competition based on value and quality rather than how well they've kept their secret sauce secret.

2) This person is obviously clueless to the background of Linux and how it actually got it start; I don't want to sound smug, but clue to the clueless, it has nothing to do with AMP (Apache, MySQL, php) - the fact that Linux was in front of the acronym is a side effect of the real reason for Linux taking off.

Linux took off outside the 'halls of geekdom' over 10 years ago on the basis that it was a UNIX-like operating system which could easily slide in an replace large expensive UNIX's systems being provided by the likes of Sun, IBM, HPUX, and SCO (in the form of software on x86).

ISP's were the first beneficiary of this by virtue of the fact that back when the internet boom started, margins were razor thin, those whose who started up the company had little in the way of finance - in the case of New Zealand, very few banks, if at all, were interested in risking large amounts of cash to a rather radical business proposition.

So this is where Linux falls into place, ISP's saw this as the platform where by they could weld together low cost x86 machines running a free UNIX like operating system - ideal for a start up who wanted all the perks of UNIX, stability, security and reliability, but without the price tag.

The best example of this was IHUG (Internet Home Users Group) which started off using Linux, which today still a large portion of their business is running off the back of Linux infrastructure (assuming the recent buy out hasn't changed anything).

Then the ball began to roll, with ISPs, came hosting companies, and with hosting companies came businesses, end users and the rest, as they say is history.

Linux success isn't derived from AMP. AMP's success one could say is derived from Linux's success - with that being said, if one wanted to play the parlour game of 'what if', one could argue that FreeBSD, had it not been tied up in legal wrangling, could have been what we see as Linux today, in regards to usage.

(rest on my blog as it would have gone over 8000 characters - http://kaiwai.blogspot.com/2007/05/microsoft-director-out-to-debunk... )

Edited 2007-05-13 00:07

Reply Score: 5

RE: Issues...
by hobgoblin on Sun 13th May 2007 01:11 UTC in reply to "Issues..."
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

hey, dont you know that calling anything/anyone you dont like anti-capitalism/communist is a sure fire way to turn the opinion against them? ;)

communism is bad, okay ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Issues...
by kaiwai on Sun 13th May 2007 01:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Issues..."
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

hey, dont you know that calling anything/anyone you dont like anti-capitalism/communist is a sure fire way to turn the opinion against them? ;)


True, but then again, that's an Americanism thing - anything that isn't 'red, white and blue, and screams loyalty to president and free market' is slandered off as being communist/communism

communism is bad, okay ;)


The stupid part of it is this; people don't understand why communism doesn't work - communism does work on a small scale; when there is sufficient pair pressure and social expectations ensure that those who take, contribute in some way back to the commune - the who thing falls apart once it scales beyond a small number of people - which is where the need for secret police and the likes are employeed.

But communism isn't a new idea; the idea of working for the benefit of each other, taking on what is needed, giving what we can - heck, Christianity in the Acts of the Apostles talk about communal ownership of assetts, hence the reason I don't/can't understand the extreme anti-communist battle cry of the religious right.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Issues...
by hobgoblin on Sun 13th May 2007 01:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Issues..."
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

problem is i guess that we are hardcoded to be greedy.

our very genes are somehow selfish. we only work together as long as we can benefit from it. ones someone finds that they can benefit more by bullying people then cooperate, they will do so.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Issues...
by kaiwai on Sun 13th May 2007 03:41 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Issues..."
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

our very genes are somehow selfish. we only work together as long as we can benefit from it. ones someone finds that they can benefit more by bullying people then cooperate, they will do so.


I wouldn't agree though; those who start the 'revolution' tend to remember what it was like before then, and as such, tend to be willing to give up their greed having seen what the alternative is.

As each generation comes and goes, people forget and lose contact with life before the 'revolution' so kicks in the selfish gene that would have otherwise been repressed with the knowledge and experience which the first generation had.

For me, communism doesn't work for the simple fact it goes against human nature - the ideas of communism are noble, but it is better for humans to voluntarily choose to do something because it is the right thing to do than having it unilaterally imposed on them in the form of "I know what's best for you"

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Issues...
by anda_skoa on Sun 13th May 2007 15:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Issues..."
anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

heck, Christianity in the Acts of the Apostles talk about communal ownership of assetts, hence the reason I don't/can't understand the extreme anti-communist battle cry of the religious right.


That's easy: they don't use their brains for thinking. Actually I am not sure yet if they use their brains at all. Seems they have outsourced thinking to their leaders

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Issues...
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 19:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Issues..."
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

The Acts of Apostles talks about freely entering communal ownership of assets. This is merely a slightly different kind of private ownership where you are more than one to own something in common. And the focus are on "freely".

Socialism is forced sharing - that's the big difference.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Issues...
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 19:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Issues..."
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Communism doesn't work on any scale per se. It is just another kind of dictatorship where a class is raping society under disguise of doing good. Just like the church in medieval times.

Communism is not about working together. Communism is nothing but forced labour in disguise.

Do not confuse communal with communism. Two very different things.

Communal practices work - but usually only in small scale, as you correctly point out. It is just not communism.

Common ownership in Christianity is based solely on freedom - nobody is forced to do sell their private property and enter common ownership solutions. They are however strongly recommended to do so. But it is the choice of the single individual to do so.

That's the big difference. Doing it under force (from other individuals) or doing it of your own free will.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Issues...
by butters on Sun 13th May 2007 14:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Issues..."
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

dont you know that calling anything/anyone you dont like anti-capitalism/communist is a sure fire way to turn the opinion against them? ;)

Anytime I point out that free software represents a new way of prioritizing outcomes and allocating resources for software development, I get labeled a Marxist. Then I have to argue that Marx would be disgusted by the idea of giving the public so much control over the production of software and content in general. Free software and Web 2.0 surely have Marx rolling in his grave.

Free software is a service-oriented economy based on free markets. Linux vendors that realize this will run their business according to well-established principles for competing in such markets. Something tells me that Mark Shuttleworth, who made mega-millions with his CA service, knows a thing or two about this kind of business.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Issues...
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 19:56 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Issues..."
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

That's only because you have been really bad at describing what your thoughts are.

First you claim that FLOSS is anti-commercial and anti-capitalistic and uses marxist terms to describe the function of FLOSS (new anti-capitalist anti-commercial economic model).

Now you call it pro-capitalist - make up your mind ;)

FLOSS doesn't represent anything new at all in regard to prioritizing anything. The model was also in use 5 millennia ago. And will always be in use one way or another. It is capitalist trade in its most classic form. You give me something - I give you something. In Danish this is called "noget for noget" (something for something) which is term for sharing resources. Nordea (a bank) is using "noget for noget" as a slogan for its practice of giving you more as you give the bank more.

Nothing new in this model.

Reply Score: 2

oh boy
by mrminnman on Sat 12th May 2007 23:48 UTC
mrminnman
Member since:
2006-06-27

yes, many companies have contributed to Linux but the inability to contribute to Windows is the problem.

I'll be removing Vista and running a dual boot XP/Linux configuration.

Microsoft is doing good things though. They were smart enough to get Microsoft hosting up on 1and1.com and i really like the WPF SDK as well as their singularity OS.

Reply Score: 2

moleskine
Member since:
2005-11-05

Come the revolution, this guy and his scarily close-together eyes will be among the first into the tumbrils! Time to sharpen the blade, mes braves.

Seriously, there are plenty of interesting points to be made about open source, but Mr Hilf doesn't seem to be making them.

His essential point is that Linux in reality is a commercial eco-system like any other. Its "staff" are paid employees, its distros are commercial outfits, so it follows that its strategy must be to beat the competition, make lots of money for shareholders and drop all pretence to morals or idealism because corporations don't do either. On the contrary, they'll suck up to any totalitarian with a few bob in a dodgy Swiss bank account. As for "standards", well those are just commercial weapons in Mr Hilf's world, as the EU is now "learning" (in his breathtakingly amoral and patronizing description of current Microsoft-EU legal proceedings).

Before this BS I would place Debian, with its pledge to create a free and universal operating system, freely available to anyone, anywhere, who wants it. Amazingly simple, and devastatingly effective as an idea because for the Microsofts of this world there is no way round it. They cannot buy it, take it over or argue it away. They can of course try to destroy it by purchasing legislation from corrupt governments, but we're not quite there yet.

More interesting points around Linux for me are, for example, whether a project in a state of permanent betaware is ever going to succeed. The problem with trying to build a new Jerusalem is always the same: it cannot be built. Then there is the question of whether the present way of putting the kernel together is really all that sensible (regardless of whether the devs are paid employees). There is the open-source old-boy network - the Mouths - who crop up time after time at conferences and in the press. Are they really spokesmen? For whom? Are they even any good at speaking? And there are the questions about open source methodology and whether a project "owned" by sophisticated developers is ever going to be able to understand the needs of ordinary users.

Oh well, we'll all have long and very different lists and interests. An often overlooked one, though, is that every new generation needs a space in which to play, to experiment and to kick against the pricks. It's the only way that skills are honed, innovations happen and the next generation's true geniuses emerge. Open source (and especially Linux, imho) currently provides this. The corporate world, typified here by Microsoft but no other large corporation is really any different, is incapable of seeing beyond ownership. In seeking to own and therefore stifle the aspirations and basic intelligence of each new generation, this corporate tendency is in fact preaching stagnation and its own destruction. So I guess there'll be no need for a guillotine for Mr Hilf and his chums after all: they are quite capable of stagnating to vanishing point up their own ass without any help from us.

Edited 2007-05-13 00:14

Reply Score: 4

Switching positions?
by eantoranz on Sun 13th May 2007 00:19 UTC
eantoranz
Member since:
2005-12-18

So, if he's the guy in charge of OS at Microsoft... and if OS is dead... then it makes full sense to go do something different, right?

How about being the carpenter that provides the chairs for cousing Stevie to throw around? :-D

Reply Score: 2

Typical standard straw man argument
by lindkvis on Sun 13th May 2007 00:39 UTC
lindkvis
Member since:
2006-11-21

"He said that most customers run a distribution - RedHat, Novell, Suse or Mandriva. Most of the work on maintaining the Linux kernel is done by developers working for these distributions, he noted"

"They are full-time employees, with 401K stock options. Some work for IBM or Oracle. What does that mean? It means that Linux doesn't exist any more in 2007"

This assumes that free software was ever about everyone working for free. This is not the case. Free software is about people having the opportunity to fix and change what they are being sold or given. If people have regular jobs making money working on free software then that is actually a validation of the free software movement.

The free software movement was never about a free lunch.

Reply Score: 5

hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

remember, the basics of capitalism is that a product have to have rarity. the rarer it is, the more value it have, given that you have people to sell it to.

but when its given away for free (as in, no limits on who can make copies in this case) said value drops to zero as the rarity also drops to zero.

the interesting thing is that the very mechanism that gives information value was set up to compensating the creators for being creative, not to bleed the world dry.

use a mechanism to abuse the people, and watch the people learn how to turn the exact same mechanism right back on the abusers ;) and thats what the GPL does. linux just happens to be the front runner for the whole concept thats the GPL, the idea of using copyright to give freedoms rather then take them away.

its kinda like trying to take out the standards bearer of a roman legion.

Reply Score: 4

Hmmm... Am I the only one
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 00:42 UTC
dylansmrjones
Member since:
2005-10-02

waiting for CrazyDude0 and tomcat to come to MS' rescue? ;)

Reply Score: 5

RE: Hmmm... Am I the only one
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 16:22 UTC in reply to "Hmmm... Am I the only one"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Oh my...even those two will have trouble keeping a straight face in light of such Redmond FUD...

Reply Score: 3

Path to unemployement ?
by Cass on Sun 13th May 2007 00:47 UTC
Cass
Member since:
2006-03-17

"The Free Software movement is dead. Linux doesn't exist in 2007. Even Linus has got a job today." Controversial statements from the head of Microsoft's Linux Labs, Bill Hilf.

Linux doesn't exist in 2007 ? might as well shut down Microsoft's Linux Labs then ... no point having a dept that has no real mandate is there ? .... its the dole for you my friend it seems...

MS really are depriving some village of their idiot !

Reply Score: 2

The article is correct
by melkor on Sun 13th May 2007 01:52 UTC
melkor
Member since:
2006-12-16

Guys - read the article and comprehend it. Of course, there is FUD. But there are some home truths as well. Note Mr Hilf says that "the Free software movement" is dead. Stop for a moment and think. He said Free Software movement, not Open source. There is a difference, a huge difference.

As an example, code released under the BSD license is open source. But it is not a free software movement license, in that it doesn't force those who use the code to re-contribute back to the community. That is what the Free software movement is all about. Free software movement ≠ open source.

Most of you Linux newbies think that it's all about open source, and you've brain washed into thinking this. This is why there's so much negative reaction to the GPL v3 drafts. Linus cries "thou shallt not have GPL v3 in Linux" and the rest of the idiotic uninformed newbies go "oh yes, my lord". Linus is a corporate shill these days, like most of the rest of the "corporate open source developers". Business owns them. They no longer play with any real interest to the ideals of the FSF, and they honour the GPL only in the least amount possible. Why? Because the GPL is not what business wants. And business pays the money - their wages.

Think about it. Why did Microsoft and Novell do such a deal? Because they know that it'll give them control of the open source movement, and as it currently stands, it's a nice loophole to the current GPL v2. They also both know that community interest in the GPL v3, and interest from the developers is waning, because newbies simply don't care about the fundamentals of the FSF, they just want free software (price) and don't care about anything else. Novell and Microsoft also know that developers won't accept the GPL v3 for a variety of reasons - all developers that contributed have to accept (which makes it impossible if one of them has died - a reasonably likely event), and most developers won't go to GPl v3 because business does NOT want it. Business will put the squeeze on developers, either not support their open source project, or ceasing employment.

Since modern open source is all about starting a project and hoping that you get noticed and get a nice programming job from big business, with little attention being paid to the free software ideals - ie stop those that would abuse the system from abusing the software, we are lost. How many people really care about the FSF, and its ideals, and that those who take from the code return improvements to the community? Very few from what I see in general, and if you look at the majority of the comments on here, it's a growing trend.

The Linux kernel is only one small part in the GNU/Linux tree. Without many other things, the kernel is worthless. Linus would do well to remember this. I sincerely hope that the FSF moves several key applications to GPL v3 and introduces a "you cannot use this GPL v3 software unless you GPL v3 your own software" stance. Either abide by what the FSF has done, or don't use its software - go and develop your own. Of course, it won't come to this, because the FSF, contrary to public belief, is not an egocentric trip by a certain person.

In essence, Mr Hilf's comments are reasonably correct. When you only have 2% of the world's population using the software, you could argue that it doesn't exist [to the majority of the populace]. True, it's a twisted argument, but it is a reasonable and logical assumption to deduce. A few people have heard of Linux these days, but it's only a few. The majority only know Windows, and don't care about any other alternative.

I'll quote the article directly:

"It means that Linux doesn't exist any more in 2007. There is no free software movement. If someone says Linux is about Love, Peace and Harmony, I would tell them to do their research. There is no free software movement any more. There is big commercial [firms] like IBM and there is small commercial [firms] like Ubuntu," he said."

That about sums it up. Guys - read the articles and comprehend what is actually being said. Too many people here just jump on the bandwagon without an ounce of a thought and go "my oh my, more FUD" without using their brains.

In essence, Mr Hilf is right. The free software movement is becoming dead, because the community doesn't care about its ideals. The community is full of newbies who don't care about the GPL, or RMS's ideals, they just want a *free* (as in cost) alternative to Microsoft Windows or Apple's OS X. If the cost is free, they don't care about anything else. This is what happens when we took on brainless Windows refugees.

I've been using Linux long enough to have seen the change in the "community", and the changes that I see coming do not bode well for the community, unless we act like a community and return to the ideals that spawned the license that spawned the software, that spawned the community. If that does not happen, Linux will simply become more and more commercialised, abused by the corporate interests, and the community will eventually suffer.

The 2.4 and 2.6 Linux kernel trees have been a good example of this - heavily co-developed and financed by big corporations, they offer little in terms of features to the ordinary user. We now see a change in the development cycle of Linux, long gone is the stable/development tree, replaced by a single tree, in constant evolution, and mostly unstable code. Why? Because big business wants a faster development cycle, which does not equal a stable development cycle. Features or quality? What is it? Business wants features, when we should be really striving for quality and this is where free software used to concentrate on. These days, with the modern open source ideals, it's quantity, not quality that seems to matter. Let's look at Ubuntu 7.04's numerous serious bugs...

I'm glad I got this out of my system, I see no value in using Linux these days, because it does not suit my needs, and it's moral values are missing. It is so intertwined with corporate interests that it is no longer the community project that it started out as. It's goals and desires aren't for the community, but for the business interests that are investing in it. All of this corporate business interest hasn't resulted in any real positives for the users - how many commercial applications have been ported to Linux? Very few. And please, don't say WINE this, Cedega that, it's not a common sense implementation and never will be. I might as well use a commercial operating system, because that's what Linux has become, and in all honesty, I need the compatbility with software that only commercial operating systems seem to offer. If the Linux community had 'grown' so much, then we'd have seen a spate of commercial applicatios ported to Linux. We haven't, why? Because big corporations have bastardised Linux, removing it from its original FSF ideals and making it a corporate beast, and all without the need to port applications to Linux.

Bleh, this post is probably a waste of time, for most of you couldn't care less, and will just mod it down because it doesn't suit your brainwashed views.

Dave

Reply Score: 5

RE: The article is correct
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 02:09 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

I'll quote the article directly:

"It means that Linux doesn't exist any more in 2007. There is no free software movement. If someone says Linux is about Love, Peace and Harmony, I would tell them to do their research. There is no free software movement any more. There is big commercial [firms] like IBM and there is small commercial [firms] like Ubuntu," he said."


Linux has NEVER been about Peace, Love and Harmony. Linux is not dead, the Free Software Movement is not dead, Open Source is not dead.

The thing here is that it failed for Microsoft to make the Free Software Movement and Open Source look like Communism, so now MS tries to make it look like the ideals have been corrupted by "evil moneymakers" akin to Microsoft.

Fact is that the Free Software Movement is still going strong. It is not dead - nor is it dying.

It is just being misrepresented by a Microsoft shill.

I agree your post is waste of time - not because people don't care, but because your post is void of any kind of sense.

The ideals of the Free Software Movement is that corporations and individuals can work together with the equal rights. And that's exactly what's happening.

Put your Marxism away and let the rest of us have some fun ;)

EDIT: BTW. The linux kernel version 2.6 gives the end user a lot of useful functionality - ACL, chipset support, sound architecture support, file system support, netcard support and a gazillion more. True, there is a lot of drivers I don't need but I just compile the kernel without those drivers - great isn't it? ;)

EDIT AGAIN:
All of this corporate business interest hasn't resulted in any real positives for the users - how many commercial applications have been ported to Linux? Very few.


Can you make up your mind!? First you complain about corporate business interests and then you complain about the lack of corporate business interests... and you even manage to confuse commercial with proprietary. Gnome is commercial, Firefox is commercial, KDE is commercial - any software package under a FSF or OSI approved license is commercial.

FLOSS is not necessarily gratis, nor does anything prevent FLOSS from being commercial - it's the entire idea. It's good to make money from software. But perhaps you prefer proprietary gratisware?

Edited 2007-05-13 02:15

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: The article is correct
by melkor on Sun 13th May 2007 06:30 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

There's no marxism in my original post - modern business wants Linux to be like the BSD - take, take, take and not give back. This is why we're now seeing deals like the Microsoft/Novell one. This was never the ideals of the FSF - *everyone*, business OR individual had to give back if they modified GPL'd source code and publicised it. How many big businesses are taking GPL'd code, using it, publicising their own code (with GPL'd code mixed in) to the public for profit, and not giving back any modifications to the community, safely blessed on the knowledge that proprietary code is hidden, and so if you can't see the src code, you can't find the illegally used GPL code. mmm? I put money on it this is becoming more and more common, the main thing is not to get caught out.

My comments on commercialiasm of Linux are twofold. The kernel itself is being commercialised (hence the usage of the term kernel), whereas there are very few proprietary applications/software being ported to GNU/Linux. Is that clear enough for you?

Dave

Reply Score: 2

RE: The article is correct
by JMcCarthy on Sun 13th May 2007 02:44 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
JMcCarthy Member since:
2005-08-12

Sometimes I wonder if I should be using/contributing to the OpenBSD project because of the things pointed out. Even if it isn't GPL'd they seem to have a firmer commitment to free-software than most people these days and don't actively try and circumvent their own ideals/license.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: The article is correct
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 02:56 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Nobody is trying to circumvent any ideals or license here.

Commercial use of Free Software is perfectly within ideals as well as license. This is also true for OpenBSD. Don't forget there is a HUGE difference between commercial and proprietary.

Most people don't try to circumvent anything. Just see the flaming Novell got for its tricky patent-deal with MS. Not to mention the work on patching what appears to be holes in the GPL.

Commercial isn't bad.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: The article is correct
by JMcCarthy on Sun 13th May 2007 03:33 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The article is correct"
JMcCarthy Member since:
2005-08-12

I'm not saying there is anything wrong with making a profit off of free-software, there is nothing wrong with it as long as profit doesn't come at a sacrifice.

>Nobody is trying to circumvent any ideals or license here.

http://www.nvidia.com/
http://ati.amd.com/

and tons of other hardware manufactures. Then there are things like the prominence of Flash, etc. I'd be surprised if more than 50% of GNU/Linux users were actually for free as in freedom software rather than Windows refugees.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: The article is correct
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 04:58 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The article is correct"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

nVidia is not circumventing the GPL since the driver isn't under the GPL ;)

The driver core is identical to the windows driver and it doesn't link to the linux kernel. Only the adapter does. All perfectly legal and no circumventing.

I don't know about ati's proprietary drivers, so I'll give you benefit of doubt on that one.

Besides that. Using proprietary software when no usable FLOSS solutions are available does not constitute circumventing the ideals.

The community is thriving, the GPL is growing stronger every day, and proprietary software is losing some of its power every single day. Rejoice dudes! Rejoice!

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: The article is correct
by JMcCarthy on Sun 13th May 2007 20:15 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The article is correct"
JMcCarthy Member since:
2005-08-12

There is a difference between circumventing and outright violating. I never accused them of the latter.

Reply Score: 1

_melkor_ is pretty much correct
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 03:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

Nobody is trying to circumvent any ideals or license here.

I beg to differ. You rightly acknowledge the Novell thing, but ideals are typically and sometimes vehemently suppressed by those who believe in "open source" (as opposed to "free software"). Recall that they merely desire superior software or methodology and that any ideal such as freedom is "politics" and thus is to be avoided.

A perfect example is when Linus Torvalds insisted on using the proprietary Bitkeeper software for the Linux kernel source, ignored all talk about such a problematic dependency, and even lambasted Andrew Tridgell for trying to develop free Bitkeeper client.

This says less about any particular person and more about the increasing tendencies to value convenience over freedom. I think melkor basically had it right.

Edited 2007-05-13 03:54

Reply Score: 3

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Open Source are not against the ideals in the Free Software Movement. It is just focusing more on the code quality rather than the license in order to "lure" more people inside.

The goals are - in fact - identical. Only the approach differs.

Novell is a problem yes, but don't forget that the majority of companies in the community are quite different than Novell. It's a minority that causes "problems" and not the majority.

Linus Torvalds use of proprietary software has nothing to do with circumventing licenses or ideals. It is just pragmatism and that isn't bad. It's quite okay to use proprietary software - especially if there is no usable FLOSS substitution. Personally I'm looking forward to the FLOSS Flash Player on par with Adobes proprietary player.

melkor had it basically wrong, because he claimed that the Free Software Movement is anti-money, anti-commercial and anti-corporate which is completely wrong.

Only a little handful of the community (Novell for an instance) is causing some "trouble". Freeze them out - give them the cold shoulder. Problem solved. The majority of the community is doing just fine ;)

Reply Score: 3

b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

Linus Torvalds use of proprietary software has nothing to do with circumventing licenses or ideals. It is just pragmatism and that isn't bad. It's quite okay to use proprietary software - especially if there is no usable FLOSS substitution. Personally I'm looking forward to the FLOSS Flash Player on par with Adobes proprietary player.

melkor had it basically wrong, because he claimed that the Free Software Movement is anti-money, anti-commercial and anti-corporate which is completely wrong.


I don't think melkor intended the characterization in quite that way, but since he was so sloppy, I can see your interpretation and will let it all rest. ;)

However, the Bitkeeper ordeal is an excellent example of circumventing ideals because Torvalds chose something that _did_ violate the ideals of some of the kernel contributors and users, such as Tridgell. More generally, such pragmatism is indeed sometimes undeniably in conflict with concerns of freedom.

Reply Score: 2

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

More generally, such pragmatism is indeed sometimes undeniably in conflict with concerns of freedom.


True, it can be.

But it only happens when the user actually has the freedom to choose. If there is no usable FLOSS alternative then there is no freedom (in reality) and the only option is to choose convenience (personally I prefer FLOSS and use it as soon as it is stable enough (for me) - which is typically much sooner than for most others ;)

Reply Score: 2

Freedom vs. convenience
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 06:26 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: _melkor_ is pretty much correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

But it only happens when the user actually has the freedom to choose. If there is no usable FLOSS alternative then there is no freedom (in reality) and the only option is to choose convenience (personally I prefer FLOSS and use it as soon as it is stable enough (for me) - which is typically much sooner than for most others ;)

Often the user may perceive fewer options than what exists. E.g., suppose I receive MS Word files that no free software can open. I may feel that my only option is to install the nonfree software to open it. However, I could also:

1. Request that users send me files in friendlier formats. This might entail my showing them how or lobbying to change a work practice.
2. Extract its content with, say, the "strings" command if all I need to do is to read it.
3. Improving free software so that it can open the files--by coding, filing bug reports, requesting help on a mailing list, paying a bounty, etc.
4. If I was really desperate, try using nonfree software on someone else's machine. There are any number of ways this could happen, and at least I would not have to compromise my own system.

Such an array of options may not be obvious at first. They may seem to be only hassle, but they teach that freedom often has a price--not a bad lesson and one that would be good to pass on to others. I would be stronger for it.

Edited 2007-05-13 06:31

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: The article is correct
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 04:57 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

Sometimes I wonder if I should be using/contributing to the OpenBSD project because of the things pointed out. Even if it isn't GPL'd they seem to have a firmer commitment to free-software than most people these days and don't actively try and circumvent their own ideals/license.

Oh, the curse of "Linux"! The Linux kernel project has no ideals. I cannot recall an instance of when someone tried to circumvent their own license. If you are thinking of Novell, well, of course, the GPL is not their license. Moreover, any free software person would currently try to avoid Novell anyway.

I will grant you that the OpenBSD project experiences less chaos and noise.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: The article is correct
by abraxas on Mon 14th May 2007 12:03 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
abraxas Member since:
2005-07-07

Sometimes I wonder if I should be using/contributing to the OpenBSD project because of the things pointed out. Even if it isn't GPL'd they seem to have a firmer commitment to free-software than most people these days and don't actively try and circumvent their own ideals/license.

Yeah, their commitment is so firm that they stole code from Linux. The only people trying to circumvent the GPL license are people who want to incorporate non-GPL software into existing GPL software or vice versa, just like the OpenBSD developer that inserted Linux code into his wireless driver.

Reply Score: 2

RE: The article is correct
by tpaws on Sun 13th May 2007 03:18 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
tpaws Member since:
2006-06-02

I will make this brief since dylansmrjones said it so well. You sould read a broader base of world news, especially business and financial. Microsoft is making a huge push in the east asian markets. MS is losing ground in the U.S., Europe, and Southwest Asia (think 'India'). There is no way Mr. Hilf could have said any of this nonsense in the interview especially in the EU and U.S. He likely would have been scorned in the EU for his elitest, condescending comments, and in the U.S. he would have been embarrased by the obvious questions the American press would have fielded.

You might do well to remember the battle in the Valley of Elah from the First Book of Samuel. Goliath mocked David, and we all know how that turned out.

Reply Score: 3

RE: The article is correct
by Almafeta on Sun 13th May 2007 03:32 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
Almafeta Member since:
2007-02-22

Since modern open source is all about starting a project and hoping that you get noticed and get a nice programming job from big business, with little attention being paid to the free software ideals - ie stop those that would abuse the system from abusing the software, we are lost.


Abuse the system? How? If you decide to give something away, you have to accept the fact that you're giving it away.

Far too much ado is made about free software 'ideals'. The most telling: How do you improve Linux -- not some part of the suite of applications that makes up your standard operating system, but the actual Linux kernel itself? In short, you can't. Go to kernel.org; there's no place for submissions, no place for discussions (except for a mailing list, and with the volume of today's internet, you can't seriously consider an e-mail list a place for serious discussion, much less collaboration), and finding out who runs the site is difficult (it's hidden in small font in the bottom, with a large graphic advertising its Hewert-Packard sponsorship below it). With the exception of its vulnerabilities being lain out for all the black hats of the world to see, Linux itself is effectively closed-source.

I sincerely hope that the FSF moves several key applications to GPL v3 and introduces a "you cannot use this GPL v3 software unless you GPL v3 your own software" stance.


I sincerely hope so too, because that would mean the FSF being regarded as irrelevant and more support for BSD...

Too many people here just jump on the bandwagon without an ounce of a thought and go "my oh my, more FUD" without using their brains.


That's what it's like reading the responses to my posts... -_-;

I've been using Linux long enough to have seen the change in the "community", and the changes that I see coming do not bode well for the community, unless we act like a community and return to the ideals that spawned the license that spawned the software, that spawned the community.


If people continue to try to force conformity onto a community, that will kill it quicker. Trying to purge your community of those who are not 'free' enough will leave a few idealists fading away (possibly noisily, but fade they will) and your product in the hands of the majority, who could care less whether it's 'sanctified in freedom' or not. You have to embrace them, or they will take your work and leave you in their dust.

And as to the 'ideals' what started the license? Stallman created the GPL because he wanted the rights to software he hadn't created; namely, a private company improved his public-domain software to commercial quality, and he was angry that they used it. Because he had created part of it, he felt he had a right to the parts they had created. This all could have been avoided if someone had explained to him what 'public domain' meant, and if he had learned that giving something away means you're giving something away.

If the Linux community had 'grown' so much, then we'd have seen a spate of commercial applicatios [sic] ported to Linux. We haven't, why? Because big corporations have bastardised Linux, removing it from its original FSF ideals and making it a corporate beast, and all without the need to port applications to Linux.


Well, that, or the fact that Linux is based on the Unix model, which is best suited for the telephone switchboards and punchcard-based time-sharing machines it was designed to operate...

It's [sic] goals and desires aren't for the community, but for the business interests that are investing in it.


A correction: "Business" is not the opposite of "people." All a business is, is a group of people gathered together for the common goals of finding a way to survive by doing a task (hopefully one they enjoy and can excel at). The bigger the business, the more interests (employees, distributors, suppliers, stockholders, and most importantly, customers) it represents. People do not become evil because they embrace big business, and people do not become good just because they reject it.

Bleh, this post is probably a waste of time, for most of you couldn't care less, and will just mod it down because it doesn't suit your brainwashed views.


Posts usually aren't modded down because they're bad; they're usually modded down because they're unpopular. I see plenty of posts that are 'bad' by most normal standards (personal attacks, off-topic, logical fallicies, illogical and/or zealous arguments, sometimes written in horribly formed deformations of English) get modded up to five within five minutes of posting, while clear, clean, well-written but unpopular posts get sent down to minus five quickly.

As to people here, I doubt there's been brainwashing: Stallman and Torvalds might be silly, but they're hardly Big Brother and Goldstein. I just think that people are too often willing to take as infallable fact the often-repeated statements that they hear, without looking at the evidence.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: The article is correct
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 16:47 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Go to kernel.org; there's no place for submissions, no place for discussions (except for a mailing list, and with the volume of today's internet, you can't seriously consider an e-mail list a place for serious discussion, much less collaboration), and finding out who runs the site is difficult (it's hidden in small font in the bottom, with a large graphic advertising its Hewert-Packard sponsorship below it). With the exception of its vulnerabilities being lain out for all the black hats of the world to see, Linux itself is effectively closed-source.


I'm sorry, but that is a great big load of BS. There's nothing stopping your from writing your own patches and submitting them back using the LKML (and yes, a mailing list *is* a serious place to discuss the kernel - not that you would know serious if it slapped you in the face...)

Posts usually aren't modded down because they're bad; they're usually modded down because they're unpopular.


Or perhaps the majority of users simply find stupidity and/or blatant disinformation offensive (in addition to being off-topic).

Well, that, or the fact that Linux is based on the Unix model, which is best suited for the telephone switchboards and punchcard-based time-sharing machines it was designed to operate...


Yeah, whatever. How do you expect people to take you seriously when you make statements like these.

Stop wasting everybody's time with your irrational anti-FOSS ramblings, and go back to coding that kernel of yours. Linus didn't create Linux by wasting his time on web forums, you know...

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: The article is correct
by Almafeta on Mon 14th May 2007 01:56 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
Almafeta Member since:
2007-02-22

Whoa. v4 really mucks up the formatting on that post...

Ah well.

Reply Score: 1

RE: The article is correct
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 04:26 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

melkor, the confusing part of your post is that you seem to believe in free software and yet express a desire for nonfree software (what you erroneously called "commercial"). That's a contradiction.

I think the larger point is that there sometimes is a conflict between freedom and convenience. Gaining the freedom is worth it, however. We are shocked by the inconvience, just as we are by prices of other freedoms that we have taken too much for granted.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: The article is correct
by melkor on Sun 13th May 2007 06:39 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Perhaps you misunderstood me. I like the goams and aims of the FSF. I like Linux. I like Photoshop. Ergo I should be able to use Photoshop on Linux. CS2 does not play nice with Linux (who's fault it is is another article for debate), and that forces me to decide not to use the Linux platform, at least until it Photoshop CS2 does run sufficiently well on the Linux platform.

The debate on whether Adobe should have a Linux version or not is a good one. I believe they should. Adobe can port to OS X (an operating system with just as many users as Linux), so numbers isn't a sufficient argument from Adobe. If Adobe says that there's not enough users on Linux wanting Photoshop, that's pure FUD. I suspect Adobe, like many software developers is playing the waiting game, waiting for Linux to pick up at least a 10% userbase before they'll start porting. I cannot see Linux getting 10%, at least not for quite some time.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

When is nonfree acceptable?
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 07:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

I like the goams and aims of the FSF. I like Linux. I like Photoshop. Ergo I should be able to use Photoshop on Linux.

In your original post you decried the ignorance of FSF ideals and yet here you express a wish that conflicts with those ideals. You do acknowledge that there should be a debate about this, which is more than most free software users will ever do.

I think my confusion is that you seem to draw an _implicit_ line of wanting a kernel that is free but apps that may not be. This line is _arbitrary_ in a sense, but in any case all of us free software supporters should realize that we can always try harder to avoid nonfree software.

Reply Score: 2

RE: The article is correct
by rajj on Sun 13th May 2007 05:14 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
rajj Member since:
2005-07-06

Actually, the BSD license is considered Free by the FSF.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: The article is correct
by melkor on Sun 13th May 2007 06:35 UTC in reply to "RE: The article is correct"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

I do realise that ;-) I'm not sure how the FSF came to that conclusion, since there's no obligation to provide alterations/improvements to the code back to the community that spanwed it, but alas...there are many grey areas in the world these days.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: The article is correct
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 06:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

I do realise that ;-) I'm not sure how the FSF came to that conclusion, since there's no obligation to provide alterations/improvements to the code back to the community that spanwed it, but alas...there are many grey areas in the world these days.

No, there is no grey area here. The BSD license clearly satisfies the four freedoms:
http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html

Therefore, it is a free software license.

What you are thinking of is the orthogonal notion of copyleft, pioneered by the GPL. In this case, if anyone modifies a work under the GPL and then distributes, the distribution must be under the GPL. This is but one specific kind of copyleft.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: The article is correct
by melkor on Sun 13th May 2007 23:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: The article is correct"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

And that is the key thing of the GPL that makes it better than these other licenses. It forces those who take, to contribute back. It's called sharing for the common good, an alien concept to most business, and it seems most people these days.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: The article is correct
by b3timmons on Mon 14th May 2007 00:53 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: The article is correct"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

And that is the key thing of the GPL that makes it better than these other licenses. It forces those who take, to contribute back.

The problem with that characterization is that it is easily subject to misunderstanding. For example, private modification is allowed, so that one never need contribute back. To avoid this problem, I would suggest something else:

The GPL promotes software freedom by ensuring that the basic rights granted by the GPL to a distributor also pass to any receiver.

That's not so smooth, but at least is subject to less misunderstanding, I think.

Edited 2007-05-14 01:10

Reply Score: 2

RE: The article is correct
by samad on Sun 13th May 2007 06:28 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
samad Member since:
2006-03-31

Finally! Someone said it. I think your thoughts could be broadened to other areas of destructive discourse within the community. For example, I am very strongly opposed to the talk about making Linux a mainstream desktop, and how 2005 or whatever will be the Year of Linux. Mainstream Linux will come at a huge cost - the abandonment of original FSF ideals. What's wrong with having a small community dedicated to the development and advancement of its platform? That, I feel, is being lost in the world of Linux.

Reply Score: 4

RE: The article is correct
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 16:37 UTC in reply to "The article is correct"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Linus cries "thou shallt not have GPL v3 in Linux" and the rest of the idiotic uninformed newbies go "oh yes, my lord". Linus is a corporate shill these days, like most of the rest of the "corporate open source developers".


...except that Linus has warmed considerably to the latest draft of the GPLv3, and said that most of the problems he had with it have been solved.

The Linux kernel may still stay with GPLv2, but at this point that's more of a practical issue (i.e. getting all the thousands of copyright holders to agree on the switch) than a political/philosophical one.

Reply Score: 2

Well...
by systyrant on Sun 13th May 2007 02:08 UTC
systyrant
Member since:
2007-01-18

he made some good points.

Like when people are innovating new technology they aren't following standards. However, they are creating them.

I do like how he confuses free (as in beer) software with free (as in freedom) software. It shows that he is either not understanding free software or is spreading FUD for the sake of spreading FUD (or both).

Companies help guide Linux and other open source projects. I think we've all seen projects that have no real leadership. They tend to fizzle out quickly.

As for ODF. The end user probably doesn't care what the document format it. They only care that they can save it, send it, and the other person can open it without regard to what they are using.

I do think he had a point about the whole ecosystem thing. An OS by itself is useless to people as it adds no value to what they are doing, but add in applications and it becomes a valuable tool. Where would Windows be if it had no ecosystem? Of course that was his point I believe.

At the end of the day this article is only good for toilet paper (if you bothered to print it out). Sadly though some people will read it like it was some kind of gospel.

Reply Score: 3

Huh...
by Almafeta on Sun 13th May 2007 02:32 UTC
Almafeta
Member since:
2007-02-22

I see a lot of people who haven't even bothered to read the article.

Reply Score: 1

Amazing
by anomie on Sun 13th May 2007 02:32 UTC
anomie
Member since:
2007-02-26

Hilf is the BS king. His performance in this article reminds me of the main character in 'Thank You For Smoking'.

Reply Score: 3

Don T. Bothers
Member since:
2006-03-15

Well, if we judge the situation by the "fact" that BSDs have been "dead" for over a decade now, this is great news. After death, the BSDs have managed to get much better, much faster, much more scalable, much more secure, and a whole lot easier to administer. I guess there really is a paradise for software where they shed all their earthly imperfections. This could only be a good thing for all the open source projects.

Reply Score: 3

Yawn
by gdanko on Sun 13th May 2007 02:53 UTC
gdanko
Member since:
2005-07-15

More FUD from the the Joseph Goebbels of Microsoft. They seem to have a few of those guys wandering around. But when you cannot compete on a level playing field you have to resort to cheap shots.

Reply Score: 1

Give Microsoft more respect
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 02:58 UTC
b3timmons
Member since:
2006-08-26

This post is too long, but, if nothing else, the references at the end are worth checking out.

Microsoft deserves more respect, although one might nearly confine it to their business prowess, how quarter after quarter they pull out such great numbers.

Microsoft FUD against any possible competitor is far more effective than OSNews comments suggest. Unlike who Bill Hilf is trying to brainwash on his tour, some commenters here have some idea of what free software really is. Indeed, what Hilf says is no more outrageous than the kind of BS that Ballmer or Gates try to pull. Granted, Gates is unmatched at deception, but all of them have more _influence_ than we would like to grant.

What's most telling about Microsoft FUD is when it's at its most intense: such as years and years ago when Microsoft correctly identified in the "Halloween"(*) documents not any particular piece of software such as the Linux kernel but the FOSS _process_ itself as their biggest competitive challenge; such as when Ballmer and Gates throw around "communist" and "un-American"(**) in reference to FLOSS.

Of course, it is dead wrong to claim that Microsoft 100% opposes free software; they happily exploit any free software they can get away with in order to try to make the world more dependent on their nonfree software; Microsoft gladly honors such free software as belonging to (their) "ecosystem".

GPLed software, however, is not so easily coopted by Microsoft, and so they have always reserved their strongest opposition to the GPL, the FSF, and "free software".

Hilf is merely continuing the tradition of wanting to kill any feeling that software should be free, any impulse of anyone wanting to write free software that cannot be incorporated into nonfree software. If anyone has any doubts about their intentions, recall that it is Bill Hilf who was instrumental in the several years of planning for the MSFT/NOVL deal intending (and succeeding) to damage the GPL. Considering Microsoft's enormous power and what they currently value, it follows that the GPLv3's biggest opponent is indeed, Microsoft.(***)

The release of Discussion Draft 3 has been greeted as warmly as I dared hope: all the recorded outrage has been emitted by Microsoft or its surrogates, which is at it should be.

(*)http://www.salon.com/21st/rose/1998/11/04straight.html
(**)http://salon.com/tech/log/2001/02/15/unamerican/index.html
(***)http://emoglen.law.columbia.edu/blog/2007/04/index.html

Edited 2007-05-13 03:09

Reply Score: 5

Heh
by Xaero_Vincent on Sun 13th May 2007 03:06 UTC
Xaero_Vincent
Member since:
2006-08-18

Bill Hilf is just another Microsoft quack spreading propaganda.

Linux and FOSS aren't about stopping commercialization. They are about equality for both businesses and end users alike. Business and end users are granted the same rights to the source code and distribution. This is the fundamental concept behind software freedom.

Bill makes the assumption that businesses are the sole contributers to FOSS. Thats a totally asinine. Perhaps that may be partially true for very large and complex projects like the Linux kernel--which quite frankly require software engineers with college degrees to fully understand and manage, but far from the case with smaller projects.

Edited 2007-05-13 03:08

Reply Score: 5

RE: Heh
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 03:10 UTC in reply to "Heh"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

They are about equality for both businesses and end users alike.


That one ought to be repeated.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Heh
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 03:19 UTC in reply to "Heh"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

Bill makes the assumption that businesses are the sole contributers to FOSS. Thats a totally asinine.

It may be asinine, but it is certainly, from Microsoft's POV, not asinine for him to spread it around. That's the problem.

It's really scary. I shudder to think about how the uninformed receive such words. I know a brilliant businessman who, when I mentioned something about computers in general, like a parrot, he just exclaimed "Intel inside!" Smarter people than us will literally buy the words from the likes of Hilf, hook, line, and sinker.

Reply Score: 4

...
by Nelson on Sun 13th May 2007 03:29 UTC
Nelson
Member since:
2005-11-29

I usually defend MS but this guy is just a moron.

Reply Score: 1

Bill Hilf: Fun Trolling
by PlatformAgnostic on Sun 13th May 2007 03:31 UTC
PlatformAgnostic
Member since:
2006-01-02

Religion and politics is what Bill Hilf's talking about. He's saying that the open-source religion is dying. Perhaps he's not seeing it correctly, but to me it looks like Microsoft's competitors are seeing it for what it is: a way for them to pool up their resources against the 800 lb. gorilla without running too much into the free-rider problem that might be encountered with pure BSD software.

I think melkor's post above hit the nail on the head too. The social aspects of the Linux movement are taking a turn for the worse. Non-technical users are creeping in and bad engineering decisions are being made in their name. The ignorance and self-proclaimed superiority of these users create a repugnant mix for those who spend money on this software and have influence on how it is developed. Look to see how much hatred and ridicule Miguel De Icaza engenders. The community has grown too large and multifarious to maintain its old form and its solid roots.

Bill Hilf poked a hornet's nest with his comments. This guy is not just another Microsoftie who has grown up in the culture and is looking out from a hilltop. He has worked with the OSS community as it was before the current level of commercialization and mass usage. I would be unsurprised if he said this just to piss off the Slashdot crowd. Business people don't care about statements like this either way (except maybe they'll see that Linux may cost them as much as a Microsoft solution in terms of dollars and cents), but perhaps the web-posting linux community will care. They'll cross-link this post and put in their own bits of vitriol and general crap-flinging. The level of emotional responses Hilf's comments will generate may be more helpful to Microsoft's cause than the statements themselves.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Bill Hilf: Fun Trolling
by ubit on Sun 13th May 2007 05:03 UTC in reply to "Bill Hilf: Fun Trolling"
ubit Member since:
2006-09-08

"(except maybe they'll see that Linux may cost them as much as a Microsoft solution in terms of dollars and cents),"

Debian.

Really, I think that's basically the antidote to all Hilf was saying.

Reply Score: 2

Vorherre bevares
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 04:54 UTC
dylansmrjones
Member since:
2005-10-02

...

It's obvious that many in here don't understand the ideals of the Free Software Movement.

melkor and many others have claimed that GPL and FSF are anti-commercial and that it is betrayal to charge for software, and that using proprietary applications constitutes circumventing the GPL (which of course is nonsens).

*sigh*

Grow up please.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Vorherre bevares
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 05:18 UTC in reply to "Vorherre bevares"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

melkor and many others have claimed that GPL and FSF are anti-commercial and that it is betrayal to charge for software, and that using proprietary applications constitutes circumventing the GPL (which of course is nonsens).

melkor made some good observations but was sloppy. His heart was in the right place--he just needs to clear up a few terms.

Reply Score: 2

What a joke
by macro on Sun 13th May 2007 05:04 UTC
macro
Member since:
2005-07-27

1) This story is in the Bangkok Post. Thailand is currently under control of a military regime which controls the press. The regime doesn't like open source. Do the math.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_Thailand_coup
http://it.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/11/16/0323202&from=rss

2) Bill Hilf looks like Mr. Garrison with Down's syndrome. Wait, I take that comparison back - it's offensive to people with Down's syndrome.

I imagine he's got Mr. Hat off-camera going, "Linux, you go to hell! You go to hell and you die!"

Which is a pretty good summary of Billy's entire argument against open source.

Reply Score: 3

What a great article!
by RawMustard on Sun 13th May 2007 06:56 UTC
RawMustard
Member since:
2005-10-10

This is the best article I've read in a long time from the MS camp. They're totally stuffed. Linux has got them totally bamboozled. They don't know how to fight it, they can't control it, it's eating away at their precious empire and they have no idea how to combat it. It's not a company, it has not entity, there's no one to bribe, corrupt or put the cement shoes on. They're like a bunch of headless turkeys running around with no direction, while their heads gobble meaningless incomprehensible crap. They're like drunken men on drugs who have totally lost the plot, it's beautiful, we should all rejoice ;)

Reply Score: 2

what's funny about it?
by roger64 on Sun 13th May 2007 07:13 UTC
roger64
Member since:
2006-08-15

I do not understand why so many people disagree with the point of view of Mr Microsoft strategy. It's not a technical article, it is all about faith and religion. You do not discuss these sort of things. You just believe....or not.

Well, I just do not believe. Not at all.

Reply Score: 1

Sabotage, I tell you!
by Darkelve on Sun 13th May 2007 08:01 UTC
Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

:o)

This probably is a deliberate attempt by Microsoft to sabotage developers of "Free Software", by making said developers spill coffee or other liquids on their keyboards in laughter or rage.

Reply Score: 3

Linux does not exist
by zerohalo on Sun 13th May 2007 10:52 UTC
zerohalo
Member since:
2005-07-26

I'd say my laptop runs pretty well considering the OS on it is non-existent. Congratulations, Linus, for creating the first fully functional non-existent OS ever!

Reply Score: 2

The real story
by Thulemanden on Sun 13th May 2007 11:09 UTC
Thulemanden
Member since:
2006-07-07

He forgets that people don't want MS OS - they want to be able to run their preferred applications. As for now most need to pay MS for running their games but more games would be sold if users didn't need to spend money on MS OS. Thus developers should invest in BSD/Linux games.

If people could choose between a commercial OS of one or two free ones that could run the same applicatins, what would they choose?

Reply Score: 2

Freedom
by andrewg on Sun 13th May 2007 11:20 UTC
andrewg
Member since:
2005-07-06

Many including Torvalds like the GPL because it is a better way to develop software and it protects his work from leachers. Many including FSF supporters believe that there is a RIGHT to be able to use, study, change and redistribute the software you use. Likely they will also believe that Free software is a superior development model.

Unfortunately Free software makes it difficult to make money because the redistribution part means that IP specifically copyright cannot be used to spread the cost of development across all users. Companies like Redhat can successfully get around this problem by selling support for it on a per seat basis effectively paying for the development and support for each seat by building the development cost into the support cost.

The problem comes in when you make something which is not infratructure type software that does not need support - say a Nero type program. This kind of software has to be sponsored or developed for free (no charge) in the Free software world because no one is going to pay for support. K3B is a good example its continued development is actually paid for by Mandriva.

In conclusion the 4 freedoms the FSF believes you have a RIGHT to end up recucing freedom. In the mind of FSF Adobe has no legitemate right to sell Photoshop to graphic designers - who just want to create digital artwork - without the right for these graphic designers to be able to see the code and redistribute even though they have no interest in modifying the code.

The FSF wishes to limit the ways in which legal "persons" can interact and the nature of the agreements they can reach. In doing so they limit freedom.

P.S. Please not that I have no problem with OSS just the FSF belief in a right to the 4 freedoms. Redhat and Sun are my favourite software companies because they have the most integrity.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Freedom
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 16:18 UTC in reply to "Freedom"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

The FSF wishes to limit the ways in which legal "persons" can interact and the nature of the agreements they can reach. In doing so they limit freedom.

There are several possible responses to this.

1. Let's consider how the FSF speak to this issue:

However, one so-called freedom that we do not advocate is the "freedom to choose any license you want for software you write". We reject this because it is really a form of power, not a freedom.

This oft-overlooked distinction is crucial. Freedom is being able to make decisions that affect mainly you. Power is being able to make decisions that affect others more than you. If we confuse power with freedom, we will fail to uphold real freedom.

Proprietary software is an exercise of power. Copyright law today grants software developers that power, so they and only they choose the rules to impose on everyone else--a relatively few people make the basic software decisions for everyone, typically by denying their freedom.
(*)

2. Freedoms can be enhanced by limiting other freedoms.
"The right to swing my fist ends where the other man's nose begins." -- Oliver Wendell Holmes

3. The FSF may wish to limit something, but most of the limiting will by others, e.g., other free software programmers whose work draws people away from nonfree software.
------------
P.S. Please not that I have no problem with OSS just the FSF belief in a right to the 4 freedoms.

Their belief comes from the U.S. Bill of Rights: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

Of course, the U.S. Constitution _authorizes_ (but does not require) the creation of the artificial monopoly that is copyright, which in principle limits the right to the four freedoms. Software is fundamentally different from whatever the founding fathers had in mind, and the FSF respects this. They simply ask that individuals learn more about issues that will only grow in importance along with the increasing role of software.

(*):http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/freedom-or-power.html

Edited 2007-05-13 16:36

Reply Score: 2

RE: Freedom
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 16:33 UTC in reply to "Freedom"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

The FSF wishes to limit the ways in which legal "persons" can interact and the nature of the agreements they can reach. In doing so they limit freedom.


I like how you specify "legal persons"...you could just have said "corporations" and we'd have understood.

So giving more freedom to users is equivalent for you to limiting freedom, then?

Of course, this isn't true. The GPL isn't reducing freedom, because of provides *more* freedom than simple copyright law allows through fair use. It might give less relicensing options than other licenses, but that is an acceptable limit since it gives much more than what you'd get with normal copyrighted material.

What I understand, though, is that you'd rather limit the freedom of all users in order to give more freedom to a portion of developers, who like to profit from open-source software without giving others the opportunity to likewise profit from their code. I do hope you see the ethical issues with this...

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Freedom
by andrewg on Sun 13th May 2007 19:55 UTC in reply to "RE: Freedom"
andrewg Member since:
2005-07-06

What I understand, though, is that you'd rather limit the freedom of all users in order to give more freedom to a portion of developers, who like to profit from open-source software without giving others the opportunity to likewise profit from their code. I do hope you see the ethical issues with this...

No. There are several false assertions in your statement. It implies that there is some fundamental right to sharing code. There is none.

It implies that because person A makes money developing software that person B has the right to make money from using Person A's work. There is no such right nor is it unethical not to allow person B to benefit financially from your work.

Freedom is allowing two or more parties to enter into an agreement that is beneficial to both parties. Any "right" which prevents this freedom is oppressive.

Seriously how can a developer for an application like kwebdev or bluefish make a living developing such software under the GPL or any free license? They have to rely on donations and sponsorships. Fine if thats the way you like it but not fine for thousands of shareware developers out there.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Freedom
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 20:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Freedom"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

No. There are several false assertions in your statement. It implies that there is some fundamental right to sharing code. There is none.


Incorrect. There is such a fundamental right. However it is also a fact that this right to share works and information has been severely restricted during the last century. But the fundamental right to do so still exists.

It implies that because person A makes money developing software that person B has the right to make money from using Person A's work. There is no such right nor is it unethical not to allow person B to benefit financially from your work.


Of course person B has the right to do so. Person A has no right to control the work the moment he is selling a piece of it. Person A has no right to make such decisions. It is extremely immoral to deny person B the right to modify the work because it belongs to person B 110%. Person A lost the rigth when selling that particular piece of Software. In a free society copyright doesn't exists. Copyright is oppressive.

Freedom is allowing two or more parties to enter into an agreement that is beneficial to both parties.


Slightly incorrect. Freedom is many things. One of them is the right for two or more individuals at equal level to freely enter agreements. However, they have to be at equal level or under no circumstance can it be used to limit the rights of any individual.

One cannot for an example freely enter slavery. Just the same way nobody can freely enter an agreement limiting the freedom of action in any way.

Any right to a person that allows him/her to limit the freedom of action for another person is an oppressive right.

Seriously how can a developer for an application like kwebdev or bluefish make a living developing such software under the GPL or any free license? They have to rely on donations and sponsorships. Fine if thats the way you like it but not fine for thousands of shareware developers out there.


Support. Distribution. Deciding to cease work if nobody will pay. However - you don't know how it works obviously. The developers are not the only individuals to write code for the applications. There are other individuals who submit bug reports, patches and so on. Payment often happens in that way. Via natural resources rather than through the abstraction layer known as "money".

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Freedom
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 22:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Freedom"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

No. There are several false assertions in your statement.


Actually, there aren't.

It implies that there is some fundamental right to sharing code. There is none.


I did not imply there was a fundamental right to sharing code. Rather, *you* erroneously inferred this.

I do, however, define the ability to access code as a freedom. The ability to relicense code is also a freedom, which can affect the first one.

You're the one bringing fundamental rights into this, btw. I'm not. The only fundamental right that we should talk about is the right to license your copyrighted work as you please. That's the only right that matters.

It implies that because person A makes money developing software that person B has the right to make money from using Person A's work.


What implies this? My statement? Or what you inferred my statement meant? I've never implied that because person A makes money developing software that person B has the same right. I take exception to you claiming that this is what I said without having the decency to explain the logical reasoning behind this.

There is no such right nor is it unethical not to allow person B to benefit financially from your work.


You're not making sense here. If you're saying that it is ethical to prevent person B from benefiting financially from your work, then we are in agreement, and that does not disagree with what I said. That's the essence of copyright.

By granting *more* rights than what you would receive normally through copyright law, the GPL offers *more* freedom than simple copyright.

Freedom is allowing two or more parties to enter into an agreement that is beneficial to both parties. Any "right" which prevents this freedom is oppressive.


...but no one is force to adopt a free license, there is therefore nothing that prevents the parties from freely entering that agreement.

On the other hand, if the parties freely enter an agreement using the GPL, which they consider to be beneficial to both parties, it would be against their rights for a third party not to respect it. The GPL is therefore *not* oppressive, because it respects the wishes of the copyright holder and those who accept the implicit agreement in it.

Seriously how can a developer for an application like kwebdev or bluefish make a living developing such software under the GPL or any free license? They have to rely on donations and sponsorships. Fine if thats the way you like it but not fine for thousands of shareware developers out there.


That is completely irrelevant. If the kwebdev or bluefish author chose the GPL, that's because they were fine with the conditions of the license.

If *you* don't like the GPL or free licences for *your* projects, that's fine, but to go around and claim that it takes away freedom is nonsensical. It is the copyright holder's choice, and it gives *more* freedom than a simple copyright license.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Freedom
by andrewg on Mon 14th May 2007 18:11 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Freedom"
andrewg Member since:
2005-07-06

I think we actually agree on most things. In many instances I think the GPL is a good choice for a license as in say Redhat's model.

So I am not against free software at all. I am against the assertion that software must be free as defined by the FSF. I really did try to emphasize that is was the assertion of a right to all software being free as defined by the FSF that I did not agree with.

So in summary free software is great I just don't think appropriate in many situations and I don't think all software must be free.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Freedom
by archiesteel on Mon 14th May 2007 23:37 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Freedom"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Indeed, we seem to mostly agree. I also do not believe all software necessarily needs to be free, although I do believe that most should.

Reply Score: 2

Microsoft FNORD Lab
by Havin_it on Sun 13th May 2007 11:34 UTC
Havin_it
Member since:
2006-03-10

Sooo... This guy is touring the globe on the expense account from Microsoft's Linux Lab, telling anyone who cares that Linux doesn't exist?

Is he going to have a job to come back to? Or will the whole building have winked out of existence?

Reply Score: 2

May I suggest
by twenex on Sun 13th May 2007 11:36 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

...another headline: "Microsoft director out to make fool of himself"?

Oh wait, that isn't news.

Reply Score: 3

The logic of the posting
by Thulemanden on Sun 13th May 2007 11:36 UTC
Thulemanden
Member since:
2006-07-07

I have a couple of problems with the logic of the original posting.

If Linux is 'dead' because of a few paid developers, what is Microsoft Windows, with it's thousands of developers?

And if the Linux-philosophy was weak, as MS has pointed out often, they should be sorry not happy that 'Linux is dead' (if this were the case) because the paid developer solution creates more threats.

Reply Score: 2

go back to work!
by Rasmus on Sun 13th May 2007 11:41 UTC
Rasmus
Member since:
2005-11-12

OK, he got us wound up. We better go back to work or he won't keep talking badly about us! /rasmus

Reply Score: 2

xD
by SK8T on Sun 13th May 2007 12:36 UTC
SK8T
Member since:
2006-06-01

that's a very bad joke xD

open source projects like Ubuntu, Firefox, Ecplise or Joomla get more and more users in our Time.

That's just advertising on a very bad and stupid way by Microsofts director.

Reply Score: 2

Ruby, Python, SBCL, ... are also open source
by dimosd on Sun 13th May 2007 13:55 UTC
dimosd
Member since:
2006-02-10

and they couldn't be anything but open source (and BSD-like, probably) or they wouldn't succeed.
Huge financial investments were not a critical factor in their success, either.

Open source is a tool, not just an OS, a GUI or a <sic> movement.

Reply Score: 2

More garbage from Hilf
by abraxas on Sun 13th May 2007 14:19 UTC
abraxas
Member since:
2005-07-07

I stopped reading after this little tidbit:

Hilf said that the Linux phenomenon had nothing to do with Linux, but rather it had a lot to do with Apache, MySQL and PHP. It was those applications which pulled Linux up with it, the "Visual Basic of open source."

It doesn't make much sense to me considering all of those things run on Windows also. There has to be another reason why Linux became as popular as it is. My guess is it is exactly the opposite of what Hilf says. Linux is as popular as it is because of Freedom and GNU. Otherwise why isn't BeOS or FreeBSD nearly as popular as Linux?

Reply Score: 3

Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by MollyC on Sun 13th May 2007 15:06 UTC
MollyC
Member since:
2006-07-04

Those of you dismissing Bill Hilf as an idiot or whatever are very much mistaken.

Read some of his writings here:
http://port25.technet.com/default.aspx (The homepage for MS OSS Lab)
and his bio:
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/community/tnradio/bio/billhilf.msp...
(he used to lead IBM's OSS effort, and OSS devotees *love* IBM, right?)

Hilf looks at OSS from a pragmatic point of view, not a religious one. He knows more than most here about how OSS works in the real world and in real business. Dismiss him at your peril!! :p

Reply Score: 1

RE: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by sbergman27 on Sun 13th May 2007 15:23 UTC in reply to "Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
Hilf looks at OSS from a pragmatic point of view, not a religious one. He knows more than most here about how OSS works in the real world and in real business. Dismiss him at your peril!!
"""

Upon rare occasion, I sometimes do find myself in agreement with a post by MollyC, and this would seem to be one of those times.

It would never occur to me to call Bill Hilf stupid.

In fact, what I find most disturbing about this article is that there is no way in the world that Bill could fail to know that some of the things that he is saying are bold faced lies. Perhaps I'm being old-fashioned to be disappointed by such a complete lack of personal integrity.

But somehow it would be less disappointing if he were some other guy who might simply be misguided, while believing what he said.

But Bill knows good and well what FOSS is and that the fact that a lot of it contains contributions from commercial entities is totally orthogonal to the fact of its being FOSS.

Edited 2007-05-13 15:25

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 17:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

But somehow it would be less disappointing if he were some other guy who might simply be misguided, while believing what he said.

Indeed. However, ethics never has been sexy; we are too blinded in our (evolved) obsession with brains, beauty, athleticism, money, etc. Microsoft has always exploited this masterfully, and Hilf is just parroting their party line.

Of course, there is no basis to expect ethics to come along with, say, intellectual ability, so this Hilf thing is completely unsurprising.

Edited 2007-05-13 17:31

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by PlatformAgnostic on Sun 13th May 2007 21:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

I don't think Bill Hilf is lying. He may have phrased things poorly, but he was making a point to a bunch of IT people who run government and corporate networks. The tools used for those environments are produced (or at least validated) by companies, the support is provided by companies, and the pay is provided to those companies.

You could see this as a sigh of relief from Microsoft. They were afraid that somehow people would be getting good desktop software for free and that the community would be able to support average customers. The constant drumbeat of Year of the Linux Desktop and consistent setbacks to this effort have shown to them that their worst fear is not going to come true for at least a long while, if it ever happens. This is what he means by the Free Software Movement being dead.

Is he right? I think it's too soon to tell, and I would not like to see OSS die in the Operating Systems space because I think someone needs to stay around to keep Microsoft in particular, and proprietary vendors in general, honest. I don't think OSS has been or will be leading the way in any macro-scale advances in computing, except maybe as a cheap infrastructure tool for others to build network applications (this is an area in which Linux obviously has no rivals so far except the BSDs).

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by anda_skoa on Sun 13th May 2007 21:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

He may have phrased things poorly, but he was making a point to a bunch of IT people who run government and corporate networks.


He has phrased it exactly the way he intended to, because he was "making a point to a bunch of IT people who run government and corporate networks".

He intentionally created the impression that the Free software movement in general and Linux in particular, were somehow opposed to commercial interests or even payed-for software development.

He intentionally distorted the image of the Free software movement as a "software for free" movement, in order to "prove" that it has obviously failed to live up to its own goals.

I wish he had been lying, because lies can be fought with truth.

A distorted reality based on true facts (e.g. people being employed to work on the Linux kernel) combined with unbased implications, makes people without enough background for cross-checking believe that the unspoken of base of the implications would also be true (e.g. wrongly asssuming that the Free software movements goal would be to create software for free)

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by b3timmons on Sun 13th May 2007 22:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
b3timmons Member since:
2006-08-26

I don't think Bill Hilf is lying.

Hilf is equivocating, though he clearly needs more lessons from the other Bill. Note that Bill Gates was raised by lawyers, so his ability to handle language is likely far beyond most anyone, and it surely rubs off on his executives.

To be fair, no corporation is in the business of truth, but hardly any can twist it as well as Hilf's employer.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by archiesteel on Sun 13th May 2007 16:24 UTC in reply to "Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

He is not stupid, he is disingenuous.

I wouldn't say he looks at it from a pragmatic point of view, though. He looks at it from a pro-MS PR point of view, and that's *just* as bad as a religious one, because it's concerned with propaganda, not truth.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Bill Hilf isn't stupid
by dylansmrjones on Sun 13th May 2007 20:01 UTC in reply to "Bill Hilf isn't stupid"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Of course he is not stupid. He is very clever about doing misrepresenting something completely. Very very devilish.

He doesn't have a pragmatic point about FLOSS at all. He is almost religious in his description of FLOSS, spreading FUD as much as he can.

How can it possibly be "pragmatic" to completely misrepresent FLOSS. All he writes is 180 degress from the truth about FLOSS.

Come on. "Linux is dead" ... pragmatic my ass. A person pragmatic about FLOSS is someone like me, who don't mind using proprietary software when it is better. Like nVidias proprietary driver for Linux. It's better than the FLOSS driver. Nothing rivals Adobes flash plug-in (yet).

EDIT: The fact he used to lead IBM's FLOSS effort only proves it is correct of us to be ambivalent about IBM. FLOSS "devotees" definitely don't love IBM. But I think most geeks appreciate the software coming from IBM. We are pragmatic enough to see that.

Of course, it is perfectly possible that his personal view on FLOSS is pragmatic, but this nonsense he is saying here is not the least bit pragmatic.

Edited 2007-05-13 20:03

Reply Score: 4

Interesting
by Headrush on Sun 13th May 2007 15:39 UTC
Headrush
Member since:
2006-01-03

I find it "interesting" that a non-OSS based company like Microsoft needs to be delivering speeches about OSS.

If just that fact alone doesn't raise suspicion from any listeners, then chances aren't you couldn't educate them anyways.

Sign me up for when MS does the circuit with the "Why OS X can't be used for business" lecture too!

Edited 2007-05-13 15:47

Reply Score: 2

bla bla bla
by Edward on Sun 13th May 2007 16:01 UTC
Edward
Member since:
2005-09-17

If MS is so worried about OSS taking over, which is apparent, why don't they start developing better software? Vista is not a good os from what I have heard, if they were more conserned about creating a good secure stable OS it would be a lot better. It sucks they rush out the next OS to make some $$ as soon as they can.

Reply Score: 2

lol, is that why we don't trust m$ ?
by troc on Sun 13th May 2007 16:06 UTC
troc
Member since:
2006-05-01

They alls spend a week in "antitrust training"

Reply Score: 1

Nothing New
by segedunum on Sun 13th May 2007 16:09 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't know why people think there's a whole load of controversy over this statement from an employee at Microsoft who is supposed to go out and understand what open source is for them. This is exactly the same view of open source software that Microsoft has had for eight or nine years, ever since it shockingly appeared on their radar.

The fact is, even after all this time and many attempts to understand it, Microsoft just has a fundamental and totally unfixable philosophy and comprehension problem of open source software and how it is developed.

The problem for Microsoft is the same one I've described before. They are absolutely, so desperate it's unreal, to get the message over to people that the vast majority of people using open source software are paying money for it. This is not only because it validates their own business model, but they are trying to reassure themselves of something that pretty much terrifies them really.

That is, if an OEM, business or organisation can, off their own bat, download a CD ISO of an operating system, burn it and install it on all their PCs and they find out that it is good enough - there are applications, they can develop software for it with APIs and documentation that work, there is a growing pool of third-party software they can download and buy....... If that really and truly were to be the case then it would blow Microsoft's own cash cows of Office and especially Windows totally out of the water and the house of cards things like Visual Studio and Windows Server are built on. The concept of client/server licenses would be gone, as would Client Access Licenses which hold back people from using Terminal Services, you could mount a drive with your applications on and run them from there - it would all be accepted.

Don't fool yourselves. Those comments from Bill Hilf are about Microsoft reassuring their own paranoia rather than sending out a message to anyone.

Reply Score: 5

I got it!
by whitespiral on Sun 13th May 2007 17:46 UTC
whitespiral
Member since:
2005-08-04

This whole interview makes sense once you exchange Linux for Microsoft, and open source for close source.

Reply Score: 1

Just wait
by sorpigal on Sun 13th May 2007 20:51 UTC
sorpigal
Member since:
2005-11-02

The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy defines Microsoft executives as "a bunch of mindless jerks who'll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes."

Reply Score: 3

Wow, this sounds familiar!
by brewmastre on Mon 14th May 2007 11:53 UTC
brewmastre
Member since:
2006-08-01

Flashback to another comment of mine in April:

I am starting to think that there is a connection between Baghdad Bob (Iraqi Disinformation Officer) and Microsoft Bob. I think that MS Bob may be a real person that works within the MS Public Relations Dept. His only job is to spread overly optimistic news about MS and anti-alternate OS information to the media. "Vista is the greatest Operating System ever made. I keep hearing people talk about this 'Linux' thing, but I just want to assure you that it does not exist, and if it does, it certainly isn't usable."

Reply Score: 1

more FUD
by Robocoastie on Mon 14th May 2007 13:54 UTC
Robocoastie
Member since:
2005-09-15

more FUD from MSFT is all. The Ubuntu movement has become a tidal wave especially as people have seen how beefy a system Vista needs while Linux can do the same things even prettier on far less hardware. Slap U/Kubuntu on a rig with the Fluendo codec licenses and they have a complete Windows replacement.

Reply Score: 1

LOL
by Hands on Mon 14th May 2007 15:24 UTC
Hands
Member since:
2005-06-30

Hilf accused his former employers, IBM, of starting a standards war simply because they wanted a part of the Office market. People do not want ODF (Open Document Format), but they want a way to control the information they create, he claimed.

"Standards is the first thing you go to in the competitive strategy playbook. Of course, IBM and Sun won't say that on the record. You create a problem that didn't exist and use standards to force a problem," he said.


Controlling information is great when you're talking about databases and spreadsheets, but formatting adds meaning to information in all contexts. Formatting is especially important when dealing with information that isn't easily restructured. Standards and protocols are what add "formatting" to information.

It's easy to understand what how important formatting can be when you look at a grammatical example.

Joe threw some food up on the shelf.
Joe threw up some food on the shelf.

It's the same information. So, why should I care about formatting?

I take issue with Microsoft [employees] acting like they have made things so easy for everyone by creating monopolies that place obstacles in the way of being productive. Linux has many strengths that aren't available with Microsoft products, but if it weren't for OOo and ODF, I wouldn't have a full-featured native office suite for Linux because Microsoft won't release Office on Linux. (I realize that Koffice and other options have been improving, but nothing other than OOo is an option for me yet). Even if Microsoft did release Office for Linux, there would be no guarantees for the future. ODF provides a much better future for information.

Reply Score: 3

"Even linus has got a job today"
by lanjoe9 on Wed 16th May 2007 04:10 UTC
lanjoe9
Member since:
2005-10-08

Wh'?
Didn't you know?
Oh, haha.
No, seriously.

It's a joke right??

C'mon, say it's a joke!
Linus has had a job in Transmeta since quite a long time, hasn't he?

You mean, in order to be in the movement, you're not supposed to have a job at all?

Yyyeah rrriiiighhhttttt!!!!

Oh come on, say it's a joke. Such a moron.

Reply Score: 1