Linked by Eugenia Loli on Thu 29th Jun 2006 01:33 UTC
Linux Linux has one, last, chance to become the No1 OS in a particular consumer-oriented market (not counting servers): the mobile phone market. The open nature and yes, the hype around Linux has made lots of mobile-oriented companies to consider using Linux for their next-generation cellphones. But there is a major problem on the way to success, a problem which is created not by Linux itself, but by the greed and close-mindness of these same companies that endorse Linux.
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Eugenia is so right
by binarycrusader on Thu 29th Jun 2006 02:25 UTC
binarycrusader
Member since:
2005-07-06

Normally I don't agree with Eugenia at all and we have exchanged some mild unpleasantries in the past -- yet I think she is 100% right about this situation.

As the maintainer of a free-as-in-beer but closed-source Adventure Game Runtime engine port for Linux, I have lamented for years over the fact that Linux is not a PLATFORM. The lack of stable, standard, well-documented APIs and even the small differences between distributions make application development on Linux a headache at best.

This problem isn't limited to the mobile platform, although it seems to be the worst there. I also find it hilarious that they would consider Java to be the only acceptable solution in the mobile environment. Embedded platforms are the perfect place for native applications when it comes to performance. In addition, until the Java Mobile platform is standardized better, your application being written in Java doesn't mean much at all.

Mobile phone vendors who have their own Linux distributions and others seem to lack the most basic understanding of the release engineering principles seen in quality projects such as OpenBSD, FreeBSD, Solaris and other older operating systems. The Computer Research Group where BSD originated had fine examples of what should be done to help establish a platform. It's amazing how many people today ignore the lessons of the past in the name of progress. It seems mobile phone vendors are more concerned about their profits in the short-term then establishing a viable long-term platform for their users (not so surprising).

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