Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Community Debates M$'s Open-Source Agenda

Filed under
Microsoft

Analysts and insiders-including Linus Torvalds-say they think that Microsoft's move to start a dialogue with the open-source community shows that the company is recognizing that open source has real, lasting value.

After a series of friendly moves towards open-source developers, Microsoft Corp. has talked with Michael Tiemann, president of the Open Source Initiative and vice president of open-source affairs at Linux vendor Red Hat Inc., about meeting with him to "begin a productive conversation" between proponents of open source and Microsoft.

What could Microsoft have to talk about with the open-source community?

Well, for one thing, Microsoft might be trying to cool off the high emotions flying between fans of open source and of Microsoft.

"It appears that Microsoft is attempting to change the environment from its currently highly charged, highly emotional state to something more constructive," said Dan Kusnetzky, IDC's system software vice president.

Linus Torvalds, primary creator of Linux, said he would welcome such a change.

"Hey, I'm all for being friendly," Torvalds said. "To me, Microsoft has never been the competition, and it's never been a Linux vs. Microsoft thing, despite that obviously having been how a lot of people end up slanting it."

Microsoft may also have developers within it that truly want to contribute to open source.

"Non-constructive executive rhetoric aside, there are substantial bodies of people within Microsoft that either already have or are ready to make good faith contributions to the open-source world," said Stephen O'Grady, a software analyst for RedMonk.

Tiemann of Red Hat even went so far as to suggest that the Microsoft Shared Source program represents "an attempt to quell an internal civil war" at Microsoft.

George Weiss, a Gartner Inc. vice president and distinguished analyst, said he doesn't buy this theory: "The people I know at Microsoft feel like they're part of an elite and they're proud of their work. Yes, some of them have interest in open source, but I don't see an internal divide with two camps warring with each other in Microsoft."

Instead, Weiss said he believes that Microsoft is trying diplomacy with the open-source community because the Redmond, Calif.-headquartered company has "recognized that they have to play in an eclectic world, which includes open source."

Now, this "doesn't change Microsoft's basic business premise or its position on intellectual property or its business model, but they realize that they have to play with the open-source world to be successful," Weiss said.

Yankee Group Research Inc. analyst Laura DiDio agrees.

Rest of the Story.

More in Tux Machines

Five reasons to switch from Windows to Linux

Linux has been in the ascendancy ever since the open source operating system was released, and has been improved and refined over time so that a typical distribution is now a polished and complete package comprising virtually everything the user needs, whether for a server or personal system. Much of the web runs on Linux, and a great many smartphones, and numerous other systems, from the Raspberry Pi to the most powerful supercomputers. So is it time to switch from Windows to Linux? Here are five reasons why. Read more

today's leftovers

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

Security Leftovers

  • Chrome vulnerability lets attackers steal movies from streaming services
    A significant security vulnerability in Google technology that is supposed to protect videos streamed via Google Chrome has been discovered by researchers from the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Cyber Security Research Center (CSRC) in collaboration with a security researcher from Telekom Innovation Laboratories in Berlin, Germany.
  • Large botnet of CCTV devices knock the snot out of jewelry website
    Researchers have encountered a denial-of-service botnet that's made up of more than 25,000 Internet-connected closed circuit TV devices. The researchers with Security firm Sucuri came across the malicious network while defending a small brick-and-mortar jewelry shop against a distributed denial-of-service attack. The unnamed site was choking on an assault that delivered almost 35,000 HTTP requests per second, making it unreachable to legitimate users. When Sucuri used a network addressing and routing system known as Anycast to neutralize the attack, the assailants increased the number of HTTP requests to 50,000 per second.
  • Study finds Password Misuse in Hospitals a Steaming Hot Mess
    Hospitals are pretty hygienic places – except when it comes to passwords, it seems. That’s the conclusion of a recent study by researchers at Dartmouth College, the University of Pennsylvania and USC, which found that efforts to circumvent password protections are “endemic” in healthcare environments and mostly go unnoticed by hospital IT staff. The report describes what can only be described as wholesale abandonment of security best practices at hospitals and other clinical environments – with the bad behavior being driven by necessity rather than malice.
  • Why are hackers increasingly targeting the healthcare industry?
    Cyber-attacks in the healthcare environment are on the rise, with recent research suggesting that critical healthcare systems could be vulnerable to attack. In general, the healthcare industry is proving lucrative for cybercriminals because medical data can be used in multiple ways, for example fraud or identify theft. This personal data often contains information regarding a patient’s medical history, which could be used in targeted spear-phishing attacks.
  • Making the internet more secure
  • Beyond Monocultures
  • Dodging Raindrops Escaping the Public Cloud