[Linux-aus] Open source: time for a name change?

Dan Shearer dan at shearer.org
Wed Aug 6 14:41:01 UTC 2003

On Wed, Aug 06, 2003 at 03:14:15PM +1000, John Knight wrote:
> Layman's terms, what about 'Open Software'? Only a
> slight change, but it might desribe it better.

In corporate and government, the word "Open" is not very helpful. 
Most software producers describe their products as open, and
that includes Microsoft. Have a look at the advertising for their 
server-side suites.

To the corporate-it-officer-in-the-street, anything with "Open" in it is
verging on the banal until they begin to get some grasp of what is

Until a person reaches that point, what better word do we currently have
than "Linux" or "Linux-style" to describe Open Source, from OpenBSD
through to Cygwin? Greg, you started this thread -- can you improve on

I wonder if it is a solution that works because it seems to irritate all
technical people about equally: the FSF dislikes it, BSD people dislike
it, Microsoft dislikes it, fans of Solaris and other Unix variants
dislike it, and even SCO dislike being called Linux. But non-technical
and mildly technical people have no problem understanding it, and the
media loves it.

Who seriously thinks they have a chance of altering this worldwide

Dan Shearer
dan at shearer.org

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