[Linux-aus] Nomination for Ordinary Committee Members

Jon maddog Hall maddog at li.org
Fri Jan 6 10:48:02 UTC 2006

purserj at k-sit.com said:
> Apart from that I get what you're saying, but we seem to be caught in a catch
> 22 situation. The companies say they wont develop for linux until there is a
> market, and the market wont exist until people start seeing that there are
> alternatives.

brent.wallis at gmail.com said:
> I think the only downside we face is that market forces in this situation are
> "slow" and sometimes it looks like nothing is happening....but for all of you
> who have worked on and/or used/deployed Linux in the last 10 years... ponder
> where we are now when compared to 1995...

> If you don;t feel warm and fuzzy after doing that I would hazzard a guess
> that you are probably not of this earth... :-)

> I don;t know of any other collaborative and complex human endeavour that as
> come so far in such a short time! 

I have to agree with Brent.  I have been in the commercial computer space for
thirty-five years, and I have never seen a movement gather pace as rapidly as
this....especially one that is "grass roots" and has virtually no marketing
budget as a "business".  I have never seen an operating system improve as
rapidly, move into so many spaces (embedded, Supercomputer, server and desktop),
or have as much great functionality added to it in such a short time.

I also see that a trend that shows that proprietary software is meeting less and
less of the total market needs, and that service for that proprietary software
is getting worse and worse.  When was the last time you got a human on a
service line, or got a real patch for your problems when you needed it?

For a lot of us who have been in the FOSS market a long time, it may seem
like it is taking forever, but if you look really close, FOSS is coming at you
from a lot of different ways.  It is kind of like the Indians in the old wild
west movies.....for a long time there are none to be seen, but all of a sudden
ten thousand of them come up over the rise.

Brent made another good point about the release of Vista.  MS has continually
talked about the TCO of going to Linux from their own products (which people
already own and know how to use).  Well going to Vista will raise their TCO,
and I think a lot of companies and people will think that this might be a good
time to go to FOSS.

In addition, MS is all over the map with their "futures".  Is their future
going to be Vista?  Web services?  Consumer products?  People, and particularly
business people, want Control.  They want to be able to plan.  And they do not
like surprises.  It is the control that they like about FOSS.

Jon "maddog" Hall
Executive Director           Linux International(R)
email: maddog at li.org         80 Amherst St. 
Voice: +1.603.672.4557       Amherst, N.H. 03031-3032 U.S.A.
WWW: http://www.li.org

Board Member: Uniforum Association, USENIX Association

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